August 2010 News Releases

Tuesday August 31, 2010
Contact: Jaye Ike, College of Fine Arts,, 304-696-3296

Faculty member's work on display in Switzerland

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - A member of the faculty at Marshall University has art work on display in an exhibition overseas.

Daniel Kaufmann, assistant professor in the Department of Art and Design, was chosen to show his artwork in reGeneration2: Tomorrow's Photographers Today, which will continue until Sept. 26 at the Muse de l'Elyse, a museum for photography in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Kaufmann's work was selected from among 700 entries submitted by 120 of the world's top photography schools. According to the Muse de l'Elyse's website, the exhibition showcases 80 up-and-coming talents from 30 countries.

Kaufmann said his work in the exhibition is from his series House Home.  The photographs in House Home are digitally constructed from photographs of his home, his friends' homes and objects from many different home-furnishing stores. He said he does not photograph a room in its entirety, but rather in parts that he then uses to construct the images.  When constructing the final images, he uses the same types of compositional and photographic techniques used in commercial photography, advertising and marketing. In the title of the work, House refers to physical construction of the rooms while Home refers to the human imprint on the room.

"The photographs in House Home are inspired by a fantasy of aspirational living in which ideas of home and a person's lifestyle are constructed by purchasing slick, shiny and arguably unnecessary things," Kaufmann said. "I see a person's lifestyle as a  means of forging a sense of self and creating cultural symbols that resonate with personal identity."

Kaufmann said the exhibition will travel for the next five years throughout Europe and the United States with additional stops in China and South Africa. It is expected to make its United States debut at Art Basel Miami Beach in Miami, Fla.

This semester at Marshall, Kaufmann is teaching "Introduction to Photography," "Introduction to Design" and "Advanced Studio Sequence Photography - The Staged Photography Constructed Image."

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Tuesday August 31, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Hispanic Heritage Month at Marshall features four events

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University will celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month with a series of special events on the Huntington campus beginning Wednesday, Sept. 15.

Hispanic Heritage Month, which celebrates the culture of Latin America and Latinos in the United States, is being presented by Marshall's Latin American Program, including the departments of history, geography, modern languages and political science.

As a national event, Hispanic Heritage Month begins in mid-September to commemorate the independence of many Latin American nations from Spain in the 1810s and 1820s, and ends in mid-October.

"The Latin American Program sponsored by the Office of Multicultural Affairs, the Office of Information Technology, the College of Liberal Arts, and several departments, has organized artistic performances and scholarly presentations to be enjoyed by Marshall students, faculty and the Huntington community," said Dr. Cristina Burgueno, professor of Spanish and Latin American Cultures, and a member of the Hispanic Heritage Month planning committee. "The program includes the Grammy-awarded Ziegler's Trio, folk music from Argentina by Marina Santillan and Samy Mielgo, and lectures on the Arizona Case and the New Tango. All of these events provide an outlook from the marvels of the cultural diversity in Latin America."

Here is a brief look at this year's Hispanic Heritage Month program of activities:

Wednesday, Sept. 15, 6:30 p.m.
Drinko Library 402
Lecture and Panel discussion

The Arizona Case: Disentangling Criminal Issues from Immigration Issues

Marco Balducci, lawyer
Andrea Arroyo, painter and political activist
Dr. Christopher White, discussant

Wednesday, Oct. 6, 6:30 p.m.
Drinko Library 402
Lecture by Dr. Oscar Ballester

Tango/New Tango: From Gardel to Piazzolla. Recommended before attending the Pablo Ziegler's Trio concert on Oct. 15. Tango is the Rio del Plata traditional music. Ballester will discuss its evolution over the past 100 years focusing in the revolution introduced by Astor Piazzolla. Piazzolla (Argentina, 1921-1992) was a tango composer and bandoneon player. His innovative oeuvre on the traditional tango led it into a new style termed Nuevo Tango, incorporating elements from jazz and classical music.

Friday, Oct. 15, 7:30 p.m.
Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center
Marshall Artists Series event

Concert by Tango Trio directed by Pablo Ziegler.  Ziegler is a very well-known pianist and composer based in Buenos Aires and New York. He was Piazzolla's pianist for many years, and currently he is the leading exponent of "Nuevo Tango." Ziegler's 2005 album, Bajo Cero (Below Zero), earned a Latin Grammy award.

Tickets: $39.60 main floor, and $29 balcony. For more information, call 304-696-6658.

Tuesday, Oct. 26, 6:30 p.m.
Booth Experimental Theater

Concert by singer Marina Santillan and guitar player Samy Mielgo. Santillan is a young singer from Buenos Aires, Argentina. She is fourth generation in  a lineage of musicians, composers and singers. Her repertoire includes popular music from jazz to tango, as well as folk music from Argentina and Latin America. She was a member of several folk groups like "Antares" and "Mama Yungay" before starting her solo career in 2002. In 2009, she released her first album called "Mar Adentro," with the contribution of several notable musicians. The album also includes two songs composed by Santillan.

Mielgo is a well recognized guitar player, composer and chorus director who published two CD's: Pequeas Alegroas (Little Joys) and Otro Lugar (Other Place).

For more information on Hispanic Heritage Month activities at Marshall, contact Burgueno by phone at 304-696-2746 or by e-mail at


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Tuesday August 31, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

MU Career Services offers resume workshop on Sept. 8

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University Career Services will present a free resume workshop for students and alumni at 4 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 8 at the Career Services Center on the Huntington campus.

Senior Career Advisor Mirek Bialk will present the Resume Basics 101 Workshop, which focuses on how to prepare a powerful, effective resume that gets attention - and interviews.

Participants will learn to:

       Format a resume to include all sections employers expect to see

      Transform a list of job duties into powerful success stories

      Utilize their education and internships to prove they have experience to do the job

     Create resume templates to help them stand out from other applicants

Students and alumni may call 304-696-2370 to reserve a seat or to obtain more information about this workshop.

The Career Services Center is located on the corner of 5th Ave. and 17th St.

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Tuesday August 31, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Ohio State police share game-day policies with Thundering Herd fans

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - An estimated 3,000 to 4,000 Marshall University football fans will be traveling to Columbus Thursday for the Thundering Herd's football game with Ohio State. Kickoff is at 7:30 p.m.

Paul Denton, Chief of Police with The Ohio State University Police Division, shared some information with Marshall University that he thinks will be helpful to Herd fans.

General game-day and stadium information is available at:

Public Safety Highlights:

Alcohol Policy
Alcoholic beverages are NOT permitted in Ohio Stadium. Guests identified with alcohol inside the stadium may be ejected and will have the alcohol confiscated.

Possession and consumption of alcohol are subject to the laws and regulations of the State of Ohio and/or City of Columbus which state, among others: No person shall have in the person's possession an opened container of beer or intoxicating liquor in any public place.

Complete State of Ohio ( and The Ohio State University Alcohol Policies ( can be found by clicking on the appropriate links.

As in past years, law enforcement agencies will continue to enforce state laws regarding the use and possession of alcohol.  A number of law enforcement authorities will issue citations or make arrests for violations of laws prohibiting open containers of alcohol in public areas, on or off campus, including university parking lots and garages.  Persons engaging in underage drinking, public indecency, disorderly conduct and other violations are subject to arrest.

In accordance with state and local fire codes, grilling is prohibited inside parking garages and garage rooftops. Grills (propane or charcoal) can be used on surface parking lots. 

Fire inspectors will inspect tents and enforce the law that requires a permit for tents larger than 200 square feet.  Cooking is not allowed inside or underneath a tent or awning. 

Parking information:

A color-coded parking map for the Marshall game is available at


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Monday August 30, 2010
Contact: Jaye Ike, College of Fine Arts,, 304-696-3296

Marshall grad wins composition contest

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - An alumnus of Marshall University's College of Fine Arts recently won a film scoring competition in Columbus, Ohio.

Mark Haas, a 2008 Bachelor of Fine Arts graduate from Nitro, W.Va., won the 2010 film scoring competition in the Indie Gathering's annual film festival.

In the competition, each composer downloaded the same short film clip and scored music to the video. The clip was then submitted and reviewed by a panel of judges.

Haas won first prize from among more than 500 entries. The award for first prize was a medal and a DVD of the winners, which is sent to directors around the world.

"Many composers are active in the industry," Haas said. "So it would have been an honor to even be in the top 10, let alone take first prize."

Haas said he entered the competition to assist his future career direction. He will be applying for graduate school this year and accomplishments like competitions are good to put on a record. He also needed a project to put on his demo reel.

"Directors, production companies and media groups want to see composers who are successful and active," Haas said.

The short clip was a movie trailer for an independent film called "Madness."

After graduating with his B.F.A. in Music Composition, Haas took a job as a full-time church music director at St. Vincent de Paul Church in Wheeling, W.Va., where he and his wife now live.

"My 'plan' is to be able to work at a college teaching anything music," Haas said, "and also to work as a freelance media composer."

Haas said all students can achieve what they set out to do.

