Archive of Impact Spotlights

Overcome the obstacles

The Corps of Cadets obstacle course builds confidence, teamwork, and leadership and is a key training tool for new cadets.

Tomatoes in trouble

A highly destructive pest that has devastated tomato crops is now heading northward to the United States.

Let's talk about teaching

A new initiative provides graduate teaching assistants support and educational opportunities.

The change agent

No one has to wonder what alumnus and entrepreneur Tracy Wilkins is thinking. He’ll tell you.

The power of a tweet

Graduate student Anne Hilborn shares bite-sized bits of her cheetah research through social media.

Invasive species

Virginia Tech scientists are developing ways to deal with pests such as lady beetles, ash borers, and stinkbugs.

Learn. Work. Learn.

The Cooperative Education and Internship Program incorporates real-world work experience into students' lives.

A duty to share

The Corps of Cadets Color Guard teaches flag etiquette to the next generation.

Disaster resilience

Pamplin Professor Chris Zobel studies how communities cope with and recover from a catastrophe.

Marvelous millipedes

Paul Marek’s lab uncovers new species of millipedes here in Appalachia.

Hope for threatened creatures

Virginia Tech researchers are doing what they can to save populations of endangered species.

Program empowers students to eat smarter

Teen Cuisine teaches kids how to eat healthier while learning other important life skills.

Virginia Tech debuts hockey helmet ratings

The goal of the much-anticipated ratings is to reduce head injuries among players.

Meaningful conversations

Through the AWARE program, Virginia Tech students mentor middle school girls.

In their own words

Virginia Tech's David Cline is a lead oral historian for the national Civil Rights History Project.

20 habits for better service

Pamplin professor Vince Magnini offers a practical guide for businesses to elevate their customer service.

Farms become classrooms

The Food Animal Field Services team made more than 2,200 farm visits and examined more than 55,000 animals in 2013.

Safety first

Myers-Lawson School of Construction experts find new ways to teach workers to avoid injury on the job site.

An agri/cultural exchange

Students from Senegal and Virginia Tech learn about sustainable agriculture while they experience cultural traditions.

Follow the code

The wording of the Corps of Cadets Honor Code has remained the same over time but its educational aspect continues to evolve.

'I felt very well-prepared'

Cadets who participate in an ROTC program receive basic military training and officer training for their chosen branch of service.

Connections created

Community engagement, especially when it comes to students, is a central focus for the Center for the Arts.

An ingredient for success

Virginia Cooperative Extension’s fresh produce food safety initiatives provide key lessons to farmers.

A resource for forests

A new center pairs massive amounts of data about natural resources with the expertise of college faculty.

Ready to serve

Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets donates more than 12,000 hours of service each academic year.

Open doors

Most students in Virginia Tech's property management program get job offers before they graduate.

Tiny bugs may save treasured trees

An entomology professor works to protect the East Coast's hemlock trees from a predator.

Seeds of hope

Through the efforts of senior Austin Larrowe, progress in the fight against world hunger takes root in Nicaragua and beyond.

Look below the surface

Geoscientist John Chermak helps mining and energy companies mitigate their environmental impacts.

International advocate

Maria Elisa Christie's job is to improve the economic status of women around the world.

The battle against obesity

The Dan River Region research project could provide a model to combat the nationwide obesity epidemic.

A place for history

Experts from the Department of History and the University Libraries help the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets move its museum.

Research at the reservoir

Scientists and students help to make sure the Western Virginia Water Authority's water is safe and clean.

Their service continues

For student veterans, service projects and social gatherings help form friendships and assimilate back into civilian life.

Better for bicycles

Associate Professor Ralph Buehler’s research in the National Capital Region works to improve the infrastructure for cycling.

Key connections

Virginia Tech Transportation Institute researchers create new ways for motorcycles to "talk" with other vehicles.

Take the bite out of mosquitoes

A multidisciplinary team tries to thwart disease transmission.

