Virginia Tech President Timothy Sands recently visited the Eastern Shore of Virginia, where he met with area farmers and took a tour of the local Agricultural Research and Extension Center.
“The partnership between Virginia Tech and Virginia agriculture has never been stronger, and our commitment to support agriculture throughout the commonwealth is firm,” Sands told a packed house at the Eastern Shore Ag Conference and Trade Show. “It is where we started, and it is still a major part of Virginia Tech.”
Sands pointed out that the National Science Foundation recently ranked the university in sixth place for research spending among agricultural universities in the U.S., a move up from seventh place. He also said that one of the university’s strong suits is putting its research into the hands of people through Virginia Cooperative Extension.
Virginia Tech Board of Visitors member Steve Sturgis, along with Alan Grant, dean of the college, and Saied Mostaghimi, associate dean of research, then took Sands to the Eastern Shore AREC in Painter, Virginia, where he met with director Steve Rideout and other faculty members.
There, Sands learned about the research that new faculty member Laura Strawn, an assistant professor in food science and technology, is doing with food safety. He also met with Mark Reiter, an associate professor in crop and soil environmental sciences, who works with farmers to address issues of nutrient and soil management.