July 23, 2024

UMW’s Summer Science Institute Inspires Grads, Faculty for 25 Years  

For a quarter of a century, UMW’s Summer Science Institute (SSI) has been a defining student experience. It’s in-the-lab, in-the-field, in-the-code, in-the-dataset kind of work. Students are fully funded during the 10-week program, earning a stipend, living on campus and staying on top of their research. “The thing that stands out the most is that […]

Companies Connect with Talent in Virginia; Employer Registration Open Now for UMW Career Fair

Governor Glenn Youngkin announced last week that Virginia is ranked “America’s Top State for Business” by CNBC. The annual ranking measures all 50 states on 128 different metrics in 10 key categories of competitiveness to determine which states are delivering most effectively on the things that mean the most to business. “When a business chooses […]

UMW’s Summer Enrichment Program Mixes College-Level Learning With Fredericksburg Fun

From mixing paint pigments to mixing music, high school students in UMW’s Summer Enrichment Program signed up for a week of college-level learning paired with outdoor activities in the Fredericksburg area. By day three in the week-long program, they had visited Ferry Farm and Kenmore, picked up litter along the Rappahannock River and tied flies […]

Newest Civil Rights Trail Markers Chronicle Mary Washington History

Five markers unveiled this week at the University of Mary Washington tell the story of a college campus – and the perseverance of its community members – following the civil rights movement of the 1950s and ’60s. The signs represent a portion of the second part of the  Fredericksburg Civil Rights Trail, “Freedom, a Work […]

UMW to Test Emergency Notification System on July 17

The University of Mary Washington will activate UMW Alerts and test its emergency notification system on Wednesday, July 17, at 10 a.m. This routine test may include text messages, emails, desktop alerts, phone calls and sirens or messages from the area warning system on campus. This summer test will reach registered devices on and off […]

UMW Earns a Spot on Money Magazine’s ‘Best Colleges’ in 2024

The University of Mary Washington is once again recognized among the “Best Colleges in America” by Money Magazine.

The 10th edition of Money’s flagship colleges list analyzes quality, affordability and future earning potential for a practical analysis of more than 700 four-year colleges. For the second year, the publication has used a star rating instead of numerical list. UMW earned 3.5 stars and is one of 22 Virginia colleges on the list.

“We hope students and parents use our list to discover new colleges that may be worth their attention, and perhaps more importantly, we want our analysis to encourage readers to think critically about what they’re paying for college and what sort of outcomes they can expect in return,” said Money’s education editor, Kaitlin Mulhere.

Unique to the list, which includes net price of a degree, average borrowing rates, and median earnings, are “value add” calculations which measure a school’s actual performance against its predicted performance. According to the methodology, these factors indicate how a college affects graduates’ outcomes. Read more.

Summer Humanities Institute Preps Students for Life After Mary Wash

[caption id="attachment_239694" align="alignright" width="300"]From left to right: UMW students Stephen McClanahan, Rob Willcox and Katie Reif adjust lighting and camera equipment. With their mentor, Assistant Professor of Communication and Digital Studies J.D. Swerzenski, the trio conducted interviews, scouted locations, got familiar with equipment and the editing process, and honed other skills. The five-week filmmaking session was part of UMW’s Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Summer Institute. Photo by Suzanne Carr Rossi. From left to right: UMW students Stephen McClanahan, Rob Willcox and Katie Reif adjust lighting and camera equipment. With their mentor, Assistant Professor of Communication and Digital Studies J.D. Swerzenski, the trio conducted interviews, scouted locations, got familiar with equipment and the editing process, and honed other skills. The five-week filmmaking session was part of UMW’s Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Summer Institute. Photo by Suzanne Carr Rossi.[/caption] University of Mary Washington senior Stephen McClanahan spent five weeks this summer practicing filmmaking. A psychology major, he saw the session as the next step in carving out the career he’s hoping to build. “It’s an incredible opportunity to have access to this technology the university offers while also getting hands-on experience with filming and editing footage,” said Rob Willcox, an anthropology and theatre major who also took part in the video project. Led by Assistant Professor of Communication and Digital Studies J.D. Swerzenski, the summer filmmaking course – packed with interviews, location scouting, lighting set-up, editing and more – was part of UMW’s Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Summer Institute (AHSSSI). The collection of immersive hands-on learning experiences, designed to give students real-world expertise they can add to their résumés, also included psychology, environmental sociology and 3-D design work, all done side-by-side with faculty mentors. “Lots of universities offer research opportunities to students, only to have them end up doing menial work. That isn’t what happened this summer,” Tobias Conner, a senior psychology major who plans to pursue a Ph.D., said of AHSSSI, for which students receive free room and board, as well as a paycheck. “We were doing real research every step of the way, from researching our primary sources in week one, to building the study, running participants, and assessing data by the end.” Read more.

