Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 71.94
Liaison Dennis Cochrane
Submission Date Dec. 19, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Virginia Tech
AC-4: Graduate Program

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 3.00 / 3.00 John Randolph
Professor Emeritus
Urban Affairs and Planning
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution offer at least one sustainability-focused major, degree program, or the equivalent for graduate students (I.e. an interdisciplinary academic program that concentrates on sustainability as an integrated concept)?:
Yes

Name of the sustainability-focused graduate-level degree program:
Master of Urban and Regional Planning (MURP)

A brief description of the graduate-level degree program:

The mission of the Master of Urban and Regional Planning at Virginia Tech is to prepare students to become professional planners, who can address the economic, environmental and social consequences of growth and change, and to provide leadership in fostering a more just and sustainable world through our teaching, scholarship and service. Upon completion of our program we expect students to:
1. Understand human settlements and their physical, social, economic, and environmental context; the theoretical, historical, and legal foundations of planning and contemporary planning practice; and the range of values associated with diverse communities at all scales and the ethical means of discriminating among competing goals.
2. Be at the forefront of envisioning, creating and sustaining communities that are just and economically and environmentally sustainable.
3. Be able to confront complex problems in a systematic and rigorous way by applying the core concepts, skills, and evidence-based techniques and strategies of planning practice, including plan creation; and be competent in generic problem solving, critical thinking, collaborative processes with diverse groups of stakeholders, quantitative and qualitative analysis, and synthesis methods, and computer applications.
4. Be versed in the complexity of global changes and local planning solutions and possess solid knowledge of national and international best planning practices.
5. Have the leadership, collaborative and written, visual and oral communicative skills necessary to function successfully as a planning professional.


The website URL for the graduate-level degree program:
Name of the sustainability-focused, graduate-level degree program (2nd program):
Master of Science and Environmental Engineering

A brief description of the graduate degree program (2nd program):

The degree program of Master of Science in Environmental Engineering primary emphasis is to give graduates from undergraduate engineering programs intensive training in the various areas of environmental engineering. The Master’s degree is considered to be the first professional degree in environmental engineering. Students with non-engineering degree are eligible for the degree depending on their academic background and satisfactory completion of background preparatory courses.


The website URL for the graduate degree program (2nd program):
Name of the sustainability-focused, graduate-level degree program (3rd program):
Master of Landscape Architecture

A brief description of the graduate degree program (3rd program):

The Landscape Architecture Program offers Master of Landscape Architecture (MLA) degree options at the main campus in Blacksburg, Virginia and in the National Capital Region (NCR) through Virginia Tech’s Washington Alexandria Architecture Center located in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia:
3-Year First-Professional MLA Program (Alexandria) — first professional degree, accredited by the Landscape Architectural Accreditation Board (LAAB), for students who wish to enter the profession who do not have a degree in landscape architecture.

2-Year Advanced Master of Landscape Architecture (Blacksburg and Alexandria) — for students who have a professional degree in landscape architecture or architecture and who wish to do in-depth studies within a focused area of the discipline of landscape architecture.

1-Year Plus Thesis Master of Landscape Architecture (Blacksburg and Alexandria) — an accelerated scholastic degree for students having a professional degree in landscape architecture who can demonstrate, by portfolio, that they meet or exceed the professional requirements of the MLA degree program.


The website URL for the graduate degree program (3rd program):
The name and website URLs of all other sustainability-focused graduate-level degree programs:

Master of Civil Engineering:
1. Civil Infrastructure Engineering Option
2. Environmental and Water Resources Engineering Option
http://www.cee.vt.edu/

Executive Master of Natural Resources "Leadership for Sustainability" (XMNR)
http://cligs.vt.edu/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/XMNR.pdf

There are many additional sustainability-focused and sustainability-related graduate degree programs.


Does the institution offer one or more graduate-level sustainability-focused minors, concentrations or certificates?:
Yes

Name of the graduate-level sustainability-focused minor, concentration or certificate:
Watershed Management Graduate Certificate

A brief description of the graduate minor, concentration or certificate:

In the 21st century, challenges that relate to watershed management and the need to protect water quantity and water quality will be intensified in Virginia and the nation, owing to increased water demand, changes in land-use and other competing interests. Management of water resources is a critical issue facing governmental agencies, as well as the private/industrial sector and citizens. Universities and colleges have a major responsibility to prepare future water and land managers to meet these challenges. Future water managers and decision makers need knowledge and training in natural science, technical assessment, economics, planning, and policy. In recent years, it has been recognized that the most effective approach to management of water resources is at the watershed scale with input from various stakeholders. Furthermore, there have been significant advances in understanding watershed science both in the natural and social sciences, and there is a national trend to integrate various facets of watershed studies in interdisciplinary programs. The Watershed Management Certificate (WSMC) program at the graduate level integrates existing programs and courses from five colleges and ten departments at Virginia Tech to provide an interdisciplinary and substantive understanding of watershed science, policy, and decision-making. The program provides excellent opportunities for students from many disciplines to study watershed management and develop interdisciplinary skills necessary for effective professional work in this emerging field. The program is designed to prepare Virginia Tech graduates for critical future tasks and will be a strong incentive for others who consider enrollment at Virginia Tech, Blacksburg.


The website URL for the graduate minor, concentration or certificate:
Name of the graduate-level sustainability-focused minor, concentration or certificate (2nd program):
Graduate Certificate in Economic Development

A brief description of the graduate minor, concentration or certificate (2nd program):

During the next generation, more than $40 trillion will be spent reshaping America’s built environment. More half of all structures existing today will be demolished or reconfigured to serve different functions. New development will exceed in volume 75% of everything existing today. The magnitude of this change will challenge economic, social, governance, physical and environmental systems as never before. It is imperative that the broadest number of current and prospective professionals possible appreciate the dynamics underlying this change, and in some way learn how to manage it. Virginia Tech’s Urban Affairs and Planning Program offers a Graduate Certificate in Economic Development. It is designed for those who are interested in acquiring a basic understanding of urban and regional economic development dynamics and the role of policy in influencing them. Urban and regional planners need to know how they can develop their economies. The challenge for policymakers, economic developers and urban planners nowadays is to design appropriate local and regional economic development policies and programs to respond to challenges resulting from globalization, technological development, demographic changes, urban decline, sprawl, and social inequities.
The target population includes current Virginia Tech and other graduate students in all fields, and others with undergraduate degrees who qualify for admission to the certificate program. As the nature and extent of future development will touch everyone, everyone qualified should have the opportunity to become familiar with the challenges and opportunities


The website URL for the graduate minor, concentration or certificate (2nd program):
Name of the graduate-level sustainability-focused minor, concentration or certificate (3rd program):
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A brief description of the graduate minor, concentration or certificate (3rd program):
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The website URL for the graduate minor, concentration or certificate (3rd program):
The name and website URLs of all other graduate-level, sustainability-focused minors, concentrations and certificates:
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Additional documentation to support the submission:
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