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WVUToday on the Radio 2019

Mountaineer Marching Band radio spot
December 19, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, Mountaineers go first. After years of conversation, a practice facility is now in the works for the pride of West Virginia Mountaineer Marching Band, but that's not the only exciting thing in the works at the College of Creative Arts. I'm here with Dr. Scott Tobias, the Director of Bands. Let's talk about the practice facility first. This is a big deal for the band.

Dr. Scott Tobia: It really is. We have been fortunate to have a nice area to practice in for a number of years. What we've been lacking a little bit is weather protection. We're looking at creating a turf field for the band to practice on. In addition to that, we're looking at a covered pavilion, possibly where we can get out of the weather and also a climate controlled storage building where all of our instruments can be stored because as the band goes out and represents the university across the state, better facility we have, the more we can do and the better we can represent WVU.

April Kaull: This isn't the only exciting development for the college in the coming year. There's also an opportunity to take WVU to China. Talk a little bit more about this trip and these performance opportunities.

Dr. Scott Tobia: The wind symphony has been issued an invitation by the United States China Cultural Exchange Foundation. We'll be going in May of 2020 over to Beijing, Shanghai, Nanxiang and doing a nine day performance tour.

April Kaull: This is also a real opportunity for those students who are part of that program to experience something very unique.

Dr. Scott Tobia: Very different. It's going to be a tremendous opportunity for us to share a little bit about our country with our friends in China and for them to share their country with our students.

April Kaull: How can people help to support this effort?

Dr. Scott Tobia: If they would like to donate to either one of these causes, they can go into our website, either through the WVU Foundation or if they go to the WVU band's website, which is, there's a link there where they can make a donation.

April Kaull: Let's go. Follow our story on

Helicopter Parents radio spot
December 9, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, Mountaineers go first. Kristin Moilanen is researching the effects of helicopter parenting on young adults. Kristin, why did you want to look at this particular issue?

Kristin Moilane: This is an aspect of parenting that's come to popular attention in the last decade or so. Parents put pressure on children and seek to control aspects of their lives, including decisions that they make their relationships with others, how they interact with other people, including their faculty members, and their employers. And there's evidence showing that this does some real harm to young people, that they don't learn how to adult, that they don't ultimately know how to manage their own lives.

April Kaull: Tell me a little bit about the study. How was it structured? What were you looking to find?

Kristin Moilane: What I was looking to find was whether there was an association between this type of parenting and youths' self-regulation ability. That's what I found.

April Kaull: What's the lesson for parents here?

Kristin Moilane: Kids need to learn how to make their own decisions. And this isn't something that happens overnight. It's something that needs to develop gradually. And when they're younger, as teenagers, they should start taking on more control over their own choices and their own lives. And that also means parents need to be ready to relinquish that control, at least gradually, in a fashion that is appropriate for their child.

April Kaull: What's the message for kids?

Kristin Moilane: Kids, listen to your parents. They do have your best interests at heart. But as well, it is okay to push back a little if you think that they're being perhaps a little too overprotective. If you're ready for a bit more autonomy or freedom, then that's a good chance to have a dialogue about what you're ready for in terms of independence.

April Kaull: And what's the societal message as it relates to young people and future generations of young people, as they become adults?

Kristin Moilane: If they are able to navigate those transitions and figure out a way to deal with those stressors in life, then things should turn out just okay.

April Kaull: So let's go, follow our story on

“Would You?” campaign radio spot
November 18, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia university, Mountaineers go first.

April Kaull: I'm April Kaull, Today. I'm here with Kim and TJ Birch. Their son Nolan was part of a hazing incident during an unsanctioned fraternity event in November of 2014, you've been part of a new documentary film that's come out. It's called breathe, Nolan, breathe, but I have to say there are some parts of the documentary that are pretty raw. Why did you feel that was important?

Kim Birch: We show it because if you just make a phone call, can change so many people's lives. Nobody helped Nolan. He was struggling. He needed help. If one person had helped him, we wouldn't be sitting here. We wouldn't be talking right now about this. My son would be alive if there was a hundred kids around that night and Nolan was laying on a table suffering, essentially dying, and nobody helped him. That's not acceptable. These kids need to step up and to make a difference. It's not just WVU problem. It's the nation's problem. So just don't be a bystander. Help each other. Be there for each other.

April Kaull: The film is really the starting point for a campaign at West Virginia University called Would You. And the idea is would you help someone if they were in trouble.

TJ Birch: Seconds Are precious. So don't waste any time. We know as humans, if something doesn't feel right, it's probably not right. Make a phone call, do it, pick up the phone, get professionals involved. It's your EMS involved. Be the leader, just be human beings and take care of each other.

