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Focus on Faculty

Music Director’s Favorite Diversion

John Brodie, director of music at Virginia Military Institute, has been playing disc golf for five years, ever since his brother Chris got him involved. Although Brodie admits to being competitive in friendly games, he prefers not to compete in tournaments. He plays wherever and whenever he can.

Headshot of Atwell with VMI logo and photo of post

VMI English Professor Pens New Mystery with Help from Fellowship

Lt. Col. Mary “Polly” Stewart Atwell, associate professor in the Department of English, Rhetoric, and Humanistic Studies, received a highly competitive residency fellowship at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts where she devoted time working on her second and third novels.

VMI Academic News - Col. Spencer Bakich

Bakich Receives Outstanding Faculty Award

Col. Spencer Bakich, professor of international studies and the director of the National Security Program at Virginia Military Institute, has been named a recipient of the 2023 Outstanding Faculty Awards announced by the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV).

Maj. Brian Donaldson poses in his full bagpipe dress complete with kilt, plaid, and feather bonnet, as Pipe Major in Scotland. -Photo courtesy of Maj. Brian Donaldson.

Pipe Band Director on With Good Reason

Maj. Brian Donaldson, pipe band director at Virginia Military Institute will be featured on the public radio program, With Good Reason on Christmas Eve, Saturday, Dec. 24.

A ‘fanajin’ of jebena with VMI cadets in the background.

VMI Cadets Enjoy Jebena Coffee: A Rich Blend of Culture, Research, and Classroom Engagement

Maj. Jason Schroepfer, assistant professor in the Dept. of Modern Languages and Cultures and director of the National Security Agency funded Arabic STARTALK program credits much of his success in his linguistic field work to jebena, a coffee drink traditionally enjoyed in Ethiopia, Sudan, and Aswan.

Post Briefs VMI overlay on fall foliage on post

Post Briefs, November 2022

VMI faculty members continue to be recognized and win awards for their excellence in teaching, research, and public service.

Col. Tappey H. Jones ’70, professor of chemistry

VMI Chemistry Professor Published in Preeminent Journal

Col. Tappey H. Jones ’70, professor of chemistry at Virginia Military Institute, has had his findings recently been published in Nature: Communications Biology. This article covers findings of years of research, much collaboration with colleagues, and a bit of providence.

Students participate in class activities in the STARTALK Arabic language program at VMI in 2021.

STARTALK Grant Offers Scholarships for Arabic Program

The Department of Modern Languages and Cultures has been awarded a competitive $141 thousand grant called STARTALK for the 2023-2024 academic year. The grant is directly funded by the National Security Agency (NSA) and provides scholarships for for six credit hours of Arabic for 15 students.

Lt. Col. Catharine Ingersoll poses with photograph of the two 16th century stained-glass panels

VMI Professor Solves Artwork Mystery

Lt. Col. Catharine Ingersoll, associate professor of art history, was recently instrumental in solving a similar mystery when she was called upon to confirm the identity of two 16th century stained-glass panels discovered in storage at the Reading Public Museum (RPM) in Reading, Pennsylvania.

Brian Donaldson speaks to a student.

VMI Welcomes New Pipe Band Director

The VMI Pipe Band, which serves as musical ambassadors throughout the United States, has recently added Scottish authenticity to its ranks in the form of its new director, Maj. Brian Donaldson.

VMI: Forging 21st Century Leaders