Education 2023: TIMOTHY SANDS
PRESIDENT, VIRGINIA TECH, BLACKSBURG
Known among Hokies as “the Sandsman” — a nod to the Hokies’ football anthem, Metallica’s “Enter the Sandman” — Sands joined Virginia Tech in 2014 after serving as interim president at Purdue University.
Sands signed a contract in August 2022 to stay on as president through the 2027 academic year. During his tenure, Sands has been leading development of Virginia Tech’s Innovation Campus, a $1 billion campus in Alexandria for graduate computer science and engineering programs. Virginia Tech has also received notable donations in recent years, including $50 million from Fortune 500 defense contractor Boeing to foster diversity at the Innovation Campus and $50 million for the Fralin Biomedical Research Institute at VTC in Roanoke.
Trained as a scientist whose research focused on light-emitting diodes, Sands announced this year a goal for Tech to become a top 100 global research university. In July, he announced that Virginia Tech would end legacy preferences in admissions, as well as the option of early decision, following the U.S. Supreme Court’s June decision to end affirmative action.