April Kaull: Kim, TJ Birch. Thank you so much, and thank you for sharing your story in order to help others. You can find information about the documentary Breathe Nolan, breathe at WVU safety website, it's There are a lot of resources as well about hazing prevention, bystander training. About Medical Amnesty, as well as a number of other safety issues. You'll also find links to the Nolan and Birch foundation. You can also watch the film, Breathe, Nolan, Breathe.

April Kaull: So let's go. Follow our story on

WV Gifted students & STEM radio spot
November 7, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, mountaineers go first.

April Kaull: Researchers will promote STEM in rural West Virginia, and they hope to increase the identification of students with gifts and talents. A five-year grant for the Project Appalachian Coders Program will help them do it. I'm with Carla [Borgandi] from the College of Education and Human Services and Nancy [Spalane] with WVU Teach. Carla, let's start with you. You believe that there are more gifted students in West Virginia than maybe we know. How does your research help to find them?

Carla: One of the components of this research is to [inaudible] local as opposed to statewide norms. Right now, West Virginia uses 125 IQ score to identify gifted children. But we know that socioeconomic level and parent education level affects the way students score on these IQ tests. So they're disproportionately identified. We believe 5% of every population in every school should be identified as gifted and talented, regardless of the IQ score. The other part is advocacy by bringing parents and kids in the community into these events that we'll be hosting. Hopefully, they'll be more likely to recognize this as a valuable experience for their children and the parents will be more likely to advocate for identification and perhaps the children themselves will self-advocate.

April Kaull: Nancy, why is it so important to get these students identified and into the STEM pipeline?

Nancy: By introducing Project Appalachian Coders early on in the elementary school, it helps students think of themselves as capable of doing things involving math and science. In particular, this case being able to code.

April Kaull: Why is west Virginia a good place for this?

Nancy: With the changing economy in West Virginia, there are going to be changing opportunities for students and many of these will be in STEM fields.

April Kaull: Carla, what does success look like five or maybe 10 years from now?

Carla: More children being identified as having high academic ability, more kids being served, more kids actualizing their potential, which is good for the kids and it's good for West Virginia because they'll come back and they'll make positive change in their communities.

April Kaull: So let's go. Follow our story on

Third annual WVU Day of Giving radio spot
October 31, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, Mountaineers go first.

April Kaull: I'm April Kaull. Today I'm here with B.J Davidson from the WVU Foundation. We're here to talk about the third annual Day of Giving, November 13th. Why now more than ever is an event like Day of Giving so important?

B.J Davidson: We've been dealing with declining state appropriations now at the university for a number of years. And we have to continue to provide funding for the university to fund that margin of excellence, the programs and the priorities that perhaps otherwise 10 years ago, would've been funded more directly through a state appropriation. So we really see the role of the Foundation as stepping in and filling that gap and then some to advance the institution's mission.

April Kaull: You receive a lot of support, a lot of donations during Day of Giving. But really there's a key word that I know you're focused on in particular for this year and that's flexibility.

B.J Davidson:The more unrestricted dollars we can drive this year in particular through Day of Giving and other initiatives will really provide our leadership with the flexibility that they really do need.

April Kaull: And there are a lot of opportunities on the actual Day of Giving. There are a lot of challenges we know that pop up throughout the day. So what things should people be looking for and how can they make the most out of their donation on that day?

B.J Davidson: If people follow us throughout the day on social media be it Facebook, Twitter, on our website. We have a number of really kind of fun challenges planned throughout the day.

April Kaull: When we talk about the support that an event like Day of Giving provides. Students, faculty are so appreciative aren't they?

B.J Davidson: It's really fun to see how a relatively modest donation can make a huge difference. It's really rewarding and very heartening to see the significant appreciation that our end users of dollars have.

April Kaull: A couple of quick reminders. It's the Day of Giving, November 13th. Be sure to visit for all kinds of information and follow the WVU Foundation on Twitter and Facebook.

April Kaull: So let's go. Follow our story on

Service Dogs radio spot
October 24, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, mountaineers go first. I'm April Kaull, we're here today at the WVU Animal Sciences Farm and we're here to talk about a really special program and partnership. I'm here with Lindsay Parenti from the Davis College, as well as Savannah Connelly from Hearts of Gold. Tell me a little bit about the service dog training program that's been happening here for a number of years now.

Lindsay Parenti: We started in 2007. Our main goal is education and community outreach, training WVU students how to train service dogs for individuals with disabilities, mostly veterans with PTSD.

April Kaull: What is it that makes a dog a good service dog?

Lindsay Parenti: It depends on the type of service. So for Hearts of Gold, we're training for mobility assistance and also psychiatric support. For mobility, obviously we're looking for a larger, stronger breed. For psychiatric support, they can be a smaller breed, but we're always looking for calm, friendly, non-aggressive type breeds.

