Recognizing distinguished alumni from Oceanside High School
he second oldest of four siblings, Dr. Phil Wandschneider was born in northern Minnesota. With economic opportunities on the horizon, his family arrived in Oceanside on Halloween Day 1952. He completed his entire K-12 education in the Oceanside Unified School District, attending Ditmar Elementary School and Lincoln Junior High before officially becoming an Oceanside High School Pirate. A member of the OHS varsity basketball team and the French Club, he graduated ranked third in his class and was the recipient of the Bank of America Award in Math and Science his senior year. In 1969, Dr. Wandschneider earned his B.A. in Psychology with an emphasis in economics from Occidental College. That same year, he joined the Peace Corps, spending two years stationed near Mt. Kenya working in cotton production and youth agricultural programs. The unique experience of living in Kenya required crossing the equator to get to and from work and home each day. He married his college sweetheart, Mary Rosengrant, in Nairobi toward the end of his stay. A subsequent trip to Oregon and a life-changing meeting with an agricultural economist inspired his own interests in the field of economic development. Pursuing his lifelong ambition to become a college professor, he earned his Master’s in Economics in 1977, and four years later completed his Ph.D. in Agricultural Economics at Michigan State University. During a six-year period at MSU (1973-79), Dr. Wandschneider worked as a Research and Teaching Assistant. Since 1979 he has served as a faculty member at Washington State University in Pullman, where he continues to help shape and inspire future economists as a Professor of Sustainable Development in the School of Economic Sciences. He and Mary have three sons. One was born with profound disabilities and died in March 2011 just short of his 36th birthday. Their other two sons, Dan and John, live in Portland, Oregon. Dan works for a leading chemistry software firm, while John pursues a still wide-open future.