St. Mary's College of Maryland
|St. Mary's College of Maryland|
|Type||Public coeducational liberal arts college|
|Endowment||U.S. $30.3 million|
|President||Joseph Urgo (since 2010)|
|Location||St. Mary's City, Maryland, United States
|Campus||Rural, 319 acres (approximately 1.3 km²)|
|Former names|| • St. Mary's Female Seminary
• St. Mary's Female Seminary Junior College (1927–1949)
• St. Mary's Seminary Junior College (1949–1968)
|Colors||Blue, gold and white
|Athletics||NCAA Division III
13 Varsity Teams
It is a member of the Council of Public Liberal Arts Colleges and designated as a Public Honors College (the only one in the state of Maryland and one of few around the U.S.). With about 2,000 enrolled students, the institution offers baccalaureate degrees in 22 disciplines, of which psychology, biology, and economics are among the most popular. It also offers one postgraduate degree, a Masters of Arts in Teaching.
The college shares much of its campus with Historic St. Mary's City, the fourth site of colonization in British North America and one of the premier archaeological sites on the East Coast.
St. Mary's College of Maryland came into existence (on paper only) by an act of the Maryland State Board of Higher Education in 1966. The first bachelor’s (B.A.) degrees were awarded in 1971.
The predecessor institution was St. Mary's Seminary Junior College (1949–1968), in turn preceded by St. Mary's Female Seminary Junior College (1927–1949). Both of these "junior colleges" combined the last two years of high school and the first two years of college, making it a four-year institution. After earning an associate's degree (A.A.) at St. Mary's girls would often continue studies at another university, where they would study for two more years and receive a B.A.
The original St. Mary's Female Seminary was founded by an act of the Maryland legislature in 1840. In 1840, the word "seminary" meant only that it was an academy or a high school, not a religious institution. St. Mary's was established by the legislature to be strictly non-denominational. It was a boarding school that included the elementary grades as well as grades 9-12, though education did not go beyond the 12th grade. Occasionally boys from the neighboring areas were allowed to take classes.
The institution was named after St. Mary's City, the colonial site of Lord Baltimore's experiment in religious tolerance. The institution was built upon land that once had been inhabited by the colonists two hundred years before.
For roughly the first 100 years (1840-1937) of its existence, the head of St. Mary's was called the "principal". When the school received accreditation as a junior college and included within the Maryland state budget in 1937, the term "principal" was changed to "president".
In 2010, Joseph Urgo became the institution's president.
General information 
The campus borders the St. Mary's River.
St. Mary's, although a state-operated institution, is independent of the University System of Maryland; it opted out of the system in 1992. However, in early 2006, St. Mary's joined the University of Maryland Academic Telecommunications System (UMATS), which interconnects the University System of Maryland with several other networks, including the Internet and Internet2 networks.
St. Mary's mascot is the Seahawk, which is a nickname for the ospreys that can be found nesting in the near off-shore areas. The school colors are navy blue, yellow gold, and white. The Seahawks compete in NCAA Division III. St. Mary's athletics are recognized for the storied varsity baseball team and the nationally-ranked varsity sailing team.
Green initiatives 
Goodpaster Hall, an academic building devoted to chemistry, psychology, and educational studies that opened in January 2008, was built to a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating of Silver. It is one of few "green" buildings in the state of Maryland.
Other green initiatives include a student-supported green energy referendum, campus composting, and a geothermal system in the new River Center.
Student data 
- As of Fall 2008, the college had 2,035 students.
- 57% of students are female, 43% male.
- 17% of students are from out of state.
- 96.36% of students attend full-time.
- 76.36% of students are Caucasian, 8.11% are African-American, 4.47% are Hispanic, 3.88% are Asian, 0.69% are American Indian or Alaskan Native, 4.32% have undetermined ethnicity, and 2.16% are international.
- Thirty-seven countries are represented among the students.
- The student:faculty ratio in the Fall of 2008 was 11.66:1.
Relationship with historic St. Mary's City 
St. Mary's College of Maryland and the historic St. Mary's City have a close relationship. Students are often hired to work within the historic site, and those who are not working are frequently found to be walking or biking along the miles of trail throughout Historic. Students may visit the historical site for free.
