January 27, 2021

Pastor, King Scholar to Deliver MLK Keynote

Aaron Dobynes was 5 when word from a Memphis motel made it to his grandfather’s farm in Alabama. A family friend stopped by to relay the news of Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination, and as the young Dobynes looked on, the two men began to cry. “I don’t know exactly how I was processing it, […]

2020 in Hindsight: A Look at the Top 10 News Stories

2020 Year in Review. Students sitting on Lee Hall Plaza, social distancing with masks.

No one really wants to rewind to the past year. But through 10 months taken hostage by a pandemic, riddled with political strife and torn by racial unrest, the University of Mary Washington persevered. And we’ve got the stories to prove it.

From the launch of the James Farmer centennial celebration and the theatre department’s virtual performance of Much Ado About Nothing to the announcement of the new Great Lives lecture series and a pair of alumni weddings at Brompton, UMW news captured success. Of the more than 100 stories published at umw.edu/news in 2020, these comprise the Top 10. Read more.

2020 in Hindsight: A Look at the Top 10 News Stories

No one really wants to rewind to the past year. But through 10 months taken hostage by a pandemic, riddled with political strife and torn by racial unrest, the University of Mary Washington persevered. And we’ve got the stories to prove it. From the launch of the James Farmer centennial celebration and the theatre department’s […]

Alumni Couples Wed Beneath Brompton Oak

It had been seven years since they’d met on this very spot, new Mary Washington first-years eating sherbet and mint chocolate chip on the president’s lawn. That day, during the annual ice cream social for freshmen, Caroline Deale ’17 made a wish. Last month, it came true. “Your youth may fade away, but your smile […]

Alumni Couples Wed Beneath Brompton Oak

From more than 8 feet away, President Troy Paino officiated the socially distanced wedding of UMW alumni Caroline Deale and John Bentley, who wed at Paino’s home at Brompton last month.

From more than 8 feet away, President Troy Paino officiated the socially distanced wedding of UMW alumni Caroline Deale and John Bentley, who wed at Paino’s home at Brompton last month.

It had been seven years since they’d met on this very spot, new Mary Washington first-years eating sherbet and mint chocolate chip on the president’s lawn. That day, during the annual ice cream social for freshmen, Caroline Deale ’17 made a wish. Last month, it came true.

“Your youth may fade away, but your smile will always remind me of the time I first saw you on that sunny day,” she promised John Bentley ’17, MSGA ’19, as they wed beneath the weathered and wise Brompton Oak.

The tree that had seen so much Civil War suffering “got to witness pure love and joy,” UMW President Troy Paino posted on social media that afternoon. As a rare favor during an unprecedented season, he officiated the socially distanced wedding outside his front door.

The event was among two sets of alumni nuptials at Brompton this fall – Isabelle Perrin ’17 and Nathan Dawes ’14, MSGA ’17, married on the seldom-available historic site in October. Both ceremonies were reimagined, with shrinking guest lists and pandemic-related gifts. But COVID-19 couldn’t stop them.

May these UMW love stories – and all the magical bonds formed at Mary Washington throughout the decades – shine a beacon of light on the end of a tumultuous year. Read more.

Partnerships Lead Students to Engineering Master’s Degrees

New partnerships with Virginia schools give University of Mary Washington students a jumpstart on master’s coursework in engineering.

New partnerships with Virginia schools give University of Mary Washington students a jumpstart on master’s coursework in engineering.

Sophomore Justin Daniels is part of a group building a virtual campus tour where users can order – and “drink” – Katora coffee. Junior Zoe Rafter put her knowledge of voltage and wavelengths to work this semester using a circuit board.

New partnerships with Virginia schools give University of Mary Washington students like Daniels and Rafter a jumpstart on master’s coursework – and futures – in engineering. Pathway agreements with George Mason and Virginia Tech offer early grad-school admission, five-year master’s degree possibilities and résumés ready for lucrative positions across the region, all while students complete their bachelor’s degrees at Mary Washington.

“Our students will be able to enjoy all that is special about UMW – our smaller student body, being able to work more closely with faculty and the rich foundation of a liberal arts education – while being able to pursue careers in engineering,” said College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) Assistant Dean Betsy Lewis.

The programs – partnerships with George Mason’s Volgenau School of Engineering (VSE), launched last fall, and Virginia Tech’s School of Engineering, available to students beginning this spring – provide accelerated pathways built on foundational courses. And students with liberal arts and sciences degrees – who’ve studied a diverse array of subjects, collected technical and practical knowledge, and learned to speak and write well – are prepared to navigate them. Read more.

Partnerships Lead Students to Engineering Master’s Degrees

Sophomore Justin Daniels is part of a group building a virtual campus tour where users can order – and “drink” – Katora coffee. Junior Zoe Rafter put her knowledge of voltage and wavelengths to work this semester using a circuit board. New partnerships with Virginia schools give University of Mary Washington students like Daniels and […]

Mental Health is Top of Mind at Mary Washington

As UMW students approach the end of an unprecedented semester, with final exams and holidays on the horizon, practicing self-care and inquiring about others’ wellbeing is important. Zen Garden photo courtesy of Dan Hirshberg.

As UMW students approach the end of an unprecedented semester, with final exams and holidays on the horizon, practicing self-care and inquiring about others’ wellbeing is important. Zen Garden photo courtesy of Dan Hirshberg.

Five short words can go a long way toward mental wellness: “How are you feeling today?”

“It’s something every single member of our community can do for our students,” said Tevya Zukor, director of University of Mary Washington’s Talley Center for Counseling Services. “That kind of check-in can mean the world to someone who’s feeling isolated and disconnected.”

And who isn’t feeling a little off-course and overwhelmed these days? Especially students. With final exams and the fuss of the upcoming holiday season upon them – not to mention a global pandemic and the aftermath of a divisive election – more first-time mental health service-seekers are turning to the Talley Center. Zukor sees a positive side to the uptick in visitors. Young people are discovering the world of mental health, beginning to build coping strategies and dissolving the stigma around asking for help.

“It’s OK to want support and seek feedback and guidance when we’re not feeling well,” he said. “There’s nothing shameful about seeing someone to help navigate the world. That doesn’t make us flawed; it makes us human.” Read more.

Concert Raises Funds for Music Students, Area Legal Aid

If the University of Mary Washington brings the melody to tomorrow night’s Jazz4Justice concert, legal aid brings the rhythm. Sponsored by UMW’s jazz music program and Legal Aid Works of Fredericksburg, the free production is a 45-minute blend of nostalgic concert footage, soulful surprises, and messages and performances by Mary Washington students. This year’s seventh […]

Mental Health is Top of Mind at Mary Washington

Five short words can go a long way toward mental wellness: “How are you feeling today?” “It’s something every single member of our community can do for our students,” said Tevya Zukor, director of University of Mary Washington’s Talley Center for Counseling Services. “That kind of check-in can mean the world to someone who’s feeling […]