April Kaull: Lindsay, talk a little bit about how the students are involved in this program and what role they play.

Lindsay Parenti: The students are the biggest part, I think, of this program. Once they're certified by us, they can become teaching assistants, they can foster dogs for us.

April Kaull: Savannah, what does this mean for Hearts of Gold? And kind of walk us through the process. Once dogs are ready to be placed with a person, how does your group make that connection for people?

Savannah Connelly: Right now we have a grant that allows us to do it free of charge to our veterans. So, they reach out to us and they fill out an application, then we enroll them in an online course, then they'll come to lab and they'll actually work with a bunch of the different dogs. From there, we try to see if there's an obvious connection, if not, then we place based on temperament, assertiveness, energy level, and we spend a lot of time with the veterans and the dog placements and then we get to see them every year thereafter.

April Kaull: In your years being involved, what has struck you about the program and the way WVU, Hearts of Gold, veterans, and these dogs interact with one another?

Savannah Connelly: You'll have a really withdrawn person actually come into the class. They can go from hiding in their house to being credentialed at The White House in less than a year.

April Kaull: So let's go. Follow our story on

State of the University radio spot
October 17, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, Mountaineers go first. President Gordon Gee delivered his annual State of the University Address Monday, October 14th. His remarks focused on building from the past to plan WVU's future.

Gordon Gee: Abraham Lincoln once said the best thing about the future is that it comes one day at a time. Looking back at how far we have ascended over the past five years, it is easy to view our progress as inevitable and to forget the nearly 2000 days we have all spent striving to arrive at this point. Certainly clouds are gathering on higher educations horizons, we all know that, the number of students graduating from high schools have been declining, and after a brief spike over the next few years the drop will accelerate sharply.

In this environment America's land-grant universities must evolve to offer what our citizens are seeking. At West Virginia University purpose has been our Polar Star, guiding us upward over the past five years ever closer to the pinnacle of excellence. We must reject the pursuit of money and prestige, chasing rankings that we know are deeply flawed at the expense of genuine educational excellence. As important as our student experience is, we must also start educating people for success long before they ever appear on a college campus. I know that at West Virginia University we can. So this rugged terrain we have traversed over the past five years proves that with purpose as our compass, a new map will guide our steps and bring our destination into focus.

April Kaull: So let's go. Follow our story on

Mountaineer Nation Day radio spot
October 10, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, Mountaineers go first. Fans from all around the globe will have the opportunity to celebrate the eighth annual Mountaineer Nation day. This year, it is October 19th. Here to tell us a little bit more about Mountaineer Nation day is Nikki Goodenow from university relations, Nikki, what is Mountaineer Nation Day?

Nikki Goodenow: Mountaineer Nation Day is 24 hour period where we ask fans to show their pride and passion for the Gold and Blue and we really look to connect our fans globally, leveraging our social media channels, whether you are in Morgantown or you're across the globe in Europe, you can have an opportunity to participate and really join in and talk with other Mountaineer fans.

April Kaull: And there are a lot of contests and opportunities available as part of Mountaineer Nation Day. Let's talk about the biggest one. The first step is really to register that watch party, right?

Nikki Goodenow: We are asking fans on Mountaineer Nation Day to capture photos and document their watch party and they can visit and enter those photos for an opportunity to win the ultimate watch party pride pack. Whether you're a watch party of one, or you're a watch party of 50, you can check out the map and we just love to see those flying WVs chilling, capture all 50 states, but then also, we've had Australia, we've had Europe, we've had a number of different countries register parties as well.

April Kaull: I mentioned there were a couple of contests happening. Let's talk a little bit about the other contest that's happening on Mountaineer Nation Day. You have a lot of parties and I know you want to break the record from last year. How can people get involved in that?

Nikki Goodenow: So we're asking fans to just follow our social media channels @WestVirginiaU on Twitter and Facebook throughout the day and you can enter a number of different contests and you use #WVUMND and you'll have an opportunity to win a wide range of products.

April Kaull: Nikki, thanks so much for sharing some information and don't forget, Mountaineer Nation, celebrate Mountaineer Nation Day, October 19th. So let's go. Follow our story on

Chris Martin Global Health Summit radio spot
October 4, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, mountaineers go first. I'm April Kaull, today I'm here with Dr. Chris Martin at the Health Sciences Center here at West Virginia University. And we're going to talk about global health and a focus that the university's having on looking at health from a global perspective.

Dr. Chris Martiin: Yes, as a world class university, WVU is very much engaged with the world in many areas, including the health sector. It's important to realize that the health problems today are very, very much common and shared amongst populations and countries throughout the world. It's often been said that any disease is a 36 hour plane ride from coming to us. And that's what we've seen historically.

