The West Virginia University Student Government Association (SGA) traveled to Tucker County last weekend (August 7-9) to participate in their annual leadership retreat. In preparation for the new semester, the group worked on personal leadership skills, character-building and gave back to the community.

The retreat kicked-off on Friday evening when approximately 40 members convened on WVU SGA Governor Trevor Kiess’s family farm in Davis, West Virginia, for team building activities and other fun-filled games and activities.

“Friday gave us an opportunity to reunite, enjoy time together, and rejuvenate as we prepared for a full-day of community service in Parsons, West Virginia,” said Ashley Morgan, WVU Student Government Association vice president.

On Saturday, the group traveled to the City of Parsons to complete many needed projects in the community for the second consecutive year. Members collaborated with local high students and community members to stain the community stage a vibrant shade of red and scrape paint from buildings located on Front Street that have been vacant and uninhabitable since the 1985 flood. They washed fire trucks, repainted the firehouse and water treatment plant, and removed debris from the Pulp Mill Bottom Pond. The group ended the day hiking Lindy Point in Blackwater Falls State Park.

“As a child growing up in Tucker County, I know firsthand how much WVU means to the people of this community,” said Governor Kiess. “I can’t thank my SGA family enough for choosing once again to help the people of Parsons and for giving back to one of the many West Virginia communities that has given us so much. I am truly blessed to have the unique opportunity of being part of and experiencing both sides of this relationship.”

On Sunday, WVU President Gordon Gee, Vice President of Student Life Bill Schafer, Associate Vice President and Dean of Students Corey Farris, among several other WVU faculty and administrators, joined the group for a “Day of Leadership”.

“I was very excited to participate in my first WVU SGA retreat and I believe that everyone involved in the retreat would agree that it was a fun and rewarding experience,” said Dr. Bill Schafer, vice president of Student Life. “I also commend our students for their hard work and dedication to Parsons. This day of service aligns with the new giving back component of WVU’s re-imagined Welcome Week. Everyone did a wonderful job in making the retreat a success, and I look forward to working with our students this year.”

Former SGA President and Vice President Ryan Campione and Benjamin Seebaugh also attended as breakout session leaders. The workshop break-out sessions provided members with an opportunity to develop and enhance their leadership skills, learn about various leadership topics, how to advance their platform and network with other leaders on campus.

“The entire retreat was an extraordinary opportunity for our student leaders,” said Morgan. “It helped them better understand the importance of giving back to our communities while learning how to be the best leader possible.”

For more information on West Virginia University Student Government Association, visit

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CONTACT: Sabrina Cave, Student Life Communications

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