"You will receive a great education to get you wherever you want to go," Haas said. "The tools you will receive at Marshall are more than enough, but there are no 'Immediate Success' classes. Take those tools and run with them on your own accord. For now, you are in great hands. For tomorrow, you take care of you. Don't wait."

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Monday August 30, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Thunder in the Shoe II tailgate party starts at 4 p.m. before Ohio State game

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Thunder in the Shoe II, a tailgate party sponsored by Marshall University alumni and supporters Jim and Verna K. Gibson, will take place at 4 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 2 in Columbus before the Thundering Herd's season-opening football game with Ohio State University.

The event, also sponsored by Nationwide Insurance, will be at the Drake Performance and Event Center at 1849 Cannon Dr., located about 500 yards from the stadium. The game kicks off at 7:30 p.m. The tailgate party continues until 10 p.m.

Marshall's cheerleaders, along with Marco, will be on hand, and there will be music, food, prizes and entertainment. Cost to attend is $35 and checks should be made payable to the Marshall University Alumni Association and mailed to Thunder in the Shoe II, Alumni Relations, One John Marshall Dr., Huntington, WV 25755-6200.

The menu for the event will be tailgate specialties along with beer and wine.

For more information, contact Jon Sutton at 304-696-2901 or Nancy Pelphrey at 304-696-3134.

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Monday August 30, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Date of Sustainable Schools West Virginia Summit changed to April 2011

- Marshall University, in partnership with the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection, will present the 2010 Sustainable Schools West Virginia Summit April 10-11, 2011.

The previously scheduled summit has been moved due to scheduling conflicts.

The free event is designed to bring together educational leaders in elementary, secondary and higher education - both public and private - to discuss the important roles schools, colleges and universities have in creating sustainable campuses across West Virginia.  The summit will take place on Marshall's Huntington campus and is open to public and private higher education, as well as public and private K-12 schools.

Online registration is available at An agenda is also available at this site.

The summit is presented in concert and partnership with the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection, Marshall University's Sustainability Department, State Electric Supply Company, and ZMM, Inc.

For more information, contact MU Sustainability Manager Margie Phillips at or 304-696-2992.

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Friday August 27, 2010
Contact: Leah Clark Payne, Media Communications Specialist, , 304-696-6397

Marshall University students win awards at Summer Law Institute

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Three Marshall University students have been recognized for superior performance during the Summer Law Institute at West Virginia University aimed at developing future community leaders.

Jasmine Hairston, a political science and sociology major from La Plata, Md.; Erica Law, an English major from Eleanor, W.Va.; and Austin Smith, a psychology major from Charleston, W.Va., attended the two-week program in June in Morgantown. The three students won awards for competitions in areas associated with the practice of law, including writing, oral advocacy and grammar.  

"The summer institute gave these students a unique opportunity to learn about careers in law and their own talents," said Dr. David Pittenger, dean of the College of Liberal Arts. "I am proud of our students' success."

Twenty students from colleges and universities around the state attended the institute, which organizers say was designed to encourage students from rural areas to consider law as a career and to develop future community leaders.  The students will be invited to return to the institute next summer for a second session.

For more information, contact Pittenger at 304-696-2731 or

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Friday August 27, 2010
Contact: Jaye Ike, College of Fine Arts, , 304-696-3296

Marching Thunder surpasses 300 members for first time in school history

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University's marching band, the Marching Thunder, is more than 300 strong for the first time in the university's history.

"We have seen growth in almost every section of the band from last year's band, including about 120 new freshmen," said Steve Barnett, Marshall's Director of Bands and Professor of Music.

Barnett said he is excited about the growth of the band program, but he admits that numbers are not his top priority.

"I have always been more concerned about the character and quality of the students that we recruit to be in the band," Barnett said. "I am very proud of the reputation that the Marching Thunder has built on a national level in the last few years - both in the quality of performance and in the citizenship."

Last year, after the band left the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl game in Detroit, Barnett received comments from the manager of the hotel where the band stayed.

"The manager said that we were the best behaved group they had ever had there," Barnett said.  "Comments like that are what we strive for and make me very proud to be associated with these fine young ladies and gentlemen. I would take them anywhere without hesitation as ambassadors for Marshall University."

Barnett said he is looking forward to the upcoming season. "We have had a great band camp and are getting ready for our first performance at the first home game on Sept. 10 against West Virginia University," he said.  "We are excited about a great season and the opportunity to be the 'center of game-day spirit' at the home football games."

In addition to football game performances, the Marching Thunder will be the feature band and perform in exhibitions at the Black Walnut Festival in Spencer, W.Va.; the Spring Valley Marching Festival in Wayne County, W.Va.; and the Kanawha County Band and Majorette Festival in Charleston.  On the Huntington campus, they also will host Band Day on Sept. 25 and the annual Tri-State Marching Festival on Nov. 6, which is the largest marching festival in the state and in the region.

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Friday August 27, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

7th annual Marshall University Marathon set for Nov. 7

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The 7th annual Marshall University Marathon will take place at 7 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 7, race director Tom Dannals said today. Events include the marathon, half-marathon run (or walk), half-marathon relay and 5-mile walk.

Registration is available at or and the cut-off date to sign up is Oct. 27.  After that day, participants must register on the Saturday (Nov. 6) before the race at the Marshall Recreation Center (5th Ave and 20th Street). There will be no race-day registration for any event.

The marathon starts on 3rd Avenue near Cam Henderson Center on Marshall University's Huntington campus. The last mile takes runners and walkers through Marshall's campus for a goal-line finish at Joan C. Edwards Stadium. The flat marathon course extends to west Huntington and back, passing Pullman Square, the Ohio River and Ritter Park.

Entry fees are as follows:

Marathon - $60 by Aug. 29 and $80 after that

Half-marathon run or walk - $35 by Aug. 29 and $50 after that

Half-marathon relay - $60 per team by Aug. 29 and $75 after that

All 5-mile walkers - $20 regardless of sign-up date

For more information, visit

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Friday August 27, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Marine selection officer to be on campus Tuesday, Aug. 31

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Lt. Charles Hansen, selection officer with the Marine Corps Officer programs, will be on Marshall University's Huntington campus, Tuesday, Aug. 31.

Kelly Sweetman, Director of Military & Veterans Affairs at Marshall, said Hansen will be seeing students who wish to gather information about the Marine Corps Officer programs. He will be in the Student Resource Center, located on the second floor of the Memorial Student Center, from 2 to 4:30 p.m. 

More information is available by calling Sweetman at 304-696-5278 or by e-mailing her at

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Thursday August 26, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Marshall University's undergraduate engineering program attains ABET accreditation

Program enrollment has doubled since it was started in 2006

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall's University's bachelor of science degree program in engineering has been accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, Inc., the recognized accreditor of college and university programs in applied science, computing, engineering, and technology.  ABET accreditation demonstrates a program's commitment to providing its students with a quality education.

"The action taken by the Engineering Accreditation Commission (EAC) of ABET to accredit Marshall University's bachelor of science in engineering program is a very important step in the continued evolution and expansion of engineering at Marshall," Marshall President Stephen J. Kopp said. "It is the standard by which engineering programs of quality are measured. One of the key outcome objectives of our program is to prepare students to become licensed professional engineers. In order to even be considered, applicants must have graduated from an ABET-accredited program. We are extremely pleased to have earned program accreditation from the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET."

Accreditation is a voluntary, peer-review process that requires programs to undergo comprehensive, periodic evaluations.  The evaluations, conducted by teams of volunteer professionals working in industry, government, academe, and private practice within the ABET disciplines, focus on program curricula, faculty, facilities, institutional support, and other important areas. 

One of the key elements of ABET accreditation is the requirement that programs continuously improve the quality of education provided.  As part of this continuous improvement requirement, programs set specific, measurable goals for their students and graduates, assess their success at reaching those goals, and improve their programs based on the results of their assessment. 

In addition to providing colleges and universities a structured mechanism to assess, evaluate, and improve their programs, accreditation also helps students and their parents choose quality college programs, enables employers and graduate schools to recruit graduates they know are well-prepared, and is used by registration, licensure, and certification boards to screen applicants.

ABET is a not-for-profit organization, owned and operated by its more than 25 professional and technical member societies.  An internationally respected organization with some 1,500 volunteers, ABET has set the higher-educational standards in its fields for nearly 75 years.  More information about ABET, its member societies, and the evaluation criteria used to accredit programs can be found at

In January 2006, Marshall's Board of Governors approved a bachelor of science degree in engineering, to be offered in the College of Information Technology and Engineering's  Weisberg Division of Engineering and Computer Science.

Four students graduated in the first class from this new program in 2009. Marshall was then eligible to apply for accreditation, which it did in January 2009.

Currently, 163 students are enrolled in Marshall's undergraduate engineering program, a total that is nearly double the number of students in the program when it was started. The total undergraduate enrollment for the Weisberg Division of Engineering and Computer Science is 271.

Sen. Robert Plymale, chair of the Senate Education Committee, was the lead sponsor of legislation in 2004 that led to the start of Marshall's engineering program.

