May 28, 2020

Read ‘Dear Evan Hansen’ with the Mother of All Book Clubs

Looking for a way to stay connected to other alumni during this challenging time? We are beginning the second round of reading in our online literary group–the Mother of All Book Clubs!

Alumni read and discuss via a private Facebook group, so only approved members can see posts or participate in the discussion. This is informal and low-pressure–read along with us and chime in on the discussion as much or as little as you like.

Our next selection is Dear Evan Hansen, by Steven Levenson. “A letter that was never meant to be seen, a lie that was never meant to be told, a life he never dreamed could be his. Evan Hansen is about to get the one thing he’s always wanted: a chance to belong. Deeply personal and profoundly universal, Dear Evan Hansen is a groundbreaking American musical about truth, fiction, and the price we’re willing to pay for the possibility to connect.”

Dear Evan Hansen was UMW’s Common Read experience for 2017 and is an ongoing Broadway hit. This book should prompt some good discussions about ethics, mental health, and the impact of social media on our society and relationships. It also is uplifting and warm, with an award-winning soundtrack. Recently, the UMW Theatre department adapted a song from the soundtrack and released it on social media, where it received praise on the show’s social media as well.

Please note that we are reading the actual screenplay of the Broadway production. There are other publications, including a novelization, by the same name. Use the links here and confirm the author to ensure you obtain the correct text.

Pick up a copy of the book and start reading–we will begin posting discussion questions on Monday, May 25. You might have a small-business bookseller you like to support, or you might want to try your local library system, as many offer ebook rentals. 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

Postponed: Mary Washington Reunion Weekend

The annual highlight of our work in Alumni Relations is Reunion Weekend. Each year, approximately 1,000 alumni and family members return to renew old friendships, create new ones, and retell—and sometimes even recreate—their favorite Mary Washington memories. It is a time-honored tradition.

Unfortunately, like so many long-awaited celebrations, it is now being affected by COVID-19. On Monday, Virginia’s governor announced a stay-at-home order through June 10. This means it is not only advisable, but mandatory, that we postpone Reunion Weekend. While this decision saddens all of us, festivities should always be secondary to safety, and the health and well-being of our Mary Washington family is our highest priority.

Work has already begun to reschedule Reunion. Despite the number of University events that must be deferred to the fall, we were able to secure Labor Day weekend (Saturday, September 5-Monday, September 7) for the event.

This event is so important, it was given a choice time in the hopes that it will be most convenient and manageable for alumni. Most of the Reunion events will occur as originally proposed. However, some planned offerings cannot occur in the fall—for example, on-campus housing will not be possible, as students will occupy the residence halls. While Reunion 2020 will look different than in previous years, this postponement will be an opportunity to start new traditions. We will find creative solutions and demonstrate that COVID-19 cannot break our Mary Washington bond.

Once we are able to determine the scope of the new Reunion, we will communicate with you and will re-open online registration. In the meantime, we will begin issuing refunds for registrations and campus housing reservations already completed.

We know the disappointment many of you will feel about this postponement–because we are feeling it ourselves! But we are so hopeful that you all will be able to join us in September. We are eager to celebrate Reunion Weekend 2020 with our Mary Washington family.

 

Sincerely,

The Alumni Relations Team

Angela McCormick: Coming Home

Angela McCormick ’00 knew the minute she set foot on Campus Walk as a high school sophomore that Mary Washington was the place for her. And after double-majoring in geography and journalism, the native of Charlottesville, Virginia, knew it was the place she wanted to go to work.

McCormick got the chance earlier this year, becoming associate director of alumni communications. It’s a big job that includes everything from managing social media accounts and producing website content to giving alumni tours and helping plan reunion activities – anything to help people feel connected to their alma mater.

[Read more…]

UMW Homecoming Weekend Kicks off Tomorrow

Hundreds of Mary Washington alumni will converge on the Fredericksburg campus, tomorrow – Friday, Oct. 19 – and Saturday, Oct. 20, for Homecoming Weekend 2018. Organizers expect about 1,000 spirited UMW grads spanning at least seven decades to visit their old stomping grounds, attend an array of activities and reconnect with good friends. Many more, […]