Dear Darden Faculty, Staff and Students:

The terrible events of the past 24 hours in Charlottesville have shaken us all, and are shocking in this place that we know, love and work to build as members of this incredible community. I am appalled, saddened and sickened by the racism, hatred, bigotry and violence that have taken place in the wake of the Unite the Right rally and condemn it unambiguously. My — our — hearts go out to the families of those who lost a loved one and those injured.

To our knowledge, members of the Darden Community are safe, and the areas around Darden in North Grounds have been safe. However, the weekend is not over and many of the trouble-makers have indicated that they will remain in Charlottesville through Sunday; we will be happy to see them leave. I urge you to read the statements delivered by UVA President Teresa Sullivan, as they contain important safety information.

UVA Community Message From President Sullivan, Saturday Afternoon
Statement Regarding Change In Academic Division Operating Schedule
Message From The University of Virginia, Saturday Morning
Message From President Sullivan, Friday Night

The safety and well-being of our students, staff and faculty and our University community are our top priorities. Due to ongoing public safety concerns in downtown Charlottesville and as result of the State of Emergency declared in Virginia, UVA cancelled all scheduled events and programming today. Please visit the Office of Safety and Emergency Preparedness webpage for updates. But in general, stay at home or indoors this weekend.  Things should be back to normal soon.

For those who are experiencing Charlottesville for the first time, including our arriving First Year students, please know that Charlottesville — and the University of Virginia — are actually wonderful places; most of the protesters from the Unite the Right group are from other places and many have unfortunately imported hooligan-like violence to our lovely town.  While we respect free speech, the values and ideology of the so-called “alt-right” and the images broadcast on media around the world are in complete opposition with Darden’s values, which include unwavering support of a collaborative, diverse community bound together by mutual respect. We will not bend our values. We will emerge from this even stronger as a community.

I know everyone is living recent events in a very personal way. Some are scared. Some wonder if they have made the right choice to live, work and/or study in Charlottesville. Last night, protesters were on our doorstep on the Lawn (we live in Pavilion I, touching the Rotunda). My brother and nephew who were trying to visit our home were turned away by police. Like many of you, my family in Europe saw pictures of flames in front of our home on their national news, and the grim images of violence today. But it will take a lot more than that to break the spirit of the Darden Community, and to stop us at the University of Virginia Darden School of Business from educating the next generation of responsible leaders the world — and the United States — need more than ever.

Darden thrives in part because we are a supportive and diverse global community. Our fundamental values for inclusion, respect for individuals and exploration of diverse perspectives are completely at odds with the racist ideologies expressed by the white supremacist groups that have traveled to Charlottesville this weekend; all races are welcome at Darden. We did not invite such hatred, and we will overcome it. I look forward to seeing those of you who can make it at the Community dialogue at Abbott Auditorium Monday afternoon, and to hearing your perspectives and lived experiences.

Please be safe and know that your Darden community is here to support you.


Scott C. Beardsley
Dean and Charles C. Abbott Professor of Business Administration
University of Virginia Darden School of Business
P.O. Box 6550, Charlottesville, Virginia 22906 USA
Shipping: 100 Darden Boulevard, 22903