As graduate education becomes increasingly important for entry into many professional fields, the Virginia Council of Graduate Schools (VCGS) builds awareness of the benefits of post-graduate education for students across the Commonwealth and for the citizens of Virginia who rely upon those benefits socially, professionally, and economically. Upon graduation, the majority of Virginia’s graduate students remain in-state, providing the highly educated and skilled workforce necessary to fuel continued success and economic growth.
In 1999 representatives from Virginia’s colleges and universities came together to outline the role of graduate education in the Commonwealth’s economic and social prosperity. Two outcomes of this effort, the seminal report, Graduate Education in Virginia, and the formation of what is now known as VCGS (Virginia Council of Graduate Schools) have changed the nature of graduate education in our state. VCGS is a state-level organization of the national CGS (Council of Graduate Schools) and regional CSGS (Council of Southern Graduate Schools).
VCGS sponsors initiatives with the goal of enhancing graduate education and its contribution to the economic, social and civic development of Virginia. The council meets regularly throughout the year and its members attend CGS and CSGS events to discuss graduate education and to learn and share best practice. VCGS has sponsored Graduate Student Research Forums for graduate students, and now holds an annual Commonwealth Graduate Education Day to provide opportunities for both associate's and bachelor's level students of the Commonwealth to explore and discuss the possibilities of graduate education with graduate faculty and students. VCGS also collaborates with the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV) and the Instructional Programs Advisory Committee (IPAC) through regular consultation with these and other public and private organizations on policies that affect graduate education.