August 3, 2021

Alum, Sports Exec, Scores Spot in Top ‘Forty Under 40’

Mike Shane ’04 is the chief business officer for Comcast Spectacor, which owns the Philadelphia Flyers hockey team and Wells Fargo Center. Shane, who also spent over a decade with the Washington Nationals, was just named to Sports Business Journal‘s ‘Forty Under 40’ list.

Mike Shane ’04 is the chief business officer for Comcast Spectacor, which owns the Philadelphia Flyers hockey team and Wells Fargo Center. Shane, who also spent over a decade with the Washington Nationals, was just named to Sports Business Journal‘s ‘Forty Under 40’ list.

Just like it was yesterday, Mike Shane ’04 remembers the Washington Nationals making the playoffs nearly a decade ago.

“An hour after the game ended, stands were still packed. Everyone was cheering as the players took a lap around the field, high-fiving their fans,” said Shane, who spent 13 years moving up through the organization. “From the players to the staff to the fans, that night was the culmination of so much effort, energy and passion.”

Shane, who played baseball and earned a bachelor’s degree while at Mary Washington, has seen his hard work pay off. This summer, he was named to Sports Business Journal’s (SBJ) “Forty Under 40” list. Now chief business officer for Comcast Spectacor, a sports and entertainment company that owns professional ice hockey team the Philadelphia Flyers, Shane said that from the beginning, his focus has been on helping sports fans make lasting memories.

“I love walking onto the concourse before a game and seeing kids’ faces light up as they take it all in,” said Shane, a father of three boys who brings his family to the UMW alumni baseball game every year. Read more.

Join us for the virtual UMW 5k for Justice!

Dr. James Farmer said, “Words are not enough. There must be action!”

To that end, we invite you to participate in the UMW 5k for Justice, which will help to empower students striving to continue Dr. Farmer’s legacy.

Join UMW Women’s Lacrosse, Black Student Association, Brothers of a New Direction, Jewish Student Association, NAACP – UMW College Chapter, and Women of Color in the UMW 5k for Justice virtual run/walk/roll challenge. All proceeds will go to UMW’s James Farmer Multicultural Center to support social justice work on campus and beyond.

Saturday, August 14 or Sunday, August 15
Run/walk/roll a 5k (3.1 miles) on your own

Post your photos with #UMWJustice5k to show your support!

The event registration fee of $15 is a donation to the JFMC. Additional donations are welcome! If you are not able to participate, you still are welcome to register for donation purposes. Alternatively, you can make a gift directly to the JFMC without registering.

We look forward to seeing your #UMWJustice5k posts!

Register

A message from the Director of University Marketing

Colleagues,

We are excited to announce that after two years of planning (interrupted by COVID), this week, we will start a phased rollout of our new brand! When you arrive on campus, you will notice that new light pole banners are being installed, and they’re going up on the Dahlgren and Stafford campuses as well. In addition, the UMW website, messages on the digital screens throughout our campuses, and Eagle Village’s electronic billboard will reflect our new marketing approach.

Thank you to those who came out to the employee appreciation picnic on Monday and picked up their baseball caps. We will also give away aluminum water bottles at the All-University Assembly two weeks later on August 16. Sustainability matters, and you’ll want to get your reusable bottle while they last

The next week, we will celebrate the first day of classes on August 23 with an all-campus pep rally on Ball Circle from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. On that day, bring your lunch, pick up a newly designed T-shirt (and other swag), mix and mingle with colleagues and students, enjoy the sounds of a local DJ, and take all the selfies with Sammy and your co-workers that your Facebook and Instagram feeds can handle.

Then, throughout the academic year, we will announce additional activities and programs as we continue to tell our story, culminating with a new web design that will roll out in the summer of 2022.

Thanks to everyone – literally thousands of you – who completed surveys, participated in focus groups, and helped define what makes UMW special. You matter, and we are grateful!

Malcolm T. Holmes
Director, University Marketing​
Advancement + University Relations

Read EVERYTHING I NEVER TOLD YOU with the Mary Washington Book Club

We are beginning the next round of reading in our online literary group, the Mother of All Book Clubs! This club is open to anyone with a connection to Mary Washington–alumni, parents, donors, faculty, and staff. Join us!

Our next selection is Everything I Never Told You, by Celeste Ng. This critically acclaimed book was the debut novel from the author of Little Fires Everywhere.

