UVA Wise has its own unique traditions, annual events and experiences you simply must try. Some help you uniquely celebrate the beginning of your college life in a way that will also help you savor your Commencement. Others will help you meet friends, make memories, and explore the area we call home. These are just a sampling of our signature experiences.


Cavs Gap

This symbolic walk welcomes and says good-bye to students as they begin and end their student experience at UVA Wise.

  • New students walk through Cavs Gap to attend convocation at the David J. Prior Center, the official ceremony to welcome new students into the UVA Wise community. Convocation is where new students take the Honor Code pledge.
  • Graduating students walk through Cavs Gap to attend the graduation ceremony at the David J. Prior Center. This symbolic walk welcomes and says good-bye to students as they begin and end their student experience at UVA Wise.

Student Governance

One of UVA Wise's most lasting traditions is entrusting student feedback and decision-making to students. The Student Conduct Board, Honor Court, and Student Government Association are staffed and governed by students. New students recite the Honor Pledge during Convocation each fall semester.

Challenge Coin

The Challenge Coin is a commemorative item presented by the Chancellor to each graduating student during the Commencement Ceremony. It is unique to each graduating class and is imprinted with a campus photo and class year.

Similar to armed forces tradition, the presentation of the challenge coin is symbolic of a personal gift from the College by its highest official, the Chancellor. It recognizes the accomplishments of our graduating students.

Annual Events

  • Founders Day
  • Alumni Commuter Appreciation Picnic
  • Homecoming and Family Weekend
  • Late Night Breakfast
  • Scholarship Luncheon
  • Benefactors
  • Take Back the Night
  • Crockett Lighting
  • Cavapalooza
  • Day of Service
  • Move-in Day

Top 15 Things to Do During Your Time at UVA Wise

  1. Have a picnic at the lake 
  2. Hang out in the Student Center (play pool, use the game room, join an intramural game) 
  3. Visit campus offices 
  4. Join a club 
  5. Snap a picture with Smiddy 
  6. Attend a Pro-Art event 
  7. Attend an athletic event (bonus if it is a rivalry game against Emory & Henry!) 
  8. Tailgate at Homecoming 
  9. Do something experiential (work on campus, intern, go for a student leader position, be a research assistant) 
  10. Take a trip (with friends or short-term/long-term study abroad) 
  11. Try a local eatery (some student favorites are Pal’s, Robos, and El Dorado) 
  12. Visit High Knob 
  13. Take a selfie with the Woodbooger at Flag Rock 
  14. Float down the Clinch River 
  15. Attend Wise’s Fall Fling