New Students Guide
Congratulations on your acceptance to Virginia Tech! We look forward to welcoming you to our community. This webpage is designed to provide you with a brief introduction to graduate life at Virginia Tech in the DC Metro Area.
New Graduate Student Orientation Spring 2021
The Graduate School New Student Orientation will be held online on Saturday, January 16, 2021. While we will miss meeting you in person, we are following Virginia Tech and state public health COVID-19 Guidelines for the safety and wellness of everyone.
Orientation (online via Zoom)
9 am Presentations; Schedule of speakers is attached
10 am Live Q & A Session
You should receive an email with registration information via Zoom for the Orientation. Please contact Susan Merten, firstname.lastname@example.org, if you have not received the information.
Other Program Specific Orientations
In addition to the general orientation listed here, some programs will have more specific sessions for students in their areas of study. Check with your program for more information.
NVC Parking Proximity Cards
Parking is free on Saturday at the NVC in the lower parking lot.
If you plan to use the NVC parking lot during the year and have purchased a VT parking permit, you can pick up a proximity card anytime from 8:30am to 7pm from one of the Facilities Coordinators in Room 404 or 406 during the work week. Only semester and yearly VT parking permits will be issued a proximity card. Please bring proof of parking permit/hang tag in order to register and receive proximity card. All other users must pay the daily rate with a credit card. More information about parking can be found here: Parking at NVC
Hokie Passports (Virginia Tech student ID cards)
The NVC Library handles the processing of Hokie Passports. Students must be registered for spring courses. Students from the area can begin making appointments Tuesday, January 19, 2021. Hokie Passport appointments for the first three weeks of spring semester:
Checklist For New Students
- Create your Personal Identifier (PID). A PID will give you access to Virginia Tech online services such as:
- Contact your academic department for information about advising, funding, class registration, and orientation requirements. Program advisors for each department are listed at the bottom of this page.
- Register for classes and pay tuition on Hokie SPA.
- Keep track of important academic deadlines (exams, commencement, thesis or dissertation).
- Login to OneCampus to setup your email, network, and 2-factor accounts.
- Order your textbooks from the Online Bookstore.
International Students please also see the Pre-Arrival and Arrival Checklist.
More information for new students can be found on the Graduate School website.
Orientation Materials Spring 2021
Graduate Student Services Office
The Graduate Student Services Office (GSSO) in the Greater Washington DC Area, serves as a coordinating and governing body to all the Virginia Tech graduate programs and their students. Some of the services they provide include:
- Change of status
- Plan of study review
- Processing graduate school forms
- Registration assistance
Finding On-Campus Employment in the Washington, D.C., area
On-campus employment in the DC area is extremely limited.
Student employment on campus generally takes two forms:
- Graduate Assistantships (GA, GTA, GRA) provide students with a stipend for living expenses, tuition, and an insurance subsidy if eligibility requirements are met. Students may be expected to teach, grade homework assignments/exams, assist faculty with research, or provide administrative support to academic programs. Assistantships can be full-time (20 hours per week) or part-time (typically 10 or 5 hours per week), and the amount of financial assistance varies widely. For more information about GAs, visit the Graduate School’s page on this topic.
- Wage employees receive hourly pay on a semi-monthly schedule from the university (based on the hours worked each week) but do not receive any additional benefits.
For international students, visa status affects the employment opportunities available. Please check with our immigration advisors for specific details at email@example.com.
If you have more questions regarding graduate education at Virginia Tech in the D.C. area, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Graduate Student Assembly
The Greater Washington DC Area Graduate Student Assembly seeks to nurture graduate student community across departments by providing social events that foster inter-department, interdisciplinary conversation. The representatives liaise with the VT GSA in Blacksburg to improve scholarly development, and graduate community by creating and implementing goals based on the issues and concerns of graduate students on campus.
The Greater Washington DC Area GSA Leadership for 2020-2021 is:
- Abdulaziz Alhamadani , President
- Fanglan Chen, Vice President
- Zongtao Lin, Communications Chair
- Hypatia Alexandria, Arlington Chair
Graduate Program Advisors
Each department at the Northern Virginia Center has a program advisor that can provide information, advising, and answer questions about the programs they represent. Below is a list of the current program advisors located at the NVC.