In September, President Tim Sands asked Charles D. Phlegar, vice president for Advancement, to launch the planning for Virginia Tech’s sesquicentennial.

Together, they have invited Rosemary Blieszner and Anne Khademian to serve as co-chairs of the sesquicentennial steering committee, which will lead the planning of the university’s celebration of its 150th anniversary.

Blieszner, dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences and Alumni Distinguished Professor, and Khademian, Presidential Fellow and former director of the School of Public and International Affairs in the College of Architecture and Urban Studies, will guide the efforts of a broadly representative group of alumni, faculty, students, and community members. Committee members will be invited to join the effort in fall 2018.

Rosemary Blieszner and Anne Khademian
Rosemary Blieszner and Anne Khademian

The sesquicentennial observation will be rooted in Virginia Tech’s history and traditions even as the university implements its plans for the future.

“We can draw on the insights of the Beyond Boundaries visioning effort as we involve our stakeholders and constituents in the celebration of Virginia Tech’s 150th anniversary,” said Blieszner, who co-chaired the Beyond Boundaries effort.

“The sesquicentennial is an opportunity to engage the entire Virginia Tech community both near and far,” Khademian said. “We anticipate that sesquicentennial celebrations will extend to all of the university’s campuses as we celebrate our many accomplishments in the commonwealth and beyond.”

Phlegar, a two-time alumnus of Virginia Tech, said that “celebrating our history and claiming our future position in the world is exactly what Virginia Tech is called to do. The sesquicentennial is an ideal opportunity to demonstrate how we live our university motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve).”

The steering committee will include members from across the entire community, including representation from the council on Virginia Tech’s history, which shared it recommendations in fall 2018.