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Spring 2014 Newsletter

    Spring 2014 Newsletter

Download: SBIO Newsletter Spring 2014

Education Abroad in New Zealand, Ireland, and Costa Rica.

Winter Break in New Zealand

By Bob Smith

Bob Smith led 18 students from five different colleges at Virginia Tech to the south island of New Zealand during the winter break to study resource conservation, and the natural and social history of the country (Sustaining Human Societies and the Natural Environment).

Note On Education Abroad in Ireland

By Bob Bush

The course promotes cross-cultural engagement while learning how culture, design, and natural resources are interconnected. Sustainable Biomaterials Professor Robert Bush led the course with the assistance of Dr. Earl Kline who is on research leave in Ireland.

Spring Break in Costa Rica

By Henry Quesada

Assistant Professor Henry Quesada from the Department of Sustainable Biomaterials traveled to Costa Rica with a group of 8 students from the College of Natural Resources and Environment (CNRE).

Saying Goodbye 

By Scott Rennerckar

This time of year always marks sad goodbyes with graduates leaving for exciting careers, being able to implement their newfound knowledge for the benefit of society. These new beginnings for graduates are part of the academic cycle with a new class of students starting in the fall with open minds and boundless energy.

SBIO Students Shine in Dallas

By Kevin Edgar

SBIO was well represented at the recent American Chemical Society national meeting in Dallas, Texas, March 16-20. Professors Chip Frazier, Barry Goodell, Scott Renneckar, and Kevin Edgar attended, with Edgar, Goodell, and Renneckar giving presentations, and students Jung Ki Hong, Joyann Marks, Xiangtao Meng, Xinyi Tan, Guigui Wang, Xing Yang, Ruoran Zhang, Wei Zhang, and Xueyan Zheng attended and presented.

Shuping Dong successfully defends master’s thesis

By Maren Roman

On Thursday, April 24, Shuping Dong, a graduate student under the guidance of Prof. Maren Roman, successfully defended her master’s thesis and earned an M.S. in Macromolecular Science and Engineering. Shuping’s master’s research investigated the effects of the hydrolysis conditions on the yield and properties of cellulose nanocrystals produced by sulfuric acid hydrolysis.

Virginia Tech Participates in World Wood Day Events 

By Barry Goodell

On March 21 and 22, 2014, the US World Wood Day event was held outside of Washington, DC in Bethesda, Maryland. The theme of the event was: The Melting Pot of American Culture and How it has Impacted the Use of Wood, and it coincided with the larger International World Wood Day activities that were being held in Fujian Province, China.

VT packaging hosts national Packaging event 

By Madeline Alden (Senior, SBIO)

The Packaging Jamboree is a yearly conference where packaging students and industry leaders from across the country gather together to discuss current issues and innovations in the packaging industry.

Bio-based Materials Center holds 3rd Graduate Research Symposium

By Maren Roman 

On Wednesday, April 30, the Bio-based Materials Center (BB MC) at Virginia Tech held its 3rd Graduate Research Symposium. Twenty-one graduate students of BB MC faculty members from various disciplines, ranging from wood science to biomedical engineering, presented their research projects in 12 oral and 9 poster presentations.

Hindman and Bouldin Panelists at ‘A Fierce Green Fire’ 

By Dan Hindman

On April 5th, Drs. Hindman and Bouldin participated in a panel discussion after the movie ‘A Fierce Green Fire’ at the Lyric Theater, sponsored by Sustainable Blacksburg. ‘A Fierce Green Fire’ chronicles the environmental movement of the 20th century, beginning with the Sierra Club’s work in dam protection in the Grand Canyon to present day concerns over climate change and the growth of sustainable building and business practices. The film was also helpful to capture the concern and involvement that the ‘green movement’ has inspired in the general population. “The number of sustainable businesses and companies continue to increase every year in our area. There is a value — both socially and economically — of including sustainable practices in our work,” says Dr. Hindman.

Chilean Visitors Discuss Sustainable Research Initiatives

By Barry Goodell

A team of University Center Directors, Researchers and the Vice Chancellor of Research from the Universidad de Concepción in Chile visited Virginia Tech on April 24 and 25, 2014.

Blakeley heads to LAX championships 

By Barry Goodell 

Charlie Blakeley, one of our SBIO seniors is a Captain and Goal Keeper on the Virginia Tech Lacrosse Team.

WEI Sold Out!

It’s the time of the year when the Wood Enterprise Institute traditionally is holding an Open House to report its achievement. However, due to the success of this year’s team, we decided to communicate our achievements by email to save the time for production and distribution of the orders received.

Extension highlights 

The Department of Sustainable Biomaterials (SBIO) at Virginia Tech is one of the leading U.S. academic programs in the field of renewable materials with a focus on cellulosic materials such as wood products. Besides research and teaching efforts, SBIO has an important role in dissemination of new knowledge in the area of renewable materials through SBIO’s three extension specialists.



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