West Liberty initiative to focus on energy issues - Business, Government Legal News from throughout WV

West Liberty initiative to focus on energy issues

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WEST LIBERTY, WV — West Liberty University says it has formed the Institute for Energy and Commerce, which will be operated through the WLU Research Corp.

"We're here to announce a new initiative, one that — again — responds to the rapidly changing economic world in which we live," WLU President Robin Capehart said Monday in announcing the institute. "The continuing influence of the coal industry and the rapid growth of the natural gas industry have created both questions and opportunities.

"It's our belief that West Liberty University, which is strategically located in the heart of both the coal and natural gas industries, is well-positioned to lead this regional and national discussion," he said.

Capehart said the institute will have two purposes:

  • To research issues surrounding the role of the energy industry in the economic future of West Virginia and the nation. Researchers will include WLU faculty, researchers from colleges and universities throughout the nation and individuals associated with other research organizations.
  • To work with the energy industry to determine the academic and professional programs that will be necessary to produce tomorrow's leaders.

Michael J. Hicks, director of the Center for Business and Economic Research and a professor of economics in the Miller College of Business at Ball State University, has agreed to serve as a visiting scholar and a distinguished research fellow at the institute. Chris Hamilton, vice president of the West Virginia Coal Association, will chair the institute's Industry Council.


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