Happy Holidays!

Things are pretty quiet on campus right now, but I’m guessing your household has livened up if your student has arrived home for winter break.

The end of the fall semester is always a time that’s both festive and stressful.  We do our best to help alleviate the stress of exams with events like the LipSync performance, a fun competition that Greek organizations take pretty seriously; Study Paws, where faculty and staff bring their dogs to campus to play and cuddle with students; activities and snacks at the library; and Late-Night Breakfast, where faculty and staff serve up pancakes, bacon, eggs and more.

And the holidays are always given their due with the Grand Illumination of the multistory tree in the Rotunda; the lighting of the downtown Farmville Christmas tree, which always draws an enthusiastic crowd; caroling in the Rotunda;  and the community holiday dinner where students provide the entertainment.

I’m sharing some of these photos with you today, and I hope your family’s holidays also are full of many equally fun and memorable photo ops.

With warmest wishes for the season,
Sabrina Brown

Student musicians provide the entertainment for Longwood’s annual holiday dinners.
Chamber Orchestra
Jazz Band
The Grand Illumination of the towering tree in the Rotunda provides opportunities for seasonal selfies—and sugar cookies.

Downtown Farmville puts on a show every December with the lighting of the tree, music and holiday treats.

Late-night Breakfast Photos

Study Paws Photos

LipSync Photos


A class ring makes a special gift—and the Ring Ceremony ties it up in a bow

If you’re thinking about what to give your Lancer this holiday season, you might want to consider a Longwood class ring.

In addition to being a lasting memento of one of the most pivotal times of their lives, a class ring gives your junior or senior Lancer—as well as their invited guests—the opportunity to participate in Longwood’s Ring Ceremony. It’s a cherished tradition where representatives of the university and the Alumni Board present students with their rings, which have spent the previous night in a special locked chest in the Rotunda.

Family members and friends are part of the celebration at Longwood’s annual Ring Ceremony, where students receive their class rings.

The next Ring Ceremony is set for noon Sunday, March 24, 2024. The final date to purchase a ring in time for it to be presented at the 2024 Ring Ceremony is Feb. 8, 2024. Everyone who purchases a ring by Feb. 8 will receive an invitation to the ceremony.

Balfour is the only company to offer the official Longwood ring. Visit the Balfour website to see options and costs.

More information is available online about purchasing a ring and the Ring Ceremony. Or contact Alumni and Career Services at alumni@longwood.edu.

Winter Break and Spring Semester: Need-to-Know Info for Campus Residents

 I can’t believe I’m writing this, but winter break and spring semester (2024!!) will be here before we know it.

Today’s post contains some important—and hopefully helpful—information that has been shared with students who live in Longwood-managed housing. (But, of course, that doesn’t necessarily mean that your student has shared this information with you.)

If you have any questions, here’s the contact information for Residential and Commuter Life:


Residence Halls and Apartment Communities Close
Noon on Saturday, Dec. 9
Residential and Commuter Life Office and University Closed
Saturday, Dec. 16, through Monday, Jan. 1, 2024
Residential and Commuter Life Office and University Reopen
Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2024
Spring Semester Classes Begin
8 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2024


Departure schedule
Students whose exams end between Monday, Dec. 4, and Thursday, Dec. 7, are required to leave within 24 hours of their last exam. Students whose last exam is on Friday, Dec. 8, are required to leave before noon on Saturday, Dec. 9.

Drop off and pick up information for Moss and Johns halls
If your student lives in Moss or Johns hall, you will be able to load and unload vehicles on Spruce Streetduring December closing and January opening. Similar to the one-way traffic flow of August move-in, fall break and Thanksgiving break, please be sure to access Spruce Street by taking Wynne Drive to Pine Street and then turn onto the sidewalk in front of the Fitness Center. Use Redford Street (McDonald’s intersection) only to EXIT campus. To prevent dangerous traffic congestion on the South Main Street side of the high rises, please be aware that the loop area will be closed.

Checkout procedures for students RETURNING to Longwood-managed housing after winter break
Any student who is returning to the same room for the spring 2024 semester must complete the checkout checklist below before departing for winter break. Please encourage your student to discuss the checkout steps with their roommates to ensure that every step on the checklist is completed. Any missed steps will result in charges to the student account for all residents of the room/apartment.

