FAIRMONT, W.Va. (WBOY) — Fairmont State University’s Academy of the Arts received a $10,000 grant to give more people the opportunity to participate in the creative arts.

The grant was given to the arts program by the Truist West Virginia Foundation. The funds will be used to provide need-based scholarships to students of all ages for camps, classes and private lessons for the upcoming academic year.

Fairmont State (WBOY Image)

“We’re pleased to support Fairmont State University’s Academy for the Arts,” said Truist West Virginia Foundation executive director, Jacqueline Keene. “Truist is committed to our purpose to inspire and build better lives and communities, and we believe the Truist West Virginia Foundation contribution to Fairmont State University will help make a difference in the lives of many.”

The grant will allow the Academy of the Arts to expand access and awareness of the creative art educational programming it offers to the region.

“We have so much talent in our community right in our back yard and in Harrison County and Mon County and Taylor County and students we get in our program and so I know that there are more children out there that maybe this has been stopping them due to finical hardship and now they will be able to come and study with us,” said Fairmont State’s Performing Arts Program Director Leigh Anne Riley.  

Riley said the grant will help support her goal of never having to turn a student away.

“We’ve had families that have had job loss, or obviously during the pandemic, had lost of financial hardships and so just being able to have this resource to be able to offer to our current students, to brand new students that maybe have never tried us before because of a financial hardship, it’s a great thing for our program,” Riley said.  

University officials state that the grant will also be used to increase access to virtual instruction options that the Academy of the Arts offers and help with an “establishment of a network of contacts among schools, libraries and other community stakeholders to distribute ongoing information about scholarship and programming opportunities to potential students.” 

Anyone interested in an application for the scholarship can email Lbolyard1@fairmontstate.edu or call 304-333-3655.