President’s Posts

Michael Rao, Ph.D.


Last week, VCU’s Board of Visitors’ meeting began with a moment of silence to honor the memory of Adam Oakes. As I shared with our Board, I talked to Adam’s family – the pain his family is suffering is unfathomable.

No parent should receive a call from a college president offering sympathy for the loss of their child. I’m sickened by what happened and continue to urge anyone who has information to speak up and contact Richmond or VCU Police.

I have charged the Division of Student Affairs with conducting an independent, comprehensive review of Greek Life at the university. This review will examine all major aspects of Greek Life at VCU including:

  • Governance, relationship with university administration and university oversight, including the role of advisors and the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life
  • Accountability of members and chapters including incident reporting processes and transparency around outcomes
  • Issues related to hazing, alcohol and drug abuse and sexual violence
  • Policies and practices related to recruitment and education of new members
  • Member experience such as social, educational, philanthropic activities, and academic success; connections and commitment to VCU and the Richmond community; and general practices related to inclusion, safety and well-being
  • Alumni involvement

The goal is for something like this to never happen again and to build a national model that promotes health and safety and creates a climate of respect and inclusion that is conducive to academic success.

Adam and his family deserve answers and there will be accountability. We will honor Adam’s life by setting the bar highest for the very organizations he wanted so much to be part of.

Categories Community, News, Periodic update, To VCU, Uncategorized
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