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Virginia State University

Petersburg, Virginia

Virginia State University was founded in 1882 as the Virginia Normal and Collegiate Institute, making it the first fully state supported, four-year institution of higher learning for Blacks in America. Today, Virginia State University is one of Virginia’s two land-grant institutions.

VSU students live and learn on a 236-acre main campus, with more than 50 buildings, including 15 dormitories and 16 classroom buildings, and a 416-acre agricultural research facility.

The University’s academic programs include the “Bridges to Baccalaureate” program for students transferring from two-year colleges who want to major in the sciences, the Honda Campus All-Star Challenge and the Ronald E. McNair Scholars Program for students planning to pursue doctoral degrees in their chosen field of study. Honors scholarships are also available to entering freshmen, including the Presidential and Provost Scholarships.

In 2006, VSU inaugurated the Low Income Families With Talented Students (LIFTS) financial aid program, the first of its kind among HBCUs. LIFTS promises to meet 100 percent of a qualifying student’s financial need by providing 75 percent of a student’s need through scholarships and grants and limiting debt through student loans to 25 percent of VSU’s in-state cost of attendance over four years, regardless of state residency.

Virginia State University offers 50 baccalaureate and master’s degree programs and a Certificate of Advanced Study within five schools: The School of Agriculture; The School of Business; The School of Engineering, Science and Technology; The School of Liberal Arts and Education; and The School of Graduate Studies, Research and Outreach. In 2006, Virginia State University graduated its first-ever doctoral students, who earned their Doctor of Education in Administration and Supervision. In 2005, VSU welcomed the first students to its Nursing Program. This important program was introduced to meet the pressing need for qualified nurses in the Southside Virginia region.


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