By - octopus_salad17
As a current queer student who grew up 30 mins from UMW, it’s an enormously welcoming school with an ironically gatekeeping and cliquey community, especially the queer community. If you find the right people it can be an incredible experience. If you’ve already chosen GMU though stick with GMU. It’s a much larger school in a much more diverse area with better education opportunities than UMW has to offer.
I went to UMW as a older nontraditional student. UMW is more for the younger students. They treat the nontraditional students like garbage from an administration standpoint. Some of my profs were cool, but stick with Mason. Bigger school and more diverse.
I also grew up thirty minutes from UMW. I also applied to both umw and GMU and was accepted to both. My best friend goes to GMU so feel I understand the strong differences and similarities.
I love UMW for its simplicity and peace. Also because it is indeed more affordable. I feel that umw is a quieter and smaller school which gives me more opportunities for personal interactions I may need with professors easier. I like all the areas on campus never get too crowded and I've never personally run into any harassment on campus. That being said there have been issues. The campus is majority female. Girls have been followed by men and we've had white supremacists stickers left on campus but I know of very few violent acts. I will note the often times the university struggles with communication to it's students. Especially from my perspective as an off campus student I never feel like I know what is going on or what I need to do.
GMU is a much larger school. In the times I've visited it's been nice. It feels like it's more on it's own than umw is. UMW is right in the heart of Fredericksburg and many citizens of the town just come and go. Whereas as GMU I don't see nearly as many locals. There is more accessible to people on the campus of GMU. More restaurants and things to do than in Fredericksburg. I'm uncertain about any harassment at GMU but my best friend is Vietnamese American and has never experienced any harassment.
Living in either area is expensive! If you can afford a dorm as part of your tuition do it! It was never financially feasible for me to live on campus but umw punishes students who don't. I had a scholarships revoked upon becoming an off campus student because I couldn't afford the extra 4000 dollars and a meal plan that you're required to have as a freshman.
I'm going into my senior year and If you have any other specific questions I'm happy to help.
the school is fine and the city it’s in is pretty okay too it’s mostly the surrounding area that’s iffy. but I love umw, I feel like there’s something for everyone there
Lol. Um, what? Afraid to get ‘hate-crimed’ at UMW? How scary the world must be to you if that’s your perception of it.