Virginia Tech President Tim Sands will speak on Nov. 13 at an event to announce a technology-based one million square foot campus in Alexandria. (Cliff Owen / AP) Nick Tech Reporter covers higher education, national education policy and the global education market On December 6, at 10:03 am, Virginia Tech announced its intention to receive a record $ 50 million donation support biomedical research, a historic gift for the public university. influence of his university health center in Roanoke. The donation comes from Charity Trust Horace G. Fralin and Heywood and Cynthia Fralin. That's twice as big as the previous one, a $ 25 million gift from Alice and Bill Goodwin for an engineering building opened in 2014 on the university's main campus in Blacksburg. The new funding will help the university recruit and retain researchers, a spokesman said. A biomedical research institute bears the name of the Fralin family and is located within the Virginia Tech Carilion University Health Center. "The remarkable generosity of the Fralin family underscores the growth and success of the VTC Health Sciences and Technology campus, its important biomedical research and its extraordinary faculty," said University President Tim Sands. Heywood Fralin, a business executive in Roanoke, is a former board member of Virginia Tech. He has also led the board of directors of the University of Virginia, his alma mater, and now chairs the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia. "I appreciate that Virginia Tech and the Commonwealth have made such an important investment in the city of Roanoke and in the region," Fralin said in its statement. "I think it's everyone's responsibility to give back to your community and let things be better than the ones you found. I hope that many more will come to support this emerging academic health center because, with respect to Roanoke 's future, there is no greater history. Fralin's older brother, the late Horace Fralin, was also a benefactor of the university. Governor Ralph Northam (D) congratulated Heywood Fralin for "a tireless advocate of education as a means of empowering the citizens and communities of our state". To learn more: excerpt from the archives: save donations to Virginia, District, and Maryland Virginia colleges, Amazon's QG2 arrived at the right time.