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Columnists

Special Name

“What’s in a name?” asked William Shakespeare in Romeo and Juliet. Last week we honored a faculty and a staff member with two very special awards. Dr. Katherine Osborne, Associate Professor of English, had her class interrupted as I led a parade of several College employees carrying ...

Is it a conspiracy or not?

You have to wonder how long it took state Sen. Mike Maroney’s enemies to find Chapter 61, Article 10, Section 21 of the West Virginia Code. It’s not the kind of thing one just stumbles upon. It certainly isn’t common knowledge. Cpl. R.S. Marant of the Pleasants County Sheriff’s ...

Transitioning to online education

“This is not your father’s Oldsmobile.” Those my age or older will recognize and understand this phrase, even though its meaning is likely lost on most of today’s students. Nonetheless, the times are changing rapidly and “your father’s Oldsmobile” is no longer functional in the ...

Neither party is right all the time

This will come as a shock to tens of millions of Americans, perhaps to you: Neither Donald Trump nor Joe Biden is wrong all of the time. Neither of them is right all of the time, either. And — brace yourself again — the top priority of leaders in both the Democratic and Republican ...

Reporter’s Notebook: Political Potpourri

With just over a week from the general election on Nov. 3, early voting has continued apace with lines and enthusiasm. You still have until 5 p.m. Saturday to cast an early vote. You can still request an absentee ballot until Wednesday, Oct. 28. I don’t want to say it is too late to mail in ...

Learning how people can survive a pandemic

Last week when Randolph County turned orange on the “Active COVID Count” our schools had to close, and Kump Education Center leaders decided not to begin the Tech-Link Tutoring program until January. We decided to postpone beginning our tutoring program for several reasons. Teachers ...

Are justices dropping hints?

We’ve read and heard a lot lately about how U.S. Supreme Court justices are supposed to abide by the Constitution, the law and precedents in their rulings, regardless of how they may feel personally about an issue. The same is true of the West Virginia Supreme Court. But that doesn’t mean ...

Lasting legacy of Dr. Gloria Payne brings joy

The smiling face of Dr. Gloria Payne on the front page of The Inter-Mountain Tuesday reminded me of the old saying: “A merry heart doeth good like a medicine.” We think we are living through difficult times now with the pandemic, but Dr. Payne had a smile on her face through good times and ...

Crossing the digital divide in days of COVID-19

Tech-Link Tutoring will begin at Kump Education Center later this month if Randolph County does not turn Orange on the WV School Covid-19 Alert Map. We plan to initiate a new program designed to help underserved students deal with some of the challenges of online learning. Parents and ...

Just can’t game the system

All right folks, allow me to continue my weekly countdown to the 2020 general election. As of today, we are less than 30 days away from Tuesday, Nov. 3. By the time you read this, I will have written campaign profiles of every Board of Public Works race except for the governor’s race (I’m ...

Building a National Heritage Area plan

The Forest Festival usually dominates Elkins conversations during the first weekend of October; however, everything is different in 2020. The Coronavirus forces us to avoid person-to-person chatting. If we want to talk, we need to go online, and that forces us to contemplate the reasons for ...

Something unique

Webster defines “transform” as to change in composition, appearance, character or condition. Frequently I have used the term transformative to describe the educational experience of our students at Davis & Elkins College. I stand firmly behind this description as apt, and yet recognize ...

Someone should pay for it

Someone should pay for what Ohio State University did to alumnus Steve Snyder-Hill, who has said he was one of the victims of the late Dr. Richard Strauss many years ago. While serving as a physician for some OSU athletic teams, Strauss allegedly abused hundreds of male students sexually. OSU ...

Looking at the 2020 election

CHARLESTON — I feel like a walking countdown clock, but we are now 36 days away from the Tuesday, Nov. 3, general election. October starts on Thursday. Absentee ballots are already being sent out by county clerks across the state. According to the West Virginia Secretary of State’s ...

Digital debate within historic Kump House

Andrew Carroll is the resourceful Elkins High School Debate Coach who also serves as a member of the Kump Education Center Board of Directors. When the high school Wi-Fi would not work early last Saturday morning, he called me to ask if the debaters could use the Wi-Fi and other ...

Amazing experience

If life is a journey, then I have certainly been living life this week. As I compose this text, I am traveling from state to state with six colleagues from Davis & Elkins College on a whirlwind graduation tour for our 2020 “spring” graduates. Due to COVID-19 our graduates were unable ...

You can’t please everyone

Until recently, there hasn’t been any polling released in the race for Republican Gov. Jim Justice and Democratic Kanawha County Commissioner Ben Salango. So far, all we have is an internal poll paid for by the Justice campaign and conducted by Mark Blankenship, a long-time Republican ...

Mountain State must increase its broadband access

The light gray silhouette of West Virginia stands out against the dark green color of all our surrounding states on a map of “Broadband Access by State” in Melissa Preddy’s article “The High Price of Slow Internet” in the AARP Bulletin September 2020. West Virginia is the only ...

Actions match words

Small colleges frequently claim to offer students a personalized and individualized educational experience. Davis & Elkins College is tangibly demonstrating our actions match our words. Among the many tragedies of the COVID-19 pandemic has been the cancellation of graduation ceremonies. ...

Will third time be the charm?

Let’s hope the third time really is the charm, because we West Virginians have botched our first two opportunities to emerge from the COVID-19 epidemic. It appears we’re at the crest of the third wave of coronavirus devastation in the Mountain State. We’re not handling it well. For a ...