Graduate Students FAQ


For Prospective Students

1. What are the minimum requirements for your program?
There are no minimum requirements. However, the target G.P.A. is 3.2 (4.0 scale). For the GREs, the targets are Verbal 150, Quantitative 155, Analytical 4.5. The TOEFL target is 105, & IELTS is 7. Keep in mind admission is competitive & the entire application package is evaluated

2. I have the application ready, but what information goes where?
Official scores and transcripts are required by the Graduate School. Send them to our Graduate School at:

Graduate School
Graduate Life Center at Donaldson Brown(0325)
Blacksburg, VA 24061

All other application materials should be uploaded directly in the on-line application. For further instructions, see our: Graduate Catalog

3. Do you admit for Spring semester?
Yes, we admit applicants both Fall and Spring.

4. There is no financial aid application included within my application packet, can you please send me one?
A financial aid application is not needed. If you are admitted into the program, your application will be considered for financial assistance in the form of Graduate Teaching Assistantships (GTA). Keep in mind financial aid is competitive. Graduate Research Assistantships (GRA) are on faculty sponsored research, so you should contact them with a resume about the possibility of a GRA.

5. When will I be notified of the decision of my application?
Once all the required materials have been received, the process takes approximately four to six weeks. This timeline does not include mailing time for notification. Estimated date for decisions to be posted is March 15th for complete applications in the US, received by Jan. 15th. Estimated date for decisions to be posted for applicants outside the US is May 15th for complete applications received by Jan. 15th. For your protection, information on application status cannot be released by telephone. Departments can only recommend admission to the Graduate School. You can find out the admission and application status on-line. Check the web periodically at: Official notification will be sent by the Graduate School;

6. The on-line application status indicates my application isn’t complete, but I uploaded by transcripts. When will it be updated?
Please be aware that the on-line status only indicates if the application is complete at the VT Graduate School, not necessarily with the Department. You must contact them directly at with questions. Keep in mind, they process thousands of applications & it can take several weeks for them to update the system.

7. My reference didn’t receive the e-mail to do the letter of recommend, can you please resend the e-mail?
That e-mail doesn’t not originate from the ME Department. You will have to go back, as a “Returning Applicant” to send a reminder. Further questions can go to the Graduate School at

8. I was notified that I was admitted but there was no indication about my financial aid, was I awarded aid?
Admission decisions come first and then financial aid offers. The deadline for GTA positions is January 15, for Fall semester, but applications must be complete to be considered. Offers normally are sent approximately mid-March. For those admitted for the spring semester, there are extremely limited GTA positions as most offers are for the fall & spring. GRA offers from faculty can be made up to 2 weeks prior to the start of classes.

9. Do you offer financial aid to international students?
Yes, the department offers aid to international students but it is very competitive and approximately 15% of admitted applicants are offered aid. Keep in mind that only those with admission are considered.

10. If I defer my admission and it is approved, will I be awarded aid next semester?
There are no guarantees you will be granted financial aid if you defer. Your file will be re-evaluated for financial aid amongst all those admitted applicants for that particular semester

11. How can I defer my enrollment from one semester to another?
You must provide a brief statement to the department as to why a deferral is justified. The Graduate School will require a $75 re-processing fee to defer for a year and the application will have to be reconsidered with the others. There is no guarantee that the deferral will be approved.

12. Who will mail my I-20?
The I-20 will be issued by the Graduate School. You will need to contact them for further information at

Graduate Staff

Dr. Corina Sandu
Professor & Associate Department
Head for Graduate Studies

ME Graduate Program
107 Randolph Hall (0710)
Blacksburg, VA 24061
(540) 231-7467



Cathy Hill
Graduate Coordinator

Applications, Recruiting, Student Records
105 Randolph Hall
(540) 231-7460


Annette Ben-Tzvi 
Graduate Advisor

Applications, Recruiting, Student Records
104 Randolph Hall
(540) 231-3608



Mandy Collins
Fiscal Technician

Stipends, Tuition, Fellowships
456 Goodwin Hall
(540) 231-5056