What the “Community of Trust” Looks Like

Photo credit: Ann McLean

This is one of two chained-down picnic tables outside the SPE fraternity on Madison Bowl spotted by TJC board member Ann McLean Sunday. Chained down picnic tables? Really?

Readers, send us photos and stories of what UVa’s “community of trust” looks like these days.

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Wahoo 76
Wahoo 76
7 months ago

I know what it used to look like in the late 60s. No main entrance of any dorm was locked at any hour, reflective of a community of trust around Grounds and even Charlottesville. Books and personal items could be left anywhere on Grounds and still be there a day later. Chaining a picnic table (or anything else) was NEVER considered!

I read of students being permanently expelled for writing bad checks and even cheating at cards. Cheating of any kind was an honor offense. First-year students were afraid to bring a car to Charlottesville (even Albemarle County) for fear of an honor violation, as cars were not permitted for first year students. We knew right from wrong and adhered to the right principles, in and out of the classroom. It’s really sad how the Honor System has devolved, but at least the single sanction has been restored as an option. But I bet it will never be used.

Wahoo74
Wahoo74
7 months ago
Reply to  Wahoo 76

Wahoo 76, spot on. Ditto when I attended. The Honor Code was a defining core principle of our University, a key distinction from other “top rated” public universities like Michigan and Berkeley.

It must be restored. The Jefferson Council makes that a priority. We will not give up the fight.

Last edited 7 months ago by Wahoo74
Geoffrey Close
Geoffrey Close
7 months ago

I spent my entire career in finance, and made it known that I was a UVA Grad. I may not have been the smartest one in the room, not having a Harvard MBA, actually Morgan Stanley did send me to Wharton Mid-career, but it was always known and accepted that I was the most ethical one in the room, my word weas never questioned! A community of trust leads to ethical behavior as a given. What do we need to do to get it back.
Cheating at cards was an Honor Violation, as was telling a lie inside Albemarle County, And stealing anything. It just was not done! Honor is not racist, it’s not elitist. It’s an honorable way of life, and like virginity, once it’s gone, it’s gone, and you can never get it back.

walter smith
walter smith
7 months ago
Reply to  Geoffrey Close

And it is particularly hard to recover it when the leaders do not have honor…

Wahoo74
Wahoo74
7 months ago
Reply to  Geoffrey Close

I too spent my entire 40 year career in corporate finance. My UVA Honor Code was known by my employers. I adhered to it as an undergrad, and even turned in a friend and dorm mate my first year who cheated. I adhered to it as a professional, sometimes to the detriment of my career, since others lied to get ahead.

I have no regrets. I can tell our children Dad never lied. Two are UVA alumnae, the other a UR alumna. Two served on the UVA and UR honor committees.

Actions have consequences. The UVA Administration and our Gen Z students seem to have forgotten that.

Peter LeQuire, College ‘65
Peter LeQuire, College ‘65
7 months ago

The breadth of the reputation of UVA students for honesty was brought home to me after the Thanksgiving weekend break uprising in 1961. Several of the guys and I raised bail for one of our dorm residents, cashing checks at whatever businesses (gas stations and restaurants) we found open.
I doubt that could have happened in many other college towns.

The recent erosion of the honour system is saddening. The enfeeblement of the penalty for violating its requirements gives cause to wonder about the integrity of those who welcome its being gelded.

The Bootstrap Kid
The Bootstrap Kid
7 months ago

The present UVA student is learning his or her ethics from the woke faculty and administrators presently controlling UVA.

Patrick Alther
Patrick Alther
7 months ago

The fact is that Charlottesville has changed from being a smallish college town i to a much larger urban area with all the problems that are found in large cities.. WhenI first cameto Charlottesville many years ago it was perfectly safe to walk around the area adjacent to the University day or night, or leave doors unlocked. Nit now! I would question the premise that University students are far more criminal or dishonest nowadays Its nhst that the city has a mu h larger lolulation and a much larger criminal element.
One reason why I moved away I now live in a rural community with .more cows and people and do not have to worry about getting mugged when I walk through its little towns or villages.

Albert L. Keatts, Jr.
Albert L. Keatts, Jr.
7 months ago

That’s for the Townies! Lol!

Obviously, and painfully, Honor is not what it used to be at UVA. Student government be damned. What about the Alumni’s opinions? The Honor System at UVA was one of the things that separated us from so many others.

It disturbs me greatly that the Single Sanction is no more. How can there truly be a “Community of Trust” now? It certainly diminishes the value of Honor in my eyes.

Wahoo'74
Wahoo'74
7 months ago

Albert in effect it eradicates it. It is now equivalent to a moral “time out,” akin to telling a 2 year old child to go sit in the corner since he or she misbehaved.