Inauguration Weekend Preview: What to Know About the Weekend’s Events

Inauguration Weekend Preview: What to Know About the Weekend’s Events

On Friday, for just the ninth time in its 200-year history, the University of Virginia will inaugurate a new president.

Jim Ryan, who took office Aug. 1, will officially be sworn in as the University’s ninth president in an installation ceremony Friday afternoon. A series of events through the weekend will bring the University community together to celebrate the occasion.

The installation ceremony, where Ryan will take the oath of office and offer remarks, will take place Friday from 3 to 4:30 p.m. on the Lawn.

Other public events planned for the weekend include a community-wide 5K run/walk; a celebration of student service organizations and local nonprofits; a research forum in the Rotunda, highlighting UVA’s latest research on everything from astronomy to infectious diseases; and a live storytelling event with stories from Ryan and others in the community.

More information about each event is available below, as well as information about parking and shuttle buses.

Friday, Oct. 19

Profiles of Discovery Research Forum (8:30-11:15 a.m.)

A research forum before the inauguration ceremony will highlight some of the best research faculty and students are pursuing around Grounds, on topics ranging from astronomy to cybersecurity to infectious diseases.

Called “Profiles of Discovery,” the event will take place in the Rotunda’s Dome Room from 8:30 to 11:15 a.m.

It will feature three 45-minute sessions with short presentations and panel discussions. The first session will spotlight several exciting discoveries at UVA and the second will explore how professors teach their research in the classroom.

The third and final session, “Democracy and Citizenship,” will focus on the goal of educating citizen-leaders, which was first articulated during UVA’s founding 200 years ago and continues to be fundamental to the University’s mission today.

See a full schedule and register here.

Installation Ceremony (3-4:30 p.m.)

Friday afternoon’s installation ceremony will begin with an academic procession, including Board of Visitors members, vice presents, deans and representatives from UVA’s 11 schools, the Health System and the College at Wise; as well as UVA faculty and students and delegates from more than 100 colleges and universities.

After the procession, Ryan will offer remarks and take the oath of office, administered by UVA Rector Frank M. “Rusty” Conner III.

Other speakers are scheduled to include Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam, UVA Commonwealth Professor of English and former U.S. poet laureate Rita Dove and School of Nursing Dean Dorrie K. Fontaine. Drew Gilpin Faust, the former president of Harvard University who mentored Ryan during his time as dean of Harvard’s Graduate School of Education, will deliver the keynote address.

After the ceremony, a community reception will be held on the north plaza of the Rotunda. Both events are free and open to the public. In the event of severe weather, both events will be held at John Paul Jones Arena.

The installation ceremony is the ninth such event in the history of the University. Take a look back at the eight other ceremonies to get an idea of how such important moments in UVA’s history have unfolded.

Learn more about the installation ceremony and register here.

Saturday, Oct. 20

Community Bridges 5K Run/Walk and Celebration of Service (9 a.m.-1 p.m.)

On Saturday morning, the University and Charlottesville communities will convene again for a celebratory run/walk with the new president, with all proceeds benefitting local nonprofit organizations.

The Community Bridges 5K Run/Walk will begin at 9 a.m. near the Chemistry Building on McCormick Road and wind through Grounds and Charlottesville for 3.1 miles. All proceeds from the event will go to the Center for Nonprofit Excellence, which supports more than 280 local nonprofits.

Participants can register for the 5K here, as an individual or in teams. The registration fee is $25, with discounts for students and youth under 18 and fee waivers available.

Immediately after the 5K, participants and members of the community will gather for a Celebration of Service in McIntire Amphitheater, featuring more than 50 service organizations from UVA and Charlottesville.

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There will be free food trucks, live music from student and guest DJs, information booths, two donation drives and a mini service project. Several prizes will be available for participants, including tickets to UVA sporting events and concerts in the president’s suites at Scott Stadium and John Paul Jones Arena.

Learn more and register here for the Celebration of Service.

Double Take: Stories That Make You Think Twice (2-3 p.m.)

The final public event of the weekend is a live storytelling event in Old Cabell Hall, “Double Take: Stories That Make You Think Twice.”

Modeled after live storytelling podcasts like the syndicated public radio show “The Moth,” the event will feature personal stories from Ryan, UVA alumna Dr. Vivian Pinn – the only woman and African-American in the School of Medicine’s Class of 1967 – and eight selected students and community members. The event is free and open to the public.

The theme of the event is “building bridges,” forging connections between different groups and perspectives. It’s a theme Ryan has emphasized repeatedly in his remarks to students and community members, and one that he hopes will define his first year in office.

Find out more about Double Take and register here.

Parking and Shuttle Buses

Guests at Friday’s and Saturday’s events are encouraged to park in one of several public parking garages and lots on Grounds, listed here.

On Friday, complimentary parking will be available in the Culbreth Road parking garage and John Paul Jones Arena. A shuttle bus will run between John Paul Jones Arena and Central Grounds, as well as the University’s normal bus services.

On Saturday, complimentary parking will be available in the Culbreth Road parking garage, the Emmet/Ivy parking garage and Scott Stadium.

On both days, guests can also use the Central Grounds parking garage on Emmet Street, which charges a small hourly fee.

Find more information about parking here.