January 23, 2020

Alum Celebrates Identity, Inclusion at Gender and Sexual Minorities Event

Gender and Sexual Minorities and Allies Cultural Celebration keynote speaker Ted Lewis ’04.

Gender and Sexual Minorities and Allies Cultural Celebration keynote speaker Ted Lewis ’04.

For Ted Lewis ’04, the process of embracing being nonbinary began at Mary Washington. Now executive director for a Richmond-based nonprofit, Lewis – who uses they/them pronouns – helps Virginia’s LGBTQ+ youth discover their own fully authentic selves.

This week, Lewis returned to UMW to share personal experiences of coming out and organizing LGBTQ+ youth at universities and communities throughout the South. They spoke with students as part of the Gender and Sexual Minorities and Allies Cultural Celebration in the Hurley Convergence Center’s Digital Auditorium yesterday at 7 p.m.

“Being authentic saved my life,” said Lewis, who recalled how powerful it was to connect with LGBTQ+ elders in college. “I’m eager to provide that experience to UMW students.” Read more. 

UMW Welcomes Class of 2023

Move-In Day 2019. Photo by Suzanne Rossi.

Move-In Day 2019. Photo by Suzanne Rossi.

For eagles, building a nest is a bonding activity. The same could be said for the 900-plus first-year students who on Wednesday made the University of Mary Washington their home.

Move-In Day 2019.

Residence halls opened their doors to the Class of 2023, who arrived with parents, siblings, pets and armloads of bedding and clothes, as well as furniture, mini-fridges, laptops and shower caddies. They immediately began making connections with fellow students, and  President Troy Paino and wife Kelly, who – along with UMW staff – were on hand to help with the hauling. The freshmen strategically placed personal mementos and Mary Washington gear around their rooms, to remind them of the people who gave them their wings and those who’ll help them take flight.

Read more. 

UMW Grant to Help Students Recover From Substance Addiction

The University of Mary Washington has received a $50,000 grant for a unique program that helps students in various stages of recovery from alcohol and substance abuse and addiction.

The “Expanding Collegiate Recovery in Virginia” grant, awarded this summer by the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services (DBHDS), will fund growth for UMW’s Eagles in Recovery program. Though a number of colleges claim substance-free housing, the program puts UMW among only a handful in Virginia – and relatively few across the country – to offer support services for students recovering from substance addiction.

Read more.