Last week, we learned that Virginia’s own Sweet Briar College will discontinue operations indefinitely on August 25, 2015. Luckily, sister schools including Baldwin have extended a helping hand in Sweet Briar’s time of need. Baldwin’s president, President Fox, recently released a statement regarding MBC’s condolences about Sweet Briar’s decision. Included in her letter, she announced that there will be several staff members visiting the college in its final months to assist the students wishing to pursue their education in a women’s college environment.
Prospective Vixens joined us this week to see what Mary Baldwin has to offer. There were wonderful decorations around campus to set a welcoming atmosphere, including the embellishment of Ham and Jam Pub, thanks to the President’s Society. Although many of the faces were glum, we were able to encourage several of the women to keep trucking and hopefully join us in the fall.
Witnessing these events so close to home causes quite a few of us to fear our school’s fate. The fact is college is expensive in America. But thriving is a bit more difficult when you’re a small women’s college. Over the years a coeducational environment has overcome the traditional segregation of earlier institutions and as a result, women’s colleges are finding it difficult to recruit enough young women to support its needs. As a student at a small women’s college, it’s scary.
Sweet Briar has been one of the few to close, but coming together especially at a time like this, proves the resilience of women in general—not to mention women’s institutions. Our continuous ability to pull through and help each other proves that there’s hope for women’s colleges like ours. As we welcome Vixens on our campus in the future, keep that in mind.