Table of Contents 1
Message from the SVP
By the Numbers
Credits Editor: Matthew Lovisa Assistant Editors: April McIntosh Rachel Smith Spencer Washington Art Director: Megan Buckley Assistant Art Director: Mabel Barreto Photo Credits: Vivek Kuruvilla Jacob Parcell Residential Life and Housing The Wellness Resource Center University Marketing University Public Affairs University Student Commons and Activities VCU Recreational Sports Typography: Univers Printer: Wythken Printing Virginia Commonwealth University Division of Student Affairs 901 Floyd Avenue, Richmond, VA 23284 (804) 828-1244 VCU is an equal opportunity university
Message from the SVP It is my pleasure to share the Division of Student Affairs annual report with you. This report is a snapshot of the work and accomplishments of our faculty, staff and students across the division in support of student success. Our report starts with the story of three of our student leaders, Vivek, Samantha and Jacob. They represent the many student leaders across campus who use their gifts and skills to move us forward as a university and become leaders in their communities upon their graduation. You will also read about select highlights from the offices that comprise our division. It gives you just a taste of the creativity, commitment and impact of the work our talented staff. We provide some impressive numerical data that emphasizes the breadth and depth of staff, student leaders and supportive others who work to actualize our mission and authenticate our values. We are grateful to each of them for their commitment, persistence and excellent work. Our report ends where it starts, with people and the accomplishments of our staff. These individuals help move our profession forward with regional and national presentations as well as significant leadership roles in regional and national organizations. With gratitude,
Charles J. Klink, Ph.D. Senior Vice Provost of Student Affairs
1 | Message from the SVP
Student Stories Meet Vivek Tell us a little bit about yourself: My name is Vivek Kuruvilla. I am studying mechanical engineering. My hometown is Clifton, VA and I was the Student Body President and Alternative Spring Break Site Leader in 2018-2019. How did you first get involved at VCU? My first experience getting involved at VCU was through working for the Commonwealth Times as a contributing videographer. Covering stories for them really helped me get to know what was going on around the university and around Richmond and, to a certain extent, shaped my desire to explore new areas. What were some of your accomplishments during the 2018-2019 academic year? I led an organization that made a lot of progress on campus issues and worked to ensure students had more empathetic representation. In doing so, I supported an amazing group of leaders in interacting with students and the community in exciting new ways, from The Big Event to the Level With Me debate series. I represented the university as part of the delegation visiting VCUarts Qatar and guided students on two experiential learning service trips. How did the Division of Student Affairs help you in your leadership role? Advisors and staff from the Division have always been there to support me in whatever I wanted to do. No matter how crazy the idea was, someone was willing to sit down with me and either fully support it or guide me in the right direction so that my vision could become a reality. What is one thing you are most proud of during your time at VCU? Helping start the Big Event here at VCU has to be one of the proudest things I’ve gotten to do at VCU. It is just a great initiative that brings the Richmond and VCU communities closer together. The planning process took the entire year and I was so impressed by all the hard work SGA’s Community Engagement Committee put into making this a huge success. I can’t wait to see how this program grows over the next few years into one of VCU’s signature
events, showcasing our commitment to the Richmond community. What are your plans for after graduation? I have one more year left here at VCU but I will be working with a horizontal construction company during the course of the school year as I decide what field I want to go into after graduation. Student Stories | 2
Student Stories Meet Samantha Tell us a little bit about yourself: My name is Samantha Lee and I am a second-year undergraduate honors student, majoring in biology and minoring in chemistry on a pre-medical track. My hometown is McLean, VA. This year, I am the Board of Visitors (BOV) Undergraduate Student Representative and Historian for Delta Epsilon Mu (DEM). How did you first get involved at VCU? During my first year, as one of 12 mentees in the VCU Honors College mentor program, my mentor shared organizations on campus that she was involved with, including DEM. I also joined the Honors College Wellbeing Team, and the Cabell Library Undergraduate Advisory Committee and volunteer at various locations around Richmond. What were some of your accomplishments during the 2018-2019 academic year? When I reflect on my college years, I want to remember my unique experiences that I shared with my peers. One way I plan to do so is by being an effective BOV Undergraduate Student Representative through increasing student awareness of the BOV and directly voicing the student bodyâ€™s opinions. As Historian of DEM, I am reviving Humans of DEM, a spin-off of Humans of New York, which was started by a former Historian (now a VCU Pharmacy student) to celebrate the diversity of members and their identity beyond their major and track. How did the Division of Student Affairs help you in your leadership role? I could not do my job without Dr. Klink! I always look forward to meeting with him because he guides me to best fulfill my role by sharing his wisdom from his experiences. I know I made the right choice in choosing VCU because every faculty and staff member conveys their desire to help and support all students in their endeavors.
