Author Archives: Khaliela Wright

About Khaliela Wright

Khaliela Wright holds degrees from the University of Idaho and Washington State University. She lives in Potlatch, where she is employed with the U.S. Census Bureau and teaches courses in economics at Spokane Falls Community College. When not traversing the state for work, Khaliela likes to do so for fun.

Fire, Fire, Everywhere

Abnormally hot weather last June left land across Idaho and in much of the West parched. The daytime highs were above a hundred, unusual for a month that’s typically known for rain. By the first part of July, my parents and grandparents, all of whom live in Bonner County, were talking about the fire at Bayview. Fires don’t generally start that early and it promised to be a long, hot summer. Continue reading

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East Meets West

When University of Idaho foreign exchange student Rafay Adeel arrived from Pakistan at the Moscow-Pullman Airport in August 2014, he had no idea that living, breathing Native Americans still walked the Earth. He thought European immigrants had killed them off years ago, during the Indian Wars, which in the Middle East have become as iconic of the American West as the cowboy. Continue reading

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School’s Out Forever

As this school year drew to a close and my seventeen-year-old son prepared to embark on his senior year, we pondered what he was going to do after high school.

When I was his age, I knew I would be attending the University of Idaho. I never considered any other schools. His future, however, is less certain. While my son busied himself with thoughts of the future, I found myself ruminating over Idaho’s educational past.

America’s well-laid foundations for free public education were not lost on early Idahoans, as I discovered when I decided to research the early days of the University of Idaho. It was established during the fifteenth session of the Legislature of the Territory of Idaho by the Organic Act of 1889, which said, “No student who shall have been a resident of the state for one year next preceding his admission shall be required to pay any fees for his tuition.” I think it’s significant that even before statehood was granted, this concept of a tuition-free university was established. And once statehood was achieved, the Idaho Legislature incorporated the Organic Act into the state constitution. Continue reading

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