16 Oct

Photography by Jolita Dural

On Thursday, October 15, nearly 20 WVU Tech faculty members, staff and students laced up their sneakers and took to Martin Field to face off in an Ultimate Frisbee match.

Hosted by the WVU Tech Sports Studies Club, the match pitted faculty against students in a friendly game designed to get attendees outside and interacting with the club.

Laura Spiers, teaching assistant professor in the Sports Studies department and advisor to the Sports Studies Club, said that the event was one of many the organization plans for the year to both get students involved and increase the visibility of the club on campus.

“We thought it was important to get students out here to do something active, connect with faculty and learn more about the club,” said Spiers. “We’re very pleased with the turnout and hope to do more of this kind of event throughout the year.”

The group has a number of events planned, including Tech madness on October 22, intramural events and a shoe drive that has currently surpassed its donation goal and will run until November 15.

LaKisha Adkins, an athletic coaching education major and basketball player at WVU Tech, said that being a member of the Sports Studies Club has motivated her to get involved.

“We have a lot of different students in the group, so it’s been nice to meet new people and to work on projects that keep us involved with different things around campus,” she said.

Spiers said that the Sports Studies Club is always accepting new students. Interested students can contact Spiers at lspiers@mail.wvu.edu. The group meets every other Thursday at 12:30 p.m. in the Baisi Athletic Center Hall of Fame Room.

Students won the match 10-6. A rematch (at the demand of the faculty team) is scheduled for the spring semester.

Check out photos from the event on Flickr.

16 Oct

Students interested in careers in engineering and science will have an opportunity to connect with regional employers during the WVU Tech Engineering, Technology and Sciences Career Fair October 21-22.

The event will welcome area employers to meet with students and alumni to discuss employment and internship opportunities. Employers will host booths on Wednesday, October 21 and Thursday, October 22 from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. on the first floor of the Engineering Laboratory building.

“We want to ensure that our students are able to put the education they’re receiving here into practice,” said WVU Tech Dean of Students Richard Carpinelli. “That translates to professional development and networking opportunities outside of the classroom. It is important that we showcase our students so that employers are able to experience first-hand how valuable WVU Tech students are in the workforce.”
Carpinelli said the fair is open to all students, including those who are simply curious about regional job opportunities.

“Career fairs like these also serve as valuable opportunities for students to explore career options and fine-tune their job-seeking skills. Many of our students are able to find full-time employment through these fairs even before they graduate,” said Carpinelli.

Job-seeking students can also visit the Student Life website to explore career resources, including interview and cover letter writing tips, helpful websites and job listings.

The event will connect students to the following regional employers:

Wednesday, October 21
American Electric Power
Neff, Longest & Beam
CDI Engineering
Reynolds American

Thursday, October 22
American Electric Power
Federal Corrections – Beckley
Joint Warfare Analysis Center
K&K Technical Group
Reynolds American
Toyota Motor Manufacturing West Virginia

American Electric Power will have on-campus interviews on Friday, October 23.

16 Oct

WVU Tech’s peer tutors are a rare breed. Half student, half teacher, these volunteers excel in their fields and still find the time to help others do the same. This October 19-23, WVU Tech is celebrating Tutor Appreciation Week to recognize those tutors who give of their time and talents to help other students succeed in the classroom.

Throughout the week, the Student Success Center (SSC) and Student Support Services (SSS) are teaming up to offer events and contests (see schedule below) that honor WVU Tech’s tutors and give students a chance to show their appreciation for these dedicated students.

“Peer tutoring is a powerful tool for college students because it offers so many benefits,” said Kelly Hudgins, Director of the WVU Tech Student Success Center. “It reinforces foundational concepts and teaches students study skills they’ll use in every subject. It boosts confidence, which leads to better grades and a higher likelihood that students will retain what they learn.”

“We’re excited to celebrate our tutors – not just this week, but every day they take the time to sit down and help their fellow students,” she said.

The SSS and SSC are also working with the English Department for a weeklong poetry contest. Participants are encouraged to write a poem to thank a tutor, to celebrate how tutoring has helped the writer or to encourage others to give tutoring a try.

Poetry contest forms can be picked up in the English Department’s offices on the third floor of COBE, at the SSC or at the SSS offices on the third floor of Old Main. The contest will offer prizes for first ($50 Barnes and Noble gift certificate), second ($25 Amazon gift certificate) and third place ($15 Dining Dollars to use at the SSC Vending Café). Poems are due to the SSC, office 327 by Wednesday, October 21. Winners will be announced at 1 p.m. during Tutor Bingo on Friday.

Students are also encouraged to write thank-you notes to their tutors by Thursday, October 22. Thank-you cards will available throughout the week at the SSC front desk.