3 | Student Stories
What is one thing you are most proud of during your time at VCU? I am most proud of applying to be the 2019-2020 BOV Undergraduate Student Representative. Having this position is incredibly rewarding, not because of the prestige, but because I proved to myself that taking risks or reaching for the stars can be very rewarding. What are your plans for after graduation?
Currently, I plan to graduate in three years and then take a gap year. I am considering studying abroad in South America or Africa, research on the West Coast and one-year Masterâ€™s programs. I hope to matriculate to medical school in Fall 2022.
Meet Jacob Tell us a little bit about yourself: My name is Jacob Parcell and I am studying anthropology with a minor in business. My hometown is Fredericksburg, VA, and I was the Undergraduate Student Representative to the Board of Visitors in 2018-2019. How did you first get involved at VCU? I first got involved at VCU as a freshman with the Student Budget Advisory Committee and the Health Disparities Organization. What were some of your accomplishments during the 2018-2019 academic year? I participated in the Virginia Capitol Semester program as an intern in the Speaker of the House of Delegatesâ€™ office during the spring semester and held an internship with McKesson. I also began serving on the Board of Trustees of the Fredericksburg Rescue Squad as the youngest board member in the organizationâ€™s history. How did the Division of Student Affairs help you in your leadership role? The Division of Student Affairs supported me with every task while serving as the Undergraduate Student Representative. They ensured that I had every tool to succeed in my role and continued to grow as a leader. Student Affairs always works collaboratively with the entire student body to ensure that the voices of every student are heard. This collaborative relationship with students serves at the core of what makes VCU great. What is one thing you are most proud of during your time at VCU? I am most proud of serving as an Undergraduate Teaching Assistant (TA) to a University 111 and 112 class. The opportunity to help improve the educational experience of my fellow students and grow as a leader has been unmatched. What are your plans for after graduation? After graduating in December I plan to apply to an MBA or MHA program.
Student Stories | 4
Highlights The Human Library comes to VCU The Office of Multicultural Student Affairs (OMSA) and Residential Life and Housing (RLH) partnered to co-sponsor the Human Library on March 30, 2019. “The Human Library is an international program that promotes dialogues across differences by sharing personal narratives,” said Greta Franklin, director of the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs. “People share their personal narratives, their ‘books’ to promote empathy and increase understanding of cultural differences and the impact of bias and systemic oppression.”
98.5 percent of participants agreed that they are able to empathize with others different than themselves. 94.2 percent of respondents indicated they were aware of how their actions reinforce the oppression of others and that they felt prepared to challenge systems of oppression through their actions. After participating in Human Library, 97.1 percent of participants felt better prepared to have conversations about difference with their peers.
A total of 15 VCU students, faculty and staff members as well as community members shared their personal narrative with more than 70 individuals engaged in the program.
Recognition for Graduating Students The Office of Student Conduct and Academic Integrity presented graduating students who volunteer to serve on the Honor Council or the Student Conduct Board with white cords to be worn during commencement ceremonies. “These cords acknowledge their dedication and time given to serving the VCU community through their service on the boards,” said Karen Belanger, director of the Office of Student Conduct and Academic Integrity.