Checkout procedures for students NOT RETURNING to Longwood-managed housing for spring semester
Any student who does not intend to live in Longwood-managed housing for the spring semester must submit a mid-year departure request form, which can be found in the Student Housing Gateway, which is accessible to your student. This form must be approved by Residential and Commuter Life. All checkout procedures (see below) must be followed. If checkout procedures are not followed, damage charges will be placed on the student account for each resident of the room/apartment. All room/apartment keys must be returned to the assigned community front desk as part of the checkout procedure.

Checkout Procedure: Apartment Resident Checklist
—Dispose of all trash and perishables from the apartment.
—Thoroughly clean the assigned living area (including bathroom).
—Remove all perishable items from the kitchen refrigerator.
—Shut down and unplug all electronics (except mini-fridges and major kitchen appliances).
—Close and lock all windows and doors.—Adjust thermostat heat to 68 degrees. Do not turn off heat.
—Remove objects from on top of/around heaters, radiators, vents, etc. Lower blinds and twist slightly open.
—Leave the porch light on (Lancer Park residents).
—Take valuables and often forgotten items (medication, eyeglasses, checkbook, etc.).
—Townhouse residents should open their bathroom cabinets and leave the bathroom doors open.

Checkout Procedure: Residence Hall Resident Checklist
—Remove all trash and/or perishable food.
—Thoroughly clean the assigned unit, including the bathroom and any common spaces.
—If applicable, adjust the room thermostat/fan to a low/medium setting.
—Take valuables and often forgotten items (medication, eyeglasses, checkbook, etc.).
—Shut down and unplug all electronics, except refrigerators.
—Turn off all lights.
—Close and lock all windows.
—Lower all window blinds/shades.
—Lock all doors.

Can students living in residence halls register to stay in their rooms during winter break?
No. All main campus residence halls close over winter break at noon on Saturday, Dec. 9. No students are permitted to register to stay on the main campus over winter break. Due to the energy costs associated with maintaining the heat and electricity over the break period, construction, maintenance, cleaning and limited staff availability, the residence halls must close during this time.

Can residents of Lancer Park or the Landings register to stay over winter break?
Yes. Students currently living in Lancer Park, Lancer Park North and South, and Longwood Landings who will remain in their current rooms for the spring 2024 semester may register to stay over winter break. Any student who wishes to stay past noon on Dec. 9 or return prior to noon on Jan. 6, must submit the intent to stay form in Student Housing Gateway accessible to your student by 11:59 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 7.


Continuing students who have been approved for a spring semester room change
Continuing students making spring room changes should report to their new residence hall/apartment community in order to be issued keys and paperwork. RCL staff will verify the room assignment and provide keys as well as important check-in materials.
Check-in Times
Saturday, Jan. 6, noon to 5 p.m.
Sunday, Jan. 7, noon to 5 p.m.
Monday, Jan. 8, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Continuing students who are returning to the same room
No special check-in or additional paperwork is required. Students may return to their rooms when the residence hall and apartment communities reopen, beginning at noon on Saturday, Jan. 6. Apartment residents who submitted the intent to stay form may return prior to this date.

Filling room and apartment vacancies for spring semester
Any student living in a room or apartment that has a vacancy may be assigned a new roommate/housemate. Because the housing terms and conditions entitle a resident to half the space in a double room in the residence halls or apartment bedroom and common space, these vacant spaces should be cleaned and cleared prior to the start of winter break.

If a new assignment is made during winter break, the new roommate’s information will be available through the Student Housing Gateway, which is accessible to your student. Students should log into the Gateway during the winter break to find out if a new roommate has been assigned. (Popups must be enabled in the web browser.)

Please keep in mind that a new roommate can be assigned to fill a vacancy anytime during the winter break or during the spring semester.

Changing a student’s meal plan for the spring semester
Any residential student wishing to change their meal plan may do so by 5 p.m. Jan. 18, 2024, through the Lancer Card Center website: https://lancercard.longwood.edu/. Students also may add Bonus Dollars to their account at any time during the semester through the website.


