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President Volpe

Angelo Volpe, Tennessee Tech University president emeritus, will receive a lifetime achievement award from his alma mater’s alumni association this fall.

Brooklyn College Alumni Association will give Volpe a post-50th alumni lifetime achievement award when he goes back to the campus for his 55-year reunion.

“I was delighted when I got the call. I had primed myself that I wasn’t going to get it,” said Volpe, who was president of TTU from 1987-2000. “Probably becoming a university president is why I got it. Most of the other stuff I’ve done was pretty routine. It was a big deal to me.”

Volpe was the university’s seventh president but its first to have a Ph.D. While president, TTU completed a $21 million capital campaign, and its endowment grew from $1 million to $27 million. During his tenure, the campus Fitness Center, Hyder-Burks Agricultural Pavilion and library, now named for Volpe and his wife, Jennette, were built.

Volpe also fought to keep the Appalachian Center for Craft open for education, created two chairs of excellence and established the Women’s Center and Leona Lusk Officer Black Cultural Center.

He is one of several alumni to receive the lifetime award, including six others from his class, as well as people from the classes of 1959, 1954, 1949, 1944 and 1934.

“You look at a few sentences about Angelo and you know he deserves an award,” said Virginia Alonso-Rainsford, assistant director of Alumni Affairs at Brooklyn College. “I knew he would be a candidate, just for the fact that he was a president of a university and all that he did there. When you see somebody who is holding a position like that, you know they’ve done a lot to get there.”