On their feet again

The Veterinary Teaching Hospital offers physical therapy to help dogs re-learn to walk after injury or surgery.

Strength in numbers

Each fall, students and university employees volunteer as Hokie Helpers during move-in week.

Maximum production

Professor Ozzie Abaye helps to modernize agriculture practices in Senegal.

Bed bugs are back

Virginia Tech scientists help to battle an old foe.

A summer to remember

A wildlife science student interviews former Zambian poachers.

Hokies help others lead healthier lives

Members of Virginia Tech’s Health Education and Awareness Team develop health education programs.

The face of campus

About 130 students volunteer with Hokie Ambassadors to give campus tours and showcase the Virginia Tech spirit.

The horse ambulance

The Equine Field Service takes veterinary students on the road to care for horses.

A history of sleep

A Virginia Tech historian's research looks at how sleep has changed in modern times.

An environmental challenge

People from diverse backgrounds train to be leaders in global sustainability.

Lessons add up to life skills

Michael Ozlanski helps accounting students do well in their careers and do good in the world.

A special game day experience

For more than a decade, Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets alumni have coordinated military flyovers at Lane Stadium.

Masters of food

Extension volunteers help provide nutrition education across the state.

Make time for sleep

Chris Barnes' research shows that sleep deprivation may contribute to unethical conduct in the workplace.

Wild encounters

A wildlife professor provides advice to governments and residents about interacting with animals.

In season

Campers at the Northern Virginia 4-H Educational Center enjoy locally grown food throughout the summer.

The human-animal bond

A center at the veterinary college expounds the therapeutic benefits of companion animals.

An education revolution

Legislation signed by Abraham Lincoln created the land-grant system 150 years ago.

Red knot research

Virginia Tech wildlife scientists have spent seven years studying the shorebird’s diet and habits for clues to its decline.

Help for the helpers

Virginia Tech faculty members are looking for ways to help grandparents who are serving as parents.

International exchange of ideas

Virginia Tech and Moroccan students work together to research international terrorism.

An investment in the future

Students expand their finance education by managing stocks and bonds for the Virginia Tech Foundation.

Hill study

A student’s research could help groundskeepers choose the best clay for pitching mounds.

A shot at job creation

Virginia Tech’s economic development team pushes $10 million into Western Virginia’s challenged economy.

A place for learning

Thousands participate in the cultural, educational, and research programs at Virginia Tech’s Reynolds Homestead each year.

From the ground up

Graduate student Keri Agriesti studies the connection men and women who farm in Bolivia have with the soil.

Students design solutions

Industrial design and architecture students visit India to create practical tools for people living below the poverty line.

Bridge saves lives in Haiti

Virginia Tech students help create safe passage for villagers, including children getting to school.

Practice with a purpose

Professors Keith and Marie Zawistowski guide students to produce better buildings and stronger communities.

A golden opportunity

David Kramar gathers valuable data on the small population of golden eagles in the East.

A noteworthy service

More than 175 students participate in the volunteer note-taker program run by Services for Students with Disabilities.

A transfer of energy

Student Rachel Gallimore has taken in a wide range of experiences at Virginia Tech.

A garden for everyone

Virginia Cooperative Extension helps families improve their nutrition through a community garden program.

A reward for kind behavior

A Virginia Tech-based movement called Actively Caring for People is spreading.

Highty-Tighties: Deeds, not words

The Corps of Cadets' Regimental Band has a history of producing students recognized for their contributions to the community.

The inflammation connection

Studying what causes inflammation could lead to treatment for more debilitating diseases.

Researchers fight waterborne pathogens

The project is finding ways to protect water quality while increasing growers’ profits.

International flair

An annual street fair gives students a chance to share their home country's heritage and traditions.

Old battlefields, new challenges

A Pamplin alumnus and former investment manager works to protect old battlefields from development.

A backbone for nanotechnology

A chemistry professor's work with filled fullerenes has led to research for the National Cancer Institute.

