Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 60.83
Liaison Parker Long
Submission Date March 2, 2018
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Virginia Commonwealth University
PA-3: Participatory Governance

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.25 / 3.00 Joseph Costa
Sustainability Projects and Program Coordinator
Sustainability
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Do the institution’s students have a representative body through which they can participate in governance (e.g. a student council)? :
Yes

Do the institution’s students have an elected representative on the institution’s highest governing body?:
Yes

A brief description of the bodies and mechanisms through which students are engaged in governance, including information to support each affirmative response above:

The Student Government Association (SGA) is the student-led governing body for the entire VCU Monroe Park Campus that works to represent students by working with the University administrators to communicate the desires, concerns, and ideas of the student body.

As a body, the organization promotes student involvement and actively seeks out and represents student opinion not only by working with students but also by ensuring student presence on committees and councils around the university. Furthermore, the SGA is responsible for allocating money from the student activity fee to student organizations.

To accomplish their goals and meet the desires of the student body that they serve, the SGA of the Monroe Park Campus is divided into three branches in order to ensure efficiency. They are the Executive Branch, the Judicial Branch, and the Legislative Branch.

VCU SGA has 2 appointed representatives that report and raise student concerns to the Board of Visitors.


Do the institution’s staff members have a representative body through which they can participate in governance (e.g. a staff council)?:
Yes

Do the institution’s non-supervisory staff members have an elected representative on the institution’s highest governing body?:
Yes

A brief description of the bodies and mechanisms through which staff are engaged in governance, including information to support each affirmative response above:

Any staff member can join the Staff Senate, an organization filled with engaged and enthusiastic members from across Virginia Commonwealth University’s diverse community. Their main goals are: to serve as a representative body for staff to serve on university committees; to provide a forum for the exchange of information; to provide referrals for staff questions or concerns; and to advocate for staff issues across the University including, but not limited to, professional development, shared University governance, and workplaces that foster a spirit of respect, dignity, unity and collaboration.

VCU Staff Senate has an appointed representative that reports and raises staff concerns to the Board of Visitors.


Do the institution’s teaching and research faculty have a representative body through which they can participate in governance (e.g. a faculty senate)?:
Yes

Do the institution’s teaching and research faculty have an elected representative on the institution’s highest governing body? :
Yes

A brief description of the bodies and mechanisms through which teaching and research faculty are engaged in governance, including information to support each affirmative response above:

All faculty members can participate in the Faculty Senate, which seeks to further and disseminate knowledge and professional skills through teaching, study, research, creativity, exhibition, performance, and provision of community service. An additional objective will be to help insure through investigation, examination, comment and recommendation that the educational goal of the University is being realized by the policies and procedures employed in the University.

VCU Faculty Senate has an appointed representative that reports and raises faculty concerns to the Board of Visitors.


Does the institution have written policies and procedures to identify and engage external stakeholders (i.e. local residents) in land use planning, capital investment projects, and other institutional decisions that affect the community?:
Yes

A copy of the written policies and procedures:
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The policies and procedures:

The Division of Community Engagement assists VCU’s faculty, staff, and students who are involved with service-learning classes or community-based research projects; we address the continuing studies and professional development needs of adults in the region and beyond; we offer programs for the community through the resources of the Mary and Frances Youth Center and the Carver Neighborhood space; we have launched ASPiRE, VCU's first living-learning residential hall with a focus on community engagement, and much more. The Division also administers the Council for Community Engagement, a representative body from all academic and academic-support units committed to creating a culture of community engagement at VCU.

Recognized as a community-engaged institution by the Carnegie Foundation, VCU is one of only 54 universities to be designated by the Carnegie Foundation as “Community Engaged” with “Very High Research Activity.”

As outlined in VCU's Quest for Distinction, the Division of Community Engagement is prepared to lead the university in becoming a national model for community engagement and regional impact. By serving as a portal for access, the division connects the university with the larger community and engages faculty, staff and students in service.

Additionally a full-time neighborhood outreach director works closely with the community, the VCU Police external relations officer and the VCU Neighborhood Team. In addition, a VCU neighborhood liaison group was established in 2013. With representatives from Carver, the Fan, Jackson Ward, Oregon Hill and Randolph, the group strives to share information and resources, pursue common goals and develop activities that enhance our communities.


Does the institution have formal participatory or shared governance bodies through which community members representing the interests of the following stakeholder groups can regularly participate in institutional governance?:
Yes or No
Local government and/or educational organizations No
Private sector organizations No
Civil society (e.g. NGOs, NPOs) No

A brief description of the bodies and mechanisms through which external stakeholders are engaged in institutional governance (including information about each stakeholder group selected above):
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The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
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