Tutor Appreciation Week schedule of events:

Monday, October 19
Hats off to our tutors!
Wear a WVU Tech hat on campus to show your appreciation for our tutors.

Tuesday, October 20
Donut you know we appreciate you a hole lot!
Meet WVU Tech’s tutors in the SSS lobby (3rd floor, Old Main) for coffee and donuts! From 9 a.m. – 11 a.m.

Thursday, October 22
Thank you Thursday
Thank you notes to tutors will be delivered by SSC staff. Cards will be available at the SSC front desk. Be sure to write your tutor a thank-you note and leave your note at the SSC front desk.

Friday, October 23
Tutor BINGO!
Visit the Bears Den from 11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. for a game of tutor-themed BINGO.

8 Oct

By Rubhi Garcia
Photography by Jolita Dural

WVU Tech started off the month of October with the entertainment of the West Virginia Dance Company and their performance of “Reflections: An Evening of Modern Dance.” This entertaining night was led by performers Aymen Robertson, Hilary J. Freeland, Brittney Fitzgerald, Curtis Johnson, Forrest Hershey and Donald Laney.

The performances were inspired by chapters and collections of quotes from books, films and overheard conversations. The quotes, which served as inspirations for the humorous, dramatic and purely physical short dances, were: “The Ghosts of Insects,” “Erased by Degrees,” “Film Noir,” “Funeral,” “Gravity,” “Rednecks,” “But In The Dark You Only See What Glows,” “Bull Moose Special” and “On Another Day There Was Faith, Hope, and Love.”


After the performance, the WVDC performers took a moment to sit down with the students to answer questions. Students were interested to know how long it took for the dancers to prepare for the dances.

“Because there was some complex choreography, we started preparing around September 17, rehearsing for long hours,” said WVDC dancer Donald Laney.

Students also wanted to know how it felt performing in the WVU Tech Ballroom and sharing their work with this audience in particular.

“It was different, interesting, but a bit intimidating because of the space provided where we get to see you closely just as you can see our performances so close” shared one dancer.


Toneta Akers-Toler, founder and managing artistic director of the WVDC, said that she understands students are under pressure during the school year and she believes that for students to take the time to come and learn about the culture and art of West Virginia is a great way to escape from the monotonous student lifestyle.

Student feedback to the performance was overwhelmingly positive.

3 Oct

WVU Tech and WVU connected with thousands of potential students, community members, business leaders and local officials during a full day of events at the Beckley Campus Kickoff on Saturday, October 3.

The kickoff began at 1 p.m. with an open house for prospective students, who toured campus and met with counselors to explore the admissions process and financial aid. WVU Tech staff and students also provided campus tours to community members, WVU alumni and WVU Tech alumni.

Hank Wright, a 1968 graduate of WVU Tech’s electrical engineering program and a member of the Tech Golden Bear Alumni Association board, travelled to the event from his home in Raleigh, North Carolina. He said the campus tour showcased what he saw as a “wonderful opportunity.”

“All of our alumni can take pride in this facility,” said Wright. “It’s going to go a long way. I think it’s a new beginning, literally, and it’s a chance for alumni to jump in and have a positive impact for the school.”

The University welcomed more than 150 guests to an afternoon ribbon-cutting ceremony celebrating the donation of Nick J. Rahall’s congressional papers to WVU. The collection, which includes 2,000 boxes of testimony, speeches, news releases and other documents from Rahall’s 38 years in office, will be curated and maintained on the WVU Beckley campus.

“This is truly an exciting day for me to see these archives come to WVU in the hands of professionals who can make so much come alive out of old, dusty boxes,” Rahall said. “Once these are on display for future generations, I hope to have a lot to add from a personal standpoint.”


“This is a dream come true. I believe that our university belongs to every citizen in the state. We’re going to plant his flag and our flag through this library. It’s a remarkable opportunity for us,” said WVU President E. Gordon Gee.

“What is important about this collection is what it will offer the students of West Virginia. They can learn things they won’t find in history books or from a Google search. This collection will tell a story that is transformative – they’ll see the living history that will shape policy moving forward,” said Rochelle “Rocky” Goodwin, Senior Associate Vice President for Academic and Public Policy Strategy, John D. Rockefeller IV School of Public Policy and Politics at WVU.

“We’re thrilled that this will bring a vibrancy to learning opportunities for students across West Virginia. This collection will allow our students to know that a kid from West Virginia can change the lives of their neighbors through policy,” she said.

WVU Tech and WVU Beckley Campus President Carolyn Long also announced the opening of a WVU LaunchLab on campus. The lab, already in operation, is designed to offer professional advice and services to help entrepreneurs develop business plans, conduct market research, protect intellectual property, network, attract investors and reach customers.

