Virginia Tech® home

CNRE Sesquicentennial Celebration

Insert your title here

Students gathered around an instructor next to a tree

Continue reading

Past, present, and future, it’s the people that make CNRE special

Community and caring drive the College of Natural Resources and Environment and offer inspiration for all Hokies during Virginia Tech’s Sesquicentennial

If you’re looking for a description of the work and the culture that distinguishes the College of Natural Resources and Environment at Virginia Tech, you’ll find it in the words of Dean Paul Winistorfer: It’s all about the people, all the time.

Our journey began more than 100 years ago with the hiring of the first faculty forester. From a department, to a school, to the emergence of a new college at Virginia Tech in 1991-1992, many individuals paid it forward to create what we are today, beginning with School Director John Hosner, who is credited for having the vision of a separate college at Virginia Tech and who rallied the forest industry around this vision. Through the ensuing three decades, the faculty, staff, and students of the college have cemented our place as a national leader.

The hallmark of a CNRE education has always been and continues to be hands-on experience. Our students learn by doing and emerge as career-ready alumni who are putting their passion and knowledge to use every day. They work side-by-side in classrooms, in labs, and in the field with top-notch faculty who are applying their research expertise to some of the worlds’ most wicked challenges.

Today’s students and faculty may look and dress a little differently, but you’ll still find them on campus or in the woods, following John Seiler or Marcella Kelly from tree to tree with a measuring tape on their belt or a camera trap in their hands. You’re also just as likely to find them in a high-tech lab, learning about geographic information systems from Santosh Rijal or crushing cross laminated timber with Dan Hindman.

Wherever you find CNRE, we’ll still be getting our hands dirty and our feet wet. We’ll be solving big problems and striving for a better tomorrow because, and again in the words of Dean Winistorfer, “What we do in this college matters to the future of the planet."

We figured out a long time ago that the work matters—but what matters most is the people.

Creating the academic core and community

We’ve been digging through the archives, old boxes, and digital files to find some historic—and groovy!—photos of CNRE students and faculty back in the day. You can scroll through the small collection below, but if you want to see more, check out our social media platforms every Thursday in October for “Throwback Thursday.”

Leading the way through hands-on learning

Transforming knowledge and research

Exemplifying Ut Prosim (That I May Serve)