(June 9, 2021) Associate professor Diego Troya has been presented the Alumni Award for Excellence in Teaching by the Virginia Tech Alumni Association. Prof. Troya became eligible for the university-wide award upon receiving the college-wide 2021 College of Science Certificate of Teaching Excellence. 

The Alumni Award for Excellence in Teaching was established by the Virginia Tech Alumni Association in 1982 and recognizes two faculty members who have been previously recognized with a college-level certificate of teaching excellence within the past three years. 

Prof. Troya has been a member of the VT Chemistry community since 2004 and has taught a variety of physical chemistry and general chemistry courses, including physical chemistry for life sciences and the general chemistry for majors lecture sequence. For his dedication to his students, he has been recognized several times throughout the years and in 2015 received the department’s Jimmy W. Viers Teaching Award. 

As a theoretical chemist, Troya is a stalwart interdisciplinary collaborator. His research focuses on quantum mechanical calculations and molecular dynamics simulations to investigate a wide variety of physical and chemical phenomena. Specifically, this research concerns the development of catalytic decontaminants for chemical warfare agents and, using computational chemistry techniques, the investigation of materials that hydrolyze chemical warfare agents quickly and efficiently.

In the spirit of the university’s motto, Ut Prosim, That I May Serve, Troya has served on multiple department committees and currently serves on the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion committee. Troya will donate the entirety of the Alumni Award for Excellence in Teaching award to initiatives that advance the inclusion of women and underrepresented minorities in the sciences and engineering.