July 4, 2022

UMW Graduates Class of 2022

The University of Mary Washington conferred undergraduate and graduate degrees upon a total of 1,163 students during its 111th Commencement ceremony, held on Saturday, May 7, at 9 a.m. on Ball Circle. The University awarded three Master of Geospatial Analysis degrees, 34 Master of Business Administration degrees, 62 Master of Education degrees, 47 Master of […]

Class of 2022: Stellar Student Stories, Part 3 of 3

The Class of 2022 began freshman year like any other, swept up in longstanding University of Mary Washington traditions like Move-In Day, Eagle Gathering and Honor Convocation. That all changed when they were sophomores. Classes went online, study abroad trips were postponed and everything – activities, internships and volunteer experiences – became virtual. But these […]

Class of 2022: Stellar Student Stories, Part 2 of 3

The Class of 2022 began freshman year like any other, swept up in longstanding University of Mary Washington traditions like Move-In Day, Eagle Gathering and Honor Convocation. That all changed when they were sophomores. Classes went online, study abroad trips were postponed and everything – activities, internships and volunteer experiences – became virtual. But these […]

Class of 2022: Stellar Student Stories, Part 1 of 3

The Class of 2022 began freshman year like any other, swept up in longstanding University of Mary Washington traditions like Move-In Day, Eagle Gathering and Honor Convocation. That all changed when they were sophomores. Classes went online, study abroad trips were postponed and everything – activities, internships and volunteer experiences – became virtual. But these […]

‘It’s Gonna Be May’: Alum’s Meme Celebrates a Decade

University of Mary Washington alumna Kianna Davis ’13 was in her Westmoreland Hall second-floor room, a year away from graduation, when she created her first-ever meme. Within 24 hours, the image she shared of a young, fresh-faced Justin Timberlake – emblazoned with a now famous play on the song lyrics to It’s Gonna Be Me […]

Eagle Awards Celebrate Campus Leaders, Dean Rucker

Senior Brianna Reaves received the Grace Mann Launch Award at the recent Eagle Awards ceremony, while Dean Cedric Rucker received the new Eagle Beyond Compare Award. Photo by Kayla Zegada.

Senior Brianna Reaves received the Grace Mann Launch Award at the recent Eagle Awards ceremony, while Dean Cedric Rucker received the new Eagle Beyond Compare Award. Photo by Kayla Zegada.

University of Mary Washington senior Brianna Reaves was presented with the Grace Mann Launch Award during the annual Eagle Awards last Thursday. Held in person for the first time since the pandemic, the event honored more than a dozen campus leaders in the University Center’s Chandler Ballroom. A newly established award was presented to Cedric Rucker, associate vice president and dean of Student Life, who will retire this June.

“Every class is amazing, but looking out at the students gathered here tonight – you’ve led our community through one of the most difficult times in its history,” UMW President Troy Paino said. “You embody the Mary Washington spirit.”

Rucker, visibly emotional throughout the ceremony, presented Reaves with the $6,900 award. “With tireless initiative, integrity, institutional investment … her leadership is deeply respected across all sectors of the University community,” said Rucker, acknowledging Reaves’ achievement as the first Black female student to become UMW Student Government Association president.

Grace Mann was a UMW leader and social justice activist who died seven years ago during her junior year. Her parents established an endowment for an annual financial award to be presented to a graduating senior who exemplifies Mann’s commitment to social justice, equality and advocacy.

Reaves, a sociology major and social justice minor, began her Mary Washington experience by becoming elected class president during her freshman and sophomore years. After participating in a 2018 Social Justice Fall Break Trip through the James Farmer Multicultural Center (JFMC), she made it her mission to make UMW a more inclusive and welcoming community. Read more. 

