Dean’s Update

Alan Grant

Alan Grant, dean

Greeting from CALS,

This spring, we will launch another class of new alumni, most of whom will be entering careers in the agricultural and life sciences industries or pursuing graduate or professional degrees. CALS student enrollment continues to grow, making the Class of 2016 one of the largest graduating classes in the college’s history!

I am confident that our new alumni will flourish much like they have here in Blacksburg. We like to think that CALS has contributed to at least some of their success to date and that we have prepared them for rewarding careers. This issue of Innovations includes some highlights of programs in CALS that emphasize the value of the Virginia Tech student experience.

The cover story describes the network of advisors in CALS who are enhancing student success, helping students navigate their plans of study, mentoring and connecting them to opportunities so they maximize their education, and challenging them to achieve their greatest potential.

The college alumni organization is also developing a new mentoring program, which will pair up students with industry leaders who will share their experiences and wisdom. We continue to expand capstone experiences and projects that immerse students in solving real problems in communities and industry settings. And as our alumni are increasingly called upon to work around the world, we are encouraging students to spend time studying abroad where they gain meaningful global perspectives.

Continued investment in facilities that support our education and research missions is also a high priority. We are grateful for the new funding proposed by the governor and the Virginia General Assembly to upgrade the college’s livestock and poultry facilities. We thank our government and industry leaders for their support for this important project, which includes significant state funding to address the first phase of construction and renovation.

I hope you join me in wishing our new alumni well and encouraging them to stay engaged with Virginia Tech. The alumni and friends of CALS are important to what we do as a land-grant university. Thank you for all you do to help us!

Sincerely,

Alan Grant
Dean

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