The Columns

A Message from the Vice-President of Student Affairs

— by on August 17th, 2017

I love this time of year! After a couple of months of relative quiet on campus, students are trickling back on to campus. The football team arrived last week, and this week soccer, volleyball and field hockey will join them. Our Pre-Orientation trip leaders, Resident Advisers and Community Assistants arrive next week to begin their training. On their heels we will welcome almost half of the Class of 2021 as they join us to begin the Leading Edge Pre-Orientation experiences. Joseph Monninger in Eternal on the Water wrote that “few places mix together the young and the old as well as colleges do,” I truly believe that and feel so fortunate to be one of the old ones who is a part of that mix.

While we eagerly anticipate the year ahead, the incidents in Charlottesville last weekend are a solemn reminder that these are challenging times. In his message to the community on Monday, President Dudley spoke eloquently about our institutional values and the type of community that we are committed to maintaining here at Washington and Lee.

Knowing that you might have questions about our approach to safety and security, you will see that I have placed that information at the beginning of this message. We will also be working to facilitate conversations and to support our students as they grapple with difficult issues as part of a community. We believe that is a critical part of their education.

Safety and Security

The safety and security of our students, faculty and staff is always a top priority. We have and will continue to evaluate our security and emergency plans in light of the events in Charlottesville, making changes as appropriate, and we continue to work very closely with our local/county/state law enforcement partners to prepare possible responses to any concerns that arise.

We have a number of emergency communications tools and resources on campus, including our General Alerts text notification system, to which all students are automatically subscribed. Parents may sign up to receive these text alerts at go.wlu.edu/general-alerts. We also offer a mobile safety app called LiveSafe. In the coming days and weeks, during welcome events and orientation activities, we will address safety and security related issues. Our Public Safety Liaison Program, which began several years ago, matches a public safety officer with every residential area on campus. These officers work to develop relationships and serve as resources for their designated areas.

We are committed to student safety and will be reminding the community in a message at the beginning of the year how we can all be a part of those efforts. If your child ever feels unsafe on campus, s/he should call Public Safety at 458-8999, dial 911 from off-campus, or use the Live Safe app.

Class Dean Structure

Each class has a designated student affairs dean who serves as the point person for that class. The dean assignments are:

Jason Rodocker, First Years
jrodocker@wlu.edu 540-458-8753

Megan Hobbs, Sophomores
mhobbs@wlu.edu 540-458-4408
For Fall Term Dave Leonard (dleonard@wlu.edu 540-458-8752) will be the primary contact for sophomores while Dean Hobbs is on family leave.

Tammi Simpson, Juniors
tsimpson@wlu.edu 540-458-4111

Tammy Futrell, Seniors
tfutrell@wlu.edu 540-458-8766

If your student has concerns, please encourage her or him to reach out to the appropriate class dean. The class deans can also be the first point of contact for you if there are significant issues. Dean Dave Leonard and I will be working closely with the class deans to provide additional support.
In the event of an emergency after hours or on the weekends, please contact Washington and Lee Public Safety at 540-458-8999. They can quickly contact Student Health and Counseling on-call staff or the student affairs dean who is on call.

Career and Professional Development

Career and Professional Development (CaPD) is offering three career exploration trips for students during Reading Days, October 12th-13th. Each trip offers students the opportunity to visit with alumni working in various industries to learn about different career paths, tips for entry, and internship and job opportunities. The application deadline for all trips is September 17, 2017. Space is very limited – students should apply as soon as possible!

The Economics trip to Washington, D.C. is geared towards students interested in majoring in economics or those who have already declared economics as a major. We will visit federal agencies, public interest groups, lobbying firms, not-for-profits, media outlets and think tanks, including The Brookings Institute, The Federal Reserve, the National Economic Council at the White House Executive Office Building, Economists, Inc., Berkeley Research Group, No Kid Hungry and the Heritage Foundation. In addition to learning about careers, this trip is a great way to begin networking with W&L alumni. For more information and application details, students should login to LexLink using their W&L credentials. Search JOB ID 6044. If students are unable to login, students must submit a resume and brief statement no more than 150 words answering why do you want to go on this trip and what do you hope to gain from the experience to Lauren Jensen at ljensen@wlu.edu.

The Energy and the Environment trip to Washington, D.C. is for students from any major. Students will have the opportunity to network with alumni, get leads on internships and jobs, and enjoy two full days of site visits to firms in various industries (research, engineering, environment/conservation, government, finance, and more relating to energy and the environment). Students should login to LexLink using their W&L credentials. Search JOB ID 5996. If students are unable to login, students must submit a resume to Molly Steele at msteele@wlu.edu.

The Exploring Careers in NYC trip will take students to New York, New York. This trip is geared towards humanities majors in any class. We will be visiting alumni and employers in a variety of fields including publications, museums, public service jobs, advertising, PR, non-profit, start-ups and more. Past visits have included: Palladium Consulting, Saatchi & Saatchi, Hearst, Men’s Health, the Michael J. Fox Foundation, American Red Cross, AT Kearney, BlackRock, Marcus & Millichap, and Grey Advertising. This will be a great opportunity for students to explore whether a particular career may be a good fit, the type of positions available in these industries, and how to best position oneself as a qualified candidate. Perhaps even more importantly, it will be a great way to begin networking with W&L alumni. For more information and application details, students should login to LexLink using their W&L credentials. Search JOB ID 6020. If students are unable to login, students must submit a resume to John Jensen at jensenj@wlu.edu.

CaPD offers a number of programs and opportunities throughout the year for students in all classes. You can follow them on Facebook @wlucareerdevelopment and Instagram or Twitter @wlucareers.