The Maryland Heritage Project is an effort to bring together the college, historic St. Mary's City, Trinity Episcopal, a church located near the St. Mary's campus, and the wider community. Two new buildings, to be used jointly by the college and Historic St. Mary's City, are being built on campus. One of the buildings is a new interpretive center, which will showcase artifacts from St. Mary's City history – from the colony established in 1634, to the farmlands that replaced that colony in the 18th century, to the founding of the monument school in the mid-19th century, and beyond. The second building will be an academic building that will replace Anne Arundel Hall, a current St. Mary's academic building. This building will include Historic St. Mary's City's research offices, and faculty offices and classrooms for St. Mary's College in anthropology, democracy studies, history, international languages and cultures, and museum studies. It will host collection-based courses and summer institutes.
Academic disciplines 
- Art and Art History
- Asian studies
- Computer science
- International languages and cultures
- Latin-American studies
- Natural science
- Fundamental Physics
- Applied Physics
- Political Science
- Public-policy studies
- Religious studies
- Theater, Film and Media studies
Post-graduate studies 
Department-based minors 
- art history
- art studio
- computer science
- educational studies
- film and media studies
- international languages and cultures
- Latin-American studies
- political science
- religious studies
- theater studies
Cross-disciplinary minors 
- African and African diaspora studies
- Asian studies
- democracy studies
- environmental studies
- museum studies
- women, gender and sexuality studies
Nitze Fellows 
Nitze Senior Fellows visit St. Mary's College several times throughout their assigned year to give lectures and meet with Nitze Scholars and other St. Mary's College students.
Previous Nitze Fellows include:
- Nicholas Thompson (2010-2011)
- John Prendergast (2009–2010)
- T.R. Reid (2008–2009)
- Kathleen Kennedy Townsend (2007–2008)
- David E. Sanger (2006–2007)
- Edward P. Jones (2005–2006)
- Diane Rehm (2004–2005)
- Josiah Ober (2003–2004)
- Norine Johnson (2002–2003)
- Mario Livio (2001–2002)
- Wole Soyinka
- Henry Rosemont
- Michael Ellis-Tolaydo
- Lucille Clifton (Spring 2001)
- Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson (Fall 2000)
- Richard Lewontin (Spring 2000)
- Ben Cardin (Fall 1999)
Student life 
More than 1,600 students live on-campus in traditional-style residence halls, suites, apartments, and townhouses. Within the residences there are four living-learning centers on campus: an International Languages & Cultures (ILC) House; a Women In Science House (WISH); a Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies (WGSX) House and an Eco-House. Furthermore, there are nine Substance and Alcohol Free Environment (SAFE) suites and apartments on campus, as well as floor of a residence hall. Other students join the IBA.
There are many opportunities for leadership development on campus, including positions as a Resident Assistant (RA), as an Orientation Leader (OL), on the school's student Judicial Board, as a Multicultural Academic Peer Program (MAPP) Mentor, within the active Student Government Association (SGA), and among the various Programs Boards.
The Student Trustee, a voting member of the Board of Trustees, is chosen from among the students to act as a direct link between the Student Body and the Board of Trustees. Aside from the Student Trustee position, students also participate in numerous other committees with faculty and other members of the administration.
Dining on campus 
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There are many places in which students may get food on campus.
- The J. Frank Raley Jr. Great Room, the main cafeteria on campus, offers a wide variety of foods. On weekdays breakfast, lunch, and dinner are served; on weekends, there is only brunch and dinner available.
- The Grab-and-Go, which caters to students who don't have time between classes for meals, is located in one of the residence halls, Lewis Quad. Meals are typically simple, consisting of sandwiches, salads, chips, fruits, or packaged foods.
- The Upper Deck offers many foods such as pizza, sandwiches, Quizno's subs, soups, burritos, and salads.
- The Daily Grind is the campus' coffee shop and convenience store. Here one can find general food products, as well as order smoothies, tea, or coffee.
The school also has a vegetarian community kitchen, which is an alternative to eating in the dining hall.
On-campus traditions and events 
- Students may be tossed by their friends into St. John's Pond. This practice is called "ponding", and it marks someone's birthday.
- New students attend a convocation ceremony at the State House of 1634 in Historic St. Mary's City. Afterwards students are invited to sign the President's book.
- Hallow-Greens, which takes place on a weekend near Halloween is an annual all-student costume event.
- The Great Bamboo Boat Race takes place during Homecoming/Parent's Weekend. Teams must make a boat entirely out of materials provided for them (bamboo, sheet plastic, twine, and duct tape) and race it in a small loop on the St. Mary's River by the college boathouse and docks. The bamboo is harvested from the campus bamboo forest, where it is considered an invasive species. There are cash prizes for the winners. This event replaced The Great Cardboard Boat Race (an earlier incarnation using cardboard instead of bamboo) in 2010.