"This accreditation validates the collaborative and cooperative efforts among higher education, government and students to bring quality engineering education back to Marshall University," Plymale said. "I'm just glad, as an elected official, to have played a major part in expanding opportunities to educate the next generation of transportation professionals for our State and the Nation."

Betsy Dulin, dean of CITE, said she is elated with the accreditation.

"We've always been proud of our outstanding engineering faculty and students at Marshall," Dulin said. "This is a direct result of their hard work and dedication to the engineering profession."

For more information about Marshall's bachelor of science degree program in engineering, visit


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Thursday August 26, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Manchin reappoints Sellards, appoints Craigo and McDonie to Marshall University's Board of Governors

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Michael Sellards of Huntington has been reappointed and two others appointed for the first time by Gov. Joe Manchin III to Marshall University's Board of Governors.

New appointees include Oshel Craigo of Winfield and Joseph McDonie of Milton. Craigo succeeds Bob Shell and McDonie succeeds Gary White. The terms of Sellards, Craigo and McDonie end June 30, 2014.

All three were appointed in late July then sworn in today by West Virginia Supreme Court Justice Brent D. Benjamin during the regular board meeting in the Memorial Student Center on Marshall's Huntington campus. Edward Pride, a senior from Morgantown, was elected as the student representative to the board and also sworn in today.

Sellards is President and Chief Executive Officer of St. Mary's Medical Center. He lives in Huntington.

Craigo, a former West Virginia State Senator, is owner and operator of Better Foods, Inc. He lives in Winfield.

McDonie is Chief Executive Officer of Rock Branch Community Bank, Inc., in Nitro, W.Va. He lives in Milton.


Photo: West Virginia Supreme Court Justice Brent D. Benjamin swears in, from left, Edward Pride, Joseph McDonie, Michael Sellards and Oshel Craigo during today's Board of Governors meeting at Marshall University. Photo by Rick Haye/Marshall University.

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Wednesday August 25, 2010
Contact: Jaye Ike, College of Fine Arts,, 304-696-3296

Larsen shows new work in exhibitions

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - A member of the art and design faculty at Marshall University is exhibiting paintings in two art exhibitions this fall, following one in which she participated over the summer.

This summer, Natalie Larsen's work was featured in the 6th Annual National Self Portrait Exhibition at the 33 Collective Gallery in Chicago, Ill. It went up in July and ended the second week of August.

The first exhibition this fall is titled "Let's Eat" and it is at the Long Island Museum in Stony Brook, N.Y. It went up Aug. 14 and will run through mid-September. The third exhibition is called the KY7 Biennial, and it runs from Sept. 11 through Oct. 23, in Lexington, Ky.

Larsen earned her B.F.A. in painting at the Maine College of Art and her M.F.A. in studio art at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

She says her work in general is about her experience growing up Mormon, but she works hard to make the work accessible to people who didn't have the same experience. The pieces in these three exhibitions range from portraits to narrative pieces. All of them are paintings.

Larsen said painting and drawing is her passion and that it is very important to her to exhibit as much as possible.

 "I always want to be an active artist," Larsen said. "It's important for me personally, but also important for my students to see me actively engaged in my discipline outside of the classroom."

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Tuesday August 24, 2010
Contact: Ginny Painter, Communications Director, Marshall University Research Corporation, 304-746-1964

Marshall to host TechConnect West Virginia forum in September

Presidents Kopp and Clements to headline program focused
on growing the state's technology economy

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University will host a forum next month sponsored by TechConnect West Virginia and intended to bring together policy and opinion leaders, researchers and entrepreneurs, economic developers and others to discuss and develop strategies for growing West Virginia's technology economy.

The event will be held from 1 to 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 7, at Marshall University Foundation Hall, 519 John Marshall Dr., Huntington.

The program will feature presentations by the presidents of the state's two research universities. Dr. Stephen J. Kopp of Marshall University and Dr. James P. Clements of West Virginia University will talk about the role of universities as the foundation for technology growth in West Virginia.

Dr. Paul L. Hill, vice chancellor for science and research at the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission, will give a presentation about plans for the West Virginia Education, Research and Technology Park in South Charleston. Additionally, panel discussions featuring experts and technology business owners from around the state will focus on access to capital, entrepreneurial assistance and entrepreneurial talent. The panels will be moderated by Kelley Goes, secretary of the West Virginia Division of Commerce, and John Golden, director of external affairs for Verizon West Virginia.

Co-sponsors of the event include Marshall University, West Virginia University and Verizon.

For more information, contact Kevin DiGregorio at 304-437-4295 or visit

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Tuesday August 24, 2010
Contact: Jaye Ike, College of Fine Arts, , 304-696-3296

'Sixteen hands' exhibition starts fall semester at Birke Gallery

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. -  Work by a group called "16 Hands," made up of eight artists from southwest Virginia, will be on exhibit at the Birke Art Gallery on Marshall University's Huntington campus until Sept. 9.

"The work on display in this exhibition is made by the eight members of '16 Hands,' " said Ellen Shankin, one of the founding members of the group. "We are first a group of friends, craftsmen and neighbors, living in the mountains of southwest Virginia for the past 30 years."

Shankin also will present a workshop at the Marshall ceramics lab on Sept. 8 and 9. She will demonstrate throwing and glazing techniques and host a discussion on form. The workshop is free and open to the public. Reservations are not necessary, but helpful. For more information or to make a reservation, persons may contact Jaye Ike, Special Projects Coordinator for the College of Fine Arts at Marshall, at 304-696-3296 or

Marshall ceramics professor Earline Allen, a local artist, was instrumental in bringing the '16 Hands' exhibition to Huntington.

"We are expecting both an inspiring and exciting workshop," Allen said. "Ellen Shankin is a well-known and experienced potter who maintains a studio in Floyd, Va.  She is respected for her national and international workshop leadership. Ellen's work has been featured in publications such as Ceramics Monthly and Studio Potter magazine. She also has been a recipient of both a NAEA Visual Arts Fellowship and Virginia Museum Grant."

Graduate student and ceramic artist Tommy Warf emphasized the value this presents to the ceramic community of the Tri-state.

"This is an opportunity to see how another ceramic artist works - her methods and details - and you can take what she does and translate it into your own work," Warf said. "She is a nationally known artist, so I'm excited to see what she presents."

"I have been making pots for more than 30 years now... every day, steadfastly," Shankin said of her work. "They are pots for the table, cooking and serving, celebrating and sharing. They are objects I love to make. As I grow in this devotion, this work of my hands, my direction has changed. At one time, early on, I chased skill and competence ... later maybe, some notion of beauty. At this point in my life, both personally and artistically, I am striving for clarity. My aim is to make pots that sing of their nature in a total way. In rim, foot, surface and form ... a common language ... a single voice."

Shankin further describes the group as much like friends, as well as business partners.

"Through our long friendship we have shared so many life experiences: the raising of children, marriages, illnesses, pottery issues, technical support and an aesthetic context and texture that surrounds our bond," Shankin said. "Our group contains a broad diversity of ceramic styles as well: working in both porcelain and stoneware, firing in wood, gas reduction and electric kilns. '16 Hands' also has one woodworker among the potters. He makes fine furniture and turnings in mostly local hardwoods."

"The founding members, David Crane, Silvie Granatelli, Richard Hensley, Donna Polseno, Ellen Shankin and Brad Warstler all have more than 30 years of studio life behind them and the two newer, younger members, Stacy Snyder and Josh Copus, bring a different perspective and vitality to the mix," Shankin explained. "Function plays a central role in most of the work of our group, but sculptural vessels and sculpture are made as well."

A closing reception for the exhibition in the gallery will take place Tuesday, Sept. 7, from 5 to 8 p.m. with light refreshments.

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Monday August 23, 2010
Contact: Ginny Painter, Communications Director, Marshall University Research Corporation, 304-746-1964

Statewide science and research symposium to be held at Marshall next month

Keynote speaker to provide counter-reaction to growing rejection of the benefits of modern science

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The biennial statewide science and research conference is scheduled for Sept. 27-28 on the campus of Marshall University. This will be the first time the event has been held in Huntington.

Intended for members of the state's business and research communities, the STaR (Science, Technology and Research) Symposium focuses on cutting-edge research being conducted in West Virginia, the national and state outlooks for scientific research, and the importance of technology-based economic development to the state's future. The sessions will be held in the new Marshall University Foundation Hall and the Memorial Student Center.

This year's symposium will feature headline speaker Michael Specter, author of "Denialism," an investigation of people's growing mistrust surrounding the world of science and its byproducts. A staff writer at The New Yorker since 1998, Specter argues that misplaced skepticism has undermined public acceptance of the scientific marvels of the present age and the benefits they provide humankind.

The theme of this year's program, "Sustainability: How Science, Technology and Research Can Sustain Our Future," will be carried throughout panel discussions on energy, the environment, cyberinfrastructure and the economy. The symposium also will offer breakout sessions highlighting the work of some of West Virginia's leading scientists, and a student poster competition that will feature the research of 26 outstanding undergraduate and graduate students from across the state, including 10 from Marshall.

