Liz McCormick

Freelance News Reporter

Elizabeth McCormick grew up in Charleston, West Virginia with her grandmother. She graduated from Capital High School in 2010 and graduated from Shepherd University in 2014 with a Bachelor of Arts in Communications - Digital Film and a minor in Theatre. During her time at Shepherd, Liz studied abroad at the University of Pau, in Pau, France for a month in summer 2012, and she was on the first executive board of Shepherd's French Club that began in spring 2013.

In the summer of 2013, Liz did an internship at the Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, France working in the Producers Network as a guide to those attending, and in summer 2014, Liz interned with West Virginia Public Broadcasting. She is now a Freelance News Reporter with West Virginia Public Radio and is based in Shepherdstown, WV.

Liz has been involved in choir ensembles and vocal technique since she was seven-years-old, and she has performed on stage in theatrical works since 1999. An aspiring filmmaker, singer/songwriter, novelist, screenwriter, and voice actor, Liz identifies herself as an artist of many trades and wishes to bring her love of art to the world.



5:04 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

SafeWise Report says W.Va. is the 15th Safest State in the US

Credit Forest Wander / Creative Commons/

West Virginia was named the 15th safest state in the US for settling down and raising a family. According to a blog from the website, West Virginia is one of the safest places to live in America coming in at number 15.

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Inside Appalachia
3:59 pm
Wed October 15, 2014

Author Homer Hickam Visits His Home State

Homer Hickam at the 2014 Appalachian Heritage Festival at Shepherd University.
Credit Cecelia Mason / Shepherd University

Every October, author and West Virginia native, Homer Hickam, makes a trip home to West Virginia for the annual Rocket Boys festival in Beckley…but he also makes a point to stop in on his hometown of Coalwood in McDowell County during his visit. 

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STEM Education
12:07 pm
Wed October 15, 2014

Second Smallest School in West Virginia Works on NASA Project

This week, students at a very small West Virginia school are wrapping up a very big science project…with help from NASA. They’re building a full scale model of a satellite. It’s something you might not expect to see at the second smallest school in the state...but one teacher had the ambition and enthusiasm to make it happen.

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School Threats
7:07 pm
Sun October 12, 2014

Updated: Former Mussleman High Student Arrested for Making Terroristic Threats

Editor's Note: We have redacted the photo and username of the person in question due to the potential of they being a minor. The tweets included in this post are graphic in nature and have not be edited.

Updated: Tuesday, October 14, 2014 at 9:40 a.m.

A former student faces charges of using a hacked Twitter account to threaten a Berkeley County school.

Police arrested 21-year-old Justin Matthew Light of Kearneysville around 1:30 a.m. Monday. Light is charged with making threats of terrorist acts.

Berkeley County Sheriff Kenneth Lemaster Jr. announced the arrest Monday afternoon during a joint news conference with school officials.

Schools Superintendent Manny Arvon says an individual in Massachusetts alerted authorities after seeing the online threats against Musselman High School. The threats were posted on Twitter on Sunday.

The Twitter account belongs to another former student who now attends Fairmont State University.

Light is being held at the Eastern Regional Jail.

Updated: Monday, October 13, 2014 at 1:05 p.m.

Berkeley County Schools says a former student at Musselman High School was arrested Monday for making terroristic threats against the school principal, students and staff. The school system says those responsible will face criminal prosecution. 

Updated: Sunday, October 12, 2014 at 11:29 p.m.

Berkley County Sheriff Kenny Lemaster says an investigation is ongoing and a person of interest has been developed after threats were made Sunday to open fire at Musselman High School on Monday morning.

Lemaster says the threats were made after a Twitter account had been hacked. He says the person whose identity was compromised is not a suspect.

Lemaster says law enforcement officials are working towards making an arrest as evidence continues to be collected.

Classes at Musselman High School are planned for Monday.

Lemaster said additional officers will be on call, and law enforcement officials will have an increased presence at Musselman High School and throughout the county to try to ease student and parents concerns.

“We are urging people not to give into their fears on this. We are working hard with so students and staff can safely go to school,” Lemaster said.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation, West Virginia State Police, Martinsburg Police and Berkeley County Sheriff’s Department were involved in the investigation.

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8:46 am
Fri October 3, 2014

Eastern Panhandle Farmers Express Concern Over Proposed Storage Tank Regulations

Terry Polen, West Virginia DEP Ombudsman, explains the proposed aboveground storage tank regulations to farmers and businessmen in the Eastern Panhandle.
Credit Liz McCormick / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

After a chemical spill contaminated the drinking water for 300,000 West Virginians, state lawmakers passed a bill to regulate above ground storage tanks in the hopes of preventing it from happening again. Just a few weeks ago, the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection released some guidelines for tank owners on how to interpret that law until their inspection program is finalized later this year. The DEP held an informational meeting in Martinsburg yesterday to hear the concerns of tank owners and collect comments on their new program.

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Arts & Culture
5:34 pm
Wed October 1, 2014

CATF to Be in New York City in October

The Contemporary American Theater Festival in Shepherdstown will, for the first time, take one of its world premieres to Off-Broadway in New York City.

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4:20 pm
Wed October 1, 2014

STEM Camp for Middle School - Age Girls

On Saturday, a STEM camp for middle school girls will be held at Shepherd University.

