VCU’s REAL initiative ensures every VCU undergraduate completes at least one experiential learning course or co-curricular activity that engages them fully in meaningful, hands-on research, scholarship or creative work directly relevant to realizing their personal and professional goals. The initiative is driven and defined by the REAL 3Cs: Connect, Create, Contribute. VCU REAL helps connect ideas, communities and resources in order to create solutions and new approaches that contribute to solving today’s most pressing social, scientific and economic challenges. Through a graduation requirement for incoming undergraduate students beginning in fall of 2021 and a thriving community of practice engaging faculty, staff and students from across VCU, REAL leverages a long-standing history and traditions as an engaged, urban public institution to prepare VCU students to make their marks as problem-solvers in a changing world.  

For students, VCU REAL also provides access to the Student Opportunity Center, a central hub to find experiential learning opportunities, including activities that fulfill the REAL undergraduate graduation requirement such as designated internships, service learning courses, education abroad experiences, collaborative research, peer leadership, interdisciplinary projects and more.  

Students interested in learning about the REAL undergraduate graduation requirement and ways to fulfill it within their programs of study should contact their academic advisers. For general information regarding graduation with distinction programs and how REAL can give students an edge as they prepare for their next great journey, contact:

Erin Webster Garrett, Ph.D.
Assistant vice provost for REAL
901 W. Franklin St., Suite 115
Richmond, Virginia 23284
(804) 827-3421