From Amazon: “Lydia is dead. But they don’t know this yet. So begins this exquisite novel about a Chinese American family living in 1970s small-town Ohio. Lydia is the favorite child of Marilyn and James Lee, and her parents are determined that she will fulfill the dreams they were unable to pursue. But when Lydia’s body is found in the local lake, the delicate balancing act that has been keeping the Lee family together is destroyed, tumbling them into chaos. A profoundly moving story of family, secrets, and longing, Everything I Never Told You is both a gripping page-turner and a sensitive family portrait, uncovering the ways in which mothers and daughters, fathers and sons, and husbands and wives struggle, all their lives, to understand one another.”

Pick up a copy of the book and start reading–we will begin posting discussion questions on Monday, August 23. You might have a small-business bookseller you like to support, or you might want to try your local library system. But if you need the book shipped, below are some links to larger online providers.

We look forward to reading with you!

All the best,
The Alumni Relations Team

Amazon

Barnes & Noble

Target

Looking ahead to future selections in order to get on library waitlists? Here is the next book we plan to read (keep in mind that changes are possible):

The Code Breaker, by Walter Isaacson

Come out to the ballgame with UMW Alumni

Fredericksburg-area alumni are invited to join us at the FredNats ballpark for Mary Washington Alumni Night!

We’ll be cheering on our FredNats as they battle the Carolina Mudcats. Wear your Mary Wash gear and come join us!

Register here for a free game ticket. Then meet us at the stadium on gameday to pick up your ticket starting at 6:15pm; look for the blue UMW Alumni tent near the main gate. The ballpark has food and beverage concessions available; Thursday also is “Thirsty Thursday” with $2 beer specials.

Thursday, August 26
7:00-10:00pm (EDT)

FredNats Ballpark
42 Jackie Robinson Way
Fredericksburg, Virginia 22401

Please note: Masks are required for unvaccinated attendees, though masks are welcome and encouraged for any guests who feel more comfortable wearing them. The outdoor nature of this event will enable social distancing for those who prefer it.

Pre-registration is required for this event, as tickets are limited. Parking is $5 per vehicle, and the park is cashless.

We look forward to seeing you at the ballpark!

 

REGISTER

UMW Earns Spot in Top-Selling ‘Fiske Guide to Colleges 2022’

For the 14th consecutive year, the Fiske Guide to Colleges has named the University of Mary Washington among the country’s best for delivering outstanding academics and reasonable prices.

UMW makes Fiske Guide to Colleges 2022Among top-selling publications that compare colleges, the prestigious Fiske Guide is often considered the gold standard resource. The 2022 edition, the 38th annual issue, features more than 300 of the “best and most interesting” public and private four-year colleges and universities in the nation as well as Canada, Great Britain and Ireland. Listings are based on questionnaires completed by administrators and a cross-section of students.

Along with strong academics, championship athletics and successful graduates, this year’s edition mentions Mary Washington’s beautiful campus, rich history and unique traditions like Eagle Gathering, Devil Goat Day and Junior Ring Week. The publication points to incoming students’ pledge to uphold the honor code, along with other shared experiences like a first-year seminar, common read and living-learning communities.

“Tradition is at the heart of UMW and is one of the many things that instills a sense of community here,” the publication quotes a student as saying. Read more.

Science Symposium Showcases Research That’s Making a Difference

Junior Karissa Highlander is one of 25 Mary Washington students participating in UMW’s Summer Science Symposium tomorrow. The event showcases months of student research aimed at finding solutions to real-world problems.

Junior Karissa Highlander is one of 25 Mary Washington students participating in UMW’s Summer Science Symposium tomorrow. The event showcases months of student research aimed at finding solutions to real-world problems.

University of Mary Washington junior Karissa Highlander has spent the summer researching an infectious illness. But not the one scientists have been focused on for the past 18 months.

Instead, Highlander, a biomedical sciences major, has been working on new treatments for tuberculosis. Though rare in the United States, antibiotic resistant strains of the deadly disease are prevalent in developing countries. “This research could provide protection to individuals living in areas with high rates of infection.”

Her study – along with that of 24 other undergraduates – were on display Wednesday at UMW’s Summer Science Symposium. The event, held via Zoom, showcased months of student research aimed at finding solutions to real-world problems. Alongside their professors, they’ve been exploring topics like the cancer-fighting potential of over-the-counter drugs, disease-causing parasites in tropical climates, toxicity of plastics and the impact of pollutants on aquatic ecosystems.

