The Undergraduate First-Year Experience

All new undergraduate students have the benefit of membership in a community-focused program offering support, direction, and connection. MBU Online functions as a community for adult students. International students also have their own community which includes intentional cultural, academic, and social immersion. MBU students, whether residing on campus or commuting, have support programs based on their common interests. Students enrolled in the Virginia Women’s Institute for Leadership (VWIL) or the Program for the Exceptionally Gifted (PEG), as well as students in the Ida B. Wells program, have an immersive experience through these communities. 

Our first-year curriculum includes a year-long orientation program which assists in the transition to college and helps guide students in career exploration. The Mary Baldwin College for Women offers that guidance with a focus on women-centered leadership. Other programming revolves around academic pursuits. Throughout the first year, students work closely with a team of faculty, staff, and peers to build successful studentship and strong relationships, to discover their passions, and to explore who they want to be. We bring these teams together around common curricular and co-curricular interests and activities while exposing students to the larger campus and all of its resources. Our first-year experience supports new students in their transition to college and in their exploration and discovery of their best selves.