Senators Jay Rockefeller and Joe Manchin this week announced over $99,000 in federal funds for Shepherd University that will help high school teachers learn more about Appalachian history, culture and literature, which they will then be able to teach their students.
These funds will cover a three-week seminar for 16 high school teachers who will come to Shepherd in July of 2013. The seminar will coincide with Shepherd's renowned Contemporary American Theater Festival (CATF) and will incorporate trips to West Virginia landmarks and cultural institutions.
"We have so many talented educators across West Virginia and the country who are devoted to helping their students learn and succeed," Rockefeller said. "Being awarded this competitive grant is a testament to the dedication and hard work of Shepherd University faculty and staff and to the inspiring nature of our Appalachian heritage. I am certain that Shepherd will implement an exceptional program."
"I'm so proud of West Virginia's rich culture and our special history. We are one of two states to be born out of the Civil War, and President Lincoln's handprints are all over our state, since he was responsible for our creation," Manchin said. "I encourage all West Virginia teachers to learn as much as they can about our state so that they can pass along our values to the next generation. It is a great opportunity for Shepherd University to receive such an outstanding grant to promote Appalachian history and heritage."
"This is great progress for Shepherd; NEH grants are very difficult to attract," said Shepherd University President Suzanne Shipley. "It is this sort of accomplishment that will extend Shepherd's potential to expand initiatives in the humanities. Excellence builds upon excellence."
"We are very excited about this NEH award and applaud the fine, scholarly work of Dr. Sylvia Shurbutt, Professor of English at Shepherd, in propelling this project forward," said Shepherd's Warren Calderone, Director of Foundation, Government, and Corporate Relations. "We are pleased to have Senator Rockefeller's and Senator Manchin's enthusiasm and support as we spread knowledge and appreciation of Appalachia."
The funding was awarded through a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). NEH grants aim to strengthen teaching and learning, facilitate research and original scholarship, preserve and provide access to cultural and educational resources, and to fortify the institutional base of the humanities.