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MAY 23, 2022

ELKINS – The West Virginia Humanities Council, the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, recently announced that the Kump Education Center (KEC) is one of 18 new mini-grants recipients in its latest round of awards. The WV Humanities Council serves West Virginia through grants and direct programs in the humanities.

The $1,500 grant for “Kump House at the Crossroads,” will support the creation of new interpretive displays for the Gov. H. Guy Kump House that will focus not only on the historical significance of the site, but also the legacy of Gov. Kump, one of the most influential governors of the state


Grant funding will also assist in a special “unveiling” weekend event, “Something Old, Something New,” that will feature Kump family wedding gowns and memorabilia as well as the new displays. The summer Open Houses are scheduled for June 25-26, 2022.

“We are pleased to receive this grant,” said Heather Biola, executive director of the Kump Education Center. “We look forward to providing more ways to share the history of this home and Gov. Kump’s political contributions. Many do not know the innovative policies he put into effect that had a positive influence on public education, state roads and easing the financial burden on WV residents hit hard by the Depression.”

An additional aspect of the project will be to have more open hours for the Kump House and encourage more visitations by students and tourist groups. “With the creation of interpretive materials, we will be able to offer a better visitor experience,” Biola said. “We appreciate the funding assistance and look forward to opening our doors more this summer.”

The Humanities Council budgets over $800,000 for grants and programs each year. A variety of grants are offered to nonprofit organizations that support educational programming. Major grants are designed for projects requesting over $1,500 and up to $20,000 and are awarded twice annually. Mini grants, designed for projects requesting $1,500 or less, are awarded four times per year. The next Humanities Council minigrant deadline is June 1 and the next major grant deadline is September 1.

For more information about the West Virginia Humanities Council grants program contact Humanities Council grants administrator Erin Riebe at (304) 346-8500 or via email at Grant guidelines and applications are available on the Humanities Council website,

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April 25, 2022

ELKINS- The Kump Education Center will hold its 12th Annual Education Research Seminar Wednesday, April 27, at 4 p.m. in the Learning Lab of the Gov. Kump House. The event is free and open to the public.

“At the Kump Education Center (KEC), we focus on what works to promote student learning and enhance teacher excellence,” said KEC Director Heather Biola. “The Annual Research Seminar highlights real life teaching experiences and findings.”

“For example, Ava Willis from Davis & Elkins College has been student teaching second graders and her research analyzes how they learn to tell time. This simple daily task requires understanding numbers and fractions that most second graders need to develop to function in their daily life.”

Another D&E student-teacher, Katie Dixon, has studied various learning modalities, she explained. “She worked with 5th-grade science students on a project called ‘Learning through Doing.’ She will explain how active engagement can improve student learning during a study unit about outer space.”

Students from a teaching methods class will describe how they plan to deal with controversial topics like Critical Race Theory in social studies. “Future teachers must learn to help students develop critical thinking skills without pushing their own personal biases,” Heather Biola said.

Two D&E faculty members will also be seminar presenters. “They will help us understand some of the important issues in teacher education for the 21st century,” she said. Dr. Danielle Riggins will discuss the problems teacher candidates experienced while the teacher education program transitioned from a traditional student teaching model to one using a new West Virginia teacher education co-teaching model. Part-time instructor Scott Biola will share his findings on the progress of implementing digital instruction within lesson planning for student teachers at D&E.

The entrance to the Learning Lab is at the rear of the Kump House. Parking is available behind the building, and attendees are asked to wear masks. For more information, contact Heather Biola, 304-637-7820.

Date: January 14, 2022

ELKINS-The Kump Education Center is set to begin a new targeted tutoring program for twenty elementary students this month thanks to the financial support of Citizens Bank of West Virginia. The KEC is offering ten weeks of afterschool tutoring on basic math and reading skills, which will help prepare fourth and fifth-grade students for year-end testing.

“Our goal is to provide a safe and successful spring season of helping children develop better academic skills,” said KEC Executive Director Heather Biola. Trained tutors will provide one-on-one assistance to students who their teachers had recommended. The tutoring will occur in the Altice Learning Lab at the Kump Education Center, and proper Covid-19 protocol will be followed.

“We know the added stress of the pandemic and disruptions to the traditional school experience have caused many students to fall behind, especially in reading and math,” she added. The program is designed to encourage students to set their own target goals for academic achievement.

Recognizing the effect the pandemic has had on education, Citizens Bank of West Virginia committed $3,000 to help students with some extra assistance adversely impacted by not being in the classroom for an extended time.

“We are pleased to support the Kump Education Center’s targeted tutoring efforts to accelerate student achievement,” commented Nathaniel S. Bonnell, President & CEO of Citizens Bank. “We are confident that our sponsorship of this program will ensure several Randolph County students get back on track with a path to future success in their education.”

Visit the Kump Education Center Facebook page for more information about the Targeting Tutoring program. The program is subject to postponement or cancellation due to Covid-19 concerns. The Kump Education Center is located at the historic Kump House, 401 Randolph Ave. owned by the City of Elkins.


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