Other Considerations


Students can immerse themselves in a field offering a rewarding career made up of history, education, management, economic development and community service with the exciting world of railroading. Graduating with a minor in railway heritage tourism management, students are qualified for consideration in museum and excursion operations and marketing, rail heritage preservation and presentation, archive cataloging and protection, and facilities planning. Graduates will have the skills necessary to staff and direct the many sites that make up what is one of the largest heritage preservation subject areas in North America.

For students of Davis & Elkins College the Center provides:

  • classroom and field experience to encourage and enable a career in railway heritage preservation and tourism management;
  • work experience through year-long and seasonal placements as interns in the railway heritage and tourism industry, either paid or unpaid at the student's discretion;
  • one-day externships wherein one or more participants experience a site visit exposing them to the various operations typically found in a railway heritage museum and/or excursion facility;
  • multi-disciplinary exposure to the many forms railway heritage preservation and tourism takes, with emphasis on the field’s potential appeal to various student and visitor interests;
  • assistance in finding and succeeding at permanent employment in the railway heritage tourism industry upon graduation, including mentoring and building a support network within the industry; and
  • the opportunity to develop model railroading skills and experience by participating in the construction of the West Virginia & Atlantic Railroad, an HO-scale layout portraying the historic role of the state's railroads in moving natural resources to market.

These services and opportunities are available to all minors, regardless of their Davis & Elkins College major, who have an interest in Railway Heritage Tourism Management. Email Jim Porterfield, director of the Center for Railway Tourism, at porterfieldj@dewv.edu, or call 304-637-1307 or 814-574-5586 for more information.