City, college benefit from partnership

BUCKHANNON – Dave McCauley, attorney for both the city of Buckhannon and West Virginia Wesleyan College, told Buckhannon Rotarians Tuesday that both entities have benefited from close cooperation over the years.

McCauley said he’s seen numerous instances of that cooperation over his 31-year career, and “the city and college can do wonderful things when they partner together.”

He praised both the college and the city.

“I truly believe that if you are to create a list of what constitutes a progressive organization, you would start with West Virginia Wesleyan College. It’s just an outstanding institution in so many ways.

And, he said, “If you look at our city of Buckhannon and the organization and commitment of the employees and the officials with our town, (there are) many things that we accomplish in Buckhannon that other towns of our size and character just simply miss the mark on.”

He attributed many of those accomplishments to city-college cooperation and added, “It’s really a great place to live. We truly do have, for a small town, an excellent quality of life here.”

McCauley said the city and college have collaborated on initiatives involving the Stockert Youth Center, Poundstone Memorial River Walk and the Community Garden, Learning Trail and campus landscaping.

The city and college also worked together on the acquisition of municipal bonds for campus improvements such as Dunn Hall, the Camden Apartments, Fleming Hall rehabilitation and the technology and electrical distribution system.

Wesleyan students also have the opportunity to participate in internships at Stockert Youth Center and at City Hall in the areas of technology, the police department, accounting and the fire department.

Some formerly college-owned property now belongs to the city and vice versa. The college’s Performing Arts Center, practice soccer field and auxiliary parking lot between Middleton Hall and the Child Development Center were formerly city-owned properties. Some of those properties were once city alleyways. In addition, the city’s boat ramp parking lot at one time was college property.

The college also contributes to the training of local police and firefighting officials by allowing municipal use of some college structures for drills ranging from smoke drills to forced entry exercises, often prior to those structures being razed. Many of the structures are derelict properties on a destruction list. Some were damaged in a 1985 flood, McCauley said.

McCauley said that WVWC is part of what “really sets Buckhannon apart” from other surrounding areas.

“The character, the quality of life (in Buckhannon) has just exponentially increased as a result of the activities that occur at Wesleyan,” McCauley added.

Contact Melissa Toothman by email at