If you have been reading the newsmagazine over the past three years, I hope you recognize the many changes we have made in the college. The list is long. Members of any successful organization know that idea generation and planning without execution usually leads to failure. Ineffective execution clouds the vision, muddles the mission, and leads to division and malaise.

We are focused on moving forward and are executing what we set out to do — become more relevant in the global discussion in the areas of forests, fisheries and wildlife, biodiversity, climate, meteorology, water, geospatial science and remote sensing, genomics, ecotoxicology, biomaterials development, renewable energy, nanotechnology, drug delivery, infectious diseases, and sustainability. We are executing our plan to be relevant and impactful to the world around us. Everything we have ever done in the college is critically important to these contemporary issues, and the entire portfolio of our faculty expertise is needed more than ever to address mounting global challenges. Our faculty are some of the most productive researchers and teachers on campus, and we are engaged on the ground in the commonwealth and beyond, working with people, communities, agencies, and associations.

In the most important area of our mission — student education — we are meeting with a very positive response to changes we have made; undergraduate enrollment is now over 700 students and climbing, and graduate enrollment is over 300 students. Our students are going abroad, working on research projects, experiencing innovative learning environments, and preparing to lead. They will have to lead...we say that a lot around here. Our obligation is to get them ready.

Our cover story describes our latest effort to inject our expertise into the global conversation on sustainability. The newly established Center for Leadership in Global Sustainability holds great promise for our college and Virginia Tech to assume a strategic leadership role in our nation’s capital and provides a base from which to launch a much larger global presence for the college.

We have a few more changes in store, but we are concentrating now on executing what we set out to do — to make what we do more relevant to the world around us and to bring solutions to mounting global challenges.

Your interest in and support of the college mean a great deal to us. Thank you. On behalf of our faculty, staff, and students, warm regards and best wishes for a pleasant holiday season.


Paul M. Winistorfer