Cost-Efficient Activities for Art Students at VCU

Art classes can get especially expensive when it comes to project materials, so many art foundations students at Virginia Commonwealth University try to save money where they can. This article discusses hot spots around Richmond where students can spend little to no money on fun activities.

The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts

Known to most students as the “VMFA”, this museum is located at 200 N. Boulevard in Richmond. It offers free admission to the general gallery 365 days a year and features exclusive collections that students can access for a discounted membership pass. The pass costs $10 and grants students a full year of access to the entirety of the museum. Art students love walking here to work on sketches and project ideas for their classes.


Christian’s Pizza

Many art students spend late nights working in their studios. Christian’s Pizza, a restaurant located on N. Harrison Street, stays open until 3am and offers great deals after 11pm. Students working after class hours at the Bowe Street Studio or the Pollack Building often go to Christian’s for their $2 cheese or pepperoni slices after 11.

First Friday on Broad Street

On the first Friday of every month, many of the art galleries on Broad Street open their doors for free to reveal their new exhibits. Small vendors set up along the sidewalks and performance and large-scale art pieces are displayed in between buildings and alleyways. Festivities begin around 5pm and last until 9pm. This event is great for students to indulge in the culture of Richmond and experience contemporary artists living in their city.

Hollywood Cemetery

On the edge of the south side of the Monroe Park campus near Oregon Hill is the historic Hollywood Cemetery. Great for driving, biking, or walking through, the cemetery features beautiful mausoleums and tombstones and breathtaking views of the James River. The site is a great backdrop for photographers and filmmakers to shoot and provides a great setting for drawing or painting. Hollywood Cemetery is open for free admission from 8am-5pm every day of the week.

The Byrd Theater

Located at 2908 W. Cary Street, this historic theater screens select current releases and cinematic classics. Occasionally, the Byrd Theater hosts film festivals; a few recent festivals include the Twin Peaks Fest (featuring original cast members as guest speakers) and the Big Screen Classics! series which features different films from The Shining to The Sound of Music. Tickets for all features are only $4.

Miscellaneous Events

Most art professors at VCU are very involved in the artistic community of Richmond and know a great deal about art events or galleries showing around town. Look out for emails from your professors sharing this information with you; sometimes the information is exclusive to your class or subject and you can see free or discounted galleries in the community. If your professor doesn’t send out many emails, don’t be afraid to ask them if they know about anything going on- they are a great resource!


The VCU School of the Arts offers students a top-rated education, which is enriched by the artistic culture around campus and within the city of Richmond. The city’s blend of history and modern culture, along with these cost-efficient activities make it a great place for any student studying art on a budget.


VCU Monroe Park Campus Pizza Guide

Pizza is a staple in any college student’s diet. Luckily for the students of VCU living on the Monroe Park campus, there are several places around town to grab a tasty slice or a whole pie.

Pizza Hut

Located in the Student Commons on Floyd Avenue, Pizza Hut is the perfect place to go if you want to utilize your dining plan. They accept one swipe for your choice of a personal pizza (cheese, pepperoni, meat lover’s, supreme, or chicken supreme), pan pasta (chicken alfredo or marinara meat sauce), or chicken wings. A medium fountain drink is included with your swipe.


Extreme Pizza

Extreme Pizza is located at 941 W. Broad Street, which is next to the campus bookstore and within reasonable walking distance from the Compass. They offer full pizzas for carry-out and dining in, as well as single slices for when you aren’t feeling quite as hungry. The restaurant also offers delivery services and often has coupons posted on their website. You can pay for your meal using RamBucks or standard currency.

Christian’s Pizza

Though Christian’s isn’t included on the VCU dining plan, it is widely known and loved by many students. Serving calzones and specialty slices, Christians opens at 11am and closes as late as 3am. A single slice of plain cheese or pepperoni will cost you less than $2.00 after 11pm. Occasionally, the restaurant boasts a long line, but service is fast and you can be in-and-out very quickly. If you’d like to check it out, they have a location at 404 N. Harrison Street.

Domino’s Pizza

Domino’s, located on 111 N. Belvidere St., is favored by students who live in the dorms. Many campus events are catered with Domino’s because they offer great prices at just $7.99 for a large, 3-topping pizza. Conveniently, Domino’s delivers and their employees are very familiar with dropping off at residence halls.


Dinamo is more of an upscale restaurant than a college pizza joint. However, their pizzas are not terribly expensive at $12 for a pie. The restaurant also has a nice atmosphere and would be a great place for a Friday-night date or a lunch out with visiting family members. It is located at 821 W. Cary Street, which is not far from the Cary Street Gym.

Within close proximity to the Monroe Park campus at VCU, there are plenty of places to get a slice of pizza when you’re avoiding the bland meals at the dining hall. At a variety of price points and locations around town, you’re sure to find yourself biting in to a cheesy pizza soon!

5 Reasons to Get Involved with Service Learning Classes at VCU

One of the big appeals that  Virginia Commonwealth University  have is its open campus in the city of Richmond. Still, while much of Richmond is still accessible, the VCU campus begins to feel a little bit like a village after a while; you get in your routine and you tend to stay within a certain radius. This often makes it hard for students to find good volunteer opportunities that they seek for personal pleasure or resume building. Luckily, VCU offers a variety of service learning classes that connect you to volunteer opportunities all over the city for class credit. This article discusses the reasons to get involved with service classes at VCU.


The service learning program at VCU has grown immensely over the last 15 years. It now consists of more than 200 classes across almost all majors. Service work isn’t always manual labor. Some classes feature indirect service by working on websites, publicity, or financial aspects of the organizations they work with.



Hands-on experience relating to class content

In each service learning class, regardless of the subject, the volunteer work will almost always be tied back into the content you learn in class. This is great for students who prefer learning by doing hands-on work. It also reinforces concepts that appear on tests or quizzes. Some studies show that 41% of people are more likely to be engaged in their work if is meaningful or fulfills a sense of purpose. Service learning is a great way to find meaning in the content you learn through the direct impact you make on your community.



Volunteering is good for you!

Busy college students often find it hard to build time in their schedule for volunteer work. However, it is linked to reduced feelings of stress or depression, can provide a sense of fulfillment or purpose, and has the potential to expose you to opportunities to advance your personal career. Service learning incorporate volunteering into the curriculum and class time, so by taking these classes you stand to gain all of these benefits.



“Credited” Resume Builder

Beyond a sense of community contribution, the service work done through service learning classes is great to add to resumes for jobs or applications for further education. By fulfilling the service hour requirements for your class each semester, you are not only receiving class credit but also building these valuable “resume-worthy” experiences.



Interpersonal Connections

By working so much out in the community, service-learning students are exposed to people beyond just their fellow classmates and their professors. Through their volunteer work, they are able to meet other volunteers or organizational heads who may be a great future reference or introduce you to a great business connection. In addition, they interact with people in need through out the city and often form strong bonds.



Overall, the service learning program at VCU offers great personal, educational, and business-related opportunities for the students that are a part of it. If you’re a VCU student looking for a meaningful, hands-on, educational experience, service learning classes may be a good choice for you.