Nancy Ross of Blacksburg, Va., professor of mineralogy in the College of Science at Virginia Tech, has been named the college's associate dean for research, graduate studies, and outreach.
In this role, Ross will: coordinate research activities within the college; find new opportunities for funding faculty research; represent the research aspects of the college at both university and national levels; and manage research, graduate, and outreach administration within the college.
Ross joined the Department of Geological Sciences at Virginia Tech in 2000 after 12 years at University College London, where she had served as a lecturer (assistant professor) and a reader (associate professor).
Her research involves investigation of the factors that control the stability of minerals and related materials under given constraints of pressure, temperature and composition. She uses a number of different experimental techniques in her research, including X-ray and neutron diffraction at high pressure. Recently, Ross and co-workers at Virginia Tech have been using computational models to establish the link between the electron density of a material, its structure, and its reactivity. Ross has been funded continuously since she became a professor, with grants from the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), the British Council, the Nuffield Foundation, and, most recently, the National Science Foundation (NSF).
Ross obtained her bachelor's degree from Virginia Tech, where she graduated summa cum laude and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and Phi Kappa Phi. She received a graduate fellowship from the University of British Columbia, where she obtained her master's degree, and a graduate research assistantship from Arizona State University, where she obtained her Ph.D.
Ross is a member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Crystallographic Association, the American Geophysical Union, the Materials Research Society, and the Mineralogical Society of Great Britain and Ireland, and is a Fellow of the Mineralogical Society of America. She has served on a number of commissions, councils and advisory groups for funding agencies such as NERC and the NSF, government laboratories such as Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and societies such as the Mineralogical Society of Great Britain and Ireland, the Mineralogical Society of America, and the International Mineralogical Association.
The College of Science at Virginia Tech gives students a comprehensive foundation in the scientific method. Outstanding faculty members teach courses and conduct research in biology, chemistry, economics, geosciences, mathematics, physics, psychology, and statistics. The college is dedicated to fostering a research intensive environment and offers programs in nano-scale and biological sciences, information theory and science, and supports research centers—in areas such as biomedical and public health sciences, and critical technology and applied science—that encompass other colleges at the university. The College of Science also houses programs in pre-medicine and scientific law.
Founded in 1872 as a land-grant college, Virginia Tech has grown to become the largest university in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Today, Virginia Tech's eight colleges are dedicated to putting knowledge to work through teaching, research, and outreach activities and to fulfilling its vision to be among the top 30 research universities in the nation. At its 2,600-acre main campus located in Blacksburg and other campus centers in Northern Virginia, Southwest Virginia, Hampton Roads, Richmond, and Roanoke, Virginia Tech enrolls more than 28,000 full- and part-time undergraduate and graduate students from all 50 states and more than 100 countries in 170 academic degree programs.