5 | Highlights
Military Affiliated Students Expand their Reach The Student Veterans Association (SVA) grew tremendously with an increase in student involvement, programs and events. “We have held more student events and have seen a rise in the number of attendees,” said Stephen Ross, director of Military Student Services.
Some of the other student events that took place included weekly yoga, recognition for veterans during a VCU men’s basketball game and an employment networking event.
“Recently the SVA joined forces with the Wounded Warrior Project to host Warrior Workouts at the Cary Street Gym. They also started working with the Travis Manion Foundation to support Chimborazo Elementary School beautification efforts.”
Making it REAL in Rec Sports Recreational Sports continued to be intentional in utilizing the department as a learning laboratory for students to engage in Relevant Experiential and Applied Learning (REAL) experiences. “This past year we enabled more than thirty student staff members to attend professional conferences and receive certifications,” said Derek Hottell, Ph.D. director of VCU Recreational Sports. “We also established the Sport Club Council to provide student governance for thirty-eight sport clubs and trained students to be American Council on Exercise (ACE) certified personal trainers and group exercise instructors.” Recreational Sports also partnered with the Center for Environmental Studies to teach three for-credit outdoor leadership courses with more than 70 students enrolled. Recreational Sports also continues to be one of the largest student employers on campus with more than 350 student employees throughout the department.
Highlights | 6
Exploring Richmond and Beyond Higher-impact programming was offered by Residential Life and Housing (RLH) staff for the 2018-2019 academic year. “These events consisted of offering residents the opportunity to attend a Broadway-scale show at the Altria Theatre, an immersive overnight trip to Washington, D.C., a musical at The Virginia Repertory Theatre and a Richmond canal cruise to learn about the history of the city and local community,” said Gavin Roark, director of
Residential Life and Housing. A total of 122 residents attended these programs and 62% of them completed post-event surveys. The responses indicated that these programs helped residents build relationships with other students inside their residence hall (83%). “Most of the residents who attended these programs indicated they would definitely attend similar events hosted by RLH in the future,” said Roark.
Leadership Training has an Impact on Students I-LEAD Connect was a three-day institute to help students develop skills that will serve them as leaders in any situation regardless of role, organization, or environment. Held in Massanetta Springs, VA, the program featured 51 student leaders and 10 staff members from various departments across campus. “The students conducted a leadership exploration and development in both small and large groups,” said Justin Raibolt, coordinator for Student Leadership and Civic Engagement, University Student Commons and Activities.
7 | Highlights
“This allowed an opportunity for students to recommit to the goals set through the original program. It also led to many students exploring new relationships and instilled in them the motivation to carry what they learned back to campus.” Some students learned to take more risks and challenge the process while other students felt more connected. “I-LEAD showed me that I don’t have to do anything by myself,” said a student.“They showed me that I always have family at school to support me and my meaning of life is much more than my leadership role.”
Increasing the Flu Vaccine Rate University Student Health Services concluded a three year quality improvement effort aimed at increasing the percent of the VCU student population that received the influenza vaccine. “A new process was initiated at patient check-in that prompted the student to answer whether or not they had received the vaccine,” said Margaret Roberson, M.D., director, University Student Health Services.
There was a significant improvement of 7% in the flu vaccine rate throughout the 3-year time frame in which this study took place. Other strategies employed included increased utilization of social media and off-site clinics in student gathering places such as the University Student Commons and Cabell Library.
“If the student had not received it yet and expressed an interest in doing so, they were able to receive the vaccine during their visit.”
New Events for Families New Student and Family Programs piloted a few family events to gauge interest for a monthly event series and to help promote the rollout of the VCU Family Council which launched in the Fall of 2019. “Many families expressed an interest in having regular monthly events at or around VCU to connect to other families and their students,” said Lynanne Yndestad, director of New Student and Family Programs.
