Skip to main content


Department of English's West Virginia Dialect Project launches 'WVU Voices' documentary

West Virginia University is an increasingly diverse place to learn, and our future will continue to see a growth in that diversity. Our students come from every county in West Virginia, all 50 states and over 100 countries around the world. WVU is aware of the differences this diversity fosters in its student body, and has several programs in place to bring all of its students together to form one WVU.

As part of that diversity, dialects from Newark, New Jersey and Mingo County, West Virginia, come into contact at WVU, as do languages from different continents and different language families. To celebrate this diversity, linguistics professor Kirk Hazen and journalism professor Mary Kay McFarland have created WVU Voices. This mini-documentary is designed to educate the WVU community and beyond to create a more knowledgeable, appreciative and welcoming environment on campus.

Language variation affects every person, and this video aims to bring those differences to light in a positive way. With the help of the Gabriel Brothers, Inc. Faculty Awards Program, WVU Voices aspires to foster a diverse culture in Morgantown, West Virginia and further the mission of WVU. 

To learn more about the West Virginia Dialect Project, visit