The symposium early registration fee is $125 per person and includes all events, including Monday night's dinner and program featuring Specter. Single tickets for only Monday's dinner and Specter's presentation are available for $50. The program of events and online registration are available at Early registration ends Aug. 26. For more information, contact Jessica Tice at 304-558-4128 ext. 6 or

The STaR Symposium is hosted by the Division of Science and Research, West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission, and sponsored by the National Science Foundation's West Virginia Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR); the Marshall University Research Corporation; the West Virginia University Research Corporation; NASA West Virginia Space Grant Consortium/NASA West Virginia EPSCoR; the Mid-Atlantic Technology, Research & Innovation Center (MATRIC); Concord University; the West Virginia Department of Commerce; the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine; Bethany College; the Charleston Area Alliance; Shepherd University; and West Virginia Wesleyan College.

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Friday August 20, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Week of Welcome activities draw big numbers of freshmen

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University's Huntington campus was buzzing today with incoming freshmen exploring their home for the next four years as Week of Welcome (WOW) activities got into full swing.

An estimated 1,800 freshmen attended this morning's Freshman Academic Convocation at Cam Henderson Center, then later in the morning blanketed the Memorial Student Center plaza for a picnic lunch. Students in each college wore matching t-shirts that identified them with their academic program, resulting in a multicolored setting both in Henderson Center and on the plaza.

The students spent the day making friends, meeting their deans and getting started on the next chapter in their lives.

"It is a great day at Marshall University," said Dr. Gayle Ormiston, Marshall's provost and senior vice president for academic affairs, as he scanned the big crowd on the plaza. "The Henderson Center was filled with a kaleidoscope of color as the students attended the academic convocation."

Early estimates indicate that a school record of approximately 2,000 freshmen will attend fall classes, which start on Monday, Aug. 23.

Week of Welcome activities began Wednesday and continue through Saturday.

At today's convocation, President Stephen J. Kopp addressed the students about a variety of topics, including attitude, preparation and keys to success. He encouraged them to stay in school and follow their dreams. The students also heard from head football Coach Doc Holliday, who invited them to today's 6 p.m. practice and encouraged them to support the Thundering Herd by attending games this fall.

Other speakers included Dr. Cam Brammer, president of the faculty senate, and Patrick Murphy, president of the student body. Robert Wray, assistant professor of music, and students from the choral area of Marshall's music department, taught the new students the alma mater. The students also repeated the "We Are Marshall" cheer.

"The purpose of the convocation is to have a first opportunity to speak with the students about expectations of them and the university," Ormiston said. "It went very well and the students were very impressive."

A video report on today's convocation is available at


Photos (More at

(Top) Incoming freshmen sing the Marshall University alma mater during today's Freshman Academic Convocation at Cam Henderson Center.

(Middle) Incoming freshmen attending Week of Welcome activities today blanketed the Memorial Student Center plaza for a picnic lunch.

(Bottom) Incoming freshmen wore matching t-shirts that identified them with their academic programs during today's activities.

Photos by Rick Haye/Marshall University.

Direct Link to This Release

Friday August 20, 2010
Contact: Ginny Painter, Communications Director, Marshall University Research Corporation, 304-746-1964

Marshall to receive more than $525,000 from NSF grant to state

Award to further expand cyberinfrastructure

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Students and researchers across the region will benefit from a $1,176,470 National Science Foundation (NSF) grant to West Virginia's Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR).

The award, which was announced earlier today by U.S. Senator Jay Rockefeller and West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin, will enhance cyberinfrastructure across the state's higher education system over the next two years.

Marshall University will receive $525,874 from the grant to enable inter-campus Internet2 access for the state's predominantly undergraduate institutions, community and technical colleges, and the K-12 community.

Internet2 is an advanced networking consortium led by the research and education community. Marshall announced in January that it had joined the network, which connects nearly 70,000 research and educational institutions nationwide and interconnects with 80 international research networks. In addition to providing access to a number of significant emerging technologies not available within the limitations of previous networks, Internet2 links Marshall with people, equipment and information at partner institutions around the world.

This vital funding will allow Marshall University to establish the mechanisms that will help our partners and collaborators strategically position themselves to join us in cutting-edge opportunities not currently available on the commercial Internet," said Dr. Jan Fox, Marshall's senior vice president for information technology and chief information officer. "These enhanced capabilities will have particular significance not only for expanding science, technology, engineering and mathematics programs, research initiatives and clinical outreach, but also will bring significant economic development opportunities to the region."

Fox also acknowledged Marshall staff members who are working on the project, including Dr. Arnold R. Miller, assistant vice president for information technology; Allen Taylor, chief technology officer; and Michael Adkins, director of information technology infrastructure.

The grant was funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. West Virginia EPSCoR is directed by the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission (HEPC).

This award builds upon a three-year, $2.6 million grant HEPC received last year from the NSF to upgrade networks and enhance immersive visualization capabilities for researchers at Marshall, West Virginia University and West Virginia State University in collaboration with the University of Arkansas system. That grant is assisting the institutions with connection to high-performance computing networks and resources around the world, allowing researchers to collaborate in real time without geographic limitations.

Marshall received a little over $1 million from the 2009 award. Rockefeller saw a mine safety demonstration earlier this year at Marshall's Virtual Interactive Simulation Environment (VISE) Lab which received funding from this earlier grant.

For more information, contact Fox at 304-696-6706 or

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Thursday August 19, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Summer projects keep workers busy on Marshall University's Huntington campus

Student Resource Center, upgraded food court among improvements

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Some are subtle and some are obvious, but one thing is certain - improvements on Marshall University's Huntington campus this summer are abundant.

From installing new dimmable lights in the hallways of Harris Hall to stripping wall paper and painting walls and jams in the Science Building to converting the former Alumni Lounge to a new Student Resource Center in the Memorial Student Center, workers have been busy the past three months completing one summer project after another.

Mark Cutlip, director of Marshall's physical plant, said workers have been focusing on building improvements and maintenance activities this summer. New, modern, efficient lighting has created brighter rooms throughout campus. In addition, more than 1,000 gallons of paint have been applied indoors and out this summer.

Work has occurred in many buildings. Examples include the Twin Towers West residence halls, which received new HVAC (Heating, Ventilating and Air Conditioning) in the lobby area, new carpet on floors one through nine and new air conditioning units in the rooms. A new kiln was installed in the art warehouse, concrete steps on the west end of Jenkins Hall were repaired and new LED spotlights were installed in Room 154 of Smith Hall.

"Work has been completed, or is still going on, in about 20 buildings on and off campus," Cutlip said. "It's been a very busy, productive, summer."

Week of Welcome (WOW) activities for incoming freshmen began Wednesday, Aug. 18. The first day of class is Monday, Aug. 23.

Here is a look at some of this summer's main projects on the Huntington campus:

Student Resource Center: The university has turned a meeting room into a Student Resource Center - a place where students have a one-stop-shop for various advising and counseling needs.

The center is located on the second floor of the Memorial Student Center in the former Alumni Lounge. It is designed for students who need advising assistance in any area of study or for those who would like to explore academic major program options, said Dr. Gayle Ormiston, Marshall's provost and senior vice president for academic affairs.

"We have arranged for representatives of the most frequently accessed student service offices to be available at a single location," Ormiston said. "We hope to give students the information and services they need quickly and with less frustration on their part."

Ormiston said he is excited about the role the Student Resource Center will play in Marshall's student success and retention efforts. The center will have expanded hours and a central location. Student Resource Center Resource Specialists will be able to assist students with general advising questions, registration issues, student financial aid services, career services, military and veterans affairs questions.

Students can also receive general information on academic skill building, the e-Portfolio requirement, and other concerns, said Sherri Stepp, interim director of University College, who assisted in the development of the center.

"We will also offer academic skills workshops and seminars including time management, test-taking strategies, study skills, note-taking strategies and more," Stepp said.

For further information, persons may contact Stepp by phone at 304-696-7038 or by e-mail at

Food Court: Students, faculty, staff and visitors have a bigger, brighter area in which to dine at the Memorial Student Center, with great new choices and free refills. The food court now has a modern, open look with lots of food and drink choices. 

Returning students will notice the wall separating the atrium and the dining room in the food court is gone, and Ultimate Baja and subconnection stations have been added. Drink machines have been moved into the dining area, allowing customers to have the free refills. Freshens, which features smoothies and yogurt, has expanded its menu.

"We're very excited about our changes and we invite everybody to come by and check us out," said Cheryl King, operations manager with Sodexo. "These new stations and the remodeled food court are a great addition to the Marshall University campus."

The food court has 270 seats, including 50 in Starbucks, which opened last spring. The food court was closed throughout the summer, but reopened on Monday, Aug. 16.


Fans of Marshall athletics will enjoy a much greater experience in football, basketball, softball and soccer this year with interactive screens and scoreboards that are easier to read and offer huge video playback and greater sponsorship opportunities for area businesses.

