Governor's School comes to a close at RU

Photo of gov school artwork

The 2014 Virginia Summer Residential Governor's Schools in the Humanities and Visual and Performing Arts have come to a close at Radford University.

This year, Governor's School provided exceptional high school students with an early look at the college experience, full of academic challenges and the opportunity to live on campus from June 22 through July 19.

As students prepared to say goodbye to the RU campus and the new friends they made, they reflected on the academic and social experience of Governor's School.

"The classes here are great," said Elizabeth Dinneny, a rising senior from Potomac Falls High School in Sterling. "They're so different from ours in school. Instead of worrying about tests and grades in the same way, we can just have great discussions with our teachers and other students."

For Anna Alpern, a rising senior from Monacan High School in North Chesterfield, the chance to live the life of a college student for a month was one of the best aspects of Governor's School, she said.

"It's different being at a college," Alpern said. "I liked all the freedom I had here."

Since 2010, RU has been selected by Virginia Department of Education to host the program, which gives junior and senior high school students the opportunity to use their creativity in music, visual and performing arts and the humanities. Students choose the classes that most pique their interest from a varied curriculum taught by RU faculty members and guest instructors.

Paul Thomas was one of those faculty members. In his course "The Cultural Significance of Monsters," students discovered that creatures, such as Frankenstein and Dracula, aren't just fictional boogeymen, but reflections of the society that created them.


Students in "The Cultural Significance of Monsters" discussed their topics and readings on a college level, all with the support of RU faculty member Paul Thomas.

The nearly 30 students enrolled in his classes were incredibly impressive, he said.

"They are excellent students and I'd be happy to have any one of them in my class here at RU," Thomas said. "They say we had the best and brightest students in the state, and I can see that it is true."

For more information about the Virginia Summer Residential Governor's Schools in the Humanities and Visual and Performing Arts or to learn more about opportunities for next year's summer program at Radford University, call (540) 831-7828, or email

Jul 21, 2014