University of Virginia

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The University of Virginia (UVa, or informally, The University) is a major economic and development partner for Charlottesville and Albemarle County. The current president is Teresa Sullivan, who took office on August 1, 2010.

The Central Grounds are technically in Albemarle County, although Charlottesville completely surrounds the original grounds.

In August 2014, the University welcomed it largest first-year class ever with 3,690 incoming students. [1]


The Virginia General Assembly granted a charter for the University on January 25, 1825.[2] It opened to students in March 1825 with 123 attendees and a faculty of 8. [3] [4]

In 1987, the United Nations designated the Rotunda and Jefferson's Academical Village as World Heritage sites.[5]

Slavery and the University

The University could not have been built without slave labor, as well as maintenance and cleaning once the Academical Village was open. Enslaved laborers lived in the basement of the new buildings. Students were not allowed to bring their slaves with them, but many did so anyway and housed them off-grounds. Some slaves were purchased directly by the University such as Lewis Commodore who was bought in 1832 for $580. His duties including ringing the bell and opening the library. [6]

Sullivan resignation

On June 10, 2012, Helen E. Dragas, Rector of the BoV, announced that Teresa Sullivan would retire effective August 15, 2012 after a two-year tenure. [7] On June 19, 2012, the McIntire School of Commerce Dean Carl P. Zeithaml was named interim president effective August 16, 2012.[8] However, he announced three days later he would suspend all duties related to the presidency while the Board of Visitors considered a vote to reinstate Sullivan. [9] Following a "Rally for Honor" protest, which drew over 1,500 Sullivan supporters to protest on the lawn, an emergency meeting of the Board met on June 26, 2012 after which Sullivan was unanimously reinstated as president of the University.[10]


Online Learning

On July 17, 2012, the University announced they would begin making online classes available in fall 2013. The classes, created in collaboration with a technology corporation based in Stanford, California called Coursera, would be free of charge and would generate no revenue for the University.[11]

Transportation and the University

The University is currently[when?] implementing strategies to reduce the number of employees who drive alone while commuting to work. The transportation demand management program (TDM) is also intended to reduce demand for parking spaces as the university continues its strategy of in-fill development.[12]

Economic impact on the community

There are over 12,500 employees at UVa, with an additional 5,500 working at the University Medical Center. These figures represent 15 percent of the total employment for Charlotteasville and Albemarle County. Over 20,000 students contribute to the economy.[13] The University is holding a capital campaign to raise $3 billion by December 31, 2010, and has raised $2.2 billion as of early December 2010.[14] Sullivan has claimed that there is enough physical space to accommodate such an expansion. However, she has said there is not enough faculty to do so.[15] The expansion would likely promote a focus towards science, technology, engineering and mathematics, areas of study being requested by state officials.[16] Outgoing vice president Leonard Sandridge said in a February 2011 interview he felt U.Va could grow within its existing footprint within the next 25 years without having to expand to land near Birdwood.[17]

For the 2010-11 academic year, UVa has 14,297 undergraduate and 6,598 graduate students[5]. UVa officials are also exploring the possibility of expanding enrollments by 1,400 undergraduates over the next five years[5]. President Sullivan told the Chamber of Commerce on November 30, 2010 that the growth will not detract from the community's quality of life[18]. UVA received a record number of applications for the class of 2015, with 23,942 students applying. [19]

Connections to area planning

The University of Virginia participates in local planning as a member of several planning groups. Alice J. Raucher, U.Va Architect, is a non-voting member of the Charlottesville Planning Commission. The University's Senior Land Use Officer in the Office of the Architect, Julia Monteith, serves as a non-voting member of the MPO Policy Board and the Albemarle County Planning Commission. At those meetings, she often reports on news from the University Transit Service.

The University office of Architect released a Grounds Plan in 2008 that outlines a strategy for infill growth.[20]

UVa oversaw the building of the North Grounds Connector, completed in 2006.

Master planning at the University is overseen by the University of Virginia Master Planning Council.

The Office of Community Relations coordinates interaction with citizens of Charlottesville and Albemarle County that are affected by the university's growth.

Architectural preservation

In 2010, the UVA Board of Visitors approved spending $22.9 million to renovate the Rotunda. The leaking roof will be repaired and the Corinthian decorations on the columns will be replaced[5]. Funding will come from private donations as well as a request from the state of Virginia.