April Kaull: The Global Health Summit really has brought a lot of different people to the table talk a little bit about the role that WVU has played in that. And some of the biggest challenges that are part of that conversation?

Dr. Chris Martiin: Well, we're thrilled to have this Global Health Summit. It's an inaugural one. It's the first one. We intend to do it every year. It was very much a team effort. We've been able to attract world class talent here, and we're very proud of that. And one of the themes of this is that global health problems are solved in a very multidisciplinary manner. So we have lawyers, we have engineers, we have dentists. It's far more than just physicians and we have to bear in mind that the solution to global health problems requires broad support from many professionals. And that's what's reflected in the summit.

April Kaull: Beyond the community impact that talking about health from a global perspective has what does this mean for the faculty and the students here at WVU?

Dr. Chris Martiin: Well, as someone who continues to be actively involved in teaching medical students and working with our younger faculty, I'm often asked at recruitment interviews to talk about our global activities. When I went to medical school, global was something you did on your own, outside of your curriculum. Now I can tell you, our students expect a global health curriculum as part of their education and our young faculty, the prized faculty that we want to recruit here, ask us how can I pursue my global health interests when I come to the WVU Health Sciences Center?

April Kaull: So let's go. Follow our story on

Sally Deskins 'Appalachian Futures' Exhibit radio spot
September 17, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, Mountaineers go first. I'm April Kaull. I'm on the downtown campus of West Virginia University inside the Wise Library. Today, I'm here with Sally Deskins from WVU Libraries. We're here to talk about an exciting new exhibit Kaulled Appalachian Futures.

Sally Deskins: Appalachian Futures is a huge exhibit of over 50 contributors from around the region, from the arts to scholarship and WVU faculty, to student projects and social media innovators. It's a very diverse, huge exhibit that takes over our first floor up to our atrium.

April Kaull: It started in early September. It's going to continue through the rest of this year. Tell me a little bit about your favorite part of the exhibit, or things that people have told you they're most drawn to as they look at it.

Sally Deskins: The speculative futures is really exciting because there's visual art, there's Fallout, which is a video game about West Virginia. There's graphic novels, so it's really exciting and upstairs in the atrium is a really cool visual art exhibit.

April Kaull: Every time we hear the word Appalachia, it seems like we're talking about our culture, our history, the past, but this is focusing on the future of the region.

Sally Deskins: Right. That's exactly why because there's so much focus on the past and we want to look forward.

April Kaull: Why is that so important, especially right now?

Sally Deskins: Because a lot of the national media tend to look at us with a certain perspective, so it's really important for the people around here to speak for themselves and document their own history and potential future.

April Kaull: Let's go. Follow our story on

Research funding for WVU hits all-time high at $195 million this past year
Sept. 24, 2020
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, Mountaineers go first.

April Kaull: West Virginia University has seen a big increase in research funding. I'm here with the Vice President for Research at WVU, Fred King. Fred, what do you attribute that big increase to, and how much money are we talking about?

Fred King: So we're talking a bit about $35 million over a previous high. It was an increase in success by a variety of investigators across the university, and the awards that they receive were all for a little bit more than we used to achieve. On the national scene we are becoming more and more competitive for these federal dollars.

April Kaull: Where does most of this funding come from?

Fred King: Like any university, most of our funding for research comes from the federal government. And the agencies that we do the best with would be the US Department of Energy, historically and fossil energy, but increasingly in other areas of energy production as well. NASA, National Science Foundation. And, it's not unusual for a university like ours, a public land grant university with a medical center, to do very well with the NIH.

April Kaull: $181 million is a lot of money for research. Where are you seeing the bulk of that work happening at the university?

Fred King: We see it growing across the university from the Davis College, all the way through health sciences.

April Kaull: What does that mean in terms of the impact West Virginia university and the researchers here can have on the quality of life and the outlook for the state, and beyond?

Fred King: Research at the university is very much focused on the purpose of serving the state. Whether we're talking about work with the Green Bank Observatory where we're looking at really the origins of the universe, or whether we're talking about the work that goes on at the Rockefeller Neuroscience Institute aimed at dealing with addiction or Alzheimer's disease, you can see that there's always a relationship back to the state.

April Kaull: So let's go. Follow our story on

Rocco Fucillo - All WVU campuses are tobacco- and smoke-free radio spot
Sept 2, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University mountaineers go first. I'm April Kaull the director of news here at university relations. I'm joined by Roco Fucillo from strategic initiatives at WVU. On August 1st. All campuses at West Virginia university went 100% tobacco and smoke free. What exactly does that mean?

Roco Fucillo: In order to promote a culture of health and wellness across all WVU, the board of governor's earlier year changed the rule to include banning all e-cigarettes and vaping products. In addition to all tobacco products.