Hokies make history at Daytona

A car retrofitted by Virginia Tech students takes the famous track with a blind man behind the wheel.

Students teach in Malawi

Participants learn about the African nation, as well as themselves, during the service-learning experience.

Researchers help Haitian farmers

Virginia Tech researchers are working with farmers to use conservation agriculture techniques to improve soil conditions.

A design on giving

The Virginia Tech’s Student Engineers' Council raises $500,000 to support student team projects.

Research project compares wind, solar energy

The community came together to make the Virginia Tech-YMCA comparison of alternative energy technologies a reality.

One big world, four ways to conquer it

Pamplin's four MBA programs are designed to meet the different needs of both full-time and part-time students.

Cadets support 'honorable cause'

Since 2001, the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets has raised more than $181,300 for the National D-Day Memorial in Bedford, Va.

Sound science to inform mining policy

The Virginia Water Resources Research Center at Virginia Tech is researching headwater streams affected by coal mining.

Short courses leave lasting impressions

The Virginia Forest Landowner Education Program educates people about the how and why of sustainable forest management.

Center helps raise autism awareness

A Virginia Tech clinic offers services for children with autism.

Electricity's volatile future

A Pamplin professor's research shows the need for greater consumer awareness of how electricity is used.

A park for everybody

Virginia Tech alumni were instrumental in creating a fully accessible beachside park.

Preparing for natural disasters

Research identifies natural hazards and assesses related risks to the commonwealth.

Student research creates opportunity

Virginia Tech graduate students offer the town of Floyd, Va., options to improve its future.

Stronger codes, safer decks

A Virginia Tech professor's ongoing research has helped increase awareness of deck safety.

Oasis on campus

The Hahn Horticulture Garden is a refuge for the public, a lab for students, and a labor of love for volunteers.

In the lead to find a cure

With more than $1 million raised, Virginia Tech's Relay For Life is among the top collegiate Relay events in the nation.

Natural sources hold key to improving medicine

Virginia Tech research on polysaccharides may result in more effective drug treatment.

A fulfilling career. A worthy cause.

Karen Johnson views Virginia Tech as both a fulfilling place to work and a worthy cause to support.

Women making a difference

The Women in Leadership and Philanthropy Council helps Virginia Tech alumnae and friends stay engaged with the university.

A focus on workplace safety

College of Engineering faculty help employees learn to work more safely.

Affordable expertise for entrepreneurs

A Virginia Tech outreach program helps small businesses, educates students, and supports economic development.

A fight against deforestation

A Virginia Tech professor's research on predator-prey interaction could help alleviate deforestation in Madagascar.

An empowered experience

Virginia Tech sponsored an exchange program with Kenya to teach responsible governance.

Imagination translates into reality

Virginia Tech students have access to education abroad programs on all seven continents.

Service, unity, and spirit

Virginia Tech's Greek organizations donate thousands of hours in community service each year.

From the vineyard to the winery

Virginia Tech's viticulture and enology programs strengthen Virginia's grape and wine industry.

Stormwater solutions

Virginia Tech researchers test methods to reduce runoff by using trees and structural soils.

Pointing schoolchildren toward tomorrow

Virginia Tech's STEM programs inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers.

Living leadership

Members of the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets learn to become leaders by first obeying, then leading their fellow cadets.

What's in your water?

Extension programs across the state focus on education to improve water quality.

Using robots to inspire

Potential scientists and engineers are nurtured in Virginia Tech summer camps.

Study targets defiant behavior in children

Research of oppositional defiant disorder will be the first in the nation to compare types of treatment.

Projects aim to build better lives

Students, alumni, and administrators team up on international service projects.

Critically ill horses treated at equine medical center

Virginia Tech's Marion duPont Scott Equine Medical Center provides critical diagnosis and treatment.

Mentors reach out to help

Each One Reach One pairs a new Virginia Tech student with an upper-class or graduate mentor.

