In January, 1959, RPI student and future internationally-renowned novelist Tom Robbins warned in his final issue as editor of the student newspaper The Proscript that Mutual Broadcasting veteran sportscaster Bill Stern may have considered Richmond Professional Institute (forerunner of VCU) a breeding ground of communist activity because there was no football team.
“The cops ruined what could have been a hell of a good riot.”
-anonymous student quoted in the Oct. 27, 1971 Commonwealth Times.
An iconic photograph that dramatically contradicted Richmond’s genteel segregationist reputation during the Civil Rights demonstrations of 1960 was snapped not by an Associated Press photojournalist, as widely believed, but by a little-known Richmond Professional Institute (now VCU) student named Malcolm Carpenter.
In late 1967, a new experiment in learning called “Free University” began appearing in various cities both as free-standing institutions and extensions of existing urban universities.
In the fall of 1968, just as Richmond Professional Institute was about to become VCU