Name: Kalina Ebling

Tribe: Quinault Indian Nation

Hometown: I grew up in Moclips, WA before moving to Aberdeen, WA. Right now I live in Pullman year round due to living expenses.

Degree(s) received from WSU, and major and/or minor: My degree is a Master’s in Apparel, Merchandising, Design, and Textiles.

Kalina Ebling
Kalina Ebling, Quinault, will be completing her master’s degree in Apparel, Merchandising, Design and Textiles.  Her cat, Whisper, is rightly very proud of her.

Why did you choose WSU? I decided to attend WSU because of its Apparel Design program. There were several closer options, but they were either too expensive or did not have the greatest reputation.

What did you enjoy most about being a WSU student? My favorite part of being a WSU student was having access to the sewing labs. My favorite part about living in Pullman is having access to Cougar Gold. I honestly can’t say which one had the most influence on my choice to continue my education in order to receive a Master’s degree.

What activities/programs were you involved with while at WSU? Activities? I am a couch potato who spent all my free time reading and playing with my cat. Occasionally I would go so far as to go to a friend’s house to read and play with their cat.

Did any particular WSU program make an impact in your success as a student? The program that had the most impact on my success was actually the Native American Program. Barbara, Ken, and Faith all helped me find and apply for opportunities that allowed me to succeed.

What was your biggest challenge to achieving your education and how did you overcome it? My biggest challenge was overcoming my social anxiety in order to fulfill my goals. I developed severe social anxiety when I was eleven and I could not talk or approach anyone outside my immediate family without suffering debilitating panic attacks. I decided that the life I was living wasn’t the life I wanted, so I decided to use self-administered exposure therapy until I could live a normal life. By the time I graduated from community college I was able to hold conversations with strangers and perform tasks such as buying groceries and ordering food. Thanks to the opportunities given to me by the Native Center, I’ve progressed to the point where I am working on applying for a teaching position abroad.

What are your future plans? I plan on applying for a teaching position abroad. I also plan on creating an online shop selling women’s clothing with pockets. I have had quite enough of fake pockets or tiny useless pockets in my clothes. I shall call it something tacky like “We Have Pockets.”

What advice would you give a freshman? Network with groups on campus. Learn about opportunities. Make friends with someone who has a car. Laminate your notes and study in the hot tubs. If you are in a class with a friend, create a Google doc where you can both take notes. If you’re in an apartment or a dorm with a roommate then make sure you talk to them. Figure out how you want to split the chores and what you are comfortable or uncomfortable with. Learn each other’s allergies. Keep a stash of chocolate next to your alarm clock. Remember: Always put your mental and emotional health first. Good grades are wonderful, but not at the cost of your health.