Chris Houpos of Suffolk, Va., a junior majoring in civil and environmental engineering in the College of Engineering at Virginia Tech, is the recipient of the university’s first SMC Concrete Scholarship. The scholarship is directed towards civil engineering students focusing on structural engineering and construction.

The SMC Concrete scholarship covers undergraduate in-state tuition and fees and can be awarded for both the junior and senior years based on a student meeting certain scholastic criteria.

SMC Concrete is a high-rise concrete construction subcontractor located in Annandale, Va. The company has been in business for over 30 years and employs 500 people. Its job sites are located in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. Recent major projects completed include: Fairfield Clarendon Residential in Arlington, Va.; the Library of Congress/National Audiovisual Conservation Center in Culpepper, Va.; and the Jefferson at Penn Quarter condominiums.

Houpos will also have the opportunity to participate in summer employment with SMC Concrete in Annandale, Va., to gain work-related experience during the summer between his junior and senior years.

The Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Virginia Tech was recently ranked in the top 15 of accredited civil engineering departments by the U. S. News and World Report survey. It is one of the largest civil and environmental programs in the United States. The department has 42 full-time faculty, 450 undergraduate (sophomore through senior level), and 225 graduate students at the Blacksburg, Va. campus. In addition, the department has two full-time faculty representing the areas of environmental engineering, civil infrastructure engineering and advanced transportation systems who conduct research and direct graduate degree programs through the University's Northern Virginia Center in Falls Church, Va. Approximately 100 part-time graduate students participate in these programs.

The College of Engineering at Virginia Tech is internationally recognized for its excellence in 14 engineering disciplines and computer science. The college's 5,500 undergraduates benefit from an innovative curriculum that provides a "hands-on, minds-on" approach to engineering education, complementing classroom instruction with two unique design-and-build facilities and a strong Cooperative Education Program. With more than 50 research centers and numerous laboratories, the college offers its 1,800 graduate students opportunities in advanced fields of study such as biomedical engineering, state-of-the-art microelectronics, and nanotechnology.