June 17, 2013

Efforts to reconnect with Richard Bland College alumni have already begun to yield wonderful results. In response to our recent mailing to the more than 7,000 alumni identified through last year’s alumni reconnection project, we have received dozens of heartwarming notes and letters from RBC alumni, all of whom articulated the value of their Richard Bland College education in helping them to achieve their academic and career goals. I’m sharing a couple of these notes below and trust that you will find them as uplifting as I did.



I’m writing to respond to the requests made by President Sydow in her recent letter. This is, I believe, the first contact I’ve had from RBC since I left. If this is any indication of a new direction for the school, I applaud it!


I’d be happy to provide some post-RBC information about myself.

  • ·         Used my Associates degree from RBC to obtain an entry level position at Capital One in February of 2000
  • ·         Began course work at VCU later that same year
  • ·         Failed miserably at working full time and taking 2-3 courses
  • ·         Dropped out mid-semester in Spring 2001
  • ·         Returned to VCU around 2005 and retook a few classes to repair the damage
  • ·         Became disenchanted after poor advising and did not re-enroll
  • ·         Married in 2005
  • ·         First child born in 2009 inspired me to return to school again
  • ·         Began at University of Richmond SPCS January of 2009
  • ·         Second child born 2012
  • ·         Completed BAS in Information Systems with 3.985 GPA in May 2013
  • ·         Recipient of George E. Christopher and George W. Swartz Memorial Book Award for Excellence in Information Systems
  • ·         2012-2013 SPCS SGA Board Member
  • ·         Continue to be employed at Capital One; currently Process Coordinator II


I can provide much more context if it’s desired.  Click here to read more here:



Favorite Memories: Met one of my best friends registering for class on what was the last possible day in August 1997.


Favorite Instructors: Dr. Frank Morgan, Dr. LeeAnn Binger, William Henderson – History, Milton – Biology (His wife was my Kindergarten teacher and he taught me in college!)


Hope this is the information you are looking for and I’d love to visit soon.


All the best,

Andrew Bowers , Class of ’99



I recently received President Sydow’s letter to Richard Bland College’s alumni requesting information pertaining to their personal achievements and career. Below is my information.


Post RBC Education: The University of Mary Washington. B.A. 1994.


News to share/achievements: President and Owner of River City Hospitality, LLC, a boutique provider of premium event planning services during premier sports events, including the PGA Farmers Insurance Open, the Masters Golf Tournament, the Ryder Cup Golf Matches, the Super Bowl, and the US Open Golf Championship. Oversee all aspect of the business including account management, advertising, brand identity, customer service, partnership marketing, and revenue channels. Personally attended 11 US Opens, 9 Masters Golf Tournaments, and over 50 PGA & LPGA Tour events.


Favorite Memories: Being one of the founding members and Vice President of the Delta Tau Chi fraternity, and being part of the RBC delegation to the Soviet Union in 1991.


Favorite Instructors: Professor Paul E. Smith and Dr. John Blair.


Let me know if you have any questions or need any additional information from me. Thank you.


Stephen Wilson, Class of ‘92


Please expect to hear more from Scott Davis who is working on several projects designed to engage alumni more fully in the life of the College.



As of last week, 380 new students have committed to attend Richard Bland College in the fall of 2013, and 175 students have committed to enter as residential students. Our targets are 595 and 350 respectively, so there is considerable work ahead to reach our target goals. We continue to track enrollments on a weekly basis.


Faculty and Staff Update

Dan Ream’s service as Library Director at Richard Bland College will end on June 30, 2013. His replacement will soon be announced. I’m grateful to Dan for his contributions to the College over the past year, and I wish him well in all future endeavors.

With appreciation to search committees comprised primarily of external experts and current practitioners in the field, two searches have been successfully completed, including:


  • Vice President for Enrollment Services – Dr. Jenifer Blair holds a B.A. in Economics from the University of Mary Washington and M.Ed. and Ed.D. degrees from the University of Virginia. JB spent the early part of her career in admission at the University of Mary Washington before expanding her scope of responsibilities as Vice President for Enrollment Management at the University of Notre Dame in Maryland and Associate Vice Provost of Enrollment Management at the University of Baltimore. JB is coming to Richard Bland from an all-boys college preparatory school—Boys’ Latin School of Maryland—where she has served as director of College Counseling since 2008.


  • Chief Information Officer – Chandragupta Gudena who is multi-lingual (English, Spanish, Hindi, Telugu and Oryia) holds a Bachelor of Engineering degree from Andhra University in Visakhapatnam, India; an M.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Texas at El Paso; and he is currently working toward a doctorate in business administration from Capella University. Chandragupta is a Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP). He began his career as a Computer Laboratory Systems Information Manager at the University of Texas at El Paso before becoming Assistant Vice President at Bridgewater State University in Massachusetts and, most recently, Chief Information Officer at Sul Ross State University in Texas.


In addition to JB and Chandragupta, Annette Parker will begin her full-time role as Vice President for Finance and Administration on July 1. Annette Smith Parker retired as Vice President and Treasurer/CFO at Dickinson College in 2010 and served through July 2011 as Consulting Vice President for the College during the transition to a new CFO.  A graduate of Dickinson with a degree in Fine Arts and Art History, Annette returned to her alma mater in 1988 as Assistant Treasurer and in 1992 became Associate Vice President and Comptroller of the College, before taking on the responsibilities of Vice President and Treasurer in the fall of 1998. Ms. Parker received her M.B.A. in accounting from Shippensburg University. She previously served on the business and economics faculty at Wilson College in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania.


Richard Bland College is fortunate to have been able to recruit these outstanding professionals to work in support of its mission, vision and strategic goals. Please join me in welcoming them to the College.



Finally, I extend congratulations to all members of the Richard Bland College family who are celebrating an employment anniversary in June, including:


Margery Young                                   27 years of service

Roy York                                            23 years of service (adjunct)

Nicole Collins                                     8 years of service

Amy Grieco                                        8 years of service (adjunct)

Donald Shrader                                   7 years of service (adjunct)

James Dumville                                   5 years of service (adjunct)

Allison Spivey                                     1 year of service


Best regards,