Nature’s Inspiration at Scale

I often think back to my first close-up view of Mount Denali. I had hiked up Mount Quigley one late August morning, providing a clear, cloud-free view of Denali’s north face from just 20 miles. Because the big one rises from 2,000 feet above sea level on its north side, it ascended within my field […]

A Near-Final Week at Fairmont State University

I write these words December 3, mostly intended for my December 10, column for the Times West Virginian. For this Great Blue Heron Blog Post, I’ve added a twist and turn here and there to bring it back to my Nature-Inspired Leading and Learning theme. The Feature Photo has me standing just this week at […]

Sowing Seeds for Tomorrow

I left Allegany Community College (ACC) May 1971 with an associate’s degree in forestry, transferring to the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry to earn my bachelor’s. Dr. Glenn O. Workman (Doc) mentored and inspired me through ACC. Judy and I established an endowed scholarship in Doc’s name three years […]

Celebrating Nature’s Symbols

Yeah, I know, it’s perhaps a real stretch to see our Fairmont State University Flying F logo in this morning’s dawn. Yet I really liked the image painted in the eastern sky above the Falcon Center. Judy and I had just finished our morning walk. Dawn had just begun brightening the east when we started. […]

A View of Fairmont State University’s Ecosystem

FSU’s Science and Technology Dean Don Trisel sent his drone with camera aloft 7:30 AM November 20. Looking north, the view captures campus and the hills beyond. Almost Heaven, don’t you think! A typical landscape of North-Central, Wild Wonderful West Virginia. Our “College on the Hill” campus rises some 300 feet from Locust Avenue in […]

Another West Virginia Dawn

Every dawn is a gift. This past Thursday, November 16, was no exception. Warm moist air streaming from the south, pushing hard against the season’s advance. A few morning cumulus signaling the struggle. Winter will eventually push past. I hope to see snow before I head back south to northern Alabama December 22! No shortage […]

A Week in the Life of This Interim President

I lay my head on a pillow in Shaw House, the Fairmont State University (FSU) President’s residence, which sits south of the Feaster athletic facility and north of the Falcon Student Center. My office is in Hardway Hall, the next building south below the Falcon Center. My current life extends across our campus, into the […]

Nature’s Veterans Day Inspiration

Today is Veterans Day — here are two photos fifteen minutes apart as dawn deepened, viewed from my Fairmont State University President’s residence. Gazing east toward my Cumberland, MD home (65 miles or so from this perch) I thought of WWII veterans Jack E. Jones and Elmer E. Cessna, my Dad and Judy’s. My hat’s […]

Summer-Like November Hike Along the Mon-River Rails-to-Trail

I hiked six-and-one-half miles along the Monongahela River Rails-to-Trail November 5, 2017, near Prickett’s Fort State Park. The temperature of 77 degrees masked the season. Leaves have mostly dropped, attributable to photo-period and evolved seasonal habit. We have not yet had a killing frost here in North-Central West Virginia. We’ll call this hike an escape […]

A Simple Expression of Nature’s Beauty, Awe, Magic, and Wonder

The old saw says a picture is worth a thousand words. I walked out of my Fairmont State University campus home to retrieve the Sunday paper this morning, glanced to the east, and succumbed to Nature’s greeting of beauty, magic, wonder, and awe. Overwhelmed by humility and lifted by inspiration, once again I know that […]

Environmental Influences

I hiked September 17 at Dolly Sods National Wilderness Area (approximately 4,000 feet elevation), a couple hours from my six-month West Virginia home. Dolly Sods has been a favorite destination for me since I first sojourned there as a forestry student nearly 50 years ago. In fact, I intend for it to be my final […]

Little Things Matter — ‘U’ Better Believe IT!

What’s a ‘U’? One of the 26 letters in our alphabet. A little less than four percent of the total, with a frequency of usage rate even lower at 2.758 percent (Wikipedia). Yet, look at the Feature Image for this post. Fairmont State University women’s tennis hosted our first home competition of the season several […]