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WVU teaching leaders in Panhandle

September 14, 1999|By DAVE McMILLION, Charles Town

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - Rapid development brings a lot of advantages for businesses in the Eastern Panhandle, but it creates challenges as well.

With a shortage of skilled workers, employees are often promoted too quickly to learn the skills needed to take on leadership positions, local and state economic experts say. Beginning this week, West Virginia University will start lending its help in the form of leadership courses.

WVU will offer courses on effective motivation, leadership skills and conflict management at the Jefferson County Public Health Center in Bardane, according to Maria Yester, director of executive education at WVU.

The course on effective motivation will be offered Wednesday, and there are spaces open, said Yester.

The course on leadership skills will be held on Oct. 15 and the conflict management course will be held Nov. 15, Yester said.

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This is the first time WVU has offered such courses, said Yester. Development of the courses started about six months ago when university officials began meeting with representatives of the business community about the need for the classes, Yester said.

WVU wanted to offer the courses here first "because it is a region that is so important to us," she said.

"We want to meet your needs first," Yester said.

Besides meeting with local business leaders, WVU coordinated its efforts with local county development authorities and chambers of commerce, Yester said.

The need for such courses has been discussed in a newsletter distributed by the Martinsburg-Berkeley County Chamber of Commerce.

"These look like courses that have been very well thought-out," said Judy Faul, executive director of the Martinsburg Chamber of Commerce.

The leadership skills course is an all-day class that will cost $119. The other two are three-hour courses and will cost $79, Yester said.

Those who wish to register may call WVU's Kim Johnson at 1-304-293-7961.

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