BLACKSBURG – On Dec. 15, 2,664 Hokies will graduate, walking across the stage at Cassell Coliseum to receive their diplomas.
The University Commencement ceremony will begin at 10:30 a.m. ET, and the Graduate School ceremony will follow at 2:30 p.m. ET. Doors will open an hour before each event. Each ceremony is expected to last about two hours. Both events will be available via livestream video from the university homepage for those unable to attend in person.
The keynote speaker for the University Commencement ceremony will be Amy Pruden, University Distinguished Professor and the W. Thomas Rice Professor in the Charles E. Via, Jr. Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, where her research program focuses on using DNA-based tools to track pathogens and antibiotic resistance in the environment. For the Graduate School commencement, three student speakers will speak: Imani Lewis, who is earning a master’s degree of public and international affairs; Ikhlas Rabab’ah, who is earning a doctoral degree in architecture and design research and graduating this semester with her master’s degree; and Norovbanzad Tsogt-Ochir, who is earning a master’s degree in civil engineering.
During the University Commencement ceremony, 1,669 undergraduates will be recognized for earning bachelor’s degrees.
The College of Engineering will feature the most undergraduates receiving degrees with a total of 416. Virginia Tech’s six other colleges and the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine will award the following bachelor’s degrees to summer and fall graduates:
College of Agriculture and Life Sciences: 149
College of Architecture, Arts, and Design: 24
Pamplin College of Business: 361
College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences: 286
College of Natural Resources and Environment: 71
College of Science: 381
Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine: 20
A total of 995 students will receive advanced graduate certificates. The graduate degree candidates include 632 master’s degrees, one education specialist degree, 173 Ph.D.s, and five doctors of education.
Of the degree recipients, 102 Ph.D. students and 230 master’s degree students are expected to attend the ceremony in-person, as well as 900 undergraduate students.
The Graduate School also will recognize its Alumni Achievement Award recipient, Owen Wagner ’07, during its ceremony. The Graduate School established this award in 2003 to recognize outstanding graduate alumni who have demonstrated extraordinary national or international achievement and exemplary contributions to their profession, discipline, community, and society.
Wagner, vice president and senior analyst for North American markets at Rabobank, is researching sustainable aviation fuel utilizing agricultural feedstocks, such as oils, corn, and cellulosic biomass, to supplement conventional jet fuel. Wagner’s research advises Rabobank’s wholesale agribusiness and rural clients about risks and opportunities in the biofuel space. He is also exploring the sustainability of cotton versus polyester textiles. “My degree from Virginia Tech provided me with the knowledge to relate to our clients while having a global economics understanding of markets,” he said in a July interview.