- World Carnival weekend takes place late in the Spring semester. Clubs across campus are invited to participate in this event which celebrates diversity in music, food, and culture.
- Frisbee golf, Dorchester Open held in the Spring.
- Midnight breakfast is held during finals week each semester. Admission is free, and many students participate in karaoke during the night.
- The Black Student Union Fashion Show.
- During the summer months the college hosts the River Concert Series, an event attended by thousands of people each year.
- The Dance Club holds a Dance Show once per semester.
- The Christmas in April auction is an annual fund-raiser in which students, faculty, and staff bid for humorous items such as singing telegrams or cooked dinners from the Admissions staff.
- Polar Bear Splash: an annual effort to raise awareness for Global Warming. More than one hundred students take a swim in the freezing St. Mary's River during this mid-winter event.
- Shoe Tree: For a lot of students, throwing a pair of shoes or flip-flops tied together into the shoe tree marks a memorable "first time" on the college campus—i.e. losing one's virginity.
- On Easter, the upperclassmen prepare the Natty Boh Hunt by buying large quantities of National Bohemian and spray painting them and hiding them all around campus for the freshmen to find. An Occasional 40 will be bought and spray painted gold, known as a Golden 40.
- On May 1 (May Day) students streak through campus on bicycles. This represents freedom, especially for seniors. Clothed students stand on the sidelines and "offer support".
- Every April the SMCM Rock Climbing Club sponsors a huge Bouldering (rock climbing) competition called "Friction Fest" which is free and open to both students, staff, faculty, community and the local Navy Base members.
The Seven Wonders are seven notable campus landmarks. New students are inducted into the traditions of SMCM by orientation leaders in a tour of the Seven Wonders during orientation and it is a graduation tradition for the departing class to tour the seven wonders and recount stories the evening before graduation. Thus a student's time at SMCM begins and ends with tours of the Seven Wonders. The seven "wonders" are:
- 1. The Shoe Tree (see above)
- 2. The Bell Tower
- 3. St. John's Pond (see above)
- 4. Maryland Freedom of Conscience Statue on Route 5 (a.k.a. The Naked Man)
- 5. Garden of Remembrance Fountain
- 6. 'Hidden' Grave
- 7. Church Point
Off-campus events (non-school sponsored) 
- Oyster Festival: The oyster-shucking contest at this annual festival is the last stop before the international championships of oyster shucking.
- St. Mary's County Fair: A "true hometown" county fair, complete with 4-H events, livestock shows, food, arts and crafts, and a carnival too.
- Point Lookout Ghost Tour: Twelve miles south of the College, Point Lookout State Park includes the remains of a Civil War prison for Confederate soldiers, many of whom died of malaria waiting for the War to end. A tour of their ghostly remains is held on Halloween.
- Concerts at Calvert Marine Museum: Big names perform at this outdoor venue, right across the bridge in Calvert County: Bob Dylan, The Allman Brothers, Travis Tritt, Martina McBride, Eddie from Ohio.
- 100 Days, Seniors and Faculty have a celebration counting down 100 days until graduation. It's held at the Green Door in Park Hall, MD. Custom Pint glasses are made to commemorate the occasion.
St. Mary's College teams participate as a member of the National Collegiate Athletic Association's Division III. The Seahawks are a member of the Capital Athletic Conference (CAC). In St. Mary's College, there are 15 varsity sports:
- Fall Sports: Field Hockey, Men’s and Women’s Soccer, Men's and Women's Sailing, Men's and Women's Cross Country, and Volleyball
- Winter Sports: Men’s and Women’s Swimming, Men’s and Women’s Basketball
- Spring Sports: Baseball, Men’s and Women’s Lacrosse, Men's and Women's Sailing, Men’s and Women’s Tennis
St. Mary's College has three different sailing teams on campus, as well as a sailing club, and a windsurfing club. The Varsity Sailing Team and Offshore Sailing Team both compete in intercollegiate events around the country and occasionally in international regattas held in venues such as Europe. The Keelboat Sailing Team competes in racing events held by One Design or PHRF (Handicap) organizations in the Chesapeake Bay and other East Coast locations.
The sailing fleet
- 1997 Taylor 40 ML
- * 2 Pearson Ensigns
Student clubs 
St. Mary's College hosts more than 90 student-run, SGA-sponsored clubs.