April Kaull: Who does this updated policy affect? Is this just faculty, staff, and students?

Roco Fucillo: Everyone who touches any of the three campuses, including Morgantown, Kaiser, and Beckley.

April Kaull: Tell me a little bit about how this is going to be enforced?

Roco Fucillo: There's three prongs to it. One is awareness through doing things like this outreach and constant communications to all our audiences. Secondly, through education, we're creating a student ambassadors program in partnership with 'Well WVU' students will go out, provide education resources about prevention and a not using the products.

April Kaull: And there's a compliance officer. That's also going to be on the Morgantown Campus?

Roco Fucillo: And that's the third prong, and that's accountability, and accountability comes in two phases. One there's a dedicated website that when started on July 22nd, where anybody can anonymously report a violation of the policy. Secondly, on the Morgantown campus will have a Compliance Officer whose job will be to patrol all of WVU Morgantown campus. And if he sees violators to write notices of policy violations.

April Kaull: Roco, thank you very much. And don't forget that website again has a lot of information it's So let's go, follow our story on

Maryanne Reed - Meet WVU’s new provost radio spot
Aug 28, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, Mountaineers go first.

April Kaull: I'm joined today by provost and vice president for academic affairs of West Virginia University, Maryanne Reed, before that, you were the Dean of the Reed College of Media here at WVU. You've been on the job since July 1st as provost.

Maryanne Reed: Yeah [laughs].

April Kaull: What's that transition been like?

Maryanne Reed: Well, it has been nonstop. It has been very exciting to be a part of the larger university. I'm learning a lot. I'm meeting a ton of people and really getting a feel for what the priorities are going to be for the coming year. But, I'm just thrilled and I have a great team of people that I'm working with.

April Kaull: What do you want students experience from an academic standpoint to be during this first full...

Maryanne Reed: Mm-hmm (affirmative).

April Kaull: Semester as provost?

Maryanne Reed: Well, I don't think you can completely separate the academic from the personal, because they're entwined when you're a college student. But I would say I want our students to start out slow, pace themselves, make sure they go to class, find that balance between fun and the academics.

April Kaull: What do you see as the biggest opportunity that you can take advantage of as you walk in the door?

Maryanne Reed: Looking at our curriculum, looking at our academic offerings to say, are we preparing students for the future? What kinds of new programs can we start that will be cutting edge and will be first of kind, really, in the country.

April Kaull: So what about the challenges? What do you see as the biggest challenge?

Maryanne Reed: I truly believe that if we can come together as a faculty, as students, as a community, we can really minimize those challenges and instead focus on the opportunities.

April Kaull: At West Virginia University, Mountaineers go first.

Rob Alsop – Pedestrian safety radio spot
August, 22, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, mountaineers go first. I'm here with Rob Alsop, the vice president for Strategic Initiatives at WVU. We're here today to talk about some changes that students and motorists will notice as they come into Morgantown this fall. It's all part of a pedestrian safety initiative that the university's been working on with the city and the county.

Rob Alsop: So we're really excited. We've been working for over a year with our partners and we've identified three crosswalks across our campus. One at Falling Run Road and University, the second at Grand Avenue and Campus, and then the third here on the Evansdale Campus on University Avenue, right by Towers and Pizza Al's and McDonald's. And so, we've taken some measures to calm traffic and highlight that those are areas where we'll have pedestrians in the road. So the city has put rumble strips on both sides of the crosswalk to allow cars, to remind them to slow down. We'll have a sign in the middle of the road, again, for traffic calming. Then there'll be some flashing lights, just to identify both to pedestrians and the motorists that this is a crosswalk area.

April Kaull: What other things do you have planned in the future?

Rob Alsop: There's some longer term things that we're still working through. So for example, up near the Coliseum and along Mon Boulevard, on Patterson Drive near Merrill Way. And over on Willy Street or even Patterson Drive and Van Voorhis, really looking at some longer term, what we consider to be tier two and tier three changes. So hopefully we'll be able to solve and add even more protection at those additional locations.

April Kaull: And in addition to the projects that are already underway for this initiative, there's also a concern as it relates to pedestrian safety, because there are a number of construction projects going on, especially right around Beechurst Avenue.

Rob Alsop: The bus loop at Hodges Hall has been moved to the Life Sciences building. And that'll be that way for a couple years as we work on Hodges. And then additionally, the pedestrian bridge between the PRT and Stansberry will be coming down. It's already closed. And so we'll have personnel and looking at additional safety measures to make sure that we take care of folks that have to cross to get over either to Napal or the other side of beers moving forward.

April Kaull: So let's go. Follow our story on

Todd Tubutis - Art Museum radio spot
March 25, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, Mountaineers go first.

