Since June, Deborah Birx has visited universities in numerous states to learn about each institution’s approach to COVID-19. The universities that are most successful in managing COVID-19 worked hard during the summer to develop a plan for the fall semester, she said.
Sui, an internationally renowned researcher in the area of GIS-based spatial analysis and modeling for urban, environmental, and public health applications, has been appointed Virginia Tech’s vice president for research and innovation, effective Nov. 1, 2020.
This year’s theme, “Where Everyone Belongs,” encourages us to welcome newcomers to our community, engage in thoughtful conversations, and connect through events and activities that promote access, inclusion, and growth.
Virginia Tech President Tim Sands, Blacksburg Mayor Leslie Hager-Smith, and New River Valley Health District Director Noelle Bissell discussed a variety of topics — from management of COVID-19 cases in the community to the decision to ban tailgating this fall.
Virginia Tech will continue to monitor all parking lots on game day. Virginia Tech Police will inform anyone seeking to hold a tailgate that it is currently prohibited and are prepared to enforce this decision if individuals choose not to comply.
The university has transitioned from benchmarking the health of residential students moving onto campus to diagnostic testing, screening, and surveillance testing. To provide more current and actionable information to members of our community, updates to the dashboard will be made more frequently in the future.
Our community has done a remarkable job so far, and now it’s up to each one of us to keep our campus open. Your role is to follow the university guidelines, honor our Community Wellness Commitment, and protect your peers and community members both on and off campus.
Among the actions taken, the board approved a resolution to demolish Femoyer Hall, a 35,500-gross-square-foot facility constructed in 1949. In addition, board members toured the new Fralin Biomedical Research Institute at VTC research facility in Roanoke, the Virginia Tech School of Medicine, and new dairy facilities at Kentland Farm.
To ensure an appropriate degree of transparency, a new online dashboard will be updated each Monday to report the number of COVID-19 test results – the positive test results and total tests – among students and employees, based on the previous week’s information.
Although it is too early to draw firm conclusions, the evidence suggests that aggressive and rapid testing, effective contact tracing, and sufficient capacity for quarantine and isolation are effective and essential.
During the three-day meeting, board members will receive reports on the Innovation Campus in Northern Virginia, the planning for the sesquicentennial celebration in 2022, new Title IX regulations, and the current state of university fundraising and the research enterprise.