John T. Novak, Nick Prillaman Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering in the College of Engineering at Virginia Tech, has been conferred the title of “professor emeritus” by the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors.

The title of emeritus may be conferred on retired professors and associate professors, administrative officers, librarians, and exceptional staff members who are specially recommended to the board of visitors by Virginia Tech President Charles W. Steger. Nominated individuals who are approved by the board of visitors receive an emeritus certificate from the university.

A member of the Virginia Tech community since 1981, Novak has received approximately $17 million in external funding to support his research on bioremediation, water and wastewater treatment, hazardous waste treatment, sludge treatment, and solid waste management.

His research and scholarly work has been recognized through many major professional awards, including the Simon Freeze Award from the American Society of Civil Engineers, the Frederick G. Pohland Award from the Association of Environmental Engineering Scientists and Professors, and the Ralph Fuhrman Medal from the Water Environment Federation.

Throughout his 43-year academic career, including 12 years on the faculty at the University of Missouri, Novak has taught thousands of civil engineering students in all areas of environmental engineering, He has advised more than 190 graduate students through their master’s degree and doctoral degree research work. Many of his Ph.D. students have gone on to hold university faculty positions.

Novak received his bachelor’s degree and master’s degree from the University of Missouri-Columbia, and a Ph.D. from the University of Washington.

Dedicated to its motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), Virginia Tech takes a hands-on, engaging approach to education, preparing scholars to be leaders in their fields and communities. As the commonwealth’s most comprehensive university and its leading research institution, Virginia Tech offers 240 undergraduate and graduate degree programs to more than 31,000 students and manages a research portfolio of $513 million. The university fulfills its land-grant mission of transforming knowledge to practice through technological leadership and by fueling economic growth and job creation locally, regionally, and across Virginia.

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