More than 400 economic development and community leaders joined in ARC's 2016 annual conference in Johnson City, Tennessee, to explore how Appalachia's rural communities are building strong, resilient economies and new opportunity for the Region's future.
Drawing on themes outlined in ARC's five-year strategic plan, presenters led discussions on rural entrepreneurship, infrastructure development, workforce training, and strategies for leveraging cultural and natural assets. The closing session focused on the vision and strategies Appalachia's next generation of leaders have for the Region’s future.
This playlist includes videos of each of the five conference sessions. To learn more about the conference, visit www.arc.gov/conference.
In March 2016, the Obama administration announced the availability of $65.8 million through the Partnerships for Opportunity and Workforce and Economic Revitalization (POWER) Initiative to help coal-impacted communities transform and revitalize their economies. To help Appalachian communities prepare to apply for assistance, ARC held a series of webinars on POWER grant opportunities and the grant application process. Videos of all of the webinars are available on this playlist.
The ARC-supported Appalachian Teaching Project (ATP) gives college students the opportunity to engage in research projects that address endemic challenges facing Appalachian communities. Led by the Consortium of Appalachian Centers and Institutes, the program includes coursework and active research on issues related to building a sustainable future for Appalachian communities. Faculty and students at participating institutions design and carry out research projects tailored to the needs of targeted communities, many of which are in economically distressed counties. Projects are presented at a conference held each year in Washington, D.C.
Fifteen institutions from 10 Appalachian states participated in the 2015 conference, "Strengthening Community Assets to Shape a Positive Future for Appalachia." The schools and their project topics included the following:
Alfred State College: "Visualizing a New Town Center in Southport, New York"
Appalachian State University: "Elk Knob Asset Development Project"
Auburn University: "Expanding Tuskegee National Forest as a Community Asset"
East Tennessee State University: "Remembering, Recording, and Re-Imagining Life in a Railroad Town"
Emory and Henry College: "Community Planning Efforts in Dante, Virginia"
Frostburg State University: "Who is Home Ground?"
Indiana University of Pennsylvania: "Poverty Traps and Sustainable Solutions in Indiana, Pennsylvania"
Morehead State University: "Community Projects at Morehead"
Radford University: "Roots with Wings"
Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College: "Next Generation Leadership"
University of North Georgia: "Cultivating Community: Helping Libraries Develop Seed and Story Repositories"
University of Pittsburgh at Bradford: "Sustainable Community Development: GPS Mapping and Promotion of Community Assets"
University of Tennessee: "Using Smartphone Technologies to Promote Tourism and Business Development in Rural Communities"
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University: "Cultural Impact of the Proposed Mountain Valley Pipeline in Montgomery and Giles Counties, Virginia"