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Board of Visitors approves new endowed professors, new name for baseball stadium

March 21, 2016

Virginia Tech President Tim Sands talks with Virginia Tech Board of Visitors Deborah Petrine, at right, during Monday’s meeting.
Virginia Tech President Tim Sands talks with Virginia Tech Board of Visitors Rector Deborah Petrine during Monday’s meeting.

At its quarterly meeting held today, the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors approved tuition and fees for the 2016-17 academic year, announced the appointment of two new Virginia Tech Carilion endowed professors, and revealed the new name of Virginia Tech’s baseball stadium.

The board approved a 2.9 percent increase in tuition and mandatory fees for both resident and non-resident undergraduate students. Next year, tuition and mandatory fees for Virginia undergraduate students will increase $367, or $12,852 annually, and out-of-state students will pay an additional $846, or $29,975 annually.

Additional details on 2016-17 tuition and fees can be found on the Virginia Tech News website.

The board honored Warren Bickel, professor and director of the Addiction Recovery Research Center, by naming him the first Virginia Tech Carilion Behavioral Science Research Professor, and honored P. Read Montague, professor and director of the Human Neuroimaging Laboratory, by naming him the first Virginia Tech Carilion Vernon Mountcastle Research Professor. These professorships were established to recognize excellence in research.

A complete story on these two appointments will be published Wednesday in Virginia Tech News.

The board also approved a resolution to rename the baseball team’s English Field to English Field at Union Park to commemorate Union Bank & Trust’s commitment to community and its long-time support of Virginia Tech, including a recent $3.5 million commitment that will help make possible major upgrades to the baseball stadium. More information on this can be found at HokieSports.com.

The board approved a resolution to establish compensation for graduate assistants for the 2016-17 academic year. Virginia Tech will advance the stipend scale by providing a base stipend increase of 3 percent, up from last year’s 2 percent increase. The university will continue to pay 90 percent of the annual premium cost of the basic health insurance plan.

On Monday afternoon, the board announced the selection of the 2016-17 student representatives. Gabe Cohen of Atlanta, Georgia, a junior majoring in mechanical engineering in the College of Engineering, will be the undergraduate student representative. Tara Reel, a master’s degree student in the School of Public and International Affairs in the College of Architecture and Urban Studies, will be the graduate student representative. Cohen and Reel will serve one-year terms beginning July 1.

Resolutions to approving funding to plan for the renovation of O’Shaughnessy Hall, a residence hall built in 1966 that houses 361 students, and to plan a revised and comprehensive solution for student wellness services that encompasses facility improvements at both Schiffert Health Center and Cook Counseling Center, were also approved.

On Sunday, board members received several reports from university leadership. The first report, “Envisioning Virginia Tech Beyond Boundaries,” by Virginia Tech President Tim Sands summarized university discussions on how to support two interrelated goals: advancing Virginia Tech’s status as an internationally-recognized, global land-grant institution and strategically addressing the challenges and opportunities presented by the changing landscape of higher education.

That report was followed by a presentation by Executive Vice President and Provost Thanassis Rikakis on Destination Areas, or ways to expand on Virginia Tech's multifaceted and comprehensive curriculum to address complex challenges of tomorrow.

Menah Pratt-Clarke, vice provost for inclusion and diversity and vice president for strategic affairs, followed and provided board members an update on InclusiveVT and proposed future initiatives in this area.

In-depth stories on each of these reports to the board will published in Virginia Tech news in the coming weeks.

During the full board meeting Monday afternoon, Virginia Tech Police Officer Larry Wooddell and his police dog, Boomer, were recognized as they both prepare to retire. Wooddell and Boomer have been partners since 2008, and Wooddell has been a member of the university’s police department since 1994.

In addition to the Bickel and Montague appointments, the board approved resolutions appointing or reappointing 11 more faculty members to endowed professorships, and a total of 12 faculty members and senior administrators were honored with emeritus status. Individual stories on each of these appointments and honors will be published in Virginia Tech News beginning next week.

The next regularly scheduled meeting of the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors will be June 5-6 in Blacksburg. More information on the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors may be found online.

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