VCU at 50: Symposium to explore university’s history since MCV-RPI merger

Higher education leaders, faculty experts and notable Virginia Commonwealth University alumni will gather Nov. 30 at a daylong symposium marking the 50th anniversary of the merger that created VCU.

Commemorating History: Challenges and Opportunities will examine the 1968 merger of the Medical College of Virginia and Richmond Professional Institute. The symposium will explore how VCU has evolved during the past five decades, said VCU President Michael Rao, Ph.D.

“When the Wayne Commission formed [VCU] in 1968, they merged two institutions that had long focused on serving the public good,” Rao said. “This year presents an important opportunity to celebrate and reflect on our 50 years as one institution.”

The symposium also will serve as a forum to discuss the university’s “complicated and difficult history and how we commemorate on campus,” Rao said, alluding to the complexity of the MCV-RPI merger, the recently completed audit of Confederate symbols that exist on VCU’s campuses and the larger discussions at VCU about the ways in which history is and will be commemorated.

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