Coloring Outside the Lines

Photo by Leigh Williams '14

A bin of orange bouncy balls caught Sidney Mullis’ eye during a routine trip to Wal-Mart.  The University of Mary Washington studio art major snapped up a plastic ball and pondered the creative possibilities. She transformed the cheap childhood toy into wearable art that she later filmed for a performance art piece called “Straight.” The coming-of-age work earned her the Melchers Gray Purchase Award  at UMW’s annual student art exhibition in April, ensuring the work a place in UMW’s permanent art collection. Mullis, already an accomplished artist as a 2014 graduate, often traverses the line between art and theatre in her work. She isn’t afraid to take risks, and admits she doesn’t fit neatly into conventional categories. “I don’t really know where I sit in between the two [disciplines], and I’m actually happy about that,” she said. “I think there is something more interesting to me when I don’t know. I think that goes into my working process, too.” With “Straight” and … [Read more...]

National Champs!

UMV rugby

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Routing a Course

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Congrats, Class of 2014!

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A Living Legacy

(from left): Jack Hylan, Julia Wood, Candice Roland and Leah Tams

History lurks just under the surface at the University of Mary Washington. Every brick, every tree, every bench on Campus Walk could tell a story from the university’s 106-year history. A group of UMW students hears echoes of those stories – and has found their place in them – thanks to an innovative history course. Century America is a small, private, online course, taught by Professors Jeffrey McClurken from UMW and Ellen Holmes Pearson from the University of North Carolina Asheville, who instruct students from nine different public liberal arts colleges. The course, funded by the Council of Public Liberal Arts Colleges (COPLAC) and the Teagle Foundation, invites each participating school to discover what life was like at their institution 100 years ago and to share those stories as part of a digital exhibition. “I already loved Mary Washington history, but it has given me a greater appreciation for the school now that I have an understanding of its legacy and this whole … [Read more...]

Up Close and Personal

Katie Wilson with sea lion[2]_HP

  Charlie Reed surveyed the marine life surrounding him as he snorkeled off the coast of the Galapagos Islands. Suddenly, two black, glassy eyes gazed back at him. He stared face-to-face at a 200-pound female sea lion. “At first, it was a little scary,” the University of Mary Washington senior said. “Then you realize they are just trying to play.” The Galapagos Islands, the site of a UMW faculty-led Spring Break trip, are known for their biological diversity – and for wildlife that haven’t been conditioned to be afraid of humans. Reed and his 23 fellow UMW students experienced that firsthand during their nine-day trip, a joint effort by Andrew Dolby, professor of biology, and Melanie Szulczewski, assistant professor of environmental science. The trip was one of five faculty-led study abroad experiences over Spring Break, including in Quebec, Guatemala, Austria and India. “What makes this course unique is that it is holistic,” Dolby said. Students will receive … [Read more...]

Sounds of Spirit

Members of the UMW Pep Band perform at each home basketball game.

The University of Mary Washington will soon croon to its own fight song. And students will get a chance to help pen the lyrics. The winner will receive $250 and a new iPad, and will have his or her name attached to the song in perpetuity. “We want the song to last and be a part of the UMW culture and tradition,” said Vice President for Student Affairs Doug Searcy. The song, “Soar, Eagles, Soar!” is being composed by Paul Murtha, a world-class composer and arranger for the United States Army Band. Murtha has long been associated with UMW as a member of the UMW Faculty Brass Quintet and an arranger for the UMW Philharmonic Orchestra. Students interested in contributing lyrics should: Listen to the music (in electronic format at the bottom of the page). It eventually will be recorded by the UMW band. Open the lyric sheet for the song and follow along. Write the words. You’ll need to supply a word for each note written. The first and last lines have been written, so … [Read more...]

Making History

bball saturday_homepage

The University of Mary Washington men's basketball team saw the greatest season in school history come to a close on Saturday, March 16 at the Anderson Center, falling to Williams College, 79-46, in the NCAA Division III Tournament Quarterfinals. The eagles finish with a school record 25 wins, and close at 25-6 overall.   … [Read more...]

Snow Day

A heavy wet snow blankets UMW, Thursday Feb. 13, 2013. (Photo by Norm Shafer).

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Wheels of Change

Photographer

Carole Garmon found her inspiration among piles of trash. On a trip to the Stafford County dump, the chair of the Department of Art and Art History at the University of Mary Washington snapped up what others might have passed by without a second glance– two dirty, dilapidated bicycles. Now, more than a year later, Garmon and her art students are collecting and refurbishing discarded or broken-down bikes. They are embellishing them with their own artistic spin, with plans to launch an informal bike share program this semester. “What started with me bringing in two bikes has grown into the Art Bike/Shared Bike project,” Garmon said. In tandem with Garmon’s efforts, the President’s Council on Sustainability is also exploring ways to make the university more bike-friendly through a formal bike plan. Joni Wilson, director of sustainability, serves as the bridge between both groups. She and Garmon hope to debut two finished bikes in conjunction with RecycleMania, an annual … [Read more...]