Joan C. Edwards Stadium: Two large video displays are being installed at the stadium. The larger of the two will measure approximately 28 feet high by 49 feet wide and be located in the south end zone where the old video board stood. The second one, measuring about 22 feet high by 32 feet wide, has been installed on the Shewey Building and is flanked by two ribbon displays (message boards) each 82 feet in length. A custom sound system also is being installed at the stadium.

Daktronics Inc. of Brookings, S.D., was chosen by Marshall University and ISP Sports - the multimedia rightsholder for Marshall athletics - to do the upgrades. Athletic Director Mike Hamrick said the upgrades will enhance the game-day experience for Thundering Herd fans.

Cam Henderson Center: Daktronics will be providing a new ribbon display and two new courtside displays in the arena. The ribbon display will measure about 92 feet in length. The two courtside displays will measure about 20 feet in length.

The arena also has all new lighting and shutters, used to cover the lights for darkness and uncover them for light, have been installed. The shutters will allow for a light show before the games. New emergency lighting has been installed as well.

Sam Hood Field: The home of Marshall soccer will have two new scoreboards. One will measure eight feet high by 18 feet wide, and the other will measure three feet high by 19 feet wide.

Dot Hicks Field: Marshall's softball field will receive a new message display.



(Top) Freshman students dine in the remodeled Food Court Thursday at Marshall University's Memorial Student Center.

(Middle) Freshens, located in the Memorial Student Center Food Court, has expanded its menu.

(Bottom) Two new video displays are being installed at Marshall's Joan C. Edwards Stadium. The one above is located on the Shewey Building on the north end of the stadium and measures about 22 feet high by 32 feet wide.

Photos by Rick Haye/Marshall University.

Direct Link to This Release

Wednesday August 18, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Marshall Recreation Center to host second annual RecFest Saturday

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The Marshall Recreation Center will open its doors to local businesses, vendors, campus groups and student organizations as a way to reach out to MU students on Saturday, Aug. 21 in the second annual RecFest.

RecFest 2010, which runs from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., is an integral part of Marshall's Week of Welcome, a program that began today and allows the university and community to greet the students as they start their college careers. The focus of RecFest is to provide the opportunity for incoming and returning students, faculty and staff to appreciate the options available to them both on campus and in the Huntington area.

RecFest will kick off with the first 500 participants receiving a reusable shopping bag, courtesy of Marshall Students Against Tobacco. Students will be able to sample products from local businesses, make a dash for the cash in a money machine, battle with new friends on an inflatable joust and get a tan without having to go outside in the spray tan booth.

Student Health Education will be sponsoring a health fair, with immunizations from the Cabell County Health Department, skin cancer testing courtesy of the American Cancer Society, and vision screenings. There also will be live music from local bands Gage and The Good Fight, free try climbs on the climbing wall, kayaking demonstrations in the pool, and prizes and giveaways throughout the day.

All students and their families are invited.

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Tuesday August 17, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Free concert highlights HerdFest 2010 on Thursday, Sept. 9

Multi-platinum artists Little Texas and West Virginia favorite
Davisson Brothers Band to perform

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - A pair of rockin' country music bands, numerous vendors and thousands of football fans from across the state will converge on downtown Huntington on Thursday, Sept. 9, to celebrate HerdFest 2010, a concert and street festival preceding the Marshall-West Virginia University football game.

Marshall University and the MU Alumni Association are presenting HerdFest 2010, which is sponsored by Frontier Communications, Cabell Huntington Hospital, Marshall's Student Activities Programming Board, 93.7 "The DAWG," WOWK-TV, the Cabell Huntington Convention and Visitors Bureau and Community Trust Bank.

HerdFest begins with a street fair at 5 p.m. on 3rd Avenue in front of Pullman Square. Music will be provided by "The DAWG."

A free concert, featuring country, southern rock, and bluegrass fusion band, the Davisson Brothers Band, and multi-platinum-selling national recording artists, Little Texas, will take place from 6:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. The Davisson Brothers perform at 6:30 p.m., with Little Texas taking the stage at about 8:30 p.m. Dignitaries, including Gov. Joe Manchin and First Lady Gayle Manchin, as well as Marshall University coaches and officials, have been invited to speak to the crowd between musical performances. Marshall's cheerleaders and Marco will be on hand as well.

"We are really excited about HerdFest 2010 and we're expecting a great crowd of Marshall and WVU fans to come together and enjoy this free concert and the street fair, just as they did three years ago," said Tish Littlehales, Marshall's director of alumni relations. "The high-energy concert with Little Texas and the Davisson Brothers Band will just add to the excitement that is building for this year's Friends of Coal Bowl."

The game between the Thundering Herd and the Mountaineers kicks off at 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 10 at Joan C. Edwards Stadium.

Littlehales also is encouraging fans and supporters from both schools to attend the Friends of Coal Game Day Luncheon from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday, Sept. 10 at the Marshall University Foundation Hall, Home of the Erickson Alumni Center.

Former Marshall Coach Bobby Pruett and former WVU Coach Don Nehlen will be featured speakers. Cost is $25. More information is available and tickets may be purchased by calling the Marshall alumni office at 304-696-2901.

Littlehales said proceeds from the luncheon will benefit the Marshall University Foundation and the Marshall University Alumni Association with a scholarship.

"Like the concert, the Friends of Coal Game Day Luncheon is open to everyone, no matter if they root for WVU or Marshall," she said. "It will be another opportunity for everyone to celebrate the Friends of Coal Bowl as the countdown to kickoff approaches."

The Davisson Brothers Band hails from Clarksburg, W.Va. Founded in the mid-1990s, the group has a unique style which infuses a remarkable blend of country, southern rock, and bluegrass to create a distinctive sound that was captured in their first single, "Big City Hillbilly."

This sound, combined with the band's talent and energy, has gained a loyal fan base all over the Eastern United States. Brothers Chris and Donnie Davisson and cousin Sammy Davisson, along with childhood friend Aaron Regester, are continuing musical pursuits started by the Davisson family long ago.

Little Texas is well known for its No. 1 singles "What Might Have Been," "God Blessed Texas" and "My Love." 

Little Texas' first radio release, "Some Guys Have All The Love," became a top-10 hit, as did its next single, "First Time For Everything." After the album, "First Time For Everything," was released, five singles reached the top of the charts.

The second album, "Big Time," sold more than three million copies. It included the three number one singles and led to the group's first Country Music Television (CMT) Award, a Billboard award, a Radio & Records award and a Grammy nod.

Direct Link to This Release

Monday August 16, 2010
Contact: Lalena Price, Communications Coordinator, 304-746-1989

Marshall University paleontologist to share species discovery at international symposium in China

HUNTINGTON, W.VA. - A Marshall University professor, whose fossil research led to the discovery of a new species of marine animal, has accepted a prestigious invitation from the Chinese government to share his findings with its National Science Foundation of China.

Dr. Robin O'Keefe, an associate professor in MU's Department of Biological Sciences, will present his recent plesiosaur discoveries from the Jurassic Sundance Formation in Wyoming during the International Symposium on Triassic and later Marine Vertebrate Faunas at Peking University in Beijing. O'Keefe said that he was honored to be asked to present his research at this prestigious international symposium.

"The research I will discuss concerns a marine reptile, a plesiosaur we called Tatenectes laramiensis, discovered in the Bighorn Basin of Wyoming several years ago. Laboratory work with my graduate students has just been completed, and we are publishing our results now," O'Keefe explained. "The symposium in China is an amazing opportunity, and I hope it will enrich the teaching and research experiences I can provide."

According to O'Keefe, Tatenectes laramiensis is a type of plesiosaur from the Jurassic Era, the period when large dinosaurs roamed the Earth. The marine animal had a long, wide, flat body, with four flippers, a tail and a long neck. O'Keefe's findings were made possible by a grant from National Geographic.

After the two-day symposium, Aug. 28-29 at Peking University's Geological Museum in the School of Earth and Space Sciences, O'Keefe will join colleagues from around the world to research fossil sites throughout China the following week.

"These areas are very hot for marine reptile fossil research right now, so this is a great opportunity for me to be exposed to, and perhaps participate in, cutting-edge research," O'Keefe said.

O'Keefe has taught biology and paleontology for Marshall University since 2006. He teaches human anatomy and comparative vertebrate anatomy and serves as a graduate adviser. He received his B.S. in Biology from Stanford University and his Ph.D. in Evolutionary Biology from the University of Chicago. O'Keefe has published numerous scientific publications, and also has served as a scientific adviser for National Geographic, IMAX and the Discovery Channel. 


Photo: Dr. Robin O'Keefe, an associate professor in Marshall University's Department of Biological Sciences, will present his recent plesiosaur discoveries from the Jurassic Sundance Formation in Wyoming during the International Symposium on Triassic and later Marine Vertebrate Faunas at Peking University in Beijing. Photo courtesy of Marshall University.

