Looking at the early numbers on Shepherd University’s enrollment picture for next year, undergraduate applications are at the highest level the University has seen in eight years (and up 39 percent compared to this time last year). Enrollment confirmations are up 24 percent compared to this time last year.
The University has also run up the score in attracting federal funding. The Fiscal Year 2022 appropriations omnibus package, approved by Congress and signed by the President on March 15, included almost $7 million for the University (out of a total of $241 million earmarked for projects across West Virginia).
Most of the federal funding will be used to enhance the campus infrastructure. The most visible projects receiving support will be the building of a new entrance to campus off of Duke Street/Route 480, the environmental remediation and demolition of two residential buildings on the East Loop of campus, and campus-wide security enhancements. Student programs that will receive federal funding include new distance learning options for rural high school students (“Dual Enrollment Hub Sites”) and the ListenLearnEngage initiative, a program administered by the Stubblefield Institute for Civil Political Communications.
Both of West Virginia’s senators supported the new funding. “We are profoundly grateful to Senators Capito and Manchin for their extraordinary support of Shepherd’s critical projects,” said University President Dr. Mary Hendrix. “Their advocacy on our behalf will allow us to provide outstanding services for our students, employees, and the community.”
Building & Investing for Success
Results of incoming federal funding are planned to have a lasting effect on the University, students and the surrounding community.
Dual Enrollment Hub Sites: $111,000
Creates distance learning options for rural high school students through dual enrollment courses; provides students and teachers a structured “safe to learn at home” environment; and promotes economic growth within West Virginia’s rural communities by educating the next generation of leaders.
East Loop Projects: $1,475,000 & $936,000
Environmental remediation and demolition of two obsolete residential buildings and the creation of a gateway entrance connecting to Route 480 will kick off the transformation of the northeast corner of the campus overlooking the Potomac and Rumsey Bridge.
ListenLearnEngage Initiative: $70,000
Supports an interdisciplinary program to prepare Shepherd students to shape and debate public policies and to fulfill community leadership roles. Initially targeting nursing, social work, and education majors, this project will be managed by The Bonnie and Bill Stubblefield Institute for Civil Political Communications at Shepherd University.
Technology and Broadband Equipment: $135,000
In coordination with nearby community colleges and universities, Shepherd University will identify the technology and equipment opportunities to connect to Internet2, a not-for-profit consortium devoted to building the next generation of internet based on fiber optics.
Campus Security Upgrades: $4,000,000
The University police department will purchase and install an integrated security camera system across campus and purchase additional vehicles, a communication system, an integrated locking system, and other improvements.
Accessibility Technology Services: $36,000
Funding for new equipment, technology, and education software will assist a wide variety of students with everything from overcoming learning disabilities and visual impairments, to language skills for students whose first language is not English.By Staff Contributor