President’s Message


by Tim Sands
Tim Sands

BREAKING NEWS: Virginia Tech President Tim Sands gives a thumbs-up during an event on Dec. 6, 2018, announcing a record $50 million gift from the Horace G. Fralin Charitable Trust and Heywood and Cynthia Fralin to Fralin Biomedical Research Institute at VTC.

It’s always a great year to be a Hokie, but 2019 is shaping up to be one of our best yet.

Last year we began implementing our Beyond Boundaries vision to advance Virginia Tech’s modern land-grant mission with some big ideas and ambitious goals. Working together, with your support, our planning and strategy is already making a difference and producing some remarkable opportunities.

In November, Virginia Tech was center stage as Amazon announced plans to expand its headquarters to Arlington, Virginia. Our commitments to build an Innovation Campus in nearby Alexandria and to increase the undergraduate pipeline to produce top-notch talent were among the key components that led to the decision. Just a few weeks later in Roanoke, we were honored to celebrate the naming of the Fralin Biomedical Research Institute at VTC, in recognition of the generosity of the Horace G. Fralin Charitable Trust and Heywood and Cynthia Fralin. Their gift will support significant expansion of our growing Academic Health Center. Big things are also happening in Blacksburg, where the Board of Visitors approved a new master plan that supports smart growth and development of our main campus.

Today, we face the same imperative that energized our predecessors to grow and evolve. Virginia Tech is in a strong position, with momentum, energy, and opportunity on our side. We have a strong leadership team in place, having recently selected Cyril Clarke as executive vice president and provost and Lee Learman as dean of the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine.

Your support is also invaluable to our continued success, and there are so many ways you can be involved. You can make an impact by:

  • joining an alumni chapter in your region,
  • making plans to visit campus
  • attending our Reunion Weekend in June,
  • creating a student internship at your place of business
  • volunteering to share your expertise in the classroom, and
  • donating during Virginia Tech’s Giving Day on March 19.

With the support of the Hokie Nation and a commitment to service in the spirit of Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), we will continue to seek excellence with a strategic focus on our priorities.

Working together in true Virginia Tech fashion, we will succeed.

We have an exciting future ahead.

Tim Sands is Virginia Tech’s 16th president.