MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (WBOY) — Due to proposed program cuts at West Virginia University, alumni of the school are seeking help and guidance from a statewide nonprofit organization, Create West Virginia.
According to Create West Virginia’s website, the organization’s primary goal is to promote entrepreneurship, innovation, and economic development across the state.
Both alumni and university stakeholders met Wednesday in the parlor of the First Presbyterian Church in Morgantown to share ideas and visions to help move the university forward. Those who were unable to attend one of the four sessions in person were given the opportunity to digitally through Zoom.
“People have been talking about the financial difficulties they were facing, but for every challenge, there are a number of responses, and I think some of the most important stuff that we’ve heard about so far has been to, we need a serious outside the organization accounting of where the money has gone and then we need some serious reconsideration of solutions to this problem,” said Rebecca Kimmons, a founding member of Create West Virginia and also a WVU Alum 1971.
Kimmons said that what happens at WVU—which she emphasized is the flagship university of the Mountain State—is important to the future generations of West Virginians and the culture at large. She said that some of the graduates have expressed that they want a university where they can design majors that speak to the things that they are interested in and the things that are happening in the world of innovation.
There’s not just one solution and several of the people that we spoke with have said, you know, has anyone looked carefully at the Administration Cost? Some people are making very, very, very good salaries at WVU’s administration. Possibly, you know, I think one university, I think maybe even Marshall University gave an across-the-board cut of 10%. Everybody shared in the sacrifice. Has that been considered at West Virginia University? And if it were, what kind of savings will there be? We’ve heard that there is mistrust in the legislature, that perhaps they’re not on board with some of the decisions at WVU. I don’t know about that, but if it’s true, it certainly needs to be addressed upfront. So, we’re quite certain that there’s a lot of brain power that resides in the alumni of West Virginia University and we are starting the process of engaging those brains and true leadership is collaborative and humble so that’s what we’re asking for is for the leadership, the authorities to listen with humility.
Representatives of Create West Virginia said that the results from the meeting’s surveys will be put together and presented to the board of governors on Friday, Sept. 8.
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