63rd Annual Parents and Family Weekend

Online registration for P&FW is now open at http://go.wlu.edu/pfw-registration. You can find more information about the weekend, including the schedule of events, at http://go.wlu.edu/pfw. The deadline to register for the weekend is Friday, September 22.

Many parents take advantage of Habitat Hotel, a fund-raising effort by our student Habitat for Humanity Chapter that expects to raise approximately $20,000 this fall for the construction of a Habitat House in Lexington. Faculty and staff open their homes to families for the weekend and families make a donation to the local Habitat chapter in exchange. If you would like to make a reservation or ask a question about Habitat Hotel, contact Thomas Thagard ‘18 or Owen Brannigan ‘18 at habitat@mail.wlu.edu.

Sustainability Initiatives and Education

At Washington and Lee the Office of Sustainability resides within Student Affairs. The program is built around our students’ interests in sustainability efforts on campus. We have a student-led and student-run Compost Crew that collects food waste from our dining halls, a Sustainability Internship program, the Sustainability-themed residential house, and the Sustainability Leadership pre-orientation trip. In addition to these programs, we grow food for the dining halls and Campus Kitchen in our Campus Garden, work on energy savings initiatives, help with recycling and other waste reduction programs, assist with student research projects, and partner with academic and administrative offices across campus. For more information about these initiatives, please visit http://gogreen.wlu.edu or contact Kim Hodge, Director of Sustainability Initiatives and Education at (540) 458-4041 or hodgek@wlu.edu.

Residential Life

All students residing on campus have a member of the Residential Life staff (Resident Advisers for first-years and Community Assistants for upper-division students) assigned to them who serves as a live-in resource. RAs and CAs are trained to help their residents with academic, social, and facilities-related concerns and will refer students to appropriate resources if necessary. Two RAs/CAs serve in on-call rotations and remain available to any student in need on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday nights. The Residential Life staff also coordinate activities and community programs for their residents and send regular notices of other campus events.

All residence hall dates and deadlines for the 2017-2018 academic year can be found on our website.

Sexual Assault Prevention

W&L takes the issue of sexual assault seriously. We have been engaged in prevention efforts for many years. We will continue to focus on bystander intervention and will provide training on that for all incoming undergraduate and law students this fall.. We will again provide training and programming to foster greater awareness of the resources available on and off campus and of the policy and procedures in place at the University to address complaints of sexual misconduct.

Student Health and Counseling Services

The Student Health Center (SHC) is located on the lower floor of Davis Hall, with our main entrance on Early-Fielding Way, the alley that runs between Washington St. and Lee Ave. We provide primary healthcare services for all full-time students during the academic year, including outpatient visits and overnight care in a 7 bed infirmary. When undergraduate classes are in session, the SHC is open with a nurse on duty 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The SHC is closed for clinical services during Thanksgiving and Winter breaks and during the summer. The Physician and Physician Assistant have office hours by appointment Monday through Friday, and are available on call whenever undergraduate or law classes are in session. Students may seek evaluation and treatment of minor illness or injury from the nurse on a walk-in basis 24/7. Laboratory, radiology and emergency medical services beyond the scope of care at the SHC are available at Carilion Stonewall Jackson Hospital, located a mile from campus. Some surgical and specialist physician services are available in Lexington, and more advanced care is available in nearby communities such as Fishersville, Charlottesville or Roanoke.

Counseling and psychiatric services are available to all students on a confidential basis at the University Counseling Center (UCC), located in the Early-Fielding University Center. A psychiatrist and three professional counselors work with students on a wide range of topics including anxiety, depression, concerns with relationships, academic problems, sexuality issues, eating disorders, incidents of sexual assault, and substance abuse. The UCC is open 8:30 AM-5 PM weekdays for scheduled appointments, and the 11 o’clock hour is reserved each day for urgent counseling needs. A counselor is on-call 24/7 when classes are in session, and the counselor on call can be reached nights and weekends when the UCC is closed by contacting the nurse at the SHC. The UCC is closed for clinical services during Thanksgiving and Winter breaks and during the summer. Emergency mental health services are available at Carilion Stonewall Jackson Hospital or through the Behavioral Health Crisis Hotline for the Rockbridge Area Community Services Board (1-855-222-2046).

By University policy, all students are required on an annual basis to provide evidence of U.S.-based, ACA compliant health insurance coverage to supplement the medical care provided by the University. This coverage may be in the form of an individual policy, inclusion in a family policy, or enrollment in a student health insurance plan offered through the University. All international students are required to enroll in the student health insurance plan offered through the University. All full-time students must complete an on-line health insurance enrollment or waiver request annually. Students may contact the SHC or visit our Student Health Insurance web site for enrollment information and assistance in filing claims for coverage under the student health insurance plan offered through the University.

An annual student health fee assures access to Student Health & Counseling (SH&C) for all full-time students, and also serves to pre-pay the co-payment and/or deductible that insurance plans typically require at the time of a medical visit. Students will be asked to bring their health insurance card each time that they come for a visit. The SHC bills health insurance companies for office visits, and will accept insurance payments as payment in full for such services. Other covered services such as certain procedures, preventive services and immunizations may be billed to insurance, as well. Some services and medications dispensed by the SHC cannot be billed to insurance, and payment may be made by cash, check or billing to a student’s University account. A receipt will be provided for all such payments that may be submitted by the student to health insurance or flexible spending plans for consideration.

As always, if I can be of assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact me at sevans@wlu.edu or 540-458-8754.