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Chris Wise

Assistant Vice President for Health and Well-being
  • Vice President’s Council
  • Departments: Cook Counseling Center, Hokie Wellness, Housing Services, Recreational Sports, Residential Well-being, Schiffert Health Center 

As Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs, Chris Wise provides leadership to diverse departments with a primary goal of integrating health and well-being into the everyday culture of Virginia Tech. With oversight for Cook Counseling Center, Hokie Wellness, Residential Well-being, Recreational Sports, and Schiffert Health Center, these departments encompass more than 800 employees with operating budgets in excess of $40 million. In partnership with the Assistant Vice President for Housing, Dining, and Student Centers, and the Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs and ExperienceVT, Chris shares supervision for Residential Experience at Virginia Tech, integrating belonging into the student living framework and providing the opportunity to incorporate well-being into the residential infrastructure where most students first experience collegiate life. Chris has also provided leadership to the Student Affairs Advancement team.

Resource development and management has been a hallmark of Chris’ long tenure at Virginia Tech. He has initiated a variety of building projects related to health and wellness, has developed numerous new income streams, and has grown staffing in thoughtful and efficient ways to provide needed programs and facilities while respecting the cost of education. Included in these accomplishments are the initial construction and two major renovations of McComas Hall where recreational and student health facilities are located, a major renovation of War Memorial Hall which also houses recreational facilities, construction and renovation of major outdoor facilities including artificial turf facilities, and the construction of Cook Counseling in the Gilbert Street Virginia Tech Foundation facility. Chris also oversaw the creation of two departments, Hokie Wellness and Residential Well-Being, which focus on the well-being of Virginia Tech students. Chris has served on numerous committees during his time at Virginia Tech including the Athletic Committee, the Board of the Virginia Tech Pete Dye River Course, the Commission on Student Affairs, the Campus Development Committee, etc.

Chris has been at Virginia Tech since 1987, when he was a graduate student serving as a graduate assistant in Recreational Sports. Although he is a native of South Carolina, he has lived in Blacksburg for more than half his life. Chris developed a passion for sports at a very early age and it led him from being a college athlete at Newberry College in South Carolina to a career in health and wellness with a student affairs twist. At a time when Chris was undecided about what his career path might be, he was introduced to Virginia Tech Student Affairs, where he now prides himself on providing health and wellness programs that allow students to find their career passion while pursuing a life of well-being. During his years as director of Recreational Sports, Virginia Tech was twice named the nation’s fittest college by The Active Times.

Chris is actively involved with the National Intramural and Recreational Sports Association (NIRSA) as well as NASPA—Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education. He has served a two-year term as NIRSA Virginia State Director and is a graduate of the NIRSA School of Recreational Sports Management and the NIRSA Executive Institute. He is also a graduate of the Academy for Leadership Excellence at Virginia Tech and the Virginia Tech Executive Development Institute. Chris is an active supporter of local youth sports programs, serving on youth baseball and soccer boards and providing support to local high school athletic programs. He knows what led him on his path in life and values the opportunity to help others along their paths.

Outside of work, Chris and his wife Barbara spend time on powerwalks, jogging, hiking, and various other active pursuits. He has two adult sons, Carson and Camden, who have had successful college football careers as kickers/punters. When time allows, meditation, traveling and golf with his family and friends are his relaxation activities of choice.