University of Mary Washington Top Questions

Is the stereotype of students at your school accurate?

Megan

there are a lot of lesbians and gays on campus, but you find that anywhere... college is the first place many people feel comfortable living a gay lifestyle. There's a shortage of guys (only 30% of the campus is male) so the guys think they're hot shit and the girls fight over them. There are parties but you have to know the right people and being on a sports team helps a lot. And yes, most people on campus ARE socially awkward.

Blake

mostly, however with regard to cliques and parties, students can avoid/overcome them

Alex

Absolutely not. The girl to guy ratio is 60:40 and we have plenty of diversity!

Michelle

Actually, there are tons of things to do on the weekends, and the majority of campus does stick around during weekends and holidays.

Mallory

I'd say they probably were somewhat accurate years ago, but that's definitely changing. Racial diversity is, thankfully, on the uptrend. And in terms of diversity of personalities, beliefs, etc., Mary Washington is extremely diverse.

Sarah

I don't think it's accurate at all. It may seem less diverse compared to other schools, but UMW is also smaller than some of the most diverse schools. There are so many clubs that promote diversity on campus, all you have to do is get involved!

Melissa

no.

Connie

I definitely think there is a lot to do on campus and in Fredericksburg on the weekends. The campus offers various activities, there are parties, there are great clubs, there's the dollar movie theatre on campus on weekends and there are a lot of great bars and restaurants in downtown Fredericksburg, which is very close to the campus. There are a lot of sports at the school, even without a football team there are plenty of sports events you can go to, the gym is excellent, there's a nice swimming pool and awesome tennis courts that are also open on the weekends.

Beth

While Mary Washington is a co-ed school, the ratio of female to male is probably 75-25, and to be honest, that is a very generous estimate on behalf of the male representation. As for the lack of diversity, it's true. Kudos to the multi-cultural center sponsoring events like "Taste of Asia", but I could count the non-white students in all my classes combined on one hand. I can understand the reasonings behind not going to Mary Washington. By going to a larger school, one encounters more diversity, and I can imagine it's not all that thrilling to be the only person of color in a intro class of 100 students.

Paige

The boy to girl ratio is about 60-40, so it is just like most universities/colleges. Also, the campus is extremely diverse in every category; everyone is represented and everyone is welcome.

Taylor

1. Definitely not. I've found Mary Wash to be a VERY welcoming and accepting environment. 2. Also definitely not. While there are more than a few Vera Bradley toting Ralph Lauren wearing students, there are also a lot of representation on the flipside.

Stephan

Somewhat however it really depends on which major you are in

Jenny

Yes!

Kyle

Yes.

Laura

The second two are, the town is pretty boring when it comes to college-oriented activities, and the town is not very accomodating for the students at the university. The students are quite lazily-dressed, but I am also someone who spends a lot of time on my professional/outward appearance.

Allison

NOOOOOOOOOO.... however there is no official Greek life, which to me is a good thing because i hate frat boys and sorority girls.

Katy

Sure, Mary Washington is a college that is 70% female, but that doesn't make it anywhere close to an all girls school. While many people at Mary Wash did apply to those schools, UMW is a strong academic school on its on, arguably in the Top Five schools in Virginia as far as academics go. I didn't apply to UVA or W&M, so alone I can break that stereotype.

Dylan

yes

Connie

We are a small school (just under 5,000 undergraduates), but there are many advantages that come with that (make close friends, good relationships w/ teachers, etc). For those that say there is nothing to do at UMW and in the city of Fredericksburg, those are the people that don't take the time to explore our campus and the community. You will find that there is much to do (i.e. visit Downtown Fredericksburg, hang out on our beautiful campus, etc).

Stephanie

Somewhat, but at times they are exagerated, especially that we don't have any guys at the school.

Mia

not really, a lot of people wanted to go to umw

Elizabeth

UMW is co-ed although there are more women than men, but that is true with many other schools. There are many commuter students but that doesn't mean campus life is dull. It is as boring or as fun as you make it - true for any campus regardless of number of students/frats/sports etc.

