January 23, 2022

Williams Interviewed for FLS Editorial on Dr. King’s Legacy

James Farmer Multicultural Center Assistant Director Christopher Williams

James Farmer Multicultural Center Assistant Director Christopher Williams

James Farmer Multicultural Center Assistant Director Chris Williams was interviewed for an editorial in The Free Lance-Star entitled, “Carrying Martin Luther King’s fight forward.”

National holidays celebrating great people can be a two-edged sword.

On one side, it is right and proper that these individuals are emblazoned in our national consciousness. They serve as the markers for how we understand our past, and what we want the trajectory of our future to be.

The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., who we recognize Monday, was such a leader. His life is a reminder of the horrendous wrongs perpetuated on Blacks via segregation and slavery. He was also a model for what it means to speak truth to power, insisting that the words “We the People” must include all the people.

Chris Williams, the assistant director of the James Farmer Multicultural Center at UMW, sees where the Fredericksburg region is taking positive steps in this direction.

He is among a vanguard of leaders working, he says, to ensure that the “uncovered Black history of this area gets told in a very meaningful, introspective, respectful way.” Central to this effort is a new Civil Rights Trail that Williams hopes will open this year. It’s a sign, he says, that “shows we’re heading in the right direction.” Read more.

Nominations for the 2022 Eagle Awards are Now Open!

Nominations for the annual Eagle Awards are now open until March 11! Click the link to nominate and learn about each award!

Faculty and Staff Yoga

Faculty and Staff Yoga
There will be two sessions, held on Mondays from 4-5 p.m. The first session starts on January 24th.
At least six people must sign-up at campusrec.umw.edu.
$25 for each session.


Often Pays Tribute to Late UMW Basketball Announcer Mike Neville

Assistant Athletic Director of Communication Clint Often

Assistant Athletic Director of Communication Clint Often

Assistant Athletic Director of Communications Clint Often was quoted in a tribute in The Free Lance-Star to late local sports broadcaster Mike Neville, who recently passed away. Neville announced UMW’s basketball games online and helped Often compile videos for Mary Washington’s annual spring athletics banquet.

“We’d stay up until the wee hours of the morning, cutting tape,” UMW sports information director Clint Often wrote in an email, “ … all the while telling dumb jokes, quoting every movie imaginable, and coming to the inevitable point of each video of going from the point from where we went from ‘Let’s make this amazing,’ to ‘Let’s get this finished.’ One year, he handed me the finished product 10 minutes before the banquet started.” Read more.

Farnsworth Comments in the News

Professor of Political Science Stephen Farnsworth

Professor of Political Science Stephen Farnsworth

Stephen Farnsworth, professor of political science and director of the University’s Center for Leadership and Media Studies, recently commented on the following news stories:

Youngkin takes office with immediate focus on education, thrilling some and terrifying others (The Washington Post)

Millions of parents lose Child Tax Credit money–President Biden’s first year in office wins and losses–Fish that can drive cars (KNX In Depth)

Some Va. school systems say they’ll ignore Youngkin’s masking order (WTOP)

Charlottesville has a new mayor — but remember, the mayor’s not the one in charge here (Charlottesville Tomorrow)

COVID update with results of entry testing

Dear fellow Eagles,

It is with a profound sense of relief and gratitude that we share results of our entry testing that took place on Sunday, January 9. As a community, we had relatively low numbers of positive cases, resulting in a positivity rate of about 6%. With the omicron variant still spreading quickly across the Commonwealth, we are grateful for your commitment to the various mitigation strategies you have used, both here and at home. Your commitment to getting vaccines and boosters if you are able, consistent masking, and thoughtfulness when interacting with others has set us up for what we hope will be another successful in-person semester at UMW. Keep up the great work and remain vigilant in your efforts!

Based on the outcome of our entry testing, we are moving forward with our stated plan of beginning in-person classes tomorrow. Our Public Health Advisory Working Group, which has been working tirelessly over the last few weeks to prepare for the semester, will continue to consult with our local healthcare and public health partners to monitor and assess conditions. Modeling indicates we have not reached the peak of this latest surge as a region, so we will continue to monitor our own cases carefully.

For now, classes will begin in-person tomorrow unless specific faculty have announced otherwise. Students: Please regularly check your email and Canvas for updates from your professors.

Here are a few additional updates:

Weekly testing. Next week, we will continue weekly testing of any person who is not up to date on their vaccines. This will include faculty, staff, and students who are not vaccinated or are eligible for the booster, but have not yet received it.

Randomized surveillance testing. As mentioned in our previous correspondence, we will begin randomized testing of individuals who are up to date on their vaccines. This process will be announced next week.

KN95 masks available. UMW has acquired a supply of KN95 masks for distribution. Students who need a higher quality mask may obtain one at no cost from the University Center’s Information desk, beginning tomorrow and during times when the desk is staffed. Academic and administrative departments may request masks for their employees through the Facilities work order system.  Remember that cloth masks alone are not very effective in the face of omicron; however, double masking is also a good solution to increase the quality of protection.

Dining. For the time being, dining will continue to only offer take-out/grab-and-go options. We will reassess on a weekly basis with hopes of returning to in-person dining as soon as it is feasible to do so.

In addition, please review our Spring 2022 FAQs for a more comprehensive look at our mitigation plans and important clarifications. The FAQs address the many questions you have posed over the last several days with regard to boosters, masking, entry and weekly testing (including the addition of random surveillance testing of vaccinated/boosted population), updated quarantine and isolation protocols, and additional efforts to maintain a healthy campus. More information regarding instruction, dining, and upcoming events is also outlined in the FAQs.

