Spectrum Logo
A non-profit publication of the Office of the University Relations of Virginia Tech,
including The Conductor, a special section of the Spectrum printed 4 times a year

Two COTA fellows named

By Liz Crumbley

Spectrum Volume 19 Issue 06 - October 3, 1996

With the goal of developing new outreach and continuing-education programs, Virginia Tech's Center for Organizational and Technological Advancement (COTA) has awarded fellowships to two College of Engineering faculty members, COTA Director Harold P. Kurstedt announced.

Greg Boardman, associate professor of civil engineering, and Dan Schneck, professor of engineering science and mechanics, will share funding of $95,000 from COTA and the engineering college. Boardman and Schneck will develop continuing-education and outreach programs in their areas of expertise and also will advise other faculty members about developing programs.

"Tech's involvement in the Hotel Roanoke conference center has sparked an interest in off-campus continuing education," Schneck said. The Hotel Roanoke and the university's Donaldson Brown Center are designed to handle the full range of continuing-education programs, including conferences, workshops, annual meetings, seminars, and short courses.

"One important goal of the COTA fellowships," Boardman said, "is to work with industries and other organizations to develop programs that will serve their professional needs. We will offer programs and try to catalyze and help others at the university to do the same."

Boardman and Schneck began their work as COTA fellows in July. Boardman, whose academic specialty is environmental engineering, already has helped coordinate a short course for treatment-plant operators and an aquaculture conference. During this academic year, he will serve as director of a biological wastewater-treatment conference, more treatment-plant short courses, a water-treatment conference, and an industrial-waste-treatment conference.

Schneck's projects include a non-invasive ultrasonic medical-imaging conference, scheduled to take place at the Hotel Roanoke April 25-27, 1997; a short course in the engineering physiology aspects of the human cardiovascular system, the 18th annual Southern Biomedical Engineering Conference, and biomechanics short courses. Schneck said plans are in the making for hosting the annual meeting of the Biomedical Engineering Society and of the Virginia Organization of Nursing Executives, as well as an international Conference on Cardiovascular Medicine, Surgery, Science and Mechanics.

The COTA fellows also have plans to work with other engineering faculty members in developing continuing-education programs. Boardman will work primarily with faculty members in the civil, chemical, mechanical, biological systems, and mining and minerals engineering departments. Schneck will work with aerospace and ocean, computer, electrical, engineering science and mechanics, fundamentals, industrial and systems, and material science and engineering departments.

The COTA program is not limited to the engineering faculty, however, and Schneck and Boardman encourage all university faculty members to contact them as resources "to help launch continuing-education programs."

"The COTA fellowship program can help our faculty forge contacts with industries and organizations that are potential research sponsors and employers for our graduates," Schneck said. "In fact, continuing education benefits all aspects of Virginia Tech's mission as a land-grant university, and our faculty should take advantage of this professional venue."