MBU’s 179th Year Begins (photos)

Move-in and new student orientation at Mary Baldwin look different this year, but the #MBUfamily welcome for new and returning students remains the same. Under masks and face coverings, smiles light up the eyes of friends, old and new.

The civic and global all-university theme for MBU’s 179th year is Courage. That theme is fitting as the university community continues to respond vigilantly to the COVID-19 pandemic and works together to help keep the MBU family safe and healthy.

Courage is MBU’s civic and global theme for the 2020-21 academic year.

Last week, move-in leaders and members of MBU athletic teams gathered in parking lots to greet first-year students and their family members, helping move boxes and supplies into dorm rooms. 

Move-in times were scheduled and staggered; only two visitors per student were allowed; temperatures were taken; and masks and social distancing measures were ever present. Students and visitors are required to track their health and complete a health attestation form prior to arriving on campus.

For first-year students, Orientation Week featured a mix of live-streamed and in-person welcomes, workshops, and sessions. Students were broken up into socially distanced groups but shared a common purpose. 

One of the most important traditions during Orientation is Opening Convocation when MBU students participate in a candlelit ceremony, sing A Hymn for Mary Baldwin, and promise to uphold the honor system. This important rite of passage still took place, as the ceremony was repeated several times on Lower Athletic Field so that smaller groups of students could gather outside with social distancing and face coverings. 

Classes began on August 24, and students also have the opportunity to virtually explore co-curricular opportunities, clubs, and campus resources available at MBU through a new virtual expo.

For specifics on MBU’s reopening plan and the health and safety measures in place for fall semester, please visit Back to Baldwin.