Skip to main content

Latest News

Gonzalo Bravo: Reflections from sabbatical

Gonzalo Bravo stands next to a sign at the Pan American Games and points to the West Virginia University logo.

The following is an essay by Gonzalo Bravo , a professor of sport management at West Virginia University, about his recent sabbatical to his native country, Chile, for the Pan American and Parapan American Games last fall. The essay provides a brief history of the often-overlooked competitions and the impact that the games have on athletes, nations, and the host country. He also shares the challenges and experiences of collecting data for upcoming research projects, his volunteer experience at the games, and the personal and professional rewards from the unique sabbatical experience.

Last fall, I had the opportunity to complete a sabbatical leave in Santiago, Chile. This enabled me to concentrate full-time on the data collection process of four large-scale research studies during the XIX Pan American and VII Parapan American Games held in Santiago from Oct. 20 to Nov. 26, 2023.

Derkotch's desire to work with kids strengthens with experience

Tyler Derkotch poses with his family in front of a WVU "HOME" sign in a gymnasium.

After working summer camps with kids, Tyler Derkotch knew it was what he wanted to do for a living. At WVU, he found that the physical education and kinesiology program offered the kinds of hands-on learning he enjoyed in a field he was passionate about. Working at a daycare in Morgantown has only strengthened his conviction to work with children as a physical education teacher. 

Major: Physical Education and Kinesiology
Class: Sophomore

WVU using virtual reality technology to innovate training for clinical rehabilitation and mental health counselors

A student sits with a virtual reality headset with fall foliage in the background.

In 2019, even before the pandemic and many lives and professions turned into hybrid worlds, Margaret Glenn and her colleagues were investigating the use of novel technologies in simulation education. Glenn readily admits she was not familiar with much of the technology that existed then but saw a presentation about how immersive videos could help people expand their experience of different subject matter via a virtual reality headset. Five years later, WVU is leading the way in the field of Clinical Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling with its innovative use of virtual reality technology.

Glenn, a professor in the School of Counseling and Well-Being, serves as the principal investigator in the development of the Accessible, Innovative, & Relevant Training for Vocational Rehabilitation (AIR4VR) project. It is funded by the US Department of Education, Rehabilitation Services Administration’s Innovative Training Program. Glenn’s team also includes David Smith from the Reed College of Media who serves as a co-principal investigator. The project is in its fifth and final year and recently received funding for an additional year.

WVU School of Sport Sciences helps launch martial arts program for individuals with disabilities

A student wearing a blue gi practices jiu-jitsu moves on another student.

West Virginia University’s Sport, Exercise and Performance Psychology program has partnered with local organizations to launch a martial arts program for individuals with intellectual and neurodevelopmental disabilities. (FULL PHOTO GALLERY)

Jeanette Garcia joined WVU’s College of Applied Human Sciences in the School of Sport Sciences in August 2023. Prior to coming to Morgantown, she was at the University of Central Florida where her research focused on developing community-based for individuals with neurodevelopmental disorders, primarily those with autism.

McGahey named assistant coach for U.S. Power Soccer National Team

Peter McGahey speaks to class holding a pen.

Peter McGahey, teaching assistant professor at West Virginia University, has been named as an assistant coach for the United States Power Soccer National Team. He is one of two assistants under the direction of head coach Tracy Mayer.

McGahey’s appointment is for the next World Cup cycle. The next World Cup is in 2026 in Argentina. The United States is coming off a third-place finish in the 2023 World Cup in Australia.