Future planning

In 2009, the University instituted the Grounds Plan that will direct land-use planning for the next 20 years.[21] The Plan is organized into four sections: The Setting, Framework and Systems, Program and Precincts, and Case Studies.[22]

Meanwhile, the admissions office offered 7,750 places to the class of 2015 with an eye towards a class size of 3,360. [23] That's an increase in enrollment of 120 over the class of 2014.

The school began a new strategic planning process with a series of public forums in December 2012. [24]

See also

Three-party agreement


  1. Web. Largest class yet joins student body, Owen Robinson, Cavalier Daily, August 25, 2014, retrieved August 27, 2014.
  2. Web. This Day in Charlottesville History, City of Charlottesville, retrieved April 18, 2012.
  3. Web. Short History of the University, University of Virginia, retrieved April 18, 2012.
  4. Web. Slavery at the University of Virginia, Brendan Wolfe, Encyclopedia Virginia, Virginia Foundation for the Humanities, retrieved November 4, 2015.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 Web. UVa developing strategy for increasing enrollment, Brian McNeill, Daily Progress, November 27, 2010, retrieved November 30, 2010. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "dp" defined multiple times with different content
  6. Web. History of African-Americans at UVA, Kiera Givens, October 14, 2015, retrieved November 4, 2015.
  7. Web. UVa ousts Sullivan as president, Aaron Richardson, Daily Progress, Lee Enterprises, June 10, 2012, retrieved June 11, 2012.
  8. Web. UVa board selects commerce dean as interim president, Ted Strong & Aaron Richardson, Daily Progress, Lee Enterprises, June 19, 2012, retrieved June 21, 2012.
  9. Web. Carl Zeithaml to 'suspend' UVA interim presidency negotiations, Brianne Carter, WJLA ABC 7, June 22, 2012, retrieved June 25, 2012.
  10. Web. Timeline of Sullivan's ouster and return, The Richmond Times-Dispatch, The Daily Progress, June 26, 2012, retrieved July 18, 2012.
  11. Pedersen, Krista. "University pursues online education" Cavalier Daily. 17 July 2012. Web. 26 July 2012. <>.
  12. Tubbs, Sean. "UVa Increasing Efforts to Reduce Vehicles." Charlottesville Tomorrow News Center. 28 May 2010. Web. 09 June 2010. <>
  13. Albemarle County. Department of Community Development. Places 29: A Master Plan for the Northern Development Areas. 2009 DRAFT. Page 3-14. < /Places29_Master_Plan_3_Existing_Conditions_Future_Trends_2_2009_Complete.pdf>
  14. Web. $3 billion campaign fails to meet targets, Cavalier Daily, December 2, 2010, retrieved December 6, 2010.
  15. Web. Sullivan finishes eventful fall term, Mike Lang, Cavalier Daily, December 6, 2010, retrieved December 6, 2010.
  16. Web. At UVA, growth vs. tuition, Kyle Daly, C-VILLE Weekly, Portico Publications, January 4, 2011, retrieved August 22, 2012. Print. January 4, 2011 .
  17. Print: Sandridge talks UVa past, present and future, {{{author}}}, Daily Progress, Lee Enterprises February 6, 2011, Page .
  18. Web. Alvin Clements honored with Chamber award, Bryan McKenzie, Daily Progress, Lee Enterprises, retrieved December 1, 2010.
  19. Web. UVa sees record number of applicants, Daily Progress, Lee Enterprises, January 24, 2011, retrieved January 25, 2011.
  20. Office of Architect, retrieved on 4/9/09,
  21. Canzi, Chiara. "Planning for the next 20 years." C-Ville Weekly. 17 Nov. 2009. Web. 18 Nov. 2009. <>.
  22. Office of Architect, retrieved 11/18/09,
  23. Web. University of Virginia Offers 7,750 Applicants a Place in the Class of 2015, Dan Heuchert, University of Virginia, March 28, 2011, retrieved March 28, 2011.
  24. Web. U.Va. To Host Public Forums As Part of Strategic Planning Process, Rob Seal, UVA Today, University of Virginia, December 6, 2012, retrieved December 10, 2012.

External links