“The LaunchLab is something we’re very proud to be a part of, and we hope it will help to make Southern West Virginia more prosperous,” Long said.

WVU Tech faculty, staff and students greeted thousands of attendees at the 25th annual Beckley Chili Night, where they hosted family activities and a t-shirt giveaway. WVU Tech Dining Services also competed in the chili cook-off.

28 Sep

Rice Lecture Helps Students Connect to History

Zachary | September 28th, 2015
Rice Lecture

By Rubhi Garcia
Photography by Jolita Dural

This past Thursday, September 24 was an eventful night for WVU Tech as the university welcomed Richard Childress to discuss his lecture “Time, Culture, and Political Choices,” which covered research from his upcoming book, “A Historical Lottery: Europe, Appalachia and Beyond – The Ramsey Family Through 1500 Years of Social and Cultural Change.”

The Rice Lecture, organized by Dr. Melissa Sartore, attracted around 70 attendees to hear Childress and his informative speech on the history of the Ramsey family. Childress shared interesting aspects of the Ramsey family, their journey through migration from Europe into West Virginia and how freedom and religion were fundamental things the family faced.

Although his lecture covered portions of his upcoming book, it is important to acknowledge how history lectures like this help students understand the world as it stands today.

For Dr. Sartore, connecting to the past is important. She said the lecture was a great opportunity to make that connection because it “touched on history, current events, social and political life.” She said that the lecture also benefits students because it provides an opportunity to learn from the past.

Students shared that they enjoyed the lecture and that they were encouraged by professors to attend and learn more about local history.

Visit WVU Tech on Flickr to see photos from the event.

28 Sep

WVU Tech and WVU will host a Beckley Campus Kickoff on Saturday, October 3, to introduce prospective students and the community to the WVU Beckley campus, welcome the newly donated Nick Rahall Congressional Collection and help celebrate the 25th annual Beckley Chili Night.

The day’s activities will begin at 1 p.m. with an open house and campus tours for prospective students and their families. Attendees will meet with admissions and financial aid counselors to explore options for attending WVU Tech.

At 3 p.m., a ribbon-cutting ceremony will be held to celebrate the donation of Congressman Nick J. Rahall’s congressional papers to WVU, including 2,000 boxes of testimony, speeches, news releases and other documents from his four decades in office. The congressional collection will be housed on the WVU Beckley campus.

“Congressman Rahall served the 3rd District and the State of West Virginia very ably and faithfully for almost four decades. His papers assembled from that distinguished career constitute an incredible resource for the study of public policy and the Congress itself,” said WVU President Gordon Gee. “WVU is greatly honored to host his archives and we look forward to working with Mr. Rahall to serve the citizens of southern West Virginia for many years to come.”

The event will also include announcements regarding the opening of a WVU LaunchLab on campus and a significant scholarship endowment recently established by a Beckley-based business. WVU Tech staff will offer alumni and community members guided tours of campus and hand out t-shirts at the 25th annual Beckley Chili Night.

“This event is a perfect opportunity for students, community members and business leaders to see the potential of the WVU Beckley campus and what WVU Tech hopes to accomplish there,” said WVU Tech and WVU Beckley campus president Carolyn Long. “We’re very excited to connect with the community, highlight Congressman Rahall’s generous gift and share news about some projects and partnerships already underway.”

For more information and a full schedule of events, visit wvutech.edu/campuskickoff. Read about the Nick Rahall Congressional Collection on WVU Today.

23 Sep

WV Dance Company to Perform at WVU Tech

Zachary | September 23rd, 2015

WVU Tech will welcome the West Virginia Dance Company on Thursday, October 1 for a 7:30 p.m. performance of “Reflections: An Evening of Modern Dance” in the WVU Tech Center Ballroom.

The upcoming performance will include “Sketches of Fall,” a reflection from Pearl S. Buck’s book, “My Several Worlds,” in which she describes her first experience with fall in West Virginia. WVDC will also showcase a new work, “The Mountains Speak,” a collaborative project among West Virginian artists telling the story of adversity in early 20th Century Appalachia and the role music played in uniting communities. The piece features choreography by Toneta Akers-Toler and Donald Laney, language from West Virginia storyteller Adam Booth and music from fiddle champion Jake Krack and West Virginia-based a cappella group, Bare Bones.

DSC_0004 WVDC’s “Reflections: An Evening of Modern Dance” tells stories in precise movement and rich color. Image courtesy West Virginia Dance Company.

Additional works will include the popular “Spirit Chaser,” an artistic interpretation of a traditional African folktale choreographed by Carli Mareneck to music by Mark Davis, and “Dynamic Equilibrium,” a work based on Asian themes by Heather Taylor-Martin.

Before the performance, WVDC representatives will also conduct a workshop with a Sport Movement Analysis class, where students will learn about body mechanics and how the neurological system acts like a computer to control the human body.