April Kaull: I'm April Kaull. I'm here today with the new director of the Art Museum of West Virginia University, Todd Tubutis. You're just the second director of this facility. How does that feel?

Todd Tubutis: Oh, it feels pretty great. It's a wonderful facility. I'm really glad to be here. It's a remarkable resource for campus and for the community, and the team here is wonderful and I'm really glad to take it to the next level.

April Kaull: Where are you from? And tell us a little bit about your philosophy regarding art.

Todd Tubutis: Well, I'm originally from the Chicago area. We've moved around quite a bit in my life. Worked in museums, probably for the last 20 or so years. Most recently, I was in Nebraska at the University of Nebraska, and really kind of reintroduced myself to academic art museums. And that's one of the reasons this job really appealed to me was how can an institution like this really serve the campus broadly, not just for art history, but how everybody on this campus can be served by a museum.

April Kaull: What are some of the can't miss aspects of this facility?

Todd Tubutis: For one, the sculpture garden is beautiful, the Nath Sculpture Garden. It'll be a wonderful place to walk and contemplate what's on display. Right now, we're about to open an exhibition featuring the Harvey and Jennifer Peyton Collection. And there's more than 70 works up right now in the gallery we're standing in. There's a lot to see, so it encourages repeat visits. So there's many wonderful things that I think visitors of all ages will come, and be able to come back again and again. Anybody can come in. There's no admission charge. People can come with their parents, their grandparents. We have programs for K through 12 students. We have programs for the university. We certainly serve the broader community, people who are adults in the world. It's a place for everyone.

April Kaull: So let's go. Follow our story on

Andrea Price - Energy Express radio spot
March 6, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, Mountaineers go first. I'm here with Andrea Price, the WVU Extension Service 4-H Energy Express program coordinator. Andrea, tell me a little bit about energy express.

Andrea Price: Energy express is a six week reading and nutrition program for children who are in low income in rural areas during the summer months and the goal of energy express is to help children increase or maintain reading skills, which helps prevent what is known as the summer slide. This is made possible through a grant which supports 510 AmeriCorps members who are required to complete 300 hours of service. And when they do that, they receive an education award and a living allowance, which can be applied toward their college tuition. Members can serve up to four terms as long as they're a graduating high school senior, or they're currently enrolled in college.

April Kaull: What's the connection with WVU extension? How is extension involved?

Andrea Price: It wouldn't be possible without the support of the local agents, because they are the ones who form a collaborative team. They obtain funding and they make all the necessary contacts and arrangements at the local level to support all of our sites.

April Kaull: I know you're looking for volunteers for this summer's energy express program. Who can apply? Who can be a volunteer?

Andrea Price: On site, you'll find volunteers who are teens in grade seven through 12, interacting with the children in the program. And what they do is assist during recreational activities, art and writing activities and projects. And they also participate in one-on-one reading with the children in the program. If they're 18 and under, they also receive free meals through our program, which is another benefit and adults can volunteer at this site as well. So if you're an adult who would like to be a celebrity guest reader, if you're a local business owner, if you're a grandparent, if you're just a friend or a family member, you can come to our sites and volunteer. For a list of ways you can volunteer, you can always contact your local extension agent.

April Kaull: You can get more information about energy express at, or you can call 304-293-3855. Again, that's 304-293-3855. So let's go. Follow our story on

Richard Goldberg - Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month radio spot
March 6, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, Mountaineers go first. I'm April Kaull and, today, I'm here with the director of the WVU Cancer Institute, Dr. Richard Goldberg, during Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. A lot of people might not realize that colon cancer's the second leading cause of death West Virginia.

Richard Goldber: It's the second leading cause of cancer death in West Virginia. The good news is it is a highly preventable and highly curable disease if caught early. The reason for Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month is to let you know that.

April Kaull: When should people be screened? Who should be screened?

Richard Goldber: There's some controversy about whether screening should start at age 45 or age 50, but certainly by age 50 people who have no relatives with colon cancer should consider screening. If you have relatives diagnosed at a younger age, you ought to start earlier and talk to your doctor about that. The frequency of colon cancer diagnosis increases with age and is most common in people in their late sixties. One interesting program we have is that we're using our Bonnie's Bus, which is a mammography bus to do research about colon cancer screening. Women who come for mammographic screening are obviously interested in screening. We're offering those of them who haven't had colon cancer screening, the opportunity to participate in a research study, which uses a blood test to detect colon cancer. This test is something that we hope will have wide applicability and make it easier to get screened.

April Kaull: So let's go, follow our story on

Timmy Eads - The new Mountaineer mascot radio spot
March 1, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, Mountaineers go first.

