From the Dean – May 2015

Alan Grant, dean

Alan Grant, dean

Dear Colleagues,

A number of our outstanding faculty and staff members were recently recognized for their many years at Virginia Tech at the 2014 Annual Service Recognition Program. Among those were Brenda Caldwell, who has been with the Department of Animal and Poultry Sciences for 50 years; Patsy Neice in the Department of Plant Pathology, Physiology, and Weed Science, who has been with the university for 40 years; and Wendy Wark in the Department of Dairy Science, who has been with the university for 40 years. We thank everyone who was recognized at the program for their hard work and dedication over all these years.

We are also proud of our many faculty and staff members who were recognized in this year’s university Awards for Excellence.

  • Frenda Wall Haynie, undergraduate student advisor and program coordinator for the Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics, received the university’s Provost’s Award for Excellence in Advising.
  • Ruth H. Lytton, professor of agricultural and applied economics and director of the financial planning program at Virginia Tech, was presented with the university’s Alumni Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Academic Advising.
  • Martha A. Walker of Ringgold, Virginia, community viability specialist for the Central District Virginia Cooperative Extension Office, has received Virginia Tech’s Alumni Award for Excellence in Extension.
  • Jennifer Bowen of Farmville, Virginia, senior Extension agent in 4-H youth development and unit coordinator for Prince Edward County, Virginia, received Virginia Tech’s Alumni Award for Excellence in Extension.

A number of our students also received some well-deserved accolades recently:

  • Jessica K. Li of Martinsville, Virginia, a senior with dual degrees in human, nutrition, foods, and exercise and biological sciences has been selected as the Virginia Tech Undergraduate Student of the Year. She is also minoring in chemistry.
  • Hope Wentzel of Alexandria, Virginia, was presented with the college’s Outstanding Senior Award. Hope is completing a bachelor’s degree in animal and poultry sciences with a minor in forestry.
  • Sarah R. McCoski of Amsterdam, N.Y., was named the college’s outstanding master’s degree student. McCoski is earning her M.S. in animal and poultry sciences.
  • Phoebe Williams of Charlottesville, Virginia, was named the college’s outstanding doctoral student. She is earning her Ph.D. in biochemistry.

The university and CALS spring graduate and undergraduate commencement ceremonies will be held on Friday and Saturday, May 15 and 16. We expect about  800 undergraduate degrees in CALS to be conferred this year. Please celebrate and congratulate our outgoing students at the many university and departmental festivities that honor their accomplishments. A resounding thank you to all who teach and mentor our students to prepare them for successful careers in the future and those who contribute so much to support and affirm the exceptional learning environment that CALS has become known for.


Alan Grant

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