Scholarships and a Send-Off at Virginia Tech

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Scholarships and a Send-Off at Virginia Tech

05 May 2017

In the last week of April, we attended the Virginia Technology Institute College of Architecture and Design’s end of year scholarship ceremony. Eastman is one of many prestigious sponsors supporting scholarship excellence in the college. For ourselves and our industry peers, it is a privilege to support the future of design in the student body. Thanks to these scholarships and long lasting partnerships with Virginia Tech, we have had the ability to participate and support challenges that offer meaningful and useful solutions to real-life problems that benefit the planet and its people. The annual gift from Eastman Chemical Company singularly honors the memory of those affected by the events of April 16, 2007. It is a merit based scholarship divided into three grade levels: rising junior, rising senior and graduating senior. You can read about last year’s ceremony here.

This year’s scholarship ceremony was extremely special as Ed Dorsa, the Associate Professor and the Chair of the Industrial Design Program at Virginia Tech, and EIL friend, is retiring this year. Since coming to Virginia Tech in 1998, he has taught at all levels of the ID studio and numerous courses across the ID curriculum. For the past 6 years, he has co-taught an Interdisciplinary Product Development Studio with faculty from ID, Computer Engineering and Business, and other departments. His research focuses primarily on Interdisciplinary Product Development, a cross-disciplinary methodology that encourages an entrepreneurial approach to opportunity identification and the development of products and services.

Bryan Shackelford attended the ceremony on behalf of Eastman and here’s what he had to say:

The day started with a visit to the design studios. Anyone recalling former collegiate days will remember that this is crunch time in design schools. The studios were as messy, full of creativity, and ablaze with energy drinks from the demands of the final weeks as any studio since the establishment of the Bauhaus. One cool project that the upper level class had in common was a bicycle helmet. Sara Parrish’s version was really cool, a helmet made from organic material grown from algae and bacteria then reinforced with straw to reproduce something organically which is usually accomplished via Styrofoam.

Our scholarship winners took the time to not only receive a bit of the recognition for their year’s effort, but to also kick back with us for a yummy dinner. We spent time with scholarship recipients Matt Corbin, Sara Parrish (our personal guide for the evening), Nathan Kent, and Stephen Lynn. Our usual faculty friends were there, but we also had the privilege of meeting a new friend, Nathan King. He’s the recipient of the “distinguished new faculty” award and responsible for setting up a new 3D print lab in the college. Last, but not least, we were present for the honors bestowed upon our dear friend, Ed Dorsa. Not only was Ed honored by declaration, but also by a rousing standing ovation. Huzzah to Ed and the Virginia Tech Design Students!