Stephen Nehrt: A Hiking Hokie

Steve Nehrt was born outside of St. Louis, Missouri in a town called Florissant, but he grew up in Springfield, VA. Drawn to the mountainous region of Southwest Virginia, he came to Virginia Tech in the Fall of 1975. After receiving his B.S. in Economics, he went on to earn his Master’s degree from Virginia Tech as well.

While he remembers the typical stress of juggling projects on heavy work weeks, Steve mostly remembers the positive aspects of his college career. Not even the brutal winters, that all Hokies are familiar with, spoiled his time here. In fact, a particularly strong memory comes from an experience during one of those winters.

During his undergraduate career, Steve attended classes on a much smaller Virginia Tech campus than today’s Hokies are familiar with. He actually lived in Major Williams when it was a dorm, and looks back at dorm life as a positive experience as well.

“We enjoyed a lot of things here, and especially the countryside. We enjoyed the hiking and the camping. I had always had a motorcycle, so I met other people with motorcycles. Here it was real simple to go for a motorcycle ride out in the middle of nowhere, without a lot of traffic. That was a fun, easy, inexpensive thing to do. And then the hiking and the camping we loved to do.”Stephen Nehrt

Frank Beamer came to Tech during his graduate school years, so Steve doesn’t recall too much excitement over the football program at that time. However, Steve and his friends were well-entertained. He especially enjoyed going to listen to bands play downtown on Wednesday nights. The atmosphere at Tech and in Blacksburg contributed to a seamless transition between his undergraduate and graduate years allowing him to spend more time enjoying the area.

Noting that this area might not be ideal for everyone, Steve seems confident that Virginia Tech is an exceptional place to experience some of the most profound years of your life. He knows that a lot has changed, but he feels that the area still retains the same charm he came to know and love.

“The campus, and the quad, and… That’s really…it’s just kind of an image that comes to mind. When you say Virginia Tech, I see these gothic gray limestone buildings, and the drill field, and the little chapel, and that’s really my first thought. It’s not really a concrete thought, it’s really more an image.”Stephen Nehrt

Share this Story

Full transcript and audio coming soon!

About this Story

Date Recorded: November 20, 2015

Interviewer: Carmen Bolt

Date Posted: February 17, 2017

Editor: Jessica Craig

Latest Stories