Virginia Tech class teams up with local county for middle school revitalization

DUBLIN, Va. – The lack of housing has been an issue all across Southwest Virginia and Virginia Tech students are working directly with Pulaski County leaders to help plan the redevelopment of the old Dublin Middle School.

“It is reworking a historic 1950s school in Dublin, Virginia, in Pulaski County and making it into adaptive, reuse housing,” said Cassidy Stackpole, a student at Virginia Tech.

Students in the class work weekly to make plans for the school’s development, and then they periodically present these plans to the heads of the project.

We talked to one student and she said this hands-on experience is invaluable.

“She found a real developer, architecture team, property management, real people we can talk to, and network with, and learn these things for when we have a job in the future,” Stackpole said.

Another student who grew up in Southwest Virginia said he has loved working on this project.

“Virginia Tech’s motto, Ut Prosim, is ‘That I may serve,’” said Dalton Hart. “Being able to serve back my community, especially being from Southwest Virginia, I love the fact that I am able to do this project and kind of contribute to the area.”

The Pulaski director of community development said working with the students has helped give a fresh set of eyes on projects like this.

“It’s incredible,” said John Crockett. “I mean, the stuff that they’re producing, the renderings, the ideas that they are coming up with, they’re outstanding.”

He said while they are still a ways away from people living inside the old school, having the students be a part of the process has been great for both the county and the students.

About the Author

Thomas grew up right here in Roanoke and is a graduate of Salem High School and Virginia Tech.

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