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8:32 pm
Fri September 26, 2014

National Park Service Seeks Public Comments on Shepherdstown Battlefield Boundary Adjustment

Credit Cecelia Mason / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

This week is the last chance to make a public comment about a boundary adjustment for the Shepherdstown Battlefield. The National Park Service is looking for thoughts and opinions on whether the battlefield should be part of the park system. If so, will it be an addition to Harpers Ferry National Historical Park or Antietam National Battlefield?

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Arts & Culture
11:50 am
Fri September 26, 2014

Appalachian Heritage Festival Continues in Shepherdstown this Weekend

Appalachian Mountains
Credit Valerius Tygart / Wikimedia Commons

The annual Appalachian Heritage Festival in Shepherdstown continues this evening.  The dance, art, and music filled weekend is a celebration of the region’s artistic traditions. This past week included a quieter celebration of Appalachian literature with Shepherd University’s 2014 writer-in-residence, Homer Hickam.

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Air National Guard
7:18 pm
Wed September 24, 2014

167th Airlift Wing to Get Eight C-17 Aircrafts

Remaining C-5s at the 16th Airlift Wing.
Credit Liz McCormick / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Thursday, September 25th marks the end of an era for the 167th Airlift Wing in Martinsburg. The National Guard unit is getting the first of eight C-17 aircrafts, which will eventually replace the 11 C-5s that have been on the base since 2006. This transition comes at a price. About 160 fulltime positions are going away, but the West Virginia National Guard is trying to help the people affected find other jobs.

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Arts & Culture
7:12 pm
Fri September 19, 2014

Homer Hickam Comes to Appalachian Heritage Festival

Homer Hickam on the set of October Sky in 1998.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

This week, the 19th annual Appalachian Heritage Festival comes to Shepherd University. West Virginia native and author, Homer Hickam, is this year’s writer-in-residence.

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Health & Science
8:22 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

Help The USDA Count Stink Bugs in West Virginia

Credit Wikimedia Commons

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Appalachian Fruit Research Station in Kearneysville is hosting a second year of its Great Stink Bug Count in the hopes more data will help answer previous questions about the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug.

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12:10 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

Martinsburg VA Holds Town Hall to Hear Veterans Healthcare Concerns

Veterans gathered together for Martinsburg VA Medical Center's first town hall meeting.
Credit Liz McCormick / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

A group of impassioned veterans showed up to a town hall meeting at the Martinsburg VA Medical Center last week to voice a litany of complaints. But for the most part, they did NOT echo the national outrage about wait times for doctors' appointments. Instead, the veterans raised issues ranging from homelessness to hospital food.

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3:14 pm
Tue September 9, 2014

Historian Explains Why It's Important to Preserve Your Nearby Graveyards

Credit Charles Gordon Clark /

There are many ways to research and learn about our past, but for one historian, studying gravestones and its cemeteries is one of the best ways to find out more about a town’s history.

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Arts & Culture
5:00 pm
Thu September 4, 2014

BE-Hive, A Family Inspiration Place

Credit Liz McCormick / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

There’s a place in historic downtown Martinsburg that’s known to the community as… the BE-Hive. It’s spelled B-E, meaning “to be,” and “hive” meaning “home.” It’s an activity center for children, but it’s not a drop-off point. The parents have to be involved too.

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National Park Service
4:31 pm
Thu September 4, 2014

National Park Service Awards $1.7 Million in Grants to Protect Four Civil War Battlefields

Credit Cecelia Mason / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Four of America’s Civil War battlefields will receive grants to help preserve their land.

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Farmland Protection
4:39 pm
Fri August 22, 2014

Jefferson County Celebrates Addition of 40th Protected Farm

(from left to right) Deloris Nicewarner, William Nicewarner, and Elizabeth Wheeler, Program Administrator, Jefferson County Farmland Protection Board
Credit Jefferson County Farmland Protection Board

Earlier this week, the Jefferson County Farmland Protection Board celebrated the addition of 76.5 acres of protected farmland. Jefferson County's Protected Farmland now expands to 4,038 acres with the addition of their 40th farm.

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4:42 pm
Thu August 21, 2014

Unmanned Aircrafts Prohibited on Appalachian Trail Grounds

Appalachian National Scenic Trail
Credit / National Park Service

The National Park Service is prohibiting the use of unmanned aircrafts on the Appalachian National Scenic Trail grounds.

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4:33 pm
Wed August 20, 2014

Berkeley County Sheriff's Dept. Says Residents Are Properly Disposing of their Pharmeceutical Waste

Credit Cecelia Mason / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Courthouses and police departments across the state have been collecting prescription drugs for a few years now. The idea is to cut down on waste in the streams and keep unused prescriptions out of the hands of drug abusers. The Berkeley County Sheriff’s Department says collections have almost doubled in the past 5 months.

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6:57 pm
Mon August 18, 2014

Libraries in the Eastern Panhandle Say They Need More Funding

(From left to right) Hali Taylor, director of the Shepherdstown Public Library, Dana Jenkins, director of the South Jefferson Public Library, Marcella Genz, director of the Charles Town Library, Gretchen Fry, director of the Bolivar Harpers Ferry Public Library, and Pam Coyle, director of the Martinsburg-Berkeley Public Library.
Credit Liz McCormick / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

As the demand for Internet resources increases, libraries are the starting place for free information. However, budget cuts have forced libraries across the state to scale back drastically on operating hours and access to services, just when it seems those resources are most needed. The Jefferson County branch of the League of Women Voters hosted a public forum on ways the community in the Eastern Panhandle can support the public libraries in their area. These libraries say they have much to offer the public but need more funding.

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