Thank you again for your ongoing commitment to the wellbeing of this community. If you haven’t done so, please respond to the booster survey as this will assist us in our testing and quarantine efforts. (A reminder went out this week to anyone who has not yet completed the survey). Continue to be thoughtful of your interactions and be sure to mask up when you are around others.


With gratitude,

Troy Paino, President

Juliette Landphair, Vice President for Student Affairs

Jeffrey McClurken, Chief of Staff and UMW COVID Director

Paul Messplay, Vice President for Administration and Finance

Tim O’Donnell, Interim Provost

Shavonne Shorter, Associate Provost for Equity and Inclusion & Chief Diversity Officer

Susan Worrell, Interim Vice President for Advancement

UMW MyTime outage and restoration update

The following message is from Payroll.

Thank you again for your patience as we work with UKG to restore access to MyTime and our time and leave data.

On Saturday, January 8, we were notified by our MyTime vendor UKG that UMW’s database had successfully moved through the first three milestones of their recovery process. At this time, UMW Payroll has access to MyTime and is working to ensure the integrity of the data. Timeclock data for the areas using timeclocks is also being restored and reviewed.

Next, Payroll staff will manually enter time and leave data from the Excel documents that you emailed to us during the outage. During this step, in addition to keying time/leave, Payroll will be reconciling existing punches and leave requests that were already in the system prior to the outage. Payroll might reach out to you and/or your supervisor to confirm information. If you’re contacted by Payroll please respond as quickly as possible and know that we want to work with you to ensure we have accurate information.

After data is entered, confirmed and reconciled we will open MyTime back up to all employees. Until then, please continue to track your time and leave using the forms on the Payroll website at the link below.


James Farmer Multicultural Center presents 2022 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration, Jan. 17-22

Every January, our nation dedicates time to commemorate the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. His prophetic words on racial injustice, voting rights, economic justice, housing discrimination and public safety are still relevant more than 60 years later. One of Dr. King’s greatest desires for this nation and world was the achievement of a “Beloved Community” that embraces full inclusivity, equality, justice and love for all. In this community, everyone is able to enjoy the richness of the land and society, and human dignity and quality of life are paramount. We understand our work of forming the beloved community is far from attainment, but must stay steadfastly committed to positive social change, freedom and justice for all to achieve this reality. Join the James Farmer Multicultural Center as we celebrate the work and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Rev. Dr. LaKeisha Cook

Rev. Dr. LaKeisha Cook

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Keynote Speaker:  Rev. Dr. LaKeisha Cook
Wednesday, January 19 | 7 p.m. | Chandler Ballroom, University Center

Rev. Dr. LaKeisha Cook is a Summa Cum Laude graduate of Virginia Union University in Richmond, Virginia, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology with a minor concentration in Religious Studies and a Master’s of Divinity. She also earned a Master’s in Educational Leadership from Northern Arizona University, and a Doctorate of Ministry degree as a Gardner C. Taylor fellow at United Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio. Dr. Cook was licensed into the gospel ministry at the Antioch Baptist Church; has served as the Youth Minister at Mount Hope Baptist Church in Fredericksburg, Virginia; as Minister of Children, Youth and Young Adults at First Institutional Baptist Church in Phoenix, Arizona; is the founding pastor of the Imani Community Church of Tempe, Arizona; and has served in various capacities for the multi-site campuses of Saint Paul’s Baptist Church. Dr. Cook has over 20 years of experience working in non-profits, education and the African American church. As a pastor and preacher, she uses her platform to educate and empower people on social justice and racial inequities, and she is passionate about justice reform. She served as a program administrator for the Kyrene School District in Tempe, Arizona, where she coordinated, implemented and ensured the quality of intervention and prevention programs and activities outlined in the eight-million dollar Safe Schools/Healthy Students grant. She also served as the Criminal Justice Reform Organizer for VICPP and led a successful campaign that abolished the death penalty in Virginia. She is currently working as an Equity Transformation Specialist for Pacific Educational Group, Inc.

Speaking Truth to Power
Thursday, January 20  |  6 p.m.  |  Lee Hall Underground

If you are interested in sharing your talent, please visit bit.ly/UMWSpeakTruth or email JoAnna Raucci (jraucci@umw.edu)

There is power in artistic expression. This event will feature art, music, dance and performances from members of the UMW campus community, who have created pieces or are sharing the works of others in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and those who have led the fight for human rights and social justice. Join us in this expression of our struggles, our triumphs and our power!

MLK Jr. Day of Service
Presented with UMW’s Center for Community Engagement
Saturday, January 22 |1 p.m. to 3 p.m. |  Chandler Ballroom, UC

Register here:  bit.ly/MLKDayUMW

Join your fellow students to celebrate our national Day of Service on the UMW campus. The MLK Day of Service is a celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s vision of the “fierce urgency of now.” Observed each year as “a day on, not a day off,” MLK Day is the only federal holiday designated as a national day of service to encourage all Americans to volunteer to improve their communities. Sign up to participate in the Day of Service at bit.ly/MLKDayUMW

Fallon Presents at Linguistics Society of America Conference

Associate Professor of Linguistics Paul Fallon

Associate Professor of Linguistics Paul Fallon

Paul Fallon, Associate Professor of Linguistics, presented a poster on “Proto-Agaw in relation to Bender’s Proto-Cushitic” on January 8, 2022 at the annual meeting of the Linguistic Society of America, held in Washington, D.C.

Professor Publishes Film Studies Article in Telos

Professor of English Antonio Barrenechea

Professor of English Antonio Barrenechea

Antonio Barrenechea, Professor of English, recently published “Fear and Loathing in São Paulo: Slum Metaphysics in the ‘Coffin Joe’ Triptych (1964-2008)” in a special issue of Telos on “The Modern City in World Cinema.”