“Our final event was a photo booth for friends and family of our students participating in the Lavender Graduation Ceremony in April,” said Yndestad. “Many of the attendees participating in that ceremony took photos with the props and rainbow Polaroid film provided to commemorate the special occasion.”
In February, the office hosted their first event at Wine and Design in Richmond where more than 40 VCU family members and students attended. Due to the popularity, a second event was held in March.
Highlights | 8
New Learning Specialist Program Student Accessibility and Educational Opportunity founded the Learning Specialist program which provides students with disabilities the opportunity to receive one-on-one coaching from a graduate learning specialist. During the academic year, 88 individual students met with the graduate learning specialist and more than 300 meetings were held.
Collaborations Abound for the SMC Amendment, one of the eight media outlets part of the Student Media Center (SMC), partnered with the MCV Campus and the Medical Literary Messenger to produce “Ablation.” The new initiative was co-edited by students on both the Monroe Park and MCV Campuses. “Ablation is a literary art journal that features creative written and visual work by students, faculty and staff around issues related to the medical field,” said Allison Dyche, director of the Student Media Center.
9 | Highlights
In addition, WVCW Radio partnered with Emanata, the SMC’s comics anthology, to recreate the final concert of the Beatles. The concert was held on Jan. 30 on the third floor outdoor patio of Cabell Library and student artists from Emanata did a live mural drawing in the style of “Yellow Submarine” on the windows of the patio.
New Peer Health Education Program In Fall 2018, the Wellness Resource Center launched its Peer Health Education program to bring peer-to-peer health education to the VCU community. “The Peer Health Educators at VCU are a diverse group of leaders, role models, advocates and friends,” said Lisa Joyner, director of the Wellness Resource Center. “To date there are more than 45 Peer Health Educators in the program.” Through leadership, education and awareness, Peer Health Educators provide quality, innovative and inclusive programs and events to meet the health needs of all VCU students. During the 2018-2019 academic year, the Peer Health Educators conducted more than 50 presentations ranging in topic areas from sexual health to alcohol and other drugs to well-being and mindfulness.
Students Take on SuperPod Projects The VCU Emerging Leaders Program recognizes and supports the development and engagement of emerging student leaders at the university through a selective one-year scholarship program. “Selected ELP students will take part in a first-year leadership experience through curricular and co-curricular programs that aim to develop young leaders,” said Rebecca Halligan, assistant director of VCU LEAD. During the past academic year, students completed six group or “SuperPod”
projects. “The projects ranged from a plan to increase awareness about RamPantry and food insecurity on college campuses, to a college survival guide and plans to develop a sustainable garden space,” noted Halligan. Each year the program matches a first-year student with a second-year mentor who guides them through their first-year at VCU and their ELP leadership experience.
Highlights | 10
By the Numbers Campus Health and Wellbeing1 Student Health Services Health Services Utilization 12,074 students served, approximately 43% of the total VCU student population and 38,914 total encounters for services. es.
Top reported factors impacting students’ academic performance: • Stress • Anxiety • Sleep • Depression • Cold/Flu 11 | By the numbers
Most sought out health and wellness information • Stress reduction • How to help someone in distress • Sleep difficulties • Depression • Physical activity
Mental Health Educational Outreach University Counseling Services (UCS) offered 62 trainings and events and impacted more than 6,900 students. The Wellness Resource Center delivered 140 in-person mental health programs and impacted more than 3,600 students.
Health Education and Wellness Promotion The Stall Seat Journal distributed 26 editions a total of 15,732 postings. 3
In-Person Health Education
297 programs and events held with 9,500+ participants and social media reach of 4,746 followers (A 19% increase over one year).
Mental Health Services Utilization2 UCS and Student Health Services together served 4,553 students with 19,362 total encounters for services.
