Do what you love outside the classroom, too
Studying what you love is one way to pursue the interests that you’re most passionate about, and joining a student organization with like-minded people is another. Aside from getting the chance to meet and talk with people who share your interests, you might also find yourself traveling to a conclave, planning a campus event, or helping with community service.
Whether you love wildlife or fishing, or get all geeked out about packaging or meteorology, there’s a club for you!
A snapshot of native wildlife research
The Virginia Tech Chapter of Alpha Zeta is a professional, service, and honorary fraternity for men and women in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and the College of Natural Resources and Environment. Its purpose is to bind together a group of people interested in the continued advancement of agriculture and to foster and develop scholarship, character, leadership, and a spirit of fellowship among all its members.
The American Fisheries Society promotes the educational, scientific, and technological development and advancement of all branches of fisheries science and practice, including aquatic biology, engineering, economics, fish culture, limnology, oceanography, and technology.
The mission of the American Water Resources Association is to support local, regional, and national water resources through water education, service, management, and research.
The Bird Club at Virginia Tech educates students on bird ecology and identification. The club hosts weekly field trips to nearby locations and plans bimonthly meetings so members can learn while having fun.
The mission of the Chi Epsilon Pi National Meteorology Honor Society at Virginia Tech is to recognize students studying meteorology for their outstanding achievements both in and out of the classroom and to provide networking and career development opportunities to help them succeed in their post-graduation endeavors.
The CNRE ambassadors work closely with the Advising Center and serve as guides and recruiters for prospective students, represent the college at university-sponsored events such as open house programs, act as hosts at alumni receptions and events, and help teach several CNRE first-year experience labs.
The mission of the FWGSA is to serve the graduate students of the Department of Fish and Wildlife Conservation by acting as an intermediary between graduate students and faculty/staff, administering computing and desk facilities, orientating new students, and providing them with graduate mentors.
Members of the Forestry Club participate in timber sports competitions with other schools on the East Coast and fund the club by cutting and selling firewood.
The Geography Club at Virginia Tech is a community filled with fun, social meetings, academic support, and professional development opportunities surrounding a common major, minor, or interest in geography.
The Geography Graduate Student Alliance acts as a mediating body to facilitate communication within and across the Department of Geography. It works to provide a space for personal development as well as the support and resources needed for graduate students to pursue fieldwork, conduct research, present at conferences, and much more.
The Blue Ridge Chapter of the American Meteorology Society and National Weather Association, known as the Meteorology Club, promotes Virginia Tech’s meteorology program and assists current and incoming students in gaining experience in the field of meteorology.
MANRRS is a national organization dedicated to the inclusion, achievement, and advancement of all people in agricultural science, natural resources, and other related sciences.
The National Deer Association at Virginia Tech works to promote sustainable, high-quality deer populations, wildlife habitats, and ethical hunting experiences through research, education, advocacy, and hunter recruitment.
Members of the Natural History Collections Club work closely with some of the natural history collections on campus in the fields of botany, entomology, geology, and vertebrate biology, assisting curators with various tasks and providing support for the collections.
The goal of the Packaging Systems and Design Club is to provide members with the skills needed to be independent, knowledgeable, and successful packaging professionals.
The Society of American Foresters at Virginia Tech is a professional development and networking association for aspiring professionals in natural resources and an affiliate of the Blue Ridge Regional and National Society of American Foresters. Student members take part in volunteer work and social events, invite speakers to campus, and hold professional development workshops.
The Virginia Department of Forestry provides opportunities for Virginia Tech students to receive federal wildland firefighter training and certification. Most of the required, field-based training activities are offered only in the fall to students who have completed or are currently enrolled in FREC 2514: Wildland Fire: Ecology and Management.
Full certification is offered to students who are willing to commit to part-time employment with the Department of Forestry to accomplish wildland fire objectives in Southwest Virginia. Students interested in these opportunities should contact Adam Coates, assistant professor of forest fire ecology and management, at firstname.lastname@example.org
The mission of the Wildlife Disease Association Student Chapter at Virginia Tech is to gain, share, and apply knowledge and experience relating to fish and wildlife diseases in Virginia and beyond for the purpose of public health and conservation.
The Wildlife Society Student Chapter at Virginia Tech integrates the experience, knowledge, and participation of undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, and wildlife professionals to provide learning opportunities and experiences for those with an appreciation and interest in wildlife.
Choose a club that boosts your career
Joining clubs and organizations can also be a great way to find opportunities for professional development. For example, students on the Wildland Fire Crew train to respond to forest fires. Members of the Packaging Systems and Design Club have traveled to Las Vegas to attend PackExpo, a major trade show for the packaging profession.
All of these opportunities will look great on a resume! And, of course, don’t forget about the hands-on academic experiences that are also available to help you apply your technical knowledge.
Timberbeast and conclave? What are they about?
Timberbeast is a timber sports event hosted by The Forestry Club each spring at the New River Valley Fairgrounds for regional colleges and universities. Students compete in events like archery, cross cut, axe throw, and knife throw. Virginia Tech students also attend forestry and wildlife conclaves, which combine presentations, speakers, and competitions of physical, intellectual, and artistic prowess.
Looking for more student organizations?
If you’re looking for other opportunities to get involved on campus or in the Blacksburg community, Virginia Tech has more than 800 student organizations. Browse the list or attend Gobblerfest at the start of the fall semester to learn about everything your university has to offer.