Harper

Umw girls are busted (ugly): Generally, yes. There are very few actually hot girls at the school, however there are a good amount of attractive and good looking girls there. The ratio of girls to guys (70% to 30%) doesn't matter, while it looks good on paper, the extra girls ARE actually unattractive, leading to an equal amount of guys and acceptable girls. umw students aren't very intelligent: pretty much, yes. they are all generally good intentioned however, so its nothing against them. there are a few of students who make you wonder how they ever got in, let alone got into any college (though to be fair, some of these get weeded out the first year) umw students are all goody-goodys: not true at all. there is a large population of heavy drinkers, a few students into harder drugs (shrooms, prescription drugs), and a fair number of potheads. Many of these students get weeded out (excuse the pun) but also many of them stay because the requirements aren't to strenuous. However, there are also a huge number of the opposite extreme, perfect god fearing Christians who look down on you if you drink. the girls are all lesbians or feminists: not true at all. no more then any other campus

Bethany

Although UMW is predominantly white, the administration is actively seeking to attract more minority students. There are plenty of black, asian, and hispanic students-- you just have to be open to meet new kinds of people! As a freshman, its definitely not easy to find the stereotypical "college" party every weekend- UMW doesn't have any official frats. As you get older and your friends start to move off campus, there's definitely more places to party. UMW is definitely academically challenging, so most people study a lot, but we have lives too! College is what you make it-- if you just sit around and wait for something to happen, you could be waiting for a very long time. AND Mary Washington is 60% female, 40% male- the same as the national average! so people need to stop saying how they wish there were more men at UMW because there are just fewer men going to college these days.

Chelsea

It is not a suitcase school- most people stay on the weekends and party. There is a strong gay population, but it is not overwhelming.

TJ

Not entirely. We DO need more diversity, but people think diversity means black and white. We do have many Asian students. Also, we do have diversity of personality and interest. Not everyone at UMW is the same.

Ashley

While a lot of the school (well a huge percentage) is white, I think the school is not stuck-up in the least. The majority of the people I have met have been very warm and friendly. Also, not everyone is from an upperclass family.

Devin

I've found that yes, students do go home on the weekends, but this is true for every college. there are just some kids who miss their homes or have obligations to fufill in which they need to leave campus once in a while. Our school has very strong Student Government and Club Organizations on campus whose job it is to provide free activites for the student body, not only for the weekends but week nights too. These groups have been able to branch out more in conjunction with the change to University status 4 years ago.

Sarah

To an extent. Yes, there are more girls than guys, so if you're looking for a relationship it is often hard to find a good person who isn't already taken. Yes, the food does get old. But you find ways to change things up, and make new things out of the things Seaco and the Nest offer. Most of the dorms are older and don't have air conditioning, but the heat only lasts a few weeks at the beginning and a few at the end of the school year. But the dorms, especially freshmen dorms, are places in which you can meet a large variety of people.

Blake

I mean yes in the sense that there are very few non-white people on campus, but the administration does tend to make a big deal about diversity. One thing that is true about our students, is that for the most part they are very liberal. There is a decent size 'gay' community on campus (though they would make you believe it's bigger than it actually is), and the students, faculty, and administration seem to try and prove just how "progressive" they are on a regular basis.

Robin

Absolutely not. I dont know a single person that goes home regularly on the weekends and as far as the lesbian thing goes, every campus is going to have them. The population at Mary Washington is well over half-female and because of that youre going to have a larger than normal population of lesbian women, but the vast majority are heterosexual girls.

Brian

Some. Students should know coming in whats true and not obsess about it. UMW when you visit isn't much different from reality. There is less diversity than some campuses but its way overblown, don't come here if it aggravates you. Fredericksburg is a nice quiet town, those who are bored complain but never take advantage of what it has to offer. Food on campus is not very good. Housing is ok, better for guys. School is improving but is what its advertised as a small liberal arts school in a nice non-college town.

Claire

Some of these ideas are true. There is a big population of conservative, stuck-up white southerners at UMW, and there are a lot of liberal hippie types, too. But it's definitely not true that UMW students don't like to have fun. Beer pong is played in the dorms and once students are 21, they frequent the local bars. There are just as many parties at MW as any other school -- we just have fewer people and smaller groups of friends.

Lindsay

NO! Except for the part about squirrels, the other statements are mostly false. Many students chose UMW as their first choice, and definitely not as a backup for UVA. UVA's a great school, but UMW has unique qualities too; beautiful campus, great location (DC and Richmond are less than an hour away each way), intimate class settings, and a growing future. We are small, but not small enough that you know everyone. And being small has its advantages too! I actually speak with my professors, not a graduate aid, and I've never had a class bigger than maybe 45 people in it. I am able to hold leadership positions and be really involved on campus. And no we don't have frats. But we do have good parties and there's ALWAYS something to do on-campus, you just can't be lazy and you can't be blind to the opportunities around you!

