MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — The approximately 25,000 students at West Virginia University, including about 5,000 new students, are set to start their second week of classes of the fall semester and WVU Vice Provost Paul Kreider thinks this year is off to a great start. Now, Kreider said, the challenge is to keep students engaged and achieving.


Paul Kreider

Kreider said the new students could be a little more affable than past classes.

“They’re more apt to actually have conversations with strangers who might be a little older than they are and wearing suits,” he said. “They’re more open to conversation and excited about being here.”

Over the past week, students have been building connections with peers, faculty and university organizations.

“They’ll make connections to current students and finding that fit for students is really more important today than it was 10 years ago or even five years ago,” according to Kreider.

Students that do have trouble in the classroom or otherwise have a variety of resources for help. Kreider said resident assistants are able to help in some situations and have contacts for issues that they may not be able to handle. Staff and Faculty members are also listening and watching for students that need assistance or extra care.

“We also monitor their card swipes to make sure that they’re engaging the way they should. In terms of eating well and going to events and doing things,” Kreider said. “So that we can possibly intervene a lot earlier if we see a student that might have an issue.”

The first major student event of the fall semester, FallFest, produced little behavior problems. The next big step will be the first football weekend. The Mountaineers host James Madison this Saturday at Mylan Puskar Stadium.