- Academic clubs – Asian Studies Club, Economics Club, History Club, Math Club, Philosophy Club, Physics Club, Sign Language Club, Sociology/Anthropology Club
- Activity clubs – Academic Team, Billiards Club, Cheerleading Club, aka Hawkettes, Dance Club, Heroscape Club, Take One Improv, Whitewater Club
- Advisory clubs – Pre-Law Advisory Network (PLAN), Student Education Association, St. Mary's Advising Students in Health
- Interest clubs – Anime Club, Camera Club, Community Garden Club, Computer/Linux Club, Fine Arts Club, Gaming Club, Global Justice League, International Club, Magic: The Gathering, Meditation Club, Outdoor Adventure Club, Out of State Club, Parking Club, SafeRide, Student Environmental Action Coalition, St. Mary's American Chemical Society, Tolkien Society, We Love the Co-Op, World of Warcraft, Women in Science House Club, Youth Alliance for the Revival of Needlework
- Musical clubs – Crazy Pianos, Gospel Choir, Interchorus (co-ed a cappella), SMC-men (men's a cappella), The Nightingales - "TNA" (women's a cappella)
- Political clubs – College Democrats, College Republicans
- Publications – Avatar (literary magazine), The Dove (yearbook)
- Religious clubs – Hillel, InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, Newman Society, Quaker Society
- Service clubs – Circle K, For Goodness Sake, Habitat for Humanity, Rotaract, Sister to Sister, Global Justice League
- Sports clubs – Club Soccer, Crew Club, Cross Country & Track, Dodgeball Club, Equestrian Club, Fencing Club, Longboarding Club, Men's Rugby, Rockclimbing Club, Sailing Club, Softball Club, Water Polo Club, Windsurfing Club, Women's Rugby, Women's St. Mary's Ultimate (Frisbee) Team
- Tolerance clubs – Black Student Union, FUSE, National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), Raices Hispanas, St. Mary's Triangle and Rainbow Society (S.T.A.R.S.)
- Media Board – The HAWK Radio (radio) and Point News (college newspaper)
- Alpha Kappa Delta (sociology) 
- Beta Beta Beta (biology)
- Omicron Delta Epsilon (economics)
- Omicron Delta Kappa (leadership): an organization of students, faculty, and staff which recognizes superior scholarship, leadership and exemplary character. Membership in OΔK is a mark of highest distinction and honor. The society recognizes achievement in scholarship; athletics; campus or community service, social and religious activities, campus government; journalism, speech and the mass media; and the creative and performing arts.
- Iota Beta Alpha (ethno-pharmacological research) local chapter
- Phi Alpha Theta (history) 
- Phi Beta Kappa (national)
- Pi Sigma Alpha (political science) 
- Psi Chi (psychology)
- Sigma Pi Sigma (physics)
- Sigma Tau Delta (English)
St. Mary's does not have any sororities or fraternities.
Arts Alliance 
The Arts Alliance of St. Mary's College of Maryland is one of the primary sponsors of the summer River Concert Series. In addition, it funds grants for faculty and guest artists during the year, gives annual cash award to students in the arts, furthers outreach on the college campus and within the outstanding community, and works on the development of the college's art collection.
The Center for the Study of Democracy 
"The Center for the Study of Democracy is a joint initiative of St. Mary's College of Maryland and Historic St. Mary's City. It explores contemporary and historical issues in democracy. As the first capital of Maryland, St. Mary's City was an early example of the stirrings of American democracy. 'Liberty of conscience' in religion, representative political practices, freedom of the press, and minority rights are a part of St. Mary's City's history. The Center focuses on an interdisciplinary understanding of early Maryland as an "emerging democracy," and applies the lessons of the region's history to a domestic and international discussion of democracy's role in the modern world. The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) We the People initiative awarded the Center a $500,000 challenge grant in September 2004. The Center has until April 2008 to raise $1.5 million in private and non-federal funds to meet the matching requirements." 
The Slackwater Center 
"The SlackWater Center at St. Mary’s College of Maryland is a consortium of students, faculty, and community members focused on the region’s changing landscapes. Our mission is to explore, document, and interpret what's happening to Chesapeake communities and their surroundings at the dawn of the 21st century. We aim to offer a closer look at the rich and complicated legacies of the past, at the social and environmental challenges facing the present, and at our collective visions for the future.
Baltimore Hall Library 
St. Mary's Baltimore Hall Library subscribes to 1,000 periodicals in print and has access to around 20,000 in electronic format. Furthermore, the school participates in the consortium of Maryland public colleges and universities (USMAI), through which library materials from 15 other institutes in the University of Maryland System are accessible.