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Friday August 13, 2010
Contact: Susan Tams, Director of Editorial Services, 304-746-2038

Commuter students invited to stay on campus during WOW

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Incoming freshmen who will be commuting to Marshall University's Huntington campus in the fall have the option of staying overnight on campus during the Week of Welcome (WOW) activities beginning Aug. 18.

"Commuter students are an important part of the class of 2014, and we expect that they will participate in the WOW activities," said Dr. Gayle Ormiston, provost and senior vice president for academic affairs. "Having a room on campus for the evenings of Aug. 18 and 19 will make it much more convenient for them."

For $15 per night (including linens and meals), commuter students may spend Wednesday, Aug. 18; Thursday, Aug. 19, or both nights in Twin Towers East. A limited number of rooms are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Interested students should contact Lekesha Glover by e-mail at or by phone at 304-696-6208 no later than Monday, Aug. 16.

For students with reservations, housing check-in will be at the front desk of Twin Towers East from noon to 4 p.m. both days. Check out is at 4 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 20.

Direct Link to This Release

Friday August 13, 2010
Contact: Lalena Price, Communications Coordinator, 304-746-1989

Marshall University names Kroll founding director of new Physical Therapy program

HUNTINGTON - Marshall University has named Dr. Penny Kroll founding director of its new Physical Therapy Department, according to Dr. Gretchen Oley, interim dean of the College of Health Professions.

Kroll comes to Marshall after serving for four years as head of the Physical Therapy Department at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center where she directed and taught in the physical therapy doctoral program as well as coordinated and directed clinical care aspects of LSU Health Care Services contracts in South Louisiana.

She begins her new duties at Marshall on Monday, Aug. 23. She will lead the new physical therapy doctoral program, which was approved by the Marshall University Board of Governors in 2009.  Students are expected to begin classes in the summer of 2012.

"I am honored to have been chosen as the founding director of the new Physical Therapy Department at such a prestigious educational institution as Marshall University," Kroll said. "I look forward to working with the faculty and administration to design a top-notch Doctor of Physical Therapy Program that will train professionals who exhibit the excellent skills, behaviors and attitudes necessary to meet the health care needs of the students of Marshall and the citizens of the City of Huntington, the State of West Virginia, as well as the entire region."

Kroll received her B.S. in Physical Therapy from Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center and her M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in Physical Therapy from New York University.  She served several years in the United States Public Health Service as a 1st Lieutenant. After leaving the service, she held staff and supervisory positions in a number of orthopedic settings including Director of Rehabilitation at the NYU Hospital for Joint Disease. During that time, she was also an adjunct and/or full-time faculty member at NYU, Long Island University, Ithaca College-Bronx Campus and Hunter College. In 1991, she took a full-time faculty position at the University of Miami in Miami, Fla., and in 2003 she became chair of the Physical Therapy Department at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia.

Marshall University President Stephen J. Kopp said he is pleased to see an experienced professional such as Kroll at the helm of the new doctoral program, one he says is much needed.

"Our region has been in need of an accredited, entry-level physical therapy program for a long time," Kopp said. "The quality professionals that Marshall University will graduate will most certainly fill that need not only locally, but throughout the entire tri-state region, the State of West Virginia and beyond. I believe Dr. Kroll is the right person to ignite a superb program and look forward to seeing the department evolve and advance under her leadership."

Kroll also has served in a variety of roles in the American Physical Therapy Association. Her research interests have been in measurement methods in physical therapy and she has a strong interest in interdisciplinary education and training. Throughout Kroll's career, her clinical focus has been on inpatient and outpatient orthopedics, and though she has taught in a number of subject areas, her teaching focus has been primarily in the movement sciences, specifically kinesiology and biomechanics.

Oley is excited about the level of leadership and experience Kroll will bring to the College of Health Professions.

"It has been truly rewarding to be able to recruit Dr. Kroll into the position as founding department director," Oley said. "She is a top-quality individual with all the best personal and professional qualifications to see this program through its inception, development and accreditation. Physical Therapy education at Marshall will be off to a sound beginning with such an experienced and well-qualified individual."

Kroll has held her position at LSU since 2007. She said she is extremely excited to make the transition to Marshall.

"I am thrilled to be joining the Marshall family and the Huntington community," Kroll added. "I look forward to rooting for The Herd!"

Direct Link to This Release

Monday August 9, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

The Parthenon earns nine awards in WVPA Better Newspaper Contest

THE RESORT AT GLADE SPRINGS, W.Va. - The Marshall University campus newspaper earned three first-place awards among its nine awards at the annual West Virginia Press Association Better Newspaper Contest on Saturday, Aug. 7.

The Parthenon won in categories for design, column, editorial, sports writing and news feature. It competes in Division 3, small dailies, against community newspapers in Fairmont, Elkins, Weirton and Keyser, among others.

"This is the most awards The Parthenon has won during my three-year tenure, which shows the Marshall community benefits from among the best journalism in the state," said Nerissa Young, Parthenon adviser and assistant professor in the W. Page Pitt School of Journalism and Mass Communications. "The year 2009 was an important one with the grade change controversy, head coaching changes and the new core curriculum."

The editions on the Friends of Coal Bowl and the grade change controversy took first place in newspaper design. Former executive editor Kyle Hobstetter and former managing editor Kayla Queen led the design team. Hobstetter is a May print journalism graduate from Portsmouth, Ohio. Queen is an August print journalism graduate from Huntington. Former sports editor Andrew Ramspacher is a senior broadcast journalism major from Dublin, Ohio.

Coverage of the grade change controversy also won first place for best single issue. The lead reporter on that story was senior public relations major Staci Standiford from New Martinsville, W.Va.

Former photo editor Carrie Kirk added three awards to her previous year's recognition in state and regional contests. The May 2009 visual arts major from Charleston won first place for her photo illustration of Friday the 13th superstitions. She earned second place for her feature photo of a student catching a Frisbee while levitating. Kirk won third place in news photo for her shot of a student getting a full body splash while attempting to cross the street at the corner of Third Avenue and Hal Greer Boulevard in Huntington.

A story about the Marshall track team's lack of a practice facility won second place in sports writing for Emily Ayres, an August online journalism graduate from Street, Md.

Senior public relations major Kerissa Bennett from Minford, Ohio, won second place for her news feature about new athletic director Mike Hamrick living in a freshman residence hall while he found permanent housing. That story was picked up by The Associated Press.

Letters From Afghanistan won second place in column writing for Sara Yoke, a junior public relations major from St. Albans, W.Va. Yoke returned stateside last month from a yearlong deployment with her Army National Guard unit.

A proposed bill to ban the Barbie doll in West Virginia yielded third place in best single editorial for Shea Anderson, a senior print journalism major from Lavalette, W.Va.

"Reporters and editors are carrying on the long, storied tradition of The Parthenon and W. Page Pitt, the man for whom the journalism school is named," Young said. "It is my honor to work with them."

The contest was judged by members of the North Carolina Press Association and had 2,000 entries.


Photo: The Parthenon editors celebrate the newspaper's awards at the West Virginia Press Association Better Newspapers Contest. Left to right: former copy, news and executive editor Whitney Burdette; former copy and managing editor Emily Ayres; former news editor Staci Standiford; former news, sports and executive editor Kyle Hobstetter and news editor Kerissa Bennett. Photo courtesy of The Parthenon.

Direct Link to This Release

Friday August 6, 2010
Contact: Sheena Lindahl, The Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour, 800-930-8021

MU spurs America's youngest workers to create their own jobs

Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour paves the way

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The power of the entrepreneurial spirit will take the Tri-State Area by storm this fall when The Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour visits Marshall University's Huntington campus.

The tour, a high-energy, half-day event, will take place from 3 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 23, at the Marshall University Foundation Hall, Home of the Erickson Alumni Center. Those in attendance will hear the stories of and learn the secrets behind the success of the world's top entrepreneurs who are still in their 20s.

The event is sponsored by Marshall University's Office of the President, MU Online College in the High School, the Center for Business and Economic Research, the Marshall University Research Corp. and Huntington Area Development Council (HADCO).  

The Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour is the first and only nationwide entrepreneurship tour. It is run by three award-winning young entrepreneurs - Sheena Lindahl (27), Michael Simmons (28) and Arel Moodie (26).

Created in 2006 by Lindahl and Simmons, the tour features many of California's top young entrepreneurs who have made, or sold companies for, millions of dollars and/or made a huge impact before the age of 30.

One speaker, Cameron Johnson (24) from Los Angeles, started a dozen profitable businesses and became a self-made millionaire while he was still a teenager.  Another speaker, Rahim Fazal (27) from San Francisco, sold his first business for $1.5 million as he was graduating from high school.  Fazal is the co-founder and CEO of the venture-backed company, Involver.

"More than half the companies on the 2009 Fortune 500 list were launched during a recession or bear market," Simmons said. "Technology and globalization have made it very inexpensive to start a business. Now is the best time that there has ever been to become your own boss."

According to a 2007 Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation survey by Harris Interactive, four out of 10 young people would like to start their own businesses someday.

