Approximately 80 business, education and legislative leaders attended The Education Alliance’s EDTalks: Connecting Education, Jobs and Our Future event on Thursday at The Capitol Theatre.

EDTalks is an education-based speaker series being held across West Virginia that promotes innovative discussion and big ideas on strengthening public education. The idea is to provide a series of networking and education events designed to engage business, education, and community leaders in public education issues.

“For the last several years, state leaders have been working to improve and diversify West Virginia‘s economy — preparing students with college and career ready skills is key to achieving that goal,” said Dr. Amelia Courts, president and chief executive officer of The Education Alliance. “The Education Alliance is excited to hear three innovative and exciting perspectives about how we can strengthen our education system to better prepare for West Virginia‘s future.”

Thursday’s event featured three speakers: Gail Adams, 2015 WV Teacher of the Year, Alison Irvin, Wheeling Park High School Senior, and Illah Nourbakhsh, Carnegie Mellon Professor of Robotics. They each shared innovative ideas from their unique perspectives on how we can better connect education, jobs and our state’s future.

To view the video recordings of the Wheeling EDTalks or for more information, visit or contact The Education Alliance at 866-314-KIDS.