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College of Agriculture & Life Sciences

www.cals.vt.edu/

Alan Grant, Dean
Associate Dean & Director of Academic Programs:
Susan S. Sumner
Associate Dean & Director of Virginia Agricultural Experiment Station: Saied Mostaghimi
Dean & Director of Virginia Cooperative Extension:
Alan Grant
Director of Agricultural Technology: Pavli Mykerezi

Hutcheson Hall

Overview

    The College of Agriculture and Life Sciences provides an education in the science and business of life. Basic life sciences and animal, plant, and food sciences – not to mention biotechnology, environmental sciences, human health and nutrition, and economic development – are just some of the choices available to you as an undergraduate major. If your ultimate goal is to apply to veterinary school, you will want to explore the excellent pre-vet preparation offered in many of the college’s majors. Excellent faculty and academic advisors are eager to work with you. You will also find more than 30 student organizations and nationally-competitive teams in the college. The college offers the educational environment and learning experiences graduates need in order to develop skills for addressing the challenges facing society and the world today. You may work beside scientists in their laboratories or participate in internships with business or industry.

Undergraduate Programs

    The undergraduate program in the college is organized into majors designed for students with widely different interests. These majors permit the student to achieve a satisfactory degree of specialization while providing the fundamentals necessary for continuing professional growth after graduation.

    Undergraduate majors are offered in agricultural and applied economics, agricultural sciences, agricultural technology (associate degree), animal and poultry sciences, biochemistry, crop and soil environmental sciences, dairy science, environmental science, food science and technology, horticulture, and human nutrition, foods, and exercise. Some students may be assigned special advisors if their objective is to prepare for graduate study in entomology, plant pathology, plant physiology, weed science, or integrated pest management.

    Freshman students also may enter the college with the designation LFSC (Life Sciences, Undecided). Upon completion of the freshman year, a college major should be selected.

    See College of Engineering for Biological Systems Engineering.

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Honors Program

    During the junior and senior years, departments may invite a selected number of majors to candidacy for a degree "in honors." At this time, a student's work focuses on the major interests and part of the work is in independent study. Areas offering work leading to a degree "in honors" are agricultural economics, animal and poultry sciences, biochemistry, crop and soil environmental sciences, dairy science, food science and technology, and horticulture.

Curriculum for Liberal Education and College Core Requirements

    The College of Agriculture and Life Sciences requires bachelor's degree students to complete the following minimum core curriculum which includes the Curriculum for Liberal Education requirements. University requirements are in parentheses. Semester hour credits required are listed at right.

Mathematics and Natural Sciences
(20)
Mathematics/Statistics (Area 5)
6
Chemistry/Physics/Geology1
6
Biology1 (Area 4)
6
Laboratory in Nat. Sci.1
2
Humanities/Fine Arts and Social Sciences
(22)
English2 (Area 1)
6
Ideas, Cultural Traditions, and Values (Area 2)
6
Creativity and Aesthetic Experience (Area 6)
1
AAEc/Econ3 (Area 3)
6
Critical Issues in a Global Context (Area 7)
3
Credits in Major and Restricted Electives (max.)
(72)
Free Electives (minimum)
6
Total Credit Hour Requirements for Graduation
120

1 Most majors require 8 credits each of chemistry and biology with laboratories. Refer to departmental check sheets for exceptions.
2 Placement may reduce the minimum credits required in freshman English but does not change the total credits required for graduation.
3 Majors in the Department of Biochemistry and Human Nutrition, Foods and Exercise are exempt from this requirement and may use other approved courses to satisfy Area 3 of the University requirement.

    Students who plan to transfer to Virginia Tech and major in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences after two years of community or junior college enrollment are encouraged to complete as many of the Liberal Education courses as possible before they transfer.

Cooperative Education

    The Cooperative Education Program is available to qualified undergraduates in the college. Information on the program is listed in the chapter, "Academics." Courses of study included in the Cooperative Education Program are: biological systems engineering, animal science, biochemistry and nutrition, dairy science, food science and technology, horticulture, and poultry science.

International Study Opportunities

    The Academic Programs Office in the college, in cooperation with the Office of International Research and Development, offers several avenues for students both in and outside the college to gain international knowledge and experience. These study opportunities allow students and faculty to become aware of and develop basic knowledge of food, fiber, and environmental issues in the world. Specific activities include study abroad programs and courses, international internships, formal student exchange programs, seminars and workshops on campus, and courses in the college which focus on international topics. In addition, the minor in International Agriculture is available which involves selecting 18 credit hours of study from a selected list of courses. Students wishing to explore this minor should contact the Office of Academic Programs in the college. All of the departments in the college offer education abroad opportunities and students wishing to explore these opportunities should contact the coordinating advisor in their department.

Agricultural Technology Program

    The Agricultural Technology Program offers a concentrated academic experience for individuals pursuing an associate degree in preparation for careers in the agricultural and green industries. Students can specialize in either Applied Agricultural Management or Landscape and Turf Management. Additional information is available at the program’s website at www.agtech.vt.edu. The program handles its own admissions. Applications and inquiries should be addressed to: Brenda French, Admissions Coordinator, 1060 Litton-Reaves Hall (0334), Blacksburg, VA 24061, or call 540-231-7649.

Graduate Programs

    At the graduate level, the college offers educational programs leading to the M.S. and Ph.D. Complete information on these programs may be found in the Graduate Catalog.

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