On Saturday, Aug. 20, the Love Like Adam Foundation will give a hazing prevention presentation at the University of Lynchburg. The presentation, to be held at 1 p.m. in Turner Gymnasium, is part of the University’s annual Hornet Days, a three-day orientation for new students and their families. It is not open to the public.
The presentation is being made in response to Adam’s Law, a new state law that went into effect in July. The Love Like Adam Foundation and Adam’s Law are named for Adam Oakes, a Virginia Commonwealth University student who died in a fraternity hazing incident in 2021.
Adam’s Law requires that all Virginia colleges and universities provide in-person hazing prevention training to the campus community and that they also meet reporting requirements about hazing violations involving their students.
More specifically, a public report of hazing violations from the past 10 years “shall be available on each institution’s homepage and Greek Life homepage, or its equivalent in a prominent location.” Each year, institutions also must report “actual findings of hazing” to the Timothy J. Piazza Center for Fraternity and Sorority Research and Reform at The Pennsylvania State University.
The University of Lynchburg will be the first college or university in Virginia to hear Love Like Adam’s presentation. After receiving an email about the presentation from the foundation, Dr. Matthew Scruggs, Lynchburg’s assistant vice president of student development, reached out to its president, Courtney White, for more information.
“The Love Like Adam Foundation worked so wonderfully with the University to help accommodate our orientation timeline,” Scruggs said, adding, “Courtney and I, as well as Annette Stadtherr, who oversees our Hornet Days, have been in communication since the middle of May to bring this presentation to Lynchburg.”
Scruggs described the presentation’s content as “invaluable” for the University community and said having Love Like Adam on campus during Hornet Days — with new students and many parents present — reinforces Lynchburg’s commitment to student success and hazing prevention.
“I’m extremely thankful for the collaboration between the University and the Love Like Adam Foundation,” Scruggs said. “Orientation is a great time to start building community and creating the best student experience for our Hornets as possible.
“Offering an extensive training on hazing prevention is a major step in ensuring that our University community is one that illustrates a culture of care and provides an experience for our students that is second to none.
“It’s unfortunate, but much hazing goes on behind closed doors, away from the eyes of administrators. Our students are our best resource to help curb hazing, and this presentation can give our students and their families the tools to further empower them to address any issues of hazing at Lynchburg.”