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Getting to Know Us

The Administration Building at Mary Baldwin CollegeMary Baldwin College is a women-centered university emphasizing global leadership and citizenship, where tomorrow’s changemakers are empowered with the confidence to lead, the compassion to serve, and the courage to change the world.

A radical belief in student potential and in the transformative power of the liberal arts and sciences has guided Mary Baldwin College since its founding as Augusta Female Seminary in 1842. Our history began with founder Rufus Bailey and what was then a revolutionary idea: that women, like men, should be well educated. A generation later, namesake Mary Julia Baldwin took the reins during the Civil War; afterward her cutting-edge innovations made the institution thrive. This history continues today with students who dare to make a difference, engage in service to their communities, and boldly initiate change in our neighborhood and around the world.

Still setting the standard for innovation with a purpose, Mary Baldwin has developed into an exceptionally diverse institution with a variety of undergraduate and graduate programs for both women and men in locations throughout Virginia:

  • The College for Women is our historic private liberal arts college for women on the main campus, occupying 54 beautiful hilltop acres in downtown Staunton, Virginia
  • Early college programs make the College for Women a premier opportunity for girls who are ready to skip all or part of high school and enter college before their peers
  • The Adult Degree Program offers a flexible and affordable option for working adults with online and regional offerings as well as the opportunity to take classes on the main campus
  • The College of Education includes master’s degrees and teacher licensure
  • The Graduate Shakespeare and Performance program uniquely combines stagecraft and scholarship for those seeking to become professional actors and directors as well as teachers and dramaturgs
  • The Murphy Deming College of Health Sciences offers highly sought-after doctoral and master’s programs that position MBC on the leading edge of career preparation for growing health care fields
  • The Virginia Women’s Institute for Leadership solidifies Mary Baldwin’s longstanding tradition of producing capable female leaders

Academic programs are organized through the four Schools of Excellence, which encompass undergraduate and graduate offerings as well as certificate programs. The schools integrate opportunities for civic and global engagement, experiential learning, original research, and creative projects into the academic experience.

Mary Baldwin College does not discriminate on the basis of sex (except that men are admitted only as ADP, graduate, and special students), race, national/ethnic origin, color, age, religion, veteran’s status, disability, sexual orientation, or any other classification protected by statute in its educational programs, admissions, co-curricular or other activities, and employment practices.