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New leadership at Robertson School

May 1, 2019

Posted in: News

Dr. Hong Cheng and Dr. Marcus Messner

The Richard T. Robertson School of Media and Culture will be under new leadership from this summer on. Dr. Marcus Messner has been appointed interim director, effective July 1. Current director Dr. Hong Cheng has accepted a new role as dean of the School of Communication at Loyola University Chicago.

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank Dr. Hong Cheng for his exceptional leadership of the Robertson School during the last six years while wishing him the best in his new role at Loyola University Chicago,” said Dr. Montserrat Fuentes, dean of the VCU College of Humanities and Sciences. “I know that the Robertson School will continue to excel under Dr. Marcus Messner’s leadership and will carry Hong Cheng’s legacy.”

Cheng has served as the Robertson School’s director since 2013. During his tenure, the former School of Mass Communications was renamed in honor of alumnus Richard T. Robertson. Cheng spearheaded many renovations and updates of the School’s facilities as well as founded a Global Scholars Program that brought many Chinese scholars to VCU.

"It has been a tremendous honor and a great pleasure for me to serve as the director of the remarkable Robertson School over the past six years," Cheng said. "I would like to thank the entire Robertson School family—its students, full-­time/part-­time colleagues, advisory board, alumni and friends—for their most diligent and innovative work for our School and for their strong support. I have no doubt the Robertson School will continue to shine under Dr. Messner's leadership."

Messner, who joined VCU in 2007, has been associate director of the Robertson School of Media and Culture since July 2018 and associate professor in the School's journalism sequence. He previously served as the Robertson School’s Coordinator for Research and Innovation.

"It has been an honor to work with Dr. Cheng in the leadership team of the Robertson School, and I wish him all the best as he takes on the dean position at Loyola University," Messner said. "I look forward to continue working with our amazing students, our outstanding team of faculty and staff, and our dedicated advisory board members and alumni to move the Robertson School forward in this age of digital transformation."