Chesterfield Business Resources

Virginia State University

Virginia State University (VSU), America's first fully state-supported, four-year institution of higher learning for Blacks, is a comprehensive university and one of two land grant institutions in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Located in Southern Chesterfield County's village of Ettrick, overlooking the city of Petersburg and the Appomattox River, Virginia State University is comprised of a 236-acre campus, a 416-acre research farm, and more than 53 major buildings (including 15 residence halls and 16 classroom buildings). VSU offers a wide variety of programs and services in education, research and cooperative extension through its four schools: Agriculture, Science and Technology; Business; Liberal Arts and Education; and Graduate Studies and Continuing Education.

Virginia State University is committed to meeting the needs of corporate Virginia. Toward that end, the university has developed the VSU Industry Cluster Program. This program allows employers and potential employers to be involved in curriculum development so that the university can better prepare students to meet industry's needs and excel in the business world of the 21st century. Through the cluster program, business and industry partners provide advice, assistance and expertise in the university's development of its educational programs and services.

Working with the cluster program, business leaders are involved in developing non-traditional and support options for students to enhance their classroom knowledge with hands-on experience, and provide exposure to real work environments and issues. The cluster program also provides a venue for business and industry leaders to direct seminars and workshops on campus for students, as well as faculty and staff. These seminars offer guest lectures on topics of interest to cluster partners, along with topics critical to the development of better-trained workers. In the area of research, cluster partners may tap VSU faculty, administrators, and cooperative extension specialists, many of whom are already providing insight and expertise to the region's business community. Their assistance includes anything from workforce and small-business development analysis to guiding the growth and development of alternative crops for Virginia's farmers. VSU faculty, for instance, are directing everything from cutting-edge cancer research to discoveries in the physics arena. Cluster partners have the opportunity to access the university's research capabilities to advance efforts already under way or to launch new research.  Beyond the cluster program's activities, the university assists businesses and individuals throughout the region with the following services:

  • Cooperative extension services to assist agricultural producers;
  • Socioeconomic, small-business and general research;
  • Waste management and environmental feasibility studies;
  • Vocational, industrial education and database management programs; and
  • Continuing education and retooling programs.

Visit Virginia State University on the Internet at the following URL:

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