Megan

Yes, they are fairly accurate

Cody

Not at all. Mary Washington has a much different acceptance policy then other public VA schools, say, for example, UVA. UVA uses a strict, numerical rubric to calculate whether or not someone has scored high enough to enter their university. With a lot of applicants, it's an efficient way to choose the most qualified, I'm sure. However, what Mary Washington (mdub) does is much more personal. There is no rating an applicant must get, but rather, the review board judges the applicants on many levels, including their personality, demeanor, and overall capability, not just academic (or at least they do the best they can according to what the apps say). The point of this culminates in a very animated, exciting, and fun student atmosphere, which makes this place very enjoyable to live in. The students chosen are all cool people-- I can vouch for that. Most of the uncool people transfer anyway :-P But in all seriousness, the people make this school. The city of Fredericksburg is a small city, so it has lots of opportunities, but they're not as visible. Anything is available, it might just take some searching. Internship opportunities are abundant, there are plenty of places to chill at, and it's hard to find anywhere else in the nation with so many places to eat, with Central Park being right around the corner, ad downtown right down the street.

Harper

I'd like to think that neither of the first two are true, seeing as I know plenty of kids that got into UVA and W&M and chose to come here for the small, and friendly atmosphere. As for the tuition, I can't comment too much, but from my experience it doesn't seem that way. As for the commuter story, UMW has plenty of kids that life off campus, meaning they live around the school with other students, not living with their families. Finally, the idea that we have a poor social scene is a stereotype that I wonder about its origins. UMW has an extremely big party scene for the weekends, and although we have no Greek life, we have plenty of sports teams that fuel the social fire. I think urbandictionary.com has a great definition about the University of Mary Washington, that illustrates the light-hearted and very social atmosphere on the weekends.

Kate

Pretty much. Unless you want to exert the energy to change it.

Devin

most are white, some are racist, and prism (gay straight alliance) is one of the most active organizations on campus

Brett

Yeah, pretty much.

Madeleine

Not really, although sometimes it may seem like that, especially if you live in Virginia Hall freshman year.

Kat

I do know a lot of people at UMW who didn't get into UVA or William and Mary, but Mary Washington definitely has a lot of smart people. UMW is very racially homogenous--it's mostly white. UMW's new president is going to work on building more diversity, though, so hopefully diversity will increase with time. Even though UMW is a public university, sometimes the school feels private, since it is small and has a very beautiful campus. Most guys aren't as smart as the girls (perhaps because it is harder for the university to attract male students, it is easier for them to get accepted), but again, you can definitely find smart ones there. The "Mary Washington High School" stereotype is completely off base.

Andrew

Not entirely, College is what you make out of it. If you want to go out, you can go out. If you want to stay in and just hang out with friends, then that's your thing. I find the social scene to be fine. It's not your typical 500 person college party, but on any given night there is something going on.

Samantha

yes!!!!!

Jeff

Like most stereotypes they can only be attributed in a very broad way. Most of the people I meet are pretty rad, smart, and fun people. There are quite a few yuppies, but even they tend to be smarter than your average jock or frat boy. There is a pretty open attitude about lesbian and gay people at our school which is really cool and fun. Obviously no place is perfect and you have stuck up pricks and morally eroded sleaze-bags who probably came here for the male-to-female ratio.

Mary

Not entirely. I would say that it pretty accurate to say that many students go away each weekend, but not because there's nothing happening on campus. There are plenty of events and opportunities to do things, but a lot of people ignore the events and go home anyway. Most people are from Nova and travel back and forth each weekend. For the W&M and UVA rejects thing: I am one of them... But, I like Mary Wash. more than I thought I would, so I think that people need to give this school a chance. Just because the reputation is not as grand as W&M does not mean that UMW is not a good school.

Ben

most

Ashley

No, while we do not have a racially diverse population we do have a diverse group of students. People come from all different socioeconomic, religious, and political backgrounds. If anything, this school has a more liberal and very tolerant student body

brittany

no. mary wash is the best school ever

Daniel

hell yeah

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