National rankings and accolades 
- Listed as "Hottest for Loving the Great Outdoors" in Newsweek's 25 Hottest Colleges.
- #2 - Environmental Protection Agency's College and University Green Power Challenge (The college bought 15 million kWh of power during the year-long challenge).
- #7 - Princeton Review's "Most Race/Class Interaction".
- #10 - Princeton Review's "Best Value Public Colleges".
- #17 - Princeton Review's "Gay Community Accepted".
- #18 - Princeton Review's "Happiest. Students"
- #87 - U.S. News & World Report's "Top Liberal Arts Colleges".
- #93 Forbes' America's Best Colleges.
- The campus newspaper, The Point News, was named the "Most Outstanding College Newspaper" and ranked "First Place with Special Merit" by the American Scholastic Press Association. (ASPA) 
- Kiplinger placed St. Mary's in the 92% percentile for its 12:1 student/faculty ratio.
- Ranked in the top 10% of U.S. colleges by Barron's Magazine's Best Buys.
- St. Mary’s College of Maryland currently holds 13 national titles, and has produced more than 100 ICSA All-American sailors and four Olympic sailors- one of whom earned a silver medal.
- The co-ed and women's teams have been ranked first in the nation by Sailing World magazine for the past two years.
- In 2004, the College won the annual Inter-Collegiate Sailing Association (ICSA)/Layline North American Team Race Championship.
- In 2006, the women's team won the Atlantic Coast Championship, defeating many venerable schools, including Harvard, Yale, Georgetown, and the U.S. Naval Academy.
- In the spring of 2008, St. Mary's Men's Basketball team was ranked 24th in the nation after making an appearance at the 2007-2008 NCAA Division III Men's Basketball Tournament.
Notable faculty 
- Jane Margaret O'Brien – the college's first female president (1996–2009)
- Jeffrey J. Byrd – wrote book The Complete Idiot's Guide to Microbiology
- Lucille Clifton – former Poet Laureate of Maryland; two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist
- Michael Glaser – former Poet Laureate of Maryland
- David Kung – professor for How Music and Mathematics Relate  from The Great Courses
- Katherine Socha – winner, 2008 Alder Award from the Mathematical Association of America
- Asif Dowla – wrote book The Poor Always Pay Back
Notable trustees 
- Benjamin C. Bradlee – vice president at large, The Washington Post
- Steny Hoyer – U.S. Representative for Maryland's 5th congressional district (since 1981); House Majority Leader (2007–2011)
- Thomas Penfield Jackson – presiding judge in the United States v. Microsoft case
- Gary Jobson – professional sailor
- Anthony K. Lake – National Security Advisor under U.S. President Bill Clinton (1993–1997)
- Steven Muller – president, Johns Hopkins University (1972–1990)
- William Donald Schaefer – former Governor of Maryland (1987–1995); former Comptroller of Maryland (1999–2007)
Notable alumni 
- smcm.edu, the college's official website
- St. Mary's College of Maryland Official Athletics Website
- Student newspaper, The Point News
- Masters of Art in Teaching Degree program website.
- Net Services.
- Goodpaster Hall: Office of Development.
- Princeton Review Student Body Profile of St. Mary's College of Maryland.
- Virtual Campus Tour.
- Maryland Heritage Project.
- Student Trustee Information
- Places to Eat
- Fun Traditions at St. Mary's College
- A Cool Dip for a Warming Planet
- oh so famous shoe tree pictures from college photos on webshots
- St. Mary's 2007-2008 SGA Club Information
- Alpha Kappa Delta
- Omicron Delta Epsilon
- Phi Alpha Theta
- Pi Sigma Alpha
- Psi Chi
- Arts Alliance of St. Mary's College of Maryland
- Center for the Study of Democracy at St. Mary's College of Maryland
- The Slackwater Center of St. Mary College of Maryland
- St. Mary's College Library
- Newsweek's 25 Hottest Universities
- Press Release for St. Mary's College's #2 finish in the EPA College and University Green Power Challenge
- Princeton Review College Profile of St. Mary's College of Maryland
- USNews.com America's Best Colleges 2008: St. Mary's College of Maryland profile
- "America's Best Colleges". Forbes. August 5, 2009.
- "Press Release for St. Mary's Point News Award from the ASPA".
- "Honors and Accolades of St. Mary's College of Maryland".
- "Sailing World Sailing Rankings".
- "Seahawks Ranked 24th in Final Division III Poll".
- Board of Trustees