Interdisciplinary Research Program in Virginia Tech – Weekly Journal 11

Recently, the annual meeting of Interdisciplinary Graduate Education Programs (IGEPs) is held in Graduate School. Though not involved in the IGEP program, I’m lucky enough to serve as a volunteer in this great event and get to know lots of graduate students and faculty members in this program. The IGEP program at VT aims at promoting and sustaining interdisciplinary graduate education and research, and has more than 300 graduate students.

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Within IGEP, there are lots of sub-programs that are designed to develop the four pillars of the Transformative Graduate Education Experience: Knowledge, Leadership, Scholarly Inquiry and Social Responsibility, and to help you prepare, connect, succeed and standout in your future career. Among them, the Sustainable Nanotechnology (SuN) and Water INTERface: INTERdisciplinary Research Transcending Boundaries of Engineering Science, and Human Health (WATER) are most related to my research field, Environmental Engineering. The SuN IGEP targets at facilitating the incorporation of sustainable design concepts in the nanotechnology field. The sustainability of a particular technology is often an afterthought in the design process; however, because nanotechnology is still in its infancy there is significant potential to proactively direct the field towards sustainable design. As for the WATER,  the research members are united by a central focus of “Water for Health”, spanning from “pipes to people”. Water security and water-related issues are closely related to our daily life, and this WATER program helps address the technical and societal challenges of transforming low-quality water resources into clean water for healthy living.

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