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University to pursue APLU’s Innovation and Economic Prosperity designation


At West Virginia University, purpose is one of our foundational pillars and we are putting words into action by officially pursuing the Association of Public and Land Grant Universities’ Innovation and Economic Prosperity designation program to further refine and improve its economic engagement and purpose as a community partner.

While APLU’s designation recognizes higher education institutions that demonstrate an exceptional commitment to economic and community development, it’s often the journey to earn the designation itself that is seen as most valuable.

“Pursuing the APLU IEP designation program helps to enhance our reputation as a modern land-grant institution,” Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Maryanne Reed said. “As we undergo this process, we have the opportunity to stay true to our core values while forging stronger partnerships to drive progress and prosperity far beyond the University.”

Over the next several months, WVU will engage with internal and external stakeholders to complete a rigorous self-assessment process of its work around innovation, community development and economic engagement efforts to identify strengths as well as areas for growth and improvement.

Led by Extension and Engagement Dean Jorge Atiles and Research Office Associate Vice President for Creative and Scholarly Activities Melanie Page, the IEP Core Team is currently in the process of recruiting liaisons from colleges and units across campus to identify members to serve on working groups. These groups will engage in different aspects of the self-assessment and designation processes, including developing an inventory of programs and projects that align with IEP’s definition of economic engagement, collecting data, and administering surveys with internal and external stakeholders

“As one WVU, knowing our purpose is the foundation upon which we build and grow. It’s the driver that pushes us upward and onward. It’s the reason we come together,”  Atiles said.

“Earning the IEP designation will help us strengthen our long-term strategy and practices to maximize WVU’s impact on innovation and economic prosperity across West Virginia and beyond,” Page added.

Undergoing this process will create opportunities for discovering new and innovative ways to measure and improve the University’s economic engagement and leverage our talents and resources to create a better future for West Virginia and the world. 

A report will be distributed at the end of this process to benchmark successes and consider modifications to strategic plans, collaborations or initiatives that could be enhanced or expanded.

Learn more about the APLU IEP designation and stay updated throughout the process.