Eagle Awards Celebrate Campus Leaders, Dean Rucker

University of Mary Washington senior Brianna Reaves was presented with the Grace Mann Launch Award during the annual Eagle Awards last Thursday. Held in person for the first time since the pandemic, the event honored more than a dozen campus leaders in the University Center’s Chandler Ballroom. A newly established award was presented to Cedric […]

UMW Dedicates Mural Honoring First African-American Alumna

UMW senior Timbila Kabre was among the students and faculty who helped create the mural honoring Dr. Venus Jones, the first African-American woman to graduate from Mary Washington. Photo by Suzanne Carr Rossi.

UMW senior Timbila Kabre was among the students and faculty who helped create the mural honoring Dr. Venus Jones, the first African-American woman to graduate from Mary Washington. Photo by Suzanne Carr Rossi.

Dr. Venus Romance Jones. It’s no wonder University of Mary Washington senior Timbila Kabre said she had “fallen in love” while researching the late physician bearing that name, who in 1968, became the first African-American woman to graduate from Mary Washington.

“Dr. Jones’ hard work, passion and love for others … is absolutely inspiring,” she said at the unveiling of a new mural honoring Jones – which Kabre and her classmates helped design – in UMW’s Jepson Science Center. Mary Washington students, faculty, staff, alums, administrators, President Troy Paino, Board of Visitors members, and Jones’ friends and family gathered together last Friday to dedicate the long-awaited exhibit. The mural’s timeline, and an accompanying digital site, traces Jones’ life and barrier-breaking career as a neurologist, along with other trailblazing Black women in medicine.

The project advances UMW’s initiative to create a more inclusive environment, said Professor of Biological Sciences Andrew Dolby, who spearheaded the effort. Disciplines across the University – visual arts, public and digital history, and the sciences – worked in collaboration, he said, getting input from the Campus Environment Committee and the Jones family.

“This is exactly what we talk about in terms of preparing our students with experiential learning opportunities for the 21st century,” Paino said in his remarks. “Your work will live on in our community, just like Dr. Jones’ legacy.” Read more.

UMW Dedicates Mural Honoring First African-American Alumna

Dr. Venus Romance Jones. It’s no wonder University of Mary Washington senior Timbila Kabre said she had “fallen in love” while researching the late physician bearing that name, who in 1968, became the first African-American woman to graduate from Mary Washington. “Dr. Jones’ hard work, passion and love for others … is absolutely inspiring,” she […]

Take Five! Mary Wash Celebrates Fifth Annual Giving Day, April 5

The countdown is on! Mary Wash Giving Day marks its fifth anniversary next week, and the entire University of Mary Washington community is invited to join the celebration.

Mary Wash Giving Day gifts on Tuesday, April 5 will benefit students and programs across the University. A goal of 3,000 gifts and 500 first-time donors has been set, and supporters can help unlock additional challenge amounts by meeting participation benchmarks throughout the day.

Mary Wash Giving Day gifts on Tuesday, April 5 will benefit students and programs across the University. A goal of 3,000 gifts and 500 first-time donors has been set, and supporters can help unlock additional challenge amounts by meeting participation benchmarks throughout the day.

Participation matters most in helping UMW reach its goal of 3,000 gifts and 500 first-time donors during the 24-hour event on Tuesday, April 5. This year’s theme, #TogetherUMW, reminds us that even though we may be spread out across the campus, country and continents, we share a common goal of supporting Mary Washington’s students and benefiting its programs and initiatives.

“It only takes five minutes of your day to make a gift that can help set up our students for success for years to come,” said Director of Annual Giving Shelby Orlando ’14. She praised the continued generosity of the Mary Washington community over the last five years, as student need grows and UMW adapts to an ever-changing world. “Making even a $5 gift on Giving Day can result in thousands of extra dollars for students.”

With $150,000 in challenges and matches waiting to be unlocked at givingday.umw.edu, every donation has the potential of doubling and even tripling its impact. All who care about Mary Washington and its mission can provide additional funding for students by helping to meet participation benchmarks throughout the day. Read more.