West Virginia University will be hosting a Polish delegation of government officials and academicians on Tuesday (March 29), as part of a two-day visit to the United States.

The goal of their visit is to strengthen U.S.-West Virginia-Polish collaboration on the political, economic, regulatory and technical aspects of shale gas production.

The delegation will spend the day at the U.S. Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Agency in Washington, D.C. before arriving in Morgantown. On Tuesday, the delegation will be meeting at the WVU National Center for Coal and Energy and will tour a Chesapeake Energy Company shale gas extraction site in Preston County before returning to Washington, D.C. Tuesday evening.

As a result of WVU and the State of West Virginia’s expertise in mining and drilling, they are the only university and state included in the Polish government program. The two-day visit is part of an ongoing cooperation between Poland, WVU and the GlobalPittsburgh Initiative.

While in Morgantown, Polish and WVU academicians will meet and discuss possibilities of collaboration in research and training of engineers specializing in shale gas technologies. Polish governmental delegates will eventually join academic delegates for a round table discussion with representatives of WVU.

Presentation and discussion on the perspectives of shale gas extraction in West Virginia and Poland will be held. A luncheon will be held with WVU representatives and state officials, and will be followed by a presentation by Chesapeake Energy Company.

In July 2010, WVU teamed with a GlobalPittsburgh, Pittsburgh-based non-profit group, to combine efforts in bringing new opportunities to West Virginia by hosting increased numbers of international visitors to the region. The goal has been to increase international awareness and student recruitment, as well as active partnerships that might lead to increased regional economic development.

Michael Wilhelm, director of WVU’s Office of International Students and Scholars, serves on the GlobalPittsburgh board and is the liaison between WVU and GlobalPittsburgh.

“I have been honored to serve as the WVU representative on the GlobalPittsburgh board, and I am very pleased to see a visit such as this develop from the international guests that we have hosted this academic year,” said Wilhelm.

For more information about International visitors at WVU and this partnership between WVU and GlobalPittsburgh, please contact Cecilia Pucci Orrego at 304-293-3519 or e-mail: Cecilia.orrego@mail.wvu.edu



CONTACT: Cecilia Pucci Orrego, Office of International Students and Scholars
304-293-3519, Cecilia.orrego@mail.wvu.edu