Athletic and Physical Education 21,547 students used Recreational Sports facilities and educational programs
2,413 students participated in intramural sports 1,349 students participated in sports clubs 3,903 students participated in Outdoor Adventure Program
7,349 students participated in group exercise By the numbers | 12
Certifications 600 American Red Cross First Responder certifications
American Council on Exercise Personal Trainer certifications
24 lifeguard certifications 5 water safety instructors 6 lifeguard instructors Student Co-curriculum Engagement and Leadership Development 16,887 total students served through Student Leadership and Engagement programs
695 students served as peer leaders
432 registered student organizations 38 fraternity and sorority chapters 1,395 members of fraternities and sororities 1,227 student employees
working in DSA units
374,096 hours worked by student employees $3,326,140 paid to students through employment 6
13 | By the numbers
Addressing Student Needs and Concerns
273 Student Code of Conduct cases
414 VCU Honor System cases involving academic dishonesty
1,162 total visits to RamPantry (82% returned visits)
61 Academic Integrity educational trainings offered
2,072 military student education benefits processed
1,523 students served through Off-Campus Student
1,373 student receiving assistance through the Dean of Students office (11% one year increase)
Office of Student Accessibility and Educational Opportunity
1,028 requests for accommodation
1,893 students who disclosed needs (23% increase over one year and a 137% increase over the past three
309 Individual Learning Specialist Services
514:1 student to case manager ratio
4,857 exams facilitated (22% one-year increase)
Service Learning and Civic Engagement 2,888 students participating in community service 13,478 hours of community service7
By the numbers | 14
Housing and University Commons Occupancy 6,585 total beds assigned
Students in Living-Learning Communities housing programs
246 in the 13
455 in three themed communities
98% occupancy rate 84% on-campus Freshmen to Sophomore Retention
644 in the four VCU
Living Learning Programs
Education and Engagement Programs in Residential Life & Housing
1,624 programs 18,478 total participants
Facility management and use of space 27,537 hours of reservable space in the University Student Commons used by student organizations. 32% of total annual bookings and a 10% increase over one year.
15 | By the numbers
DSA Professional Staff Accomplishments 8 served in a leadership role at a national professional organization
10 served in a leadership role at a regional professional organization
8 national awards 5 regional awards
Professional Organizations • YWCA Young Women’s Leadership Alliance • Richmond Court-Appointed Special Advocate • Elon Alumni Richmond Chapter Board • American College Personnel Association (ACPA) • Southern Association for College Student Affairs • National Association for Campus Activities • Association of College Unions International-Institute for Leadership Development and Education • Richmond SportsBackers Board • Southeastern Association of Housing Officers • Virginia Association of College and University Housing Officers • National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association • Association of Outdoor Recreation and Education • American Canoe Association • Virginia Recreational Sports Association FOOTNOTES 1.American College Health Association-National College Health Assessment II: Virginia Commonwealth University, Spring 2018. 2.Unique student count and total encounters include both clinic visits to University Student Health Services and University Counseling Services. 3.The StallSeat Journal provides practical information and VCU facts on issues related to health, safety, emotional well-being, and other health and wellness related issues. 4.Peer Leaders are students who have been selected and trained in a leadership role to deliver educational services and promote active citizenship among their peers. 5.Number of student employees and the hours worked include data from all students-undergrad or grad/professional for any type of student employment including hourly work, work-study, and Graduate assistant work. 6.Dollar amount paid back to student through employment only included those student employees who received no tuition benefit. Graduate assistants data were excluded. 7.Hours of community services include services provided by sponsored Student Organizations, Fraternity and Sorority Life, as well as the Student Engagement and Leadership office.
By the numbers | 16
The annual report shares a glimpse of the work accomplished by the VCU Division of Student Affairs during the 2018-2019 academic year.
Published on Nov 26, 2019
The annual report shares a glimpse of the work accomplished by the VCU Division of Student Affairs during the 2018-2019 academic year.