Mark Owczarski of Blacksburg, former director of communications programs at Syracuse University, has been named director of news and information at Virginia Tech.

In his new position, Owczarski will provide leadership for Virginia Tech's media relations program and oversee the development of the university's web site.

Owczarski had served as director of communications programs at Syracuse University since 1998. In that position, he oversaw the university's national media relations program and several specific strategic communications projects. From 1994 to 1998, he was director of college relations at Guilford College in Greensboro, N.C., and held media relations and publications positions at the State University of New York at Stony Brook from 1989 to 1994. Owczarski has recognized for professional achievement by both the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education and the Syracuse Press Club.

A native of Cheshire, Conn., and 1982 graduate of Cheshire High School, Owczarski received his bachelor's degree from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University and a master's degree from the School of Education at Syracuse University.

Founded in 1872 as a land-grant college, Virginia Tech has grown to become the largest university in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Today, Virginia Tech's eight colleges are dedicated to putting knowledge to work through teaching, research, and outreach activities, and to fulfilling its vision to be among the top 30 research universities in the nation. At its 2,600-acre main campus located in Blacksburg, and other campus centers in northern Virginia, Hampton Roads, Richmond, and Roanoke, Virginia Tech enrolls 28,000 full- and part-time undergraduate and graduate students from all 50 states and more than 100 countries in 170 academic degree programs.