Vernon Burnsed, professor of music in the School of Performing Arts in the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences at Virginia Tech, has been conferred the title of “professor emeritus” by the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors.

The emeritus title may be conferred on retired professors, associate professors, and administrative officers who are specially recommended to the board by Virginia Tech President Timothy D. Sands. Nominated individuals who are approved by the board receive an emeritus certificate from the university.

A member of the Virginia Tech community since 1978, Burnsed made significant contributions to the understanding of music education through his scholarship and research focused on the relationship between school music instruction and the perception of the expressive elements of music. His research was published and presented internationally and he served on the editorial boards of the leading research journals in music education.

Burnsed was a state leader in the Music Educators National Conference serving as Virginia college president, state research chair, and editor of the official publication of the Virginia Music Educators Association, VMEA Notes.

Performing throughout the region as a jazz pianist, Burnsed was also the founding director of the Virginia Tech String Project, a non-profit instructional program dedicated to offering affordable string instrument instruction to elementary students while training future string music educators.

Burnsed designed the music education curriculum at Virginia Tech, which is widely acclaimed for its extensive laboratory and field based practicum experiences. He taught a variety of undergraduate and graduate courses in music education and research and helped many students develop successful careers in both public school music and professional music settings.

Burnsed received his bachelor of music degree from Georgia Southern University and a master of music degree and a Ph.D. from the University of Miami.

Dedicated to its motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), Virginia Tech takes a hands-on, engaging approach to education, preparing scholars to be leaders in their fields and communities. As the commonwealth’s most comprehensive university and its leading research institution, Virginia Tech offers 240 undergraduate and graduate degree programs to more than 31,000 students and manages a research portfolio of $513 million. The university fulfills its land-grant mission of transforming knowledge to practice through technological leadership and by fueling economic growth and job creation locally, regionally, and across Virginia.