About the Project

The Team

West Virginia Uncovered is a partnership between the state’s community media outlets and West Virginia University’s P.I. Reed School of Journalism. The project exists to promote digital journalism in the Mountain State.

In 2008, community newspapers were beginning to feel the effects of massive changes in the technology and business models that had defined the practice of journalism. The papers were going to have to adapt their print product for audiences consuming news differently. More than half of the state’s newspapers were weekly, community publications with small staffs and few resources for training.

The school of journalism was grappling with its own need to adapt its curriculum to an industry demanding young journalists who could provide information effectively in multiple formats. These new journalists needed to be storytellers, who looked at new technology as an opportunity to take information and package it for a variety of consumers in the mediums most relevant to them.

With grant funding from the McCormick, Benedum and Ford Foundations, West Virginia’s small towns and communities became the training ground. Students with West Virginia Uncovered travel to remote areas of the state to work with community newspaper staffs and produce digital stories with rich multimedia components for their online audiences. Graduate students working with the project manage our blog and Twitter account.

Several times each semester, the project staff conducts workshops for the community journalists on subjects ranging from video production to creating and selling online advertisements.

Five years after the project began, we have more than a dozen media partners across the state, and those partners have launched community blogs, hosted digital forums, developed innovative online revenue strategies and produced high quality digital journalism.

Our award-winning student work includes a wide variety of stories that capture the character and culture of the state. Many of our students have gone on to secure positions as multimedia journalists and editors at both local and national publications.

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Our Sponsors

  • The Ford Foundation

    The Ford Foundation in New York City provided a $100,000, 18-month grant in 2009.

  • Benedum Foundation

    Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation in Pittsburgh, Pa., provided an $85,000, one-year grant in 2009. In 2010 the Foundation provided an additional $105,000, two-year grant for the support of the project.

  • McCormick Foundation

    The McCormick Foundation in Chicago, Ill., provided an $85,000, two-year grant in 2009.

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Welcome!

The West Virginia Uncovered project was created to cultivate online innovation and storytelling among the Mountain State’s community newspapers. Since fall 2008, faculty and students from the WVU P.I. Reed School of Journalism have crisscrossed the back roads and small towns of West Virginia to find untold stories and provide training for a dozen weekly newspapers.

To find out more about the project, check out
the About page.


Faces of the Mine

Faces of the Mine

West Virginia Uncovered students have been working for two semesters to build a memorial website for the community affected by the Upper Big Branch mining disaster that occurred April 5, 2010. The disaster claimed the lives of 29 miners. The site is a digital meeting place for members of the community to gather and remember their loved ones.

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Recording Tools and Techniques

On Oct. 23, West Virginia Uncovered hosted a Multimedia Reporting Workshop "Sound and Slideshows." Bill Kuykendall, a West Virginia native and multimedia professor from the University of Maine, talked about techniques for good audio reporting.

The second session, "Recording Tools and Techniques," is featured to the left.

View this Blog post >>





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Students
  • Von Barclay

    Von Barclay

    Quick Facts

    Hometown:
    Status:
    Major: Visual Journalism

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  • Tiffany Benson

    Tiffany Benson

    Quick Facts

    Hometown: Gypsy, W. Va.
    Status: Junior
    Major: Journalism

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  • Aaron Bodkins

    Aaron Bodkins

    Quick Facts

    Hometown: Elkins, W. Va.
    Status: Senior
    Major: Television Journalism

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  • Sean Manning

    Sean Manning

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    Hometown: Inwood, W.Va.
    Status: Senior
    Major: Print Journalism

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  • Greg Olenik

    Greg Olenik

    Quick Facts

    Hometown: Dover, Del.
    Status: Senior
    Major: Television Journalism

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  • Ardath Osborne

    Ardath Osborne

    Quick Facts

    Hometown: Berkeley Springs, W.Va.
    Status: Junior
    Major: Television Journalism

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  • Mary Power

    Mary Power

    Quick Facts

    Hometown: Albany, NY
    Status: Senior
    Major: Broadcast News

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  • Erik Roberts

    Erik Roberts

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    Hometown: Landing, NJ
    Status: Senior
    Major: Television Journalism

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  • Natalie Snyder

    Natalie Snyder

    Quick Facts

    Hometown: Sheperdstown, W.Va.
    Status: Senior
    Major: Print Journalism

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