President’s Posts

Michael Rao, Ph.D.


To the VCU and VCU Health System Community,

As many of you may be aware, Governor Northam proposed yesterday that Virginia celebrate Juneteenth as a paid holiday for state workers. I am pleased to announce that VCU and VCU Health System will celebrate the Juneteenth holiday this coming Friday, June 19. This holiday, which has been celebrated since the late 1800’s, provides an opportunity to commemorate the end of slavery in the United States and to reflect with family and friends on advancing freedom and justice for all people.

University employees will be able to take the day off as paid leave. University employees who are unable to take the day off on Friday should notify their timekeeper, and will have up to one year to use their accrued holiday leave. 

VCU Health System benefited team members will be provided with additional PTO hours equivalent to a day prorated based on their FTE to be used on Juneteenth with manager approval, or at a time that is meaningful to them thereafter. The additional PTO is also eligible to be cashed out at any future period as well as during the election period of July 3 – July 10 for a payout date of July 17.

Since VCU’s summer courses are being conducted online, faculty will work with students to coordinate lectures and assignments around the Juneteenth holiday.

VCU Dental Clinics will be closed on Friday. Other Health Sciences students will receive instructions from their deans about any changes in their clinical experiences.

It is an important time to reflect on our history and to recognize it has not always been just. Engaging in meaningful reflection of our history and developing new activities and expanded opportunities to promote diversity and racial equity now will lead us toward a better future.


Michael Rao
President, VCU and VCU Health System

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