Culture Working Group

The Culture Working Group was asked to consider how we can improve the University's distinctive culture. Some aspects of the University's culture need to change so that we can achieve our goal: to ensure that UVA and its Grounds are a safe and welcoming place to learn, teach, conduct research, recreate, and live for all members of the community. In addressing this issue, the group considered that UVA currently requires first-year students to live on Grounds, with most upper-class students living off-Grounds. Very few students, however, live with their families and commute to the University. In recommending actionable steps, the working group was encouraged to consider the following:

  • What are the strengths of the UVA culture, and how can they be leveraged to further improve University culture?
  • What issues of the more general culture-21st century America and Virginia, Contemporary Millennials, popular culture-pose opportunities or obstacles in improving University culture?
  • What is the role of residential arrangements in making the college experience more or less safe?
  • What are the characteristics of a safe residential arrangement?
  • What is the role of student leadership in changing or sustaining the culture?
  • How can we foster more options in social life, especially for first-year students?
  • How can we reduce the role of alcohol in student social life at UVA?
  • Reporting social norms to students has had some success in reducing peer pressure to over-consume alcohol. Is there a place for the social norming approach in promoting healthy relationships and healthy sexuality?

This charge may evolve as the working group delves deeper into its topic.




  • Sharon L. Hostler, M.D., Working Group Chair
  • Kristen S. Allen
  • Catherine P. Bradshaw
  • Shelley Wright Brindle
  • Brittany E. (Britt) Brown
  • Donna L Byrd
  • Whittington W. (Whitt) Clement
  • Timothy L. (Tim) Davis
  • Charles R. Gamper
  • Christopher G. (Bo) Greenwood
  • Winborne L. Hamlin
  • Victoria D. Harker
  • Sanda D. Iliescu
  • Melissa C. (Missy) Jenkins
  • Peter E. Mahoney
  • Jane Miller
  • Stephen A. Nash
  • Caroline L. Parker
  • Susan B. Rives
  • Michael B. Schwartz
  • Sophie Trawalter
  • Denise M. Hubbard, Working Group Staff
  • Joseph F. (Joey) Carls, Working Group Staff


To report an incident of bias, hazing or sexual misconduct, please use the Just Report It site.