VT Alum Donates $20 Million for Multi-Disciplinary Ed

Mar 20, 2018

A Virginia Tech alum has given the University one of its largest gifts ever.  It is aimed at preparing students for the 21st century workplace.   

Businessman David Calhoun, Class of '79, is putting $20 million behind the idea of an interdisciplinary learning model at the university.  Calhoun is known as a 'turn around' expert, able to find new ways to address complex problems facing corporations.  

David Calhoun
Credit Virginia Tech

“Almost every one of those problems requires interdisciplinary work, people who understand lots of things: human behavior, highly engineered systems, data analytics, communications systems.  All the things that are necessary to solve today's problems and /or create tomorrow's opportunities," Calhoun said Tuesday.

Calhoun says it normally takes decades to train people to see the big picture.  His donation to Tech's Honors College is focused on a multi-faceted approach to solving real world problems while still students.  He got his degree at what is now Virginia Tech's Pamplin School of Business. He began his career at GE, went on to become CEO at Nielsen, the TV ratings firm, and now heads private equity portfolio operations at Blackstone.  

University President Tim Sands calls the donation a game-changing gift for Virginia Tech.

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