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Presentation: Virginia Tech prepares for its Sesquicentennial celebration

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Virginia Tech prepares to celebrate 150 years of impact and engagement. The university’s Sesquicentennial celebration will take place July 2021 through December 2022.
Virginia Tech is preparing to celebrate its Sesquicentennial. It's been 150 years since our founding as the Virginia Agricultural and Mechanical College in 1872. Recognition of this milestone anniversary begins in Fall 2021 and runs through Fall 2022. Through the years, Virginia Tech has continued to grow and thrive. We've claimed our role as leaders in education and innovation. President Tim Sands asks the planning committees to engage Hokies near and far and to demonstrate the impact of the Virginia Tech experience. Our celebration is broad with a focus on honoring our past and celebrating our present. Most important, it is an opportunity to propel us into the future, charting a course toward greater engagement and impact. The university motto, UT Prosim, has grounded our efforts since its adoption in 1896. This concept continues to shape our highest aspirations. We will explore how this deeply held value informs our engagement with one another and our communities. Unique opportunities for engagement and celebration will involve faculty, staff, students, alumni, and all of our campuses. The engagement planning team hosted 55 focus groups with our key audiences to garner ideas for the celebration. The academic work group developed are cross-cutting themes and brainstormed program ideas with their peers in colleges, institutes and campuses. The Sesquicentennial will advance our Beyond Boundaries vision crafted in the 2015 - 2016 academic year. Three themes help illustrate the vision: showing what we do, how we do it, and why. They reflect the land-grant mission of the university. The first theme is solving problems. We respond to current problems and conduct research to discover answers to emerging questions. Our faculty, students and professionals collaborate with communities to identify and address problems that affect the human condition. The second theme focuses on expanding knowledge. Both teaching and learning are the focus of this theme. We develop and share knowledge using a variety of methods. Some are tried and true, others are at the leading edge of experiential learning approaches. The third theme explores our mission to create and engage communities. The Hokie Nation is broad and diverse. It includes students, faculty and staff, alumni, and the university's donors, partners and friends. The Cooperative Extension network and other researchers serve citizens of the Commonwealth and offer assistance across the U.S. and around the world. We will recognize the societal context in which the Sesquicentennial planning and celebrations take place. Our programming. will explore how the universities addressing issues and challenges we face, such as the COVID-19 pandemic and calls for racial justice. Designing the celebration around three vibrant themes helps us tell stories about Virginia Tech's past, present, and future. Where is Virginia Tech going in the next 150 years? Please join our multifaceted celebration of Virginia Tech during our Sesquicentennial.