Vermont’s 1862 Land-Grant Institution: University of Vermont
The University of Vermont was founded as a private university in 1791, the same year Vermont became the 14th U.S. state. In 1865, the university merged with Vermont Agricultural College (chartered November 22, 1864), and became the University of Vermont and State Agricultural College. Of great historical interest is the fact that Justin Morrill, the senator from Vermont who authored the 1862 Land-Grant Act that created the land-grant institutions, served as a trustee of UVM from 1865 to 1898.
President: Thomas Sullivan became the president of the University of Vermont in 2012. President Sullivan has an impressive land-grant heritage. Prior to becoming UVM’s president, he served as Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost at the land-grant institution University of Minnesota, where he also was dean of the law school. Dr. Sullivan also served as the dean of the law school at the land-grant institution University of Arizona, and he began his career in higher education as a faculty member at the land-grant institution University of Missouri.
Dr. Sullivan will be stepping down as president this year, and his successor has been named. Suresh Garimella, who currently is the executive vice president for research and partnerships at Purdue University, will assume the UVM presidency in July 2019. @SVGarimella
Virginia’s 1862 Land-Grant Institution: Virginia Tech
Established in 1872 as the Virginia Agricultural and Mechanical College. The school was renamed Virginia Agricultural and Mechanical College and Polytechnic Institute in 1896. In 1944, the school’s name was again changed to Virginia Polytechnic Institute, and again in 1970 to its present legal name: Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. In the early 1990s, university administration authorized the official use of “Virginia Tech” as equivalent to the full legal name.
President: Timothy D. Sands became president of Virginia Tech in 2014. President Sands has impeccable land-grant credentials, having earned a bachelor’s degree in engineering physics and master’s and doctoral degrees in material science and engineering from the land-grant institution University of California, Berkeley. Dr. Sands also started his academic career at his alma mater as a professor of material science and engineering. He then joined the engineering faculty at the land-grant institution Purdue University, where he also served as provost and acting president before assuming the presidency at Virginia Tech. @VTSandsman
Virginia’s 1890 Land-Grant Institution: Virginia State University
Founded in 1882 as the Virginia Normal and Collegiate Institute. In 1902, the school’s name was changed to the Virginia Normal and Industrial Institute. In 1920, the land-grant designation was granted to the school after having been removed from the Hampton Institute. The school’s name was changed in 1930 to Virginia State College for Negroes and again changed to Virginia State College in 1946. The present-day name of Virginia State University was provided by the state legislature in 1979.
President: Makola M. Abdullah became the president of Virginia State University in 2016. Dr. Abdullah’s land-grant credentials include having served as the dean and director of 1890 land-grant programs at the land-grant institution Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University. @makolaabdullah