Dr. Matthew Harder appointed to Wheeling Arts and Culture commission

Dr. Matthew Harder Picture on his Faculty information page

West Liberty University’s Dean of the College of Arts and Communications and Director of Music Technology, Dr. Matthew Harder, was appointed as a volunteer member of the Wheeling Arts and Culture Commission. This is a community program or council of various, diverse individuals from the area dedicated to finding creative outlets of expression and activity for the city and the greater Ohio valley.

As stated on the city of Wheeling’s website, the goals and objectives of the commission range from fostering “artistic, cultural and creative strengths of [the city] in order to create a sustainable and positive aesthetic results in our community,” to “working in concert with schools, businesses and other organizations” in hopes to “encourage the role of arts in education and promote cultural enrichment.”

When asked how he came to arrive at such a venture, Harder simply stated that he saw an announcement online calling for volunteers and applied while a friend also sent in a recommendation on his behalf. “I’m truly honored to work with the city on this commission. I live in Wheeling so it’s literally ‘close to home.’ I mostly look forward to meeting people who are also passionate about the arts in this area. I know a lot of people, of course, but it’s always good to meet more people and develop relationships. Being on the commission gives me an opportunity to strengthen the ties between WLU and the city of Wheeling,” said Harder.

Harder then went on to discuss some of his thoughts and how the new position might affect his role, position or influence here on campus. Generally, he remained optimistic and hopeful for the future of the two communities West Liberty and Wheeling. Harder said, “I invite the campus community to reach out to me with ideas so I can serve as a liaison. Having a voice with the city of Wheeling on artistic and cultural matters will further enhance the WLU College of Arts and Communication, which includes visual art, theater, music, and media programs. Serving on this commission is definitely a recruiting opportunity. The more we can be visible to the community, the more awareness we bring about the awesome things that we do up here at WLU.”

Under Harder’s guidance and instruction, the music programs here at West Liberty have continued to grow. Once again citing his goal as a steady drive to connect West Liberty to its partners and neighbors and to see arts and creativity thrive around him, his student’s, his friends and families work.

“One of my goals is to enhance the connection between the city of Wheeling and West Liberty University. WLU and Wheeling have partnered on many things in the past, of course, and I just want to help continue the sharing of resources and promote activities that will benefit both organizations. It’s an understatement to say that WLU has a lot to offer in terms of arts and culture,” Harder said.

The Wheeling Arts and Cultural Commission’s mission statement, listed on their new website, reads; “The mission of the Wheeling Arts & Cultural Commission is to promote and develop artistic and cultural activities and initiatives that stimulate economic development and advance the quality of life and vibrancy of the greater Wheeling area. The Commission works to achieve this mission through the following committees: Visual Arts; Performance Arts; Literature/History; and Marketing/Development.”

The Trumpet team and staff would like to congratulate Dr. Harder on his accomplishment and wish him all the best in his new position as he continues to teach here on the Hilltop! For more information regarding this article, please contact Creed Kidney at [email protected].