Virginia Tech is located in Blacksburg –
a typical “college town” – nestled between the beautiful
Blue Ridge and
As a large, comprehensive university, VT offers a broad variety of programs and activities.
In this setting, Physics is a relatively small and congenial department,
providing its faculty a co-operative atmosphere for research and teaching,
as well as offering its students a nurturing environment for learning and development.
In our ranks are 25 full time professors
and about a dozen emeriti professors on campus.
Typically, there are 10 research scientists and postdoctoral associates.
Enjoying international reputation, our faculty conducts research in the “global village,”
on projects that extend the leading edge of discoveries and/or provide creative insights into how nature works.
In addition to those within Physics, there are many scientists in other departments at Virginia Tech, from biosciences
and geosciences to all areas of engineering, working on projects intimately related to physics.
As a result, interdisciplinary collaborations flourish and, with the supporting resources of two Institutes
(ICTAS and IBPHS),
our faculty ranks are expected to increase substantially.
Our graduate program
provides students a rigorous set of core courses towards the MS and PhD degrees.
Most of our PhD students become naturally involved with the research within the department –
from nanotechnology to non-equilibrium statistical mechanics, from string theory to high-energy and astrophysics.
To foster interdisciplinary research, we encourage students to take non-physics courses and, if the opportunity arises,
to work on their dissertation with an advisor outside our department. Typical in physics departments, we have a diverse student body, with an equal mixture of American and foreign nationals.
At present, there are approximately 50 graduate students.
Many of our undergraduates have a memorable experience – getting an excellent education,
participating in front line research,
winning national scholarships and fellowships, sent to top rate graduate schools or launched towards highly successful careers.
Thanks to our small numbers (25 per class, on the average), each student is given individual attention and
provided essential advice, whether on course material, academic programs, or career opportunities.