April Kaull: I'm April Kaull and I'm here with the new Mountaineer mascot Timmy Eads. Timmy you heard your name called as the 66th Mountaineer mascot, what was going through your mind at that moment?

Timmy Eads: My mind was racing honestly. To hear my name called you know that was icing on the cake. And it's something I've wanted for a long time. And just to hear my name called it was the greatest feeling ever.

April Kaull: You're a West Virginia native, you're from Putnam County West Virginia and you've been the alternate Mountaineer for the past year, but I'm curious what's it like for you knowing that now year you're gonna be the mascot, the number one guy?

Timmy Eads: Being the alternate Mountaineer was a great experience but for me wasn't the end of the road, you know I wanted something more. now that I've worked my way up and reached an ultimate goal it really really feels great.

April Kaull: What do you want people to know about you? You're a Public Relations major in the Reed College of Media here at WVU. When you're out and about in the community, should people feel free to come up and say hi?

Timmy Eads: Absolutely, I want people to come up and talk to me and share their stories with me and share their experiences and I'll do the same for them.

April Kaull: I have to ask about the beard, was that a challenge, was it easy to grow that beard, have you always had it?

Timmy Eads: I've had the beard for quite a while now since pretty early in high school started a while back and kept it trimmed pretty well and past year I've just kind of let it go let it do its own thing and I think it's looking pretty good

April Kaull: And before we head out the door it's a little windy out here today but it's beautiful sunshine outside so it seems like the appropriate place to get a really great let's go Mountaineers, okay?

Timmy Eads: All right... LET'S GO MOUNTAINEERS!!!

April Kaull: So, let's go. Follow our story on

Chris Plein - Military Families Learning Network radio spot
February 21, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, mountaineers go first.

April Kaull: With 1.3 million active duty military personnel nationwide, coordinating and finding accessible healthcare and social services for their families is a major challenge. WVU Professor Chris Plein is working to address that challenge. Tell me about the Military Families Learning Network. What is that?

Chris Plein: The commitment of a number of different universities working together through the Cooperative Extension Service, as well as through the Department of Defense to provide resources, information, training for those who assist military families. The idea behind the Military Families Learning Network is to establish essentially, a virtual learning community for those who work with military families, but may also include folks in the community, such as social service providers, extension agents, and other stakeholders who are committed to the wellbeing and welfare of families, not only in the military, but in the community themselves.

April Kaull: How does this network speak to WVU's role as a land-grant institution, and how are you using campus collaboration to make this work?

Chris Plein: The Military Families Learning Network was a great opportunity for WVU to become involved in a consortium of 19 universities across the United States, all engaged in this project. Each university, and the teams in the universities, bring special skill and expertise to a number of different subject areas.

April Kaull: Why is this such a great fit for WVU, especially as it relates to the university's mission related to healthcare, education and prosperity?

Chris Plein: One, I think we're all committed to the wellbeing of families and children. Two, we recognize the special role that military families play.

April Kaull: So, how do people engage?

Chris Plein: We host a website. And through the website, we offer a number of different virtual learning experiences. The most important perhaps are our webinars. So during one week, there might be a webinar on advances or changes in health policy. The next week, there might be a webinar on early childhood education. The work that we do provide ready access for military support personnel, families, and others.

April Kaull: So let's go. Follow our story on

Cathy Yura - Collegiate Recovery Program radio spot
February 8, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, Mountaineers go first. I'm here today with Cathy. You're the director of the Collegiate Recovery Program here at WVU and Joey Ferguson, a student here at the university. Cathy, I'm going to start with you. A lot of people might not be aware that West Virginia University has a Collegiate Recovery Program. What is it?

Cathy: For community of students who are in recovery or students who support recovery, what we offer is a safe haven for students; to come enjoy each other's company, do activities, have a normal college experience, but not have the temptation of any alcohol or drugs.

April Kaull: We're at Serenity Place, which is the home, the physical location for the Collegiate Recovery Program. Why is it so important that there is a physical place for students to come?

Cathy: They can find that they can get away from their apartment or their roommate or whomever that might not have the same issues. And they can come here and enjoy activities on a daily basis. And we try to help them find different activities that will help support their recovery.

April Kaull: Joey, tell me a little bit about what your experience has been with the program and, and how it's helped you?

Joey: Well, I came to WVU and my addiction was already progressing and eventually I had to get to the point where I had to drop out to take care. So I went to rehab, nine months into my recovery I made a decision to come back to WVU and finish my degree, and I did that. And that was at a time when WVU did not have a Collegiate Recovery Program. So now that we do have one, I want to be here so that I can help students that are going through that time, that I remember, and I want to be here to answer their questions and help them get started on their recovery.

April Kaull: So what would you say to one of your fellow students who is thinking, hey, maybe this is the place for me.

