News Release

President Wilcox Leads First-Ever Virtual University Forum

Buena Vista, Va.—President Reed N. Wilcox led Southern Virginia University’s first-ever Virtual University forum on Friday, Aug. 28. Streaming live on YouTube, he discussed the importance of the University’s Healthy Campus Plan and Four Pillars of Personal Responsibility.

“When this school started, its mission was to provide refuge from the spiritual storm that’s out in the world,” said President Wilcox. “This year, in addition to that, there’s the viral storm. So, we’ve invested a lot to make sure that campus is safer.”

Some of those investments for Fall 2020 include HEPA-grade filtration, ionic purification, outdoor classroom pavilions, and AirPods Pro for every student and faculty member to enhance communication while masking. The University also established Four Pillars of Personal Responsibility—masking, sanitizing, distancing, and reporting—as practices to further prevent the spread of COVID-19.

“We have to expect that there are going to be positive cases,” said President Wilcox. “We believe it will happen far less here because of the things we have done…but we’re ready for this…The important thing is that we follow the principles that we’ve been talking about.”

President Wilcox reviewed scientific studies to explain how each part of the Healthy Campus Plan helps prevent the virus from spreading. By following the plan, he said, each member of campus can follow the message of the University’s traditional hymn, “Love One Another.”

“Everything we’re doing here is both about keeping ourselves healthy as a student body, but also about keeping everyone around us healthy.”

Considering these new campus practices and structures, President Wilcox thanked everyone for their positive responses and encouraged them to be of good cheer as these changes are “For Now, Not Forever.”

“The most important thing we can do is remember who is our best friend, and who we can always count on,” said President Wilcox. “And that is our Savior Jesus Christ. I promise you that’s true. Stay close to Him and we’ll be able to do this together.”

Following President Wilcox, University Founder Glade Knight offered a dedicatory prayer for this unprecedented school year.

During the forum, President Wilcox also made announcements about key changes in University leadership naming April Harris as the Dean of Housing, Bill Braddy as Dean of Students, and James Lambert as Executive Vice President of Academic Operations.