New reporter joins University Times

Shannon Wells

Shannon Wells, a native of Charleston, W.Va., joins the University Times staff this week as its full-time writer, replacing Donovan Harrell, who now works in the chancellor’s office.

A longtime journalist and communications specialist, Wells recently taught journalism courses at West Virginia State University and served as adviser for its student newspaper. He returned to Charleston in 2020 after 14 years in Portland, Ore., where he served as executive news editor for three Pamplin Media Group publications and covered news, business and entertainment reporting beats.

After earning a bachelor’s and master’s degree in journalism from West Virginia University, Wells worked as a copy editor and reporter for the Charleston (WV) Gazette, news editor and reporter for The Daily Progress in Charlottesville, Va., and media relations coordinator at Sweet Briar College near Lynchburg, Va.

A fan of Pittsburgh since his WVU days, Wells is excited about a new opportunity to further his journalism career in a dynamic academic environment.

“I grew up in a river city, so Pittsburgh always felt like a home away from home to me,” he said. “I’m thrilled to finally have an opportunity to live here, take in all the games, culture, food and recreational opportunities in the surrounding area.

“With its range and depth of topics and reporting, University Times offers just the dynamic variation from the traditional newspaper world I’ve been seeking,” he added. “I am happy to be part of the team at such an illustrious, innovative learning institution.”

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