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About Us

Festival of Ideas was created in 1995 by President Emeritus David C. Hardesty Jr. It was inspired by events he organized as WVU’s student body president in the 1960’s.

Today, the lecture series spans the academic year and brings a diverse group of news-makers, public figures and thought leaders—along with WVU’s own academic superstars—to engage the campus community in important issues of the day.

A speaker series such as the David C. Hardesty Jr. Festival of Ideas is at the heart of what a university represents—the free exchange of ideas, knowledge, and the discovery of new and exciting ideas and possibilities.

These events are supported in part by the David C. Hardesty Jr. Festival of Ideas Endowment.

Visit our Facebook page and join the #wvuideas conversation @wvu_univevents.

Sign up for email reminders of upcoming Festival of Ideas lectures here.


For Festival of Ideas, parking  is free after 5:00 p.m. Monday through Sunday in non-restricted lots at West Virginia University. Please take note when parking for an event that it is in a non-restricted parking area to ensure you will not be ticketed