Parkersburg, W.Va. 3/6/12 – Last week, West Virginia University at Parkersburg and Roane County School District officials accepted a USDA Rural Utilities Services (RUS) grant award in the amount of $298,330. Roane and Ritchie counties and WVU Parkersburg will use the funds to develop collaborative programs to improve health and well-being of citizens in rural areas through training, activities and advocacy.
As part of the grant, WVU Parkersburg will purchase videoconferencing equipment in order to provide synchronous educational opportunities for program participants. This will allow individuals to earn course credit or training hours with face-to-face interaction without having to travel to the college. Program offerings will be available by early summer.
“This is a continuing effort on the part of the college to reach out into the community to provide valuable and necessary training to enhance the quality of life in our area,” said Dr. Rhonda Tracy, WVU Parkersburg senior vice president for academic affairs.
The grant funding, which was announced in December, was awarded to recipients in 34 states.
“This program delivers educational and medical opportunities that are urgently needed in remote, rural areas,” said U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. “President Obama has said that no matter where you live in America, you should have access to quality educational opportunities. Rural Americans deserve the same opportunities for education and medical care as metropolitan-area residents, and these funds will make that happen.”