I’d like to thank John McDowell for serving as acting department head in fall 2010 while I took advantage of a sabbatical at Colorado State University.
Last fall, PPWS added a new faculty member, Jacob Barney. In 2011, the department celebrated the promotion of Steve Rideout and David Schmale to the rank of associate professor with tenure. Congratulations, Steve and David!
Other highlights of the year include many achievements in publication and grantsmanship and the graduation of several graduate students. Faculty members Boris Vinatzer and David Schmale developed a new course, Microbial Forensics and Biosecurity, which had excellent student enrollment. The second annual AREC-Ag Industry tour in August 2010 was a success. In March, we were honored to host PPWS alumnus Jeff Jones as the Outstanding Alumnus at the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences awards ceremony and banquet.
Construction of a new, state-of-the-art greenhouse for PPWS is just getting underway. We anticipate completion in the early fall and look forward to using this facility to expand our research programs. We have also planned a departmental retreat this fall to review our strategic plan and chart a course for the next five years.
Please check out the many accomplishments and activities of department members featured in this newsletter and on our website at www.ppws.vt.edu. As always, we hope you will visit if travel brings you to this area.
Virginia Cooperative Extension materials are available for public use, reprint, or citation without further permission, provided the use includes credit to the author and to Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech, and Virginia State University.
Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Virginia State University, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture cooperating. Edwin J. Jones, Director, Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg; M. Ray McKinnie, Administrator, 1890 Extension Program, Virginia State University, Petersburg.
September 7, 2011