Dr. Patricia (Patty) A. Perillo hails from Wilmington, Delaware. She was the first in her family to graduate from college and learned early in her college career that education has the power to transform lives. She knew that she wanted to work in higher education as a vehicle to make the world – one person and community at a time – a better place.
Patty worked at six institutions of higher learning before coming to Virginia Tech. They include the University of Delaware, State University of New York (Plattsburgh and Albany campuses), State University of Maryland (College Park and UMBC campuses), and Davidson College. She has worked in every functional area of student affairs, always focused on creating collaborative learning partnerships with students and academic affairs. She began her work at Virginia Tech in 2012, and the university’s lived values of community, service, diversity and inclusion, and learning resonate with her deepest values, so she feels like she has come home to the Hokie Nation!
As a renowned scholar-practitioner for 30 years, Patty provides leadership and oversight for more than 20 departments and administrative units in the Division of Student Affairs. With a team of 3,600 students, faculty and staff; a budget of more than $160 million; and responsibility for 30 percent of the campus physical capital, she is committed to ensuring transformative learning experiences for students. She is an assistant professor in the higher education graduate program at Virginia Tech, past president of ACPA–College Student Educators International, and recently became certified as an executive/life coach.
She obtained her doctoral degree from the University of Maryland, College Park and her master’s and bachelor’s degrees from the University of Delaware. She has received many honors and awards, including ACPA’s Esther Lloyd Jones Professional Service Award, ACPA’s Diamond Honoree Award, and inductions into Phi Kappa Phi and Omicron Delta Kappa.
In her free time, Patty enjoys spending time with her wonderful spouse, extended family and close community of friends, and engaging in the arts, athletic events, outdoor activities, exercise, prayer, reflection, music, reading, and entertaining. Her family remains one of her greatest gifts in this lifetime. Her father was the youngest of 15 and mother was the oldest of three. Patty is one of eight children with more than 80 first cousins, and still lovingly claims Wilmington as her home community.