UMW 2024-25 Budget Bolsters Investments in Academics, Campus Experience and Employees

The University of Mary Washington Board of Visitors has approved the budget for 2024-25 academic year.

The University of Mary Washington Board of Visitors has approved the budget for 2024-25 academic year.

The University of Mary Washington Board of Visitors approved the budget for 2024-25 academic year at the June 7 meeting, following approval of the Virginia state budget in May. Both the statewide budget and UMW budget plan advance higher education by focusing on details critical to student success, the campus experience, and human resources.

“The state through the General Assembly was very generous again to higher education generally and to Mary Washington specifically,” said Vice President for Administration and Finance Craig Erwin.

Among the highlights of the state allocation to UMW are $2.5 million in permanent funding to offset operating cost increases, following $2.1 million provided in the 2023-24 budget addendum. UMW’s state-supported need-based financial aid for Virginia residents will increase to just over $7 million, thanks to additional general fund support of $283,860 in 2024-25.

UMW’s annual budget totals approximately $160 million. About 38% of UMW’s budget comes from general funds allocated by the state, with another 38% from tuition and fees, and approximately 24% from a combination of auxiliary programs including housing, dining, parking, federal aid and other sources.  The 2024-25 tuition and fees for UMW were announced in April 2024. While delays from the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) have created uncertainty for families in the enrollment process, as well as uncertainty in university budgets, the release of financial aid packages in late April and through May have provided the needed information and certainty to move forward with the budget and to provide more information and a plan for the campus community.

This year’s state budget factors in a 3% pay increase for faculty and staff, as well as a 6.3% increase in health insurance premiums, both effective June 10, 2024, and both partially funded by the state. UMW must fund the remainder and has kept human resources as a priority in the upcoming year, with plans for new staff in HR and the budget office to aid in employee recruitment and retention and an allocation for a staff compensation study.

These mandated increases, inflationary pressures, and increased expenses have been key cost drivers in recent years, balanced by efforts such as the faculty early retirement incentive program and a strategic focus on enrollment and retention through all areas of university operations. With a positive enrollment outlook leading into the 2024-25 year and a continued conservative fiscal approach in conjunction with state investments, UMW has a stable and sustainable budget plan with opportunities to re-invest in areas critical to the campus experience.

“We are going into this fiscal year in a very strong position,” said UMW President Troy Paino. “Students and their families continue to choose Mary Washington, and we’re maintaining strong enrollment and retention of students. It’s a credit to the hard work of many on our campus, from the personalized approach in the admissions process and financial aid through the expert faculty leading each class taught and extended through life after Mary Wash. We will continue to work to find ways to reinvest within fiscal practices and approaches in conjunction with the state.”

For more information on the 2024-25 budget plan, see the June 7 board agenda online.

UMW Honors 2024 Alumni Award Recipients at Reunion Weekend

Jay Dugger ’90 was always ready to go toe-to-toe in debates with his political science professors. In the decade after he graduated, the scholarship and legal acumen he once showcased at Mary Washington helped him earn a law degree from the College of William and Mary, pass the bar, go into private practice, make partner […]

UMW’s 2024 Reunion Weekend is One for the Ages

Edna Gooch Trudeau ’59 and Danielle DeSimone ’14 graduated 55 years apart. Yet, each returned to the University of Mary Washington’s Reunion Weekend for the same reason. “I’ve kept in touch with friends I met here 69 years ago,” said Trudeau, tearing up as she recalled classmates she has lost over the years. But her […]