First-generation students began their college experience in the great outdoors last month as part of the Discover Fairmont State program.

Eight students toured the New River Gorge with two faculty members from Fairmont State University and two current students to gain a support system and also learn what to expect from their first year at FSU.

“The purpose was to provide students an opportunity to experience some of West Virginia’s most beloved areas while working with current students, faculty and staff,” said Carol Tannous, director of destination education at Fairmont State.

The group was in the New River Gorge for four days and went on a zip-lining treetop canopy tour, took a day-long whitewater rafting trip and camped overnight along the New River.

The trip was free and was funded by a grant from the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission, which approached FSU to create a program targeting incoming freshmen.

Read the full story in Wednesday’s Times West Virginian, available at newsstands or through home delivery by calling 304-367-2525 or 304-367-2527.

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