Joey: Stop by, come meet Kathy, come give us a few minutes of your time. Tell us what you're going through. I think that anybody that's struggling with addiction can also have an amazing life if they get involved in recovery.

April Kaull: So let's go. Follow our story on

Partho Sengupta - American Heart Month radio spot
February 4, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, mountaineers go first. I'm here with Dr. Partho Sengupta at the WVU Heart and Vascular Institute. February is American heart month. A lot of people are focused on heart health right now. There are great things happening here at the Institute. I'm curious what you are most excited about?

Partho Sengupta: The Heart and Vascular Institute at the West Virginia University just came up with this big plan to bring this program and expand it. And what's happening here is a component of three things that have evolved. One thing is a service. Service to the community. Number second is the education. And number third is research.

April Kaull: What's the one thing that someone could do starting today to improve their heart health?

Partho Sengupta: You come up with a healthy plan. The health plans should start first thing in the morning. You get up, get a treadmill or some kind of an activity, go on the treadmill for 15, 20 minutes. See your television. The best shows that you wanted to listen to music or whatever. But the best thing that one we need to do is to become more physically active, bring in more activities, 10,000 footsteps, for example. Get some goals, get your smart watch or some kind of activity monitor tracking to be able to get up to this goal. Number one. Number two is healthy eating. Have a diet which is not necessarily fast food, which is all fired and loaded with lots of calories. Know the calorie count what you're eating. And the third thing that I will tell you is the stress management. Disconnect from what you do and be available to yourself in respect and be able to meditate. And even if you don't have a meditation plan, doesn't matter, but know yourself. You need to know how to relax.

April Kaull: So let's go. Follow our story on

Keith Bailey - Online graduate programs radio spot
January 22, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, mountaineers go first.

April Call: Online graduate programs at WVU in business data analytics, nba, forensic accounting and fraud examination, as well as a graduate engineering program in Information technology, have all been recognized in the top 50 of the latest U.S. News and World Report best online program rankings. Keith Bailey from WVU Online is with me. Talk a little about the importance of these types of programs to WVU's mission.

Keith Bailey: Through online education we are able to expand access to these programs. Those students that aren't normally able to come to campus, or be able to re-locate, are able to get the same degree, just in an online format. More and more people are gaining access to online programs. What we are doing is trying to grow that access to those students in the way they want to consume their degree. Whether it be fully online, on campus or somewhere in between.

April Call: Talk a little bit about how these high performing programs tie into WVU's status as a R1 Research institution.

Keith Bailey: We have some of the premiere faculty in the country and many of those same faculty are also teaching in these online programs. So not only are they benefiting from the research and those aspects of the institution, but also the education that they're able to place through these distance education programs. There is an upward trend of students taking online courses that support their residential experience but also taking fully online programs. We are actually out pacing that here at the institution. Were have about 2400 fully online students right now but we also have about 50% of our students are taking at least one online course to support the residential experience. You know the rankings are out there and people can look at kind of the criteria behind those rankings so if you start to look at what those actually mean, a savy student may go and look at hose rankings and say hey this is the type of an experience I can get compared to other institutions.

April Kaull: So let's go. Follow our story on

Matt Akers - National Birth Defects Awareness Month radio spot
January 10, 2019
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April Kaull: At West Virginia University, Mountaineers go first. I'm here with Dr. Matt Akers from the Department of Pediatrics at WVU. This is National Birth Defects Awareness Month, and I wanted to ask you about what you see on a daily basis at WVU Medicine Children's

Dr. Matt Akers:We have a great team of health care providers here to help take care of these babies and their families. And so the experience is very humbling, but also very rewarding.

April Kaull: What do you see as the biggest challenge in trying to address birth defects?

Dr. Matt Akers:There's been a good amount of research done to try to understand how the birth defects actually happen. And so the ultimate goal would be to prevent these from happening from the get-go. And so the focus to kind of improve outcomes is really to improve the medical management and surgical management for these babies.

April Kaull: What's happening here at West Virginia University to help address some of those challenges?

Dr. Matt Akers:So working with our high risk obstetricians, they get a good number of referrals from the state and around the state where moms and dads can come prenatally to get aided in their diagnoses and the management and kind of planning prenatally, and maybe even be able to meet with some of the surgeons before the baby's even born.

April Kaull: A new WVU Medicine Children's Hospital is in the works at the university. What is that going to mean for care and treatment here in West Virginia?

Dr. Matt Akers:A new hospital will kind of give us more to space to help take care of more babies, not just with congenital anomalies, but with other problems as well, but then also be able to use it as a way to recruit more physicians and healthcare providers here to help care for the babies in the state of West Virginia and beyond.

April Kaull: So let's go! Follow our story on

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