“We work hard to offer opportunities for our students to engage with the arts throughout the year, bringing in musical acts, films, magicians, artists, comedians and performers from a wide range of artistic disciplines. The West Virginia Dance Company is one of the state’s most renowned performance groups, and we’re very excited to welcome them to campus again to bring the art of dance into the classroom and onto our stage,” said Emily Sands, WVU Tech Associate Dean of Students.

Since 1977, WVDC, West Virginia’s only professional touring dance company, has toured throughout WV and 14 other states performing a program of diverse, entertaining and thought provoking modern works. WVDC is also well known for its award-winning arts education program which is offered annually to tens of thousands of WV students.

This program is presented with financial assistance from the West Virginia Division of Culture and History, and the National Endowment for the Arts, with approval from the West Virginia Commission on the Arts. The program is free and open to the public.

For more information about the West Virginia Dance Company, visit wvdanceco.com.

17 Sep

Charleston Gazette-Mail

The third annual West Virginia State Science, Engineering and Art Fair will be held on Friday, Oct. 16, at the Neal D. Baisi Athletic Center on the campus of West Virginia University Institute of Technology in Montgomery.

This day-long competition provides students with an opportunity to display their knowledge and passion for the sciences as well as showing their creative sides. Integrating the arts with sciences and engineering encourages innovativeness, creativity and contextual thinking and gives students the ability to succeed inside and outside of the classroom.

Middle school and high school students throughout the state are encouraged to participate in the event. The fair is broken down into five divisions: Investigatory Project Division – experimental research performed on a particular topic with a display to explain the experiment; Display Project Division – informational poster on a research project in the biological and physical sciences with no experiments performed; Art Division – an art object with a scientific theme; Symposium Division – an oral competition open to students with Investigatory, Display or Submitted Papers projects; and Submitted Papers Division – written report from presentations in the Display, Investigatory, and/or Symposium categories.

Each division will be judged based on a specific set of criteria, and $1,000 scholarships will be awarded to the winners. Students are allowed to compete in as many divisions as they wish.

Another fun but challenging way for all students to get involved is to enter the Olympiad event division.

This competition is open to any student, regardless if he/she has an exhibit entered in the other divisions or not. The name of the Olympiad event this year will be “Fun with Chemistry,” and it will include four separate competitions that are both educational and competitive. Certificates of participation will be given out to all participants of this event.

The West Virginia State Science, Engineering and Art Fair is hosted and sponsored by West Virginia University Institute of Technology in partnership with the West Virginia Division of Culture and History and the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission. Registration is free and open to public, private and home school students.

For more information about the science and art fair, a list of rules, applications and a complete schedule, visit http://sciencefair.wvutech.edu.

14 Sep

WVU Tech’s Computer Science program received its initial accreditation from the Computing Accreditation Commission of ABET earlier this month. The approval lifts the number of specially accredited programs in WVU Tech’s Leonard C. Nelson College of Engineering and Sciences to nine, which were all re-accredited during this review. There are only two ABET-accredited computer science programs in the state and both are in the West Virginia University system.

ABET accreditation assures that programs meet standards that produce graduates ready to enter critical technical fields that are leading the way in innovation and emerging technologies. ABET reviews look at program curricula, faculty, facilities and institutional support, and are conducted by teams of highly skilled professionals from industry, academia and government with expertise in the ABET disciplines.

“ABET accreditation is very important because it proves to employers that our graduates have a solid educational foundation and are ready to enter the field of computing,” said Dr. Ranjith Munasinghe, Chair and Professor, Department of Computer Science and Information Systems. “It is international recognition of program quality and assurance that we continuously improve the Computer Science program and promote best educational practices.”

“ABET is a rigorous accrediting body, and its stamp of approval shows that our curriculum is globally competitive. I applaud the faculty who have worked tirelessly to give our students yet another reason to be proud of the education they are earning here – another reason to go out into the workforce with confidence,” said Dr. Zeljko “Z” Torbica, Dean of the Leonard C. Nelson College of Engineering and Sciences at WVU Tech.

In addition to computer science, WVU Tech’s chemical, computer, electrical and mechanical engineering programs are accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET. The University’s civil, electronic and mechanical engineering technology programs are accredited by ABET’s Engineering Technology Accreditation Commission.

ABET, the global accreditor of college and university programs in applied science, computing, engineering, and engineering technology, is a nonprofit, non-governmental organization recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). It currently accredits almost 3,500 programs at nearly 700 colleges and universities in 28 countries. More information about ABET, its member societies and the accreditation criteria used to evaluate programs can be found at www.abet.org.

Read more about WVU Tech’s programs and accreditation at academics.wvutech.edu.

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