Three programs share the Canada House heritage building at Western Washington University. Together, these programs champion transboundary teaching and scholarship in the Salish Sea region and across the US-Canada border.
Center for Canadian American Studies
Founded in 1971, the Center for Canadian-American Studies is one of the most well-established Canadian Studies Programs in the United States. The Center has served as a US Department of Education funded National Resource Center for the Study of Canada since 1988, in consortium with the Canada Studies Center at the University of Washington. The Center offers two interdisciplinary academic degrees and relies on courses and faculty from four colleges at WWU: College of Business and Economics, College of Fine and Performing Arts, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, and Huxley College of the Environment. The Center’s director Dr. David Rossiter is a geographer and an associate professor in Environmental Studies at WWU.
Border Policy Research Institute
The Border Policy Research Institute formed in 2005 and supports policy-relevant research on trade and economics, transportation, human mobility, and security along the entire US-Canada border, with a focus on western border regions and the Peace Arch and Pacific Crossing in particular. BPRI Director Dr. Laurie Trautman conducts significant outreach, regularly participating in the Association on Borderlands Studies, the Canada-US Transportation Border Working Group, the Borders in Globalization project, and the Pacific Northwest Economic Region.
Salish Sea Institute
The Salish Sea Institute launched in 2017 with the hiring of the program’s first director, Ginny Broadhurst. The Salish Sea ecoregion crosses the US-Canada border and comprises the Georgia Basin, Puget Sound, the Strait of Juan de Fuca, and the watersheds of many rivers, including the Fraser and the Skagit. The Salish Sea Institute is a hub for leaders, scholars, and comunities working to improve the health of the Salish Sea for future generations. The program is designing Salish Sea Studies curriculum for use across the region, including a minor in Salish Sea Studies at WWU. The Institute also serves as the administrative home of the biannual Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference.
Canada House Programs
In 2017 WWU brought these three programs together to share the Canada House building and a joint staff: Assistant Director Dr. Natalie Baloy, Program Manager Chuck Hart, and Program Assistant Ruth Musonda. Each program offers its own unique strengths and focus areas, and together Canada House Programs enrich transboundary engagement at the heart of the international Salish Sea region. Our interdisciplinary efforts take place on the ancestral and traditional territories of the Lummi Nation and Nooksack Tribe, two of many Coast Salish nations living on the Salish Sea since time immemorial.