Purpose & Guidelines

The purpose of the Advisory Board is to provide the guidance that will help the Department of Materials Science & Engineering (MSE) achieve its vision and objectives.

The Department of Materials Science & Engineering shares the vision to be recognized internationally for: 

  • providing outstanding, state-of-the-art undergraduate and graduate education; and
  • conducting cutting edge, visionary research.  

As a Department, our objectives are to:

  • provide a broad, innovative, and quality education to men and women in all aspects of materials science and engineering; and
  • insure that our graduates are well-rounded, competitive, and prepared for advanced studies or careers in industry, academia and government research facilities.  


Advisory Board Guidelines:


  • The Board will have a rotating membership that provides a balanced perspective. Members will be selected from industry, academia and federal/national laboratories.
  • Members will serve for a period of three years with an option to serve an additional three-year term.
  • The Board will operate under the direction of a chair. In the chair's absence or inability to serve, a vice chair shall assume this role.
  • Initially, the chair will be appointed by the department head for a period of one year, after which time the Board members shall elect a chair and a vice chair to serve three-year terms.


  • The Board will meet with faculty and departmental representatives once per year at Virginia Tech (usually for two to three days). Based on need identified between the chair and department head, MSE will provide travel support for this meeting.
  • Following the annual meeting, the Board will provide an oral and a written summary of comments and recommendations to the MSE department head and the College of Engineering dean. 
  • Issue-specific meetings may occur more frequently at the discretion of the Advisory Board chair at other locations convenient for Board members or via teleconferencing.  


  • Constructively critique and advise MSE regarding education and research activities 

    • Serve as a sounding board for new initiatives. 
    • Review curricula and degree programs. 
    • Contribute to continuous development/revision of MSE strategic plan. 
    • Assist with fund-raising initiatives for instruction/research equipment, undergraduate teaching and laboratories, scholarships, and other items deemed necessary to achieving the department's mission. 
    • Identify opportunities in outreach, short courses, industrial projects, employment of graduates, creation of new CO-OP positions and student internships. 
    • Assist in student and faculty recruitment. 
    • Review and critique student work such as senior design projects. 

  • Enthusiastically represent MSE and enlighten university, industrial and government entities as to the strengths of the department.