Just the Facts: Giving, The Honor Code, and Retention

wide shot of new barracks with flag poles on either side, and statue of Gen. George C. Marshall in the center.

Published: March 4, 2022

There is a flurry of misinformation, in most cases on social media, that we need to set straight; therefore, we submit the following to all VMI alumni, family, and friends.


Thanks to loyal donors and in recognition of continued private support for the Corps of Cadets, as of Feb. 28, 2022:
• Cash gifts are up by 418 donors and more than $6 million compared to Fiscal Year 2021.
• Cash gifts and new pledge commitments are up by 524 donors and more than $14 million compared to FY 2021.
• Annual Giving, a component of the previous two bullet points, is up by more than $250,000 and 350 donors.
• Thus far, giving in Fiscal Year 2022 is at $31 million, the second highest in the last five years, with four months to go.

These figures are without the benefit of the VMIssion Endures Days of Giving planned for April 4-7, 2022. The continuation of this tremendous generosity will be critical to ensure VMI competes and wins in the future.


• VMI’s Honor Code has not changed. It is and will remain single-sanction.
• The Honor Code Standard Operating Procedures were adjusted by leadership many times in the 20th century, to include moving from no jury to a jury of peers.
• The Honor Court has benefited from faculty and staff advisors in past decades who served in various capacities, including as defense advocates. Only cadets serve as members of the jury.
• Defendant legal representation has also been part of the honor system in the past and is now being restored.


Fall 2021 matriculation numbers were down by four cadets from the VMI budgeted number (496 versus 500).


There are many variables at play in addition to the recent reports about VMI in the media, including transitioning from COVID-19 protocols and the fact that incoming first year students across the nation had very little in-class preparation for college expectations. Additionally, it is important to keep in mind an entire class and prospect pool had reduced opportunity to visit VMI and understand the VMI experience firsthand. We are also seeing noted growth in less expensive online college educational opportunities. The demographic shift expected for more than a decade is impacting recruiting and retention in higher education across our nation.

Those interested can review an article related to this subject here.

Institute leaders are watching admissions trends closely to best determine how to secure the deepest pool of candidates who will thrive at VMI and beyond.

We are wholeheartedly committed to VMI’s mission of producing leaders of character for our nation and our world. We sincerely appreciate your direct support in making this happen.

David L. Prasnicki
VMI Alumni Agencies
Chief Executive Officer