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Cranwell International Center to move to Harper Hall


   

Photograph of Harper Hall on the Virginia Tech campus Harper Hall, the new home of Cranwell International Center


BLACKSBURG, Va., May 9, 2014 – For 28 years, the former residence of William Cranwell and his family has served as home away from home to Virginia Tech’s international community. 

This summer, the Cranwell International Center will move to a more central campus location in Harper Hall on West Campus Drive.  

“Our international undergraduate student population has doubled in just the past three years,” said Vice President for Student Affairs Patty Perillo. “Moving these programs and services to a central campus location and creating the Virginia Tech Global Village is a critical part of the university’s strategic initiatives in international engagement. All our students will benefit from access to immersion in rich cultural experiences.”

The move represents the first important step in the development of a vibrant international living and learning community. 

The Cranwell International Center and the planned Virginia Tech Global Village at Harper Hall will provide both international and domestic students an opportunity to experience a rich hands-on learning environment while, deepening their knowledge and competency around global politics, international economic development, foreign languages, and cultural fluency.

The vision of the Virginia Tech Global Village is a cornerstone of initiatives built into “A Plan for a New Horizon: Envisioning Virginia Tech, 2012-2018.”

Guru Ghosh, vice president for outreach and international affairs, says it’s vital for the university to intensify its focus on the international arena. 

“Engagement across borders is imperative,” said Ghosh. “The Global Village at Harper Hall will provide a new focus of hospitality and support for undergraduate and graduate students as well as international scholars who come from abroad to study in Blacksburg.”

Programs offered at Harper will include English conversation groups, cultural enrichment, advocacy and support, and visa and immigration advisory services. As the global village grows, it will assist students to more fully develop their international competency, by offering greater accessibility to faculty, mentoring between upper division and first year students, and engagement in global activities including scholarship, research and outreach.

The new location will simplify campus arrival and check-in at the nearby Student Services Building on Washington Street. The move will begin after commencement when the Cranwell staff relocates to the first floor of Harper.

The Cranwell International Center serves approximately 2,800 international undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, and scholars from more than 120 nations. The Cranwell House, located at 417 Clay Street, SW, first began serving Virginia Tech’s international community in 1986. 

Given the Cranwell family vision and commitment to international scholars and students, the center will retain the family name.

Dedicated to its motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), Virginia Tech takes a hands-on, engaging approach to education, preparing scholars to be leaders in their fields and communities. As the commonwealth’s most comprehensive university and its leading research institution, Virginia Tech offers 225 undergraduate and graduate degree programs to more than 31,000 students and manages a research portfolio of $496 million. The university fulfills its land-grant mission of transforming knowledge to practice through technological leadership and by fueling economic growth and job creation locally, regionally, and across Virginia.


International diversity at Virginia Tech

  • Cranwell International Center opened in 1986 as a central focal point for international community activity, providing an array of educational, cultural, and social activities. The center was a gift to Virginia Tech by the William Cranwell family.
  • Cranwell International Center programs serve students, scholars, faculty, spouses, and visitors from more than 120 countries in all regions of the world.
  • In fall 2013, there were 2867 international students at Virginia Tech, including 999 undergraduates and 1868 graduate students. Top countries represented include China, India, Iran, South Korea, Egypt, and Germany.
  • About 350 community members, faculty and staff, and students volunteer at Cranwell and play an important role in welcoming international students to Virginia Tech and helping them become comfortable in the United States.
  • Cranwell International Center offers multiple conversation classes for anyone who wishes to improve their English and learn more about other cultures. They are open to Virginia Tech students, researchers, scholars, faculty, visitors, and their families.
  • The Council of International Student Organizations is an umbrella organization representing international student organizations at Virginia Tech. The organization represents the interests and voices of international students to the university's committees, commissions, and administration.
  • More than 15,000 visitors experience a lively intercultural exchange during Virginia Tech's annual International Street Fair. This year’s event, sponsored by the Council of International Student Organizations and Cranwell International Center, is scheduled for Sunday, April 27.

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