Board of Visitors History & Purpose


The Board of Visitors (BOV) is the governing authority of Virginia Tech, and is composed of 14 members, 13 appointed by the Governor of Virginia, and subject to confirmation by the state Senate. The fourteenth member is the president of Agriculture and Consumer Services who serves ex-officio. The term of office for each member is four years.

Some of the board’s responsibilities include appointment of the president of the university, establishment of fees, tuition and other charges paid by students, and the review of university policies relating to student life.

There are also four non-voting representatives serving on the BOV as follows:

  • Faculty Representative
  • Staff Representative
  • Undergraduate Student Representative
  • Graduate Student Representative

The purpose of the undergraduate and graduate student representatives to the board of visitors is to serve as a liaison between the student population of Virginia Tech and the board. This position gives the student an excellent opportunity to broaden his/her experiences and learn from direct participation how decisions are made that affect the university. The student representatives to the BOV are appointed for a one-year term and meet with the BOV four times during the academic year, typically in September, November, March, and June.

Student Representative Responsibilities

What is the student representative’s role on the Board of Visitors?
The student representative gives voice to student concerns, perspectives, and ideas as a non-voting member of the BOV. The student is appointed to serve on one of the board’s standing committees. In addition, at each of the four general board meetings, the representative delivers a constituency report to apprise the BOV of student issues.

What types of issues does the student representative address?
The representative acts as a facilitator and a champion for issues faced by his or her constituency. Issues that cannot be solved at the SGA and GSA levels or by other commissions, and issues that need official sanction from BOV will be the representative’s niche. Additionally, the representative works with the administration, various departments, constituencies, and the community to enhance academic and student life experiences at Virginia Tech.

Where does the student representative to the Board of Visitors fit in university governance?
The student representative to the Board of Visitors is an independent position, but the representative often works closely with the Vice President for Student Affairs, the Graduate School and Graduate Dean, the Student Government Association, the Graduate Student Assembly, and the Commission on Student Affairs. The representative is also invited to various committees and task forces. The representative gives frequent updates on their activities and meets with administrators at all levels of the university to address student concerns.

What opportunities are afforded by the position?
The student representatives to the BOV have a unique opportunity to give students a voice at the highest level of governance at Virginia Tech. These are coveted positions and are of great benefit to those students who are interested in learning more about university governance.

Learn more about the Board of Visitors

You can view a diagram of the governance structure at Virginia Tech or visit the Board of Visitors website.