The 10-week Summer Science Institute (SSI) gives students from six disciplines – biology, chemistry, computer science, Earth and environmental sciences, physics and mathematics – a jumpstart on projects they’ll continue throughout their college careers.

“Independent research gives UMW students the opportunity to see the impact their work can make on the scientific community at large,” said Associate Professor of Chemistry Davis Oldham. “The experiments they’re doing today – working with cells, analyzing mixtures, writing code – may one day lead to big discoveries.” Read more.

UMW Trio Heads to Tokyo for Paralympic Games

Joey Peppersack '21, UMW Assistant Swim Coach Zach Shattuck and UMW Swim Coach Justin Anderson '10

Joey Peppersack ’21, UMW Assistant Swim Coach Zach Shattuck and UMW Swim Coach Justin Anderson ’10

UMW Assistant Swim Coach Zach Shattuck and Joey Peppersack ’21 are heading to Tokyo soon as members of the U.S. Paralympic Team, along with UMW Swim Coach Justin Anderson ’10 as an assistant coach for Team USA. The Paralympics run from Aug. 24 to Sept. 5.

Shattuck and Peppersack have appeared on several regional media outlets:

Mary Washington’s Joey Peppersack, Zach Shattuck preparing for Paralympics (WRIC/ABC-8 in Richmond)

Two local athletes heading to Tokyo after making US Paralympics Swim Team (WJLA/ABC-7 in D.C.)

UMW Grad and Coach to Compete in Tokyo (WVTF Radio IQ) 

Peppersack, Shattuck fulfill quest, will compete at Tokyo Paralympic Games (The Free Lance-Star, Culpeper Star-Exponent)

Shattuck Eyes Gold in Tokyo for US Paralympic Swim Team (The Sports Pulse, Maryland)

UMW Honors Students Earn Early Selection to Med School

When Shreya Murali was in high school, she got the chance to observe an open-heart surgery. She watched, mesmerized, as the surgeon cut through the sternum to reveal the patient’s beating heart.

“At that moment, I knew I wanted to be in that room one day,” said prospective physician Murali, now a rising junior at the University of Mary Washington, where she’s already immersed in cutting-edge cancer research.

She’s getting a jumpstart on becoming a doctor, as one of three Mary Washington students recently accepted into The George Washington University’s School of Medicine and Health Sciences. Thanks to an agreement between the two institutions, UMW Honors students can earn early selection to the highly competitive four-year program by applying during the spring semester of their sophomore year.

Eleven students have been accepted since the partnership was announced in 2015, with four UMW graduates enrolled as of this fall. In a couple of years, Murali, Abigail Delapenha and Hannah Harris will join them. Read more.

College of Education, City Spin New Type of Story

Walking along the Rappahannock Heritage Trail, Stephanie Gardner and her kids, Piper and Pierce, read ‘Alex’s Day on the Rappahannock,’ written and illustrated by students in UMW’s College of Education, as part of Fredericksburg Parks, Recreation and Events department’s new StoryWalk(R) project. Photo by Suzanne Carr Rossi.

Walking along the Rappahannock Heritage Trail, Stephanie Gardner and her kids, Piper and Pierce, read ‘Alex’s Day on the Rappahannock,’ written and illustrated by students in UMW’s College of Education, as part of Fredericksburg Parks, Recreation and Events department’s new StoryWalk(R) project. Photo by Suzanne Carr Rossi.

Each time Melissa Wells has taught “Literature and the Arts in Elementary Classrooms,” her students have partnered with local teachers to create children’s books to use in their classes.

That wasn’t an option after the pandemic hit, said Wells, an assistant professor in University of Mary Washington’s College of Education (COE). But her colleague, Leslie Martin, faculty director of UMW’s Center for Community Engagement, had an idea.

She put Wells in touch with Fredericksburg Parks, Recreation and Events department, which recently launched a StoryWalk® project to get kids outdoors and reading. This semester, Wells’ students wrote and designed a 20-page storybook, Alex’s Day on the Rappahannock, about a family discovering wildlife and safety while tubing on the river. Rather than paper, the pages will be printed on panels along the Rappahannock Heritage Trail.

“The arts got many of us through the pandemic,” said Wells, who teaches aspiring educators how to integrate arts and literature into their curriculum. “As human beings, we naturally process our world and experiences through storytelling, which can help teach concepts that lead to deeper learning.” Read more.