Program provides global learning opportunities

Students gain invaluable life experience abroad.

Portable hospital gives on-site care

A program in the veterinary school provides large animal care in the field.

Working to save chimpanzees

Dr. Taranjit Kaur is trying to figure out how to protect Africa's endangered chimpanzee population.

Restoring life to the rivers

The Virginia Tech Freshwater Mollusk Conservation Center is restoring endangered mussels to the region's rivers.

Burning to prevent fire

A student wildland firefighting group works to ignite the truth about the importance of forest fires.

'Leading expert' studies pipe corrosion

Through research and field work, Marc Edwards’ efforts have influenced changes in lead and water-related regulations.

Genetic screening: To test or not to test

Professor Doris Zallen has published a book on issues to consider before pursuing genetic screening.

Restoring the nation's largest estuary

Virginia Tech scientists work to mitigate the effects of pollution in the Chesapeake Bay, ensuring blue crab health.

Getting ready for diverse workplaces

The Pamplin College of Business is expanding its teaching and research programs on workplace diversity and multiculturalism.

Hokie Camp 2008 delivers leadership, values

Read student reactions to this retreat -- designed to help with the transition to college -- in the students’ blog.

Entrepreneurs and leaders help communities prosper

Virginia Cooperative Extension’s community viability programs help find ways to improve and sustain hometowns.

A quest to prevent falls and save lives

College of Engineering's Thurmon Lockhart is solving the mysteries of mobility and stability in his Locomotion Research Lab.

Roots of progress can be traced to philanthropic titans

Members of Ut Prosim Society, Virginia Tech's most prestigious donor group, have contributed more than $569 million.

Beautiful Gardens help grow Virginia's green industry

This green partnership has begun to develop new and test under-used varieties of ornamental germplasm through a research-based plant introduction program.

Student group 'makes the switch' for the environment

key: spotlight, energy, recycling, environment, interior design desc: This is the Make the Switch spotlight.

Study: Bears may answer human health questions

Hibernating black bears could hold a key to treating osteoporosis and depression, say Virginia Tech wildlife researchers.

Undergraduate works in Mali to save innocent lives

Senior Christine George is helping fight the spread of yellow fever and dengue carried by the Aedes mosquito.

Environmentally conscious solutions to eroding streams

Stroubles Creek restoration offers model for reversing effects of pollution on nation’s streams and waterways.

So what are free radicals?

Researchers have developed an antioxidant delivery system to target specific cell receptors present in the lower airways of RAO-affected horses.

Fitting in: In housing, it's what's inside that counts

Theme housing groups students with shared interests. The approach engages students and gives them tools for success.

International preparation for global energy business

The Executive Energy Management Program is helping Indian engineers enhance their global leadership skills.

Students use elbow grease to deliver message of thanks

Some 2,500 students banded together this spring for a project with a 'Big' purpose: dedicating their Saturday to thank community residents.

Kids' online privacy

After discovering that parents did not know how to protect their children's online privacy, a Virginia Tech team went to work on a solution.

Hokies football lines up to prevent head injuries

Biomechanics researchers are working implements that help reduce impact-related injuries on the field and in your car.

Center puts Virginia a step ahead of natural disasters

An interdisciplinary effort uses geospatial information technology to save money, assist federal programs and help safeguard Virginia.

Study is helping children stare fear in the face

The Child Study Center aims to arm children and parents with ways to conquer childhood phobias, such as fear of dogs.

Noteworth alum has fistful of firsts and years of service

Jerry Gaines has spent 35 years giving back in education. This trailblazing former student-athlete leads by example.

Theatre arts links campus and community in creativity

This acclaimed program blends challenging academic standards with inventive vision. The results touch lives and inspire change.

Collaboration helps students become better scientists

The interdisciplinary MILES program is targeting pressing health issues by looking at free-radical and oxidation processes.

100-Car Study marks first in transportation safety

Researchers at the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute are helping keep families safe on the road.