Leaves Legendary Legacy of Men Helping Women
8, 2001-- During Andrew Oldhams second year
at the University of Virginia, his best friend was sexually assaulted.
The agony of that horrible event prompted Oldham to help start an
organization of men committed to helping sexual-assault survivors.
Oldham graduates May 20, the organization, One in Four, will remain
strong, with chapters around the country. The organizations
name comes from a statistic in the FBIs crime victimization
survey that found one in four college women have been victims of
rape or attempted rape since their 14th birthday.
entering Harvard University to pursue masters and law degrees,
Oldham will spend a year volunteering at the Violence Against Women
Office in the U.S. Department of Justice.
is committed to devoting his public service to ending violence against
women," said John D. Foubert, an assistant dean of students,
who advises One in Four.
says the year of volunteer service is an ideal way to explore his
interest in public policy and the law -- an interest whetted by
his experience in starting One in Four.
learned that a group of similarly impassioned individuals can make
a difference in a short time. Ive also learned it is possible
to create a positive outcome from a terrible event," said Oldham,
the son of Dwight and Bobbi Oldham of Lynchburg. Oldham will graduate
with a perfect 4.0 grade point average from U.Va., earning a degree
with honors in government
and foreign affairs, with a minor in economics.
commitment to sexual-assault education helped Oldham last year win
a Truman Scholarship, which will pay for his studies at Harvard.
As part of the Truman application
he wrote a public-policy proposal on sexual-assault education. Crafted
as a fictional memo to the Virginia secretary of education, Oldham
implored the secretary to establish an organization like One in
Four to help sexual-assault victims.
in Four started with 16 men who wanted to learn and teach other
men how to help sexual-assault victims. The organization is now
30 members strong," said Oldham.
the organizations first vice president for new member selection,
Oldham created it's recruitment process. "He spent a great
deal of time developing a vision for the selection process,"
Foubert said. "He created the process by inspiring a shared
vision within the group. He designed a thorough review process with
multiple interviews, wrote out each interview question, designed
rating sheets, reserved rooms, and ensured that all current group
members had files of applicants.
also responded on the phone to approximately 80 candidates and designed
a computer program to tabulate interview results," Foubert
added. He led a collaborative discussion about the candidates and
facilitated final decision-making. Throughout, he showed that leaders
create their best work by serving others. Andy personifies the term,
addition to his pioneering work with One in Four and his stellar
work as an Echols and Jefferson Scholar, Oldham has served others
through more than 25 organizations. One of his favorite volunteer
activities has been with the Shelter for Help and Emergency, but
he also was involved in the University Guide Service, Jefferson
Literary and Debating Society, Madison House, Habitat For Humanity,
SERVE, the Raven Society, and Resident Staff.
is that rarest of rare student who is able to be involved in numerous
activities and do each well," Foubert said.
has Oldham learned from his commitment to serve others? "Ive
learned to question assumptions. The world is full of gray areas.
Im learning to plumb the depth of grayness, and that makes
things interesting. That effort spills over into my social, spiritual
and emotional life," Oldham said.
summed up Oldham, saying, "He has grown to be a legend in his
own time at U.Va."
Ida Lee Wootten, (804) 924-6857