University of Virginia holds virtual town hall

University of Virginia holds virtual town hall
President Ryan and other UVA officials held a virtual town hall to answer community questions (Source: WVIR)

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - The University of Virginia held a virtual town hall Friday, August 7, to address questions from the UVA community.

One of the questions raised to the university was if it planned to again delay students returning, as well as the start of classes. UVA had recently announced a two-week delay for undergraduate classes, as well as when those students could move in.

“Our current plan is to make a go-no-go decision by the end of August,” UVA President Jim Ryan said. “We recognize that this one delay is difficult enough and people need time to plan.”

Ryan and other UVA officials also addressed concerns when it comes to reducing tuition, dining and housing costs for this school year: “We have no plans now to discount tuition,” Ryan said. “Going into this year we knew it was going to be an unusual year and rather than think about discounting tuition, what we’ve decided to do was provide a free class in J term and a free class in summer term.”

As far as housing and dining costs, there is talks about reducing the price to account for lost time on UVA Grounds, but no set plans yet.

“We’re working through those logistical issues, but on the macro issue. Yes, we will be providing adjustments to housing and dining due to the phased return,” UVA Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer J.J. Davis said.

Another hot topic during the event was social distancing and how it would be enforced.

“The enforcement process that I talked about before applies to both the individual student and organizations,” University Counselor Tim Heaphy said. “They can also take action against an organization, be it a fraternity or sorority or another student organization if there’s a collective decision to violate the norms.”

In severe cases, students and organizations can be suspended.

A similar town hall event for parents and Charlottesville community members is expected to be held sometime next week. UVA leaders plan to share another update no later than August 28.

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