"However, when we talked with students, we realized that many of them needed inspiration and support to achieve this dream," Lindahl said. "That's why we started the tour."

The goal of the Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour is to have college students around the nation graduate with an entrepreneurial mindset.

The tour uses numerous themes and resources to reach and inspire those in attendance. Some are:

  • Focus - students are inspired and learn how to start and run their own businesses;
  • Keynote - this speaker is an extremely successful young entrepreneur who shares his or her story and business lessons;
  • Workshop - helps students come up with a viable business idea based on strengths and passions;
  • Speed networking - focuses on students connecting with each other based on their business ideas;
  • Panel - consists of the event speakers and local entrepreneurs with a focus on entrepreneurship. Local participants will include some who have created businesses and been successful  in commercializing products, including representatives from Vandalia Research Inc., which is the first biotechnology research company based upon Marshall University research. Other panelists include local K-12 students, including award-winning students from Cabell Midland High School.

Registration to the event is limited to Marshall University students, faculty and staff, and to K-12 students. To register, they may go to

Direct Link to This Release

Thursday August 5, 2010
Contact: Jaye Ike, College of Fine Arts,, 304-696-3296

Artists with Marshall ties to exhibit in Nelson Gallery in Lexington, Va.

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Four artists associated with Marshall University's College of Fine Arts have been selected to exhibit artwork in the Nelson Gallery, located in Lexington, Va.

John Farley, Daniel Kaufmann, Andra Levy and Tommy Warf have been chosen to participate in the Nelson Gallery's 11th Annual Juried Show, which opens Aug. 6 and runs through Aug. 28.

Farley is an adjunct faculty member in Marshall's Department of Art and Design, and director of both the Birke Art Gallery and Gallery 842.  His piece, "A Meeting of the Minds," is a pen/ink drawing.

"My work is inspired by the innate principles and patterns, the dynamic formations, found throughout nature," Farley said. "It is a graphic expression of the delicate complexity, design, and aesthetic sensibility of the structures that define our world." 

Kaufmann, an assistant professor of photography at Marshall, had a photograph from his "House Home" series chosen. He describes the works as "digitally constructed from photographs of my home, my friends' homes and objects from many different home-furnishing stores."

Warf is a graduate ceramics and education student at Marshall.

"My work, 'Vase Head Samantha,' shows Samantha ready to be filled with the joy, love, grief, or unhappiness of others and carry that weight on her shoulders," Warf said.

Sculpture student Andra Levy's piece, "The Blue Deeley," is made of blue mist alabaster stone. Levy describes it as "mother nature vs. woman. It goes with my other art pieces of what a woman goes through from young to old and everything in between."


Fran Fevrier, coordinator of this show, calls the Nelson Gallery "an artist's cooperative in sweet little Lexington, Virginia. We put a lot of effort in to supporting other artists, and to inviting the community in to enjoying the visual art that goes on in our gallery."

The show was open to residents of North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware and the District of Columbia, with a theme of  "OUTSIDE/INSIDE," which could be interpreted in any way the artist wished. It was juried by David Mickenberg, executive director of the Taubman Museum in Roanoke, Va.


Photos: "A Meeting of the Minds" by John Farley (top) and "Vase Head Samantha" by Tommy Warf are two works with Marshall connections that will be shown at the Nelson Gallery in Lexington, Va., starting Aug. 6.

Direct Link to This Release

Thursday August 5, 2010
Contact: Mallory Jarrell, Marketing and Branding Coordinator, , 304-696-3490

'Chance of Thunder' design is winner in contest sponsored by MU

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - "Chance of Thunder," a shirt design created by 2006 Marshall University graduate Michelle Southworth of Milford, Ohio, has been selected as the winner of a contest sponsored by Marshall seeking a new look in university apparel.

Southworth's winning design will be produced on shirts to be sold at the Marshall University Bookstore and she will receive a $500 prize. At Marshall, she earned a BFA degree in Visual Arts, with an emphasis in Graphic Design.

The contest allowed anyone wishing to design a new shirt for Marshall's 2010 football season to submit his or her design to be judged and voted on by the community. A selection committee chose the top 15 designs on which the community had the opportunity to vote. More than 80 designs were entered in the contest.

This contest was part of Vote for Art, which sponsors design contests across the country for universities and sports teams. It allows fans to become involved in creating new looks for their favorite teams. The prize also is sponsored through the Vote for Art contest.

For more information, visit or contact Mallory Jarrell, Marshall University Marketing and Branding Coordinator, at 304-696-3490 or by e-mail at

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Thursday August 5, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Advance only tickets on sale now for MU's Paint the Capital City Green event

CHARLESTON - Advance only tickets are still on sale for Marshall University's Paint the Capital City Green during which fans can meet new head football coach and Hurricane native Doc Holliday to learn about the future of Thundering Herd football.

Paint The Capital City Green, presented by Friends of Coal, is the nation's largest indoor pep rally for Thundering Herd alumni, fans and friends. The event is hosted by the Big Green Scholarship Foundation, the Marshall University Alumni Association, the Greater Kanawha Valley Alumni Club and the Charleston Quarterback Club. Event proceeds benefit the Big Green Scholarship Foundation and the Marshall University Alumni Association.

Individual tickets are $50 and a limited number of table sponsorships are still available. Tickets must be purchased by close of business on Monday, Aug. 16 to be entered into a drawing to win two tickets to the Herd's season opener against Ohio State Thursday, Sept. 2. The winner will also receive complimentary hotel accommodations in the Columbus area.

Festivities will begin at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 18, at Charleston's Embassy Suites Hotel with a pep rally and tailgate spread featuring entertainment by mascot Marco, the cheerleading squad and Dance Team, as well as music from members of the Marching Thunder. A formal program begins at 7 p.m. For ticket information, call the Big Green Scholarship Foundation at 304-696-4661.

Holliday will share the stage with Marshall University President Stephen J. Kopp and Athletic Director Mike Hamrick as well as key members of the squad as they discuss the future of Marshall football. Hamrick, the former director of athletics at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, rounds out his first full year at Marshall. He also will introduce the Herd's new head basketball coach Tom Herrion.

Holliday, a native of Hurricane, W.Va., was named head football coach in December 2009. He is widely regarded as one of the top recruiters in the nation and he brings 31 years of collegiate coaching experience to Marshall that includes stops at Florida, North Carolina State and WVU.

Highlights of his career include coaching in 20 bowl games and three national championship games. He also has coached 11 players that have gone on to the National Football League. Holliday comes to Marshall after serving as associate head coach at West Virginia for the past two seasons.


Photo: Marshall Head Football Coach Doc Holliday.

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Tuesday August 3, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

RCBI to celebrate 20th anniversary, MTP graduation in Bridgeport

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The Robert C. Byrd Institute for Advanced Flexible Manufacturing will celebrate its 20th anniversary as West Virginia's advanced manufacturing technology center with an open house from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 10 at its Bridgeport, W.Va., location.

The RCBI Machinist Technology Program's Class of 2010 graduation ceremony will be staged in conjunction with the open house, beginning at 6 p.m. Twenty-one people will receive their National Certifications from the National Institute of Metalworking Skills.

For the first time since the inception of the program, a combined graduation ceremony for students who completed their training in Huntington, Wheeling, and Rocket Center (near Keyser in the eastern panhandle) will be conducted jointly with the students at Bridgeport.

Kelley Goes, West Virginia's Secretary of the Department of Commerce, will be the keynote speaker. Steve Mandes, President of the National Institute of Metalworking Skills, will attend, along with Industry Board of Advisors made up of manufacturers from throughout West Virginia, who advise RCBI's MTP Program.

The open house will feature manufacturing seminars, networking opportunities, machining demonstrations as well as seminars and technology displays by more than 45 representatives from machine tool vendors and equipment suppliers across the region.

"RCBI is pleased to mark this very important milestone by continuing to bring close to 50 high tech machine tool vendors and equipment suppliers to West Virginia to demonstrate the power of technology and its effects on our economy," said Charlotte Weber, director and CEO of RCBI.

"To date, because of introduction to and training offered at RCBI, nearly 200 pieces of high-end machines representing an investment of $26 million have been made in West Virginia. And, more than 280 individuals have graduated from RCBI's Machinist Technology Program. RCBI is West Virginia's and the region's source of the latest technologies and technical training."

The next round of RCBI's nationally-certified training classes at Huntington, Bridgeport, Rocket Center and Wheeling will begin Aug. 23. There are still openings at each location for those who are interested in a manufacturing career that pays well and offers benefits.

For further information or to enroll, contact Larry Cartmill, technical program recruiter, at 304-654-0424, or Kathryn Stanley, workforce development recruiter, at 304-641-8588. Or, call 800-469-RCBI (7224) or e-mail

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Tuesday August 3, 2010
Contact: Jaye Ike, College of Fine Arts, , 304-696-3296

Fall Invitational at Gallery 842 opens Aug. 6

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Gallery 842's next exhibition, a fall invitational, will open on Friday, Aug. 6, with a reception from 6 to 9 p.m.

