Times Dispatch reporter Karin Kapsidelis researched and wrote a good, fairly objective overview of outgoing Virginia Commonwealth University President Eugene Trani’s term. Of course, I may not be that objective as I was the ‘loudest protester’ named in the article. “He’s expanded VCU at the expense of a lot of other components of Richmond,” said […]
Times Dispatch reporter Karin Kapsidelis researched and wrote a good, fairly objective overview of outgoing Virginia Commonwealth University President Eugene Trani’s term. Of course, I may not be that objective as I was the ‘loudest protester’ named in the article.
“He’s expanded VCU at the expense of a lot of other components of Richmond,” said Scott Burger, president of the Oregon Hill Neighborhood Association.
I would have liked to have seen more examination of Trani’s role as powerbroker, especially when he used his Richmond Renaissance position to not so gently persuade City Council to approve Dominion Power’s Special Use Permit for its headquarters and trading floor expansion at the expense of the river view, but I know its difficult to cover everything, even in a front page article.
We are hopeful that the new VCU president will be a reasonable man and a man of
honor. The sign of a great leader will be to make things better for the
surrounding communities as well as being an advocate for the university’s
VCU is blessed with many gifted faculty members and students. Its president
should serve as a role model and use this talented staff for the betterment of
all parties involved. Oregon Hill and the other historic communities of Carver,
Jackson Ward, and Randolph have paid a dear price for the unbridled VCU
expansion. “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” is a pretty tough
golden rule to argue with.
But what is interesting are the anonymous online comments on the article. Here is a sample:
Trani bears much of the responsibility for this, when he took over there was a quick and drastic shift in the attitude VCU took towards students, faculty, and staff. In the end, Trani’s work has benefited property owners, local politicians, contractors, and the corporate entities that he has allowed to prey upon his students (read commodities). The students have not benefited at all, unless the student is a college basketball fan.
As usual, the RTD has it wrong. The negative posts regarding Trani on this thread out number the positive, and for someone who lives in the university community and knows many people that work at VCU at many different levels I can attest they share no love for the man either.
Ouch, and people call me harsh. A Sunday school lesson for us all: arrogance and “pride goeth before the fall”.