First-Year Honors Orientation – City as Text

Honors Program – First-Year Honors Orientation

The UMW Honors Program is excited to introduce our Honors Scholars to UMW and the Greater Fredericksburg Area through a First-year Honors Orientation on August 18-20, 2019. Throughout the orientation, scholars will have the opportunity to get to know their classmates, upperclassman, faculty/staff, and allied community members while exploring the Fredericksburg area, engaging in a meaningful academic exercise. We will work with all fall season athletes and coaches so that they can participate.

City as Text

City as Text* walkabouts encourage participants to explore and critically reflect on a location, looking at the place as one interprets or reflects on text. In the Honors Experience, small groups of scholars, accompanied by upperclass students, will visit an assigned part of the Fredericksburg area for 4-5 hours.

During the visit, scholars will consider and record their observations about the buildings, the layout of the location, people walking around the area, and historical context of the place. Scholars will also have opportunities to dine in a local

CaT participants, 2018

establishment. The experience should enable scholars to have a better understanding of their new environment or gain a new perspective on the familiar. Scholars will be encouraged to document their experience with sketched maps and photographs.

After the exploration period, scholars will prepare for a presentation to be delivered later that night at a dinner program with stakeholders from the UMW campus and Fredericksburg area. These debriefings will enable the stakeholders to experience the Fredericksburg area from a newcomer’s viewpoint and will enable Honors Scholars to extend their orientation to their new home by meeting Fredericksburg community members, UMW faculty, and administrators.


Registration for the 2019 Honors Orientation is available at the bottom of the Orientation registration page 


Sunday, August 18 – Move-in, Honors Lounge Open House for families.

Monday, August 19 – Breakfast and City as Text introductions.  Today scholars will participate in a trial experience, Campus as Text, orienting to the UMW campus and participating in training and debrief to prepare for Tuesday’s events.

Tuesday, August 20 – Time to explore!  Scholars will walk through their assigned city neighborhood, including having lunch at a local restaurant. There will be time to prepare the City as Text Presentation, which will be given at a formal dinner with community and UMW guests.

Wednesday, August 21— Optional advising or programming will be offered in the morning; in the afternoon scholars will join general New Student Arrival programming.

What to Bring

The City as Text event will occur rain or shine.  It will be postponed or relocated in the

CaT participants, 2018

case of severe weather.  Scholars will be outside for numerous hours during the City as Text excursions and they should come prepared for the environment (i.e. comfortable clothing, walking shoes, umbrella, bag or knapsack, sunscreen, etc.)  Scholars will be provided with water bottles, notebooks, and pens.

Meet the City as Text Student Leaders

Please visit  Meet the Honors City as Text Leaders to learn more about the City as Text Student Leaders.


If you have any questions about the First-Year Honors Orientation – City as Text program, please contact


*City as Text is an honors pedagogy trademarked by the National Collegiate Honors Council.