Virginia Tech logo August 2019  
Virginia Tech Monthly
A newsletter for alumni and friends

Rob Markus

Architect of Careers

In a career as a talent agent spanning more than 15 years, Rob Markus has represented clients like James Brown, Nine Inch Nails, Chris Cornell, and J Balvin, and booked sold-out shows in venues from Coachella and Lollapalooza to Madison Square Garden and the Hollywood Bowl.

However, his spring headliner at Burruss Hall as commencement speaker for the College of Architecture and Urban Studies counts as one of his favorite gigs. “It was one of the biggest honors of my life,” he said. “The School of Architecture + Design laid the foundation for pretty much everything I’ve done in my life. I found my passion in the music business, but I’m still an architect of sorts, helping build the careers of artists and growing festival brands.”

Read more about Markus >>


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Hokie Highlights

Donations to Virginia Tech reached a new high: $181.9 million

Tens of thousands of donors stepped forward to support programs throughout Virginia Tech in a year of unprecedented generosity.

A total of 36,286 individuals, corporations, and foundations gave to Virginia Tech during the fiscal year that ended June 30. The previous record for new gifts and commitments was $162.3 million in 2016-17.

Read about the new record >>


Viviana Pazos ’22 navigates the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets Obstacle Course.

Corps resurgence includes new buildings and plans to reach 1,400 cadets

Strong growth in Virginia Tech’s oldest living-learning community is a credit to the perseverance and generosity of alumni who, decades ago, recognized the tenuous position the corps was in and decided to do all they could to help.

Read about the resurgence >>


Elham Morshedzadeh, Chris Arena, and Pamela VandeVord (left to right) discuss possible fabrication methods for biomedical device prototypes

Designers and engineers team up to help vets

As a special population with unique needs, veterans often struggle to connect with health care professionals, processes, and products in ways that result in adequate care.

With a grant from the National Institutes of Health, Virginia Tech faculty members are hoping to better recognize and resolve some of those unmet medical needs by changing the way designers and engineers are trained. In efforts led by faculty in the industrial design program and the Department of Biomedical Engineering and Mechanics, students will soon be able to enroll in a course that combines the unique skillsets of both disciplines to identify health care needs of wounded veterans in clinical settings.

Read more about helping vets >>


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Around the Drillfield

Students looking over architectural plans

New initiative to boost real-world learning for architecture and urban studies students

Since its dedication in 1994, the Research + Demonstration Facility (RDF) has been an integral part of academic and research programs in the College of Architecture and Urban Studies (CAUS). RDF is a living-learning laboratory, a dedicated space where CAUS students can gain practical, hands-on architecture, design, and construction experience alongside expert faculty and industry professionals.

The RDF is representative of a larger initiative designed to meld education and industry to deliver unmatched learning experiences for students—without ever leaving campus.

Read more about the initiative >>


Meyha Swaroop

Med student awarded fellowship to study structural heart disease

Meyha Swaroop, a third-year student at the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine, has received the Carolyn L. Kuckein Student Research Fellowship awarded by the Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Honor Society to help support her research studying the outcomes of patients who undergo heart valve surgery.

Read more about Meyha >>


Hokie Bird with blue t-shirt

Hokie Helpers set for a super move-in

Nearly 400 volunteers have signed up for Hokie Helpers to cover 591 work shifts. But another 129 shifts have yet to be filled, with the greatest need for volunteers on Wednesday afternoon, 1:30 to 5:30 p.m.; Thursday afternoon, 1:30 to 5:30 p.m.; and all shifts on Friday.

Read more about the helpers >>


GOBBLE BACK: What was one really special item you made sure to bring to campus for your first year?

Tweet us @VT_Mag or email us VTMag@VT.edu.


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Hokies In The Headlines

Joe DeSimone has built a $2.5 billion business that is disrupting a 7,000-year-old industry

More from Forbes >>


Carl Morgan engineers moving pieces of art

More from the Bainbridge Island Review >>


Elliot McAllister could forever change medical testing

More from Richmond Inno >>


Alumni Happenings

celebrating crowd

Richmond alumni celebrate new Hokies

More than 20 incoming first-year Hokies were celebrated as a part of the chapter’s annual student send-off at Robious Landing Park in Midlothian, Virginia. He is also one of hundreds of incoming Hokies who will be welcomed in similar fashion by alumni chapters across the country, this summer. The Richmond Chapter is one of 40 Virginia Tech alumni chapters hosting student send-offs across the country this summer.

Read more about the celebration >>


Start jumping: Alumni football events

Whether you're coming back to campus for a game or looking for a group of Hokies to cheer with in your hometown, we've got you covered.

Check out what’s planned for the season >>


Multicultural Tailgate set for Sept. 7

Join us for fun, food, drinks, and music before the Hokies take on Old Dominion. All are welcome!

Make plans to attend the tailgate >>


Mentor young Hokies

Share career advice through Hokie Mentorship Connect. There are three different ways to participate.

Sign up to mentor now >>


New Alumni Welcome Parties set for Aug. 22

Help your local chapter welcome the Class of 2019 to the Hokie alumni family!

Find a welcome party near you >>


Upcoming Events

Boston College tailgate (Aug. 31)

Hokies in 757 (Sept. 4)

Pamplin College of Business (Sept. 7)

Virginia Tech School of Medicine Tailgate (Sept. 7)

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Young Alumni and Student Tailgate (Sept. 14)

College of Science (Sept. 27)

Class of 1969 50th Reunion (Oct. 17-19)

Homecoming (Oct. 14-19)

College Liberal Arts and Human Sciences Tailgate (Oct. 19)

Notre Dame Tailgate (Nov. 2)


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