“Our Values, Our Students”

I’ve started each of my first two years at UMW with a theme that I hope will capture the central focus of activities planned for the academic affairs area.  For this year, I’ve selected “our values, our students” because I want to emphasize our strengths as a student-centered university.  Being student centered doesn’t mean that we treat students as customers or cater to their every wish.  To me, it means that we acknowledge the central role students play in the functioning of the university.
Student Centered means finding students where they are intellectually and, over time, opening their eyes and minds to the world.  It’s about connecting with freshmen to help them discover themselves and see possible career opportunities.

Student Centered is about allowing students to assist you in your professional research.  It’s about modeling what it is like to be a professional in your discipline.

Student Centered is about attending open houses and Discovery days to acquaint possible new students about the value of a Mary Washington education.  It’s about retaining those students who matriculate and graduating them on time.

As we go into this year, we should be proud of job we do in educating our students.  Several guides and ranking publications agree that we’re an excellent university.  We must, however, be vigilant if we desire to maintain our top tier status.  To do this, we need to apply our values to our students and remain student centered.

Have a wonderful and productive year.   If you have suggestions about what we need to do to keep UMW moving forward, please share them with me.

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