Welcoming MBU’s New Students

August 27, 2019

Mary Baldwin University is set to welcome undergraduate students back to campus for the start of the 2019–20 academic year.

The largest number of new students in history join the university this fall, marking the second straight year of record-breaking enrollment. As of release, 450 new students have made their deposits to Mary Baldwin, surpassing last year’s new student class. 

New students also bring a broad range of backgrounds, interests, and perspectives to campus, reaffirming MBU’s commitment to diversity and inclusivity:

  • 65% in-state; 35% out-of-state, with 28 states represented 
  • 75% women, 25% men
  • 51% white, 40% non-white, 9% non-disclosed
  • 26% first-generation college students 

A new feature of Fall Orientation this year is a workshop using the StrengthsFinders assessment tool. Students are guided through an understanding of their learning style, career aptitude, and areas of strength to start off their studies.

The common reading book is another way MBU is encouraging new students to bond through shared experiences this year. Over the summer, they read Counting Descent by Clint Smith — a collection of poetry that speaks to issues of social justice and inclusion — and will participate in a book discussion with the author during orientation.     

New students, including freshmen and transfer students, move in on Aug. 28, and then participate in several days of orientation activities designed to kick off their college experience. Highlights include:

  • MBU Family Picnic, 5 to 7:30 p.m. on Aug. 28 outside Hunt Dining Hall
    • Students and their families, plus MBU faculty and staff, gather on Hunt Hill for food, music, and games.
  • Meet Staunton, 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Aug. 31, starting on Page Terrace 
    • Students meet business owners, community leaders, and residents throughout downtown Staunton and learn about cultural and historic sites.
  • Opening Convocation and Candle Lighting Ceremony, 7:30 to 9 p.m. on Sept. 1, First Presbyterian Church and Page Terrace 
    • New students officially join the MBU community.

Upperclassmen return to Mary Baldwin over Labor Day weekend, Aug. 30–Sept. 1, and fall classes start on Labor Day, Sept. 2.