Opportunities outside the classroom

Undergrad Research Symposium
Undergraduate research

Undergraduate research programs:
The number of undergraduates participating in research has grown more than 50 percent over the last five years. While it is difficult to offer a research experience to every interested student, our faculty have made considerable efforts to work with undergraduates. Additionally, students may find opportunities in other departments.

Under the umbrella of the Center for Transformative Research on Health Behaviors, the Translational Obesity Undergraduate Research Scholars (TOUR-Scholars) Program is a research-intensive summer experience which prepares students for graduate and medical education in translational obesity research.

TOUR-Scholars will be matched with a faculty mentor, working across the obesity translational spectrum. Ten students will be chosen to participate. Each student will receive a $5,250 stipend.

Dr. Deborah Good is the program director; please contact her with any questions (goodd@vt.edu, 540-231-0430).

Keely O'Keefe
In the summer of 2015, HNFE student Keely O’Keefe surveyed 138 mothers in 10 Malagasy villages with support from a Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship from the Fralin Life Science Institute.
  • Fralin Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF)
    This ten week training program is designed to give motivated undergraduates the opportunity to engage in full time (approx. 40 hours/week) research and related professional development activities that mirror graduate training. The experience will help students determine if they want to pursue a career in research while they develop skills for graduate school.

The program includes weekly research and professional development seminars, periodic social events, and a final symposium during which students will present their research. Students selected to participate iwill receive a $4,000 stipend.

Promotion of diversification in the student body and on the postgraduate level - particularly in the science, math, and technology areas.

Through a partnership with various departments, other colleges and university peers, governmental, private, and non-profit institutions, participants are supported with academic guidance and financial support.

Ecuador 2014 group
Winter Session Study Abroad: Ecuador

Individual learning experiences:

  • Field studies
    Field study sites are commonly local physical therapy centers, dental offices, free clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, Virginia Tech athletics, and physician offices. Students enroll for one to three credit hours, with each credit hour requiring 45 hours of contact.

Summer Internship with the Family Nutrition Program of Virginia
Students teach nutrition education classes for children in low-income areas around the state using the Healthy Weights for Healthy Kids curriculum.

Great Wall of China
Visiting the Great Wall of China during a summer study abroad
  • Study abroad
    The lock-step nature of the HNFE undergraduate curriculum creates some level of difficulty for students wanting to study abroad. We recognize this problem, and we also recognize the benefit of international experiences. A study abroad to China was offered in 2013 and 2015 and more trips are being planned to other locations.