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Planes, trains, and automobiles

19 Mar

Some of the most common questions I get on tours and around the Admissions office are regarding transportation. Trust me, I get it. Lexington seems like it is in the middle of nowhere, but it is actually a lot more connected than you think, and certainly more connected than I expected.

I am writing this post from a train on my way to New York City for an interview (wish me luck!) and this is the fourth such trip I  have made by train. While we don’t have a station in Lexington, there are three relatively close; Charlottesville, Staunton, and Lynchburg. All three are serviced by Amtrak and are all well within an hour and a half away. They can take you pretty much anywhere on the eastern seaboard for a very reasonable fare. Want to go to a concert in D.C.? No problem. Visit a friend in Philly? Sure thing. Get a job in NYC? Again, wish me luck.

As far as flying goes, Roanoke is the closest airport and it connects to most of the major airports in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, and Midwest. Some students choose to drive to Richmond, about 2 1/2 hours away, where you can find generally find cheaper flights to Texas and the West Coast. When traveling abroad, most leave out of Dulles in D.C. or Charlotte, N.C.

If you prefer to drive, whether for a weekend away or to get home during breaks, Lexington is conveniently located at the crossroads of 64 and 81. Locations in Kentucky, Tennessee, Ohio, North Carolina, South Carolina, , Georgia, West Virginia, Maryland, D.C., Pennsylvania, New York, and New Jersey are all, generally, less than 8 hours away, with many being far closer.

So while we are definitely not a suitcase campus, there are always ways to get where you need to go!

 

 

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Feeling like a kid again!

6 Mar

Feeling like a kid again!

This afternoon when the snowfall started to slow down, some of my sorority sisters and I decided to go out in front of the sorority houses and build a snow man! We had to get pretty creative, using anything we could find in our house for eyes and a mouth, but we think he turned out pretty great!

Snow day!

6 Mar

 

Holly in Davidson Park

Holly in Davidson Park

The snow started last night and is still going strong today. Some professors have cancelled classes but school remains open – for now. My morning walk with Holly was especially fun today as I let her off leash in Davidson Park, an area of campus that is home to many of our fraternity houses. She loves to pounce around in the snow and dig in the powder so it was a great and adorable way to start this cold and snowy day. I made it through my first class and we turned on the fireplace in the Admissions Office, so now all I need is a cup of hot chocolate!

 

Healthy living

1 Mar
Prof. Knapp encourages everyone to get a Flu Buddy for Flu Season

Prof. Knapp encourages everyone to get a Flu Buddy for Flu Season

From the little things like the coat hooks to the big deals like our Honor System, I find something I love about Washington and Lee every day. There are seemingly endless resources on campus whether you need to find an internship, mail a package, and update your computer software, but the one that never ceases to amaze me is our Health Center.

Open 24/7 the Student Health Center is always there for undergrads and law students alike who come down with a cold, sprain an ankle, or need a flu shot. Completely included in your tuition, you can go to the Health Center as much as necessary when you are enrolled at W&L, and I certainly take full advantage of this (essentially) free health care while I still have access to it. Yesterday in class I felt a small bump under my neck and, being a hypochondriac and chronic worrier, I began to freak out. I ran out to “go to the bathroom” (Sorry, Professor!) and made a quick call to the Student Health Center. And then, just 15  minutes after class ended I walked in the door to my appointment where I was instantly assured that it was entirely normal for a lymph node to get a little inflamed and that I had absolutely nothing to worry about. I left feeling relieved not only from the knowledge that I was fine, but also the security in knowing I have a resource like the Health Center to calm all of my nerves and treat all of my ailments.

While the neck-bump was a non-issue, many students must visit the Health Center under less convenient circumstances. If a student happens to have, let’s say, consumed too much of a liquid substance, the Health Center will gladly take them in with open arms and an open cot for the evening, only to be released after they have seen a doctor and had a healthy breakfast the next morning. This resource comes with a guarantee that no student will get in trouble for seeking assistance when needed and ensures that all W&L students have a safe place to go at all times.

Winter Concert

27 Feb
GAB Poster for Dillon Francis this Saturday!

GAB Poster for Dillon Francis this Saturday!

The General’s Activities Board (GAB) is our student-run entertainment organization that is responsible for putting on the major on-campus concerts throughout the year. This Saturday, GAB is hosting Dillon Francis, an electronic/dance musicician who will be playing at the Pavillion for the students and the public. GAB concerts are always a lot of fun, and many up-and-coming names have played here in the past including Girltalk and Wale. There are even a few impromptu Afroman appearances in the middle of the afternoon which have been, well, confusing, but still very fun. The concert this weekend is sure to be a blast for everyone – just one more reason for friends to come visit!

Honor.

14 Feb
Honor is everything at W&L

Honor is everything at W&L

From ‘The Honor System’ on the W&L website:

Honor is the moral cornerstone of Washington and Lee University. Commitment to honor is recognized by every student, faculty member, administrator, and staff member of the University. Honor provides the common thread woven through the many aspects of this institution and creates a community of trust and respect affecting fundamentally the relationships of all its members.

The centrality of honor at Washington and Lee is contained in its Honor System. The Board of Trustees has granted to students the privilege of overseeing the administration of the Honor System. The sole penalty for an Honor System violation is dismissal from the University. These responsibilities are administered by the Executive Committee of the Student Body, a group of students elected annually by their peers.

Academic life is essentially shaped by the commitment to honor. Assuming that students will behave honorably, the faculty grants flexibility in the scheduling of most final examinations, and all are taken without supervision. Take-home closed book examinations are a common occurrence. The pledge, “On my honor, I have neither given nor received any unacknowledged aid on this (exam, test, paper, etc.),” expresses the student’s promise that the work submitted is his or hers alone. Students’ dedication to honorable behavior creates a strong bond of trust among them and between them and the faculty. This student dedication and the bond that it engenders also provide the basis for the faculty’s commitment to accepting a student’s word without question.

The dedication to behave honorably is not confined to academic life. It is expected that students will respect each other’s word and intellectual and personal property in the residence halls and the Greek houses, on the playing field, in the city of Lexington, or wherever Washington and Lee students take themselves. This principled expectation provides the foundation for the community of trust which students seek to create not only in the academic sphere but in life outside it, as well.

The Honor System has been a unique feature of Washington and Lee University for well over a century. Thousands of students have lived under it while in residence, have been morally shaped by it, and as alumni and alumnae, continue to be guided by it in their professional lives. Current students are as committed to it as were those who lived and studied here before them, and they maintain with firm conviction this distinctive ideal of the University.

 

“On my honor, I have neither given nor received any unacknowledged aid on this blog post.” -Ali

Something Random

29 Jan
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In the 60s in January!

Virginia weather is random. Last week we had snow. However, today we have blue skies and 60 degree weather…in January. The random surprises like this truly make one appreciate the beautiful surrounding scenery. Although there will surely be more cold days to come, weather like this makes one look forward to Spring term. Spring term at Washington and Lee is something many schools simply do not offer. During this term we take one class for four weeks. Some students take this opportunity to go study abroad, while others decide to focus  their interests on campus. Regardless of what class you take, Spring term gives students the opportunity to not only focus on just one class, but also to explore the surrounding Lexington area. With many off campus houses right on the river, which flows right outside of town, the Spring weather is greatly appreciated by all students. This experience is something that seems to be very unique to W&L. It is one of the many things about Washington and Lee that makes one’s time spent here different then from anywhere else.