John Farley, gallery director and adjunct art and design faculty at Marshall University, is curating the show, and says he has enjoyed the process.

"From start to finish, I have had the opportunity to manage all aspects of this exhibition: from organizing and inviting the artists, selecting the art to be displayed, and finally installing the work itself," he said. "It has been a professional challenge and, watching it all come together, a source of great personal satisfaction. In one way or another, each of the participating artists has shaped and influenced my personal development and professional growth as an artist; I consider this my opportunity to give back. Viewers can expect to see a very eclectic show, with fine woodworking and furniture pieces, sculpture, ceramics, paintings, drawings, prints, and photography all sharing the same space."

Gallery 842 is both a community- and university-held space to promote local talent and initiative. The gallery, a free cultural experience for any artist or art enthusiast, is located at 842 4th Ave. in downtown Huntington,  and is open Wednesday through Sunday during the summer.

Marshall's chairman of the Department of Art and Design, Byron Clercx, will be participating in the exhibition.

"John selected dynamic and diverse works from Marshall University artists and key community artists that attest to the creative skills and spirit in the Tri-State region and embody the important shared mission Gallery 842 plays for Marshall University, the Department of Art and Design, and the community," Clercx said.

For some emerging artists, it's exciting to be showing work next to established key artists in the area.

"It's an honor to be invited to be in a show with artists whom I've looked up to as role models, teachers, and friends," said graduate education student Tommy Warf, who is also known for being instrumental in Marshall's Empty Bowls event each year. "I am very excited to see the show and to have my work next to some of Huntington's greatest artists."

For others, it's the unexpected opportunity to see the work of local artists who lead more administrative roles, including Don Van Horn, dean of the College of Fine Arts.

"I am very excited to see this show at Gallery 842 as it will include a veritable 'Who's Who' of artists from our region," said Margaret Mary Layne, executive director of the Huntington Museum of Art. "We at the Museum are very proud that so many artists included hold leadership roles at HMA, including Don Van Horn, Mike Cornfeld, Katherine Cox and Kathleen Kneafsey."

Layne continued, "I am particularly interested in the inclusion of so many individuals who teach, or have taught, at Marshall University, many of whom were my teachers. These individuals have spent their lives not just influencing students but influencing the community in which they live, and we are all the better for it. Of particular interest to me is Dr. Clayton McNearney. He was my Religious Studies professor and it does not surprise me one bit to see him included in this show. Dr. McNearney taught me so much about how to live and and that is what art is really about life."

Though Farley invited artists to submit primarily new works of art, some exceptions were made. Van Horn, for one, will have one new piece - a large piece of furniture he hand-crafted. But he will also be showing some older pieces of work.

"Given the fact that I am no longer actively making sculpture or exhibiting, I am pleased to be invited," Van Horn said. "I am including four small sculptures that are shown as one piece. The boxes are made up of components of models and molds I used in a series of pieces using dead birds as images. I treat these pieces as specimens, hence the title "Specimen Boxes."

The list of participants in the show includes Nik Botkin, Natalie Gibbs Burdette, David Castleberry, Fern Christian, Byron Clercx, Michael Cornfeld, Katherine Cox, Eva Cox, Seth Cyfers, John Farley, Diana Frazier, Adam Hodges, Rebecca Holbrook, Kathleen Kneafsey, Staci Leech, Leona Mackey, Clay McNearney, Sholten Singer, Don Van Horn, Tommy Warf, Erin White, Ryan Worley, Chris Worth and Kristen Zammiello.

The show will run through Sept. 9.

For more information, contact Jaye Ike, special projects coordinator for the College of Fine Arts, by phone at 304-696-3296 or by e-mail at

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Tuesday August 3, 2010
Contact: Susan Tams, Director of Editorial Services, 304-746-2038

'Time for Music' registering for fall; advance discount ends Aug. 9

HUNTINGTON, W. Va. - Time is running out for parents who want to take advantage of the advance discount for "Time For Music," a popular program for babies and children up to age 5. The discount applies to registrations that take place on or before Aug. 9, according to Joni Pappas, director of the program, which is offered through the Speech and Hearing Clinic at Marshall University. Sessions begin the week of Aug. 23.

Classes are available for babies from birth to 18 months; toddlers from 18 to 36 months; 3-year-olds, and 4- and 5-year-olds.  In the baby category, a "baby-and-sibling" registration is available so that parents may register two children at a combined rate.

Parent participation is required for the classes, which take place in the daytime and early evenings on Mondays through Wednesdays. A maximum of nine children is accepted per class and children with special needs are welcome.

Pappas said the 45-minute sessions are designed to enhance a child's cognitive, social/emotional, speech/language and physical development by using age-appropriate music activities and movement. Emphasis is made on American folk music, with which most of the parents will be familiar, and virtually all of it will be performed live.

"[This program] has afforded our 21-month-old a fun and caring place to learn new communication skills through song, dance, musical instruments and even sign language," said Charlotte Hoffman Norris, a parent-participant. "It has also given me, a working mom, a great opportunity to watch and participate in my son's play and interaction with other children and their parents/grandparents."

Pappas is a board-certified neurologic music therapist specializing in early childhood intervention, special education and older adults. Her private practice has included work in numerous pre-schools, early childhood centers, special education programs, nursing homes and rehabilitative centers in Iowa, Mississippi and Indiana. She also is a music educator, having taught pre-K-12 general and choral music in Dubuque, Ia. She is currently serving as adjunct faculty for the Department of Music at Marshall.

For information on "Time For Music," persons may visit the program's website at, contact Pappas by e-mailing, or call her at 304-697-0211.


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Monday August 2, 2010
Contact: Ginny Painter, Communications Director, Marshall University Research Corporation,, 304-552-1287

CSX presents $50,000 gift to Marshall University for research at the Rahall Transportation Institute

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - CSX Corporation today presented a gift of $50,000 to Marshall University for research at the university's Nick J. Rahall II Appalachian Transportation Institute (RTI).

U.S. Congressman Nick Rahall and Marshall officials accepted the check from J. Randolph Cheetham, CSX regional vice president for state relations, in a ceremony in conjunction with the National Rural Intelligent Transportation Systems Conference being held Aug. 1-4 at the Pullman Plaza Hotel in Huntington.

<>The donation will be matched through the state's "Bucks for Brains" West Virginia Research Trust Fund.

"CSX is pleased to work closely with Marshall University's Rahall Transportation Institute on a variety of important transportation research initiatives," said Cheetham. "Our contribution is meant to recognize that work and, with the matching grant from the research trust fund, position the institute for continued initiatives that will help the railroad industry continue its role as the safest, most efficient form of surface transportation." 

The contribution will be used to further transportation research conducted by RTI through its Railroad Safety and Operations Research Center of Excellence (Rail-SORCE). The center was formed to enhance the study of technologies that address railroad industry challenges nationwide. The Rail-SORCE at RTI provides an array of services including technology testing, research and development for asset mapping and inspections; train, car and mobile worker tracking; and intelligent grade crossings.

This was the second donation CSX has made to Marshall. The company made a $50,000 contribution last year for transportation research at RTI. That gift was also matched by the trust fund.

Dr. Stephen J. Kopp, president of Marshall University, also thanked the company for the donation, saying, "Once again, CSX has demonstrated their support for the Rahall Transportation Institute, Marshall University and our community. This latest gift complements the significant investments made in transportation research at Marshall over the past several years, and we thank CSX for their continuing commitment. We also salute Congressman Rahall for his unwavering dedication and support of our university and this entire region."

CSX Corporation, based in Jacksonville, Fla., is one of the nation's leading transportation companies, providing rail, intermodal and rail-to-truck transload services. The company's transportation network spans approximately 21,000 miles, with service to 23 eastern states and the District of Columbia, and connects to more than 70 ocean, river and lake ports.

A National University Transportation Center located at Marshall University, RTI is a multimodal institute with an emphasis on intelligent transportation systems, rail research and enhancements, and custom web-based Geographic Information Systems. RTI fosters strategic relationships with private industry and public agencies to leverage resources, technology and strategic thinking to improve mobility and stimulate economic development in West Virginia and throughout the 13-state Appalachian Region.

The West Virginia Research Trust Fund was established in 2008 to serve as a catalyst for economic development across the state. The trust fund program allows Marshall to double private gifts that support expansions to research faculty and infrastructure in key areas linked to economic development, health care and job growth. The West Virginia Legislature initially appropriated $15 million in the trust fund for Marshall. Qualifying private gifts to the university are matched dollar-for-dollar by the state's fund.


Photo: From left, Lance West, vice president for development at Marshall University; Stephen J. Kopp, president of Marshall University; J. Randolph Cheetham, CSX regional vice president for state relations; U.S. Congressman Nick J. Rahall II, and Bob Plymale, director and CEO of the Nick J. Rahall II Appalachian Transportation Institute, participate in a check presentation today at the Pullman Plaza Hotel.  CSX presented a gift of $50,000 to Marshall University for research at the Rahall Transportation Institute.

Photo by Rick Haye/Marshall University.

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