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Virginia Tech centers at home and around the world

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Category: impact Video duration: Virginia Tech centers at home and around the world
Whether the topic is wildlife rescue, holistic farming, study in Switzerland, cultural events, international research, graduate education and more -- Virginia Tech centers offer transformative experiences for students.
[00:00:15] >> From the Steger Center for International Scholarship in Switzerland to Kathy Alexander's emerging wildlife work in Botswana, from the Catawba Sustainability Center to the Commonwealth Campus Centers in Virginia the university's reach is global. No matter where in the world a Virginia Tech center is a powerful way to marshal the university's resources. [00:00:40] I think it's important that Virginia Tech have a strong brand presence and the centers are a good way to establish that presence and indeed it has created a sustained understanding of the university's commitment. In Botswana Alexander's headline grabbing work on 42 acres involves wildlife research and rescue creating transformative experiences for students and for the population. [00:01:09] Across the university a team working to enlarge Virginia Tech's Botswana footprint and create a university center here includes Outreach and International Affairs, the Department of Fish and Wildlife Conservation, veterinary medicine and the Department of Biological Sciences. Closer to home work at the Catawba Sustainability Center includes a project to resurrect the American chestnut, those mighty giants that were once America's signature tree. [00:01:48] We are part of a nationwide back-crossing effort to develop a genetic form of the American chestnut tree that makes them resistant to the blight. But that's not all -- the Catawba Sustainability Center hosts research projects from four colleges. Other projects employ drone technology and geospatial analysis. Professor John Munsell of the College of Natural Resources and Environment has been leading student work at the center for almost a dozen years. [00:02:16] They have at their fingertips a sizable farm with varying topography, they have a creek that is essentially the headwaters for the Chesapeake Bay. The focus is on what can we do and in doing that you create a diversified farming system finding creative ways to develop these polyculture strategies the intentional combination of trees, crops and/or livestock in the same space and that's the beauty of the center because we are focusing on the whole property. [00:02:48] That facilitates true interdisciplinary work. The Reynolds Homestead includes the original boyhood home of tobacco manufacturer R.J. Reynolds. Situated on hundreds of acres the homestead is where Virginia Tech carries out forest research and also operates an education and culture center. Lifelong resident Anna Lester is on the Homestead's board. [00:03:20] I've enjoyed the Reynolds Homestead since I was a child. It adds vibrancy to our community through so many different workshops and programs and events. It offers a place for people to come and make connections and that's powerful. Julie Walters Steele has directed the center since 2011. People see the university actively engaged in the community and they feel like they are important, you know, if Virginia Tech is reaching out and has a center here in Critz, Virginia, it to them feels like they're important and they are part of this bigger scheme of Virginia Tech and Extension and outreach.