Document Type


Publication Date



Eberly College of Arts and Sciences


Center for Resilient Communities

Faculty Sponsor

Bradley Wilson


Flooding is a prevalent threat to community wellbeing, particularly in West Virginia where the mountainous topography and narrow valleys create perfect conditions for flood water to accumulate. To more deeply understand how hazards, such as flood events, become disastrous, we must consider not only the environmental/physical aspects, but also political, economic, and social dimensions. Thinking holistically about flood vulnerability acknowledges the influence of economic positioning, inadequate policies, industrial legacies, etc. which result in varied vulnerabilities to hazards within communities. The insights, knowledge, and experiences of local individuals and communities remain absent from domain top-down approaches to flood preparation. In an effort to better understand the historical context of flood vulnerability in WV, we began to prepare an archive of the history of flooding, focusing particularly on Monongalia County. To address a lack of community participation in flood planning, this project began outreach to high school students for a summer workshop that involves younger generations in creating more prepared and flood-resilient communities.