—Students planning to transfer or withdraw from Longwood must contact the Registrar’s Office to complete the necessary paperwork. Failure to do so will result in housing and meal plan charges being placed on the student’s account.
Office of the Registrar
Brock Hall 112
201 High Street
Farmville, VA 23909-1899
—All residential communities will remain locked (24/7)during the break. Students who are approved to stay during the winter break will continue to have access to their assigned buildings through the card reader(s) on their buildings (where applicable).
—No guests are allowed in university housing during the break.
An extended brunch meal will be served from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 9. The fall meal plan ends following that meal.
Up-to-date hours and information for all other Longwood Dining-managed food venues can be found at https://longwood.campusdish.com/.
—Farmville Area Bus service(FAB) will end at 6 p.m. Friday, Dec. 8, and will resume at 1 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 6. There is no bus service during the winter break period.
Residence hall rooms and apartments are subject to entry during the break; limited work orders and/or facility safety inspections could occur.
For general assistance from Campus Police during the break, students can call 434-395-2091. In case of emergency, students should call 911.

—Sabrina Brown

Planning for the Thanksgiving Break

Today’s post has what I hope will be some helpful information about Thanksgiving break.

For those of you whose students will be coming home for the holiday, I hope you have a wonderful visit and a very happy Thanksgiving.

This is a time when many of us think about what we’re grateful for—an activity that apparently has health benefits. Here’s what the Mayo Clinic Health System website has to say about being intentionally thankful: “Expressing gratitude is associated with a host of mental and physical benefits. Studies have shown that feeling thankful can improve sleep, mood and immunity. Gratitude can decrease depression, anxiety, difficulties with chronic pain and risk of disease. If a pill that could do this, everyone would be taking it.”

I can tell you that those of us who work at Longwood are thankful that we have the opportunity to provide your student with a college experience that prepares them for a successful and meaningful life as a citizen leader.

Now, here’s that information about the break.

If your student lives in Longwood-managed housing and is staying on campus during the break, they need to fill out an Intent to Stay form, which is available through the Student Housing Gateway.

It’s important to note that any student who needs access to their residence between 6 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 21, and noon Sunday, Nov. 26, must fill out an Intent to Stay form—even if they won’t be on campus for that entire time.

The Intent to Stay form must be submitted no later than 11:59 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 20.

Filling out this form gives students uninterrupted ID card access to their housing (where applicable) and notifies Campus Police that they will or may be staying on campus during all or part of the break.

If your student asks, please let them know they should not cancel any academic or other personal obligations during the break period. Instead they can be sure to have continued access to their assigned living space by submitting the Intent to Stay form.

If your student lives in Longwood-managed housing and is coming home for the holidays, they should be sure to do the following before departing campus:
—Remove all trash and perishable food.
—Thoroughly clean their assigned living area, including the bathroom and common spaces.
—If applicable, adjust their room thermostat to a low/medium setting.
—Take valuables and important items with them (medication, eyeglasses, wallet, etc.).
—Shut down and unplug all electronics, except personal refrigerators or apartment appliances.
—Turn off all lights.
—Close and lock all windows.
—Lower all window blinds/shades.
—Lock all doors.

If your student lives in Moss or Johns hall, you will be able to load and unload vehicles on Spruce Street for the break. Similar to the one-way traffic flow of  August move-in and fall break, please be sure to access Spruce Street by taking Wynne Drive to Pine Street and then turn onto the sidewalk in front of the Fitness Center. Use Redford Street (McDonald’s intersection) only to EXIT campus.

Below is some additional important information about the break that has been shared with students.

  • All residential communities will remain locked (24/7)during the break. Students who filled out the Intent to Stay form will continue to have access to their assigned buildings through the card reader(s) on their building (where applicable).
  • No guests are allowed in university housing during the break.
  • The dining hallwill close after lunch on Tuesday, Nov. 21, and re-open for dinner on Sunday, Nov. 26.  Regular hours of operation resume on Monday, Nov. 27. Up-to-date hours and information for all other Longwood Dining-managed food venues can be found at https://longwood.campusdish.com/ .
  • Farmville Area Bus service(FAB) will end at 5 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 21, and will resume at 1 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 26. There is no bus service for travel to Lancer Park during the break period.
  • Residence hall rooms and apartments are subject to entry during the break; limited work orders and/or facility safety inspections could occur.
  • Campus offices will be closed Nov. 22-24.  
  • For general assistance from Campus Policeduring the break, students can all 434-395-2091. In case of emergency, students should call 911. Students who need help with a non-life-threatening medical issue can call the Nurse Advice Line at 805-858-3117.

 —Sabrina Brown

The Fall (So Far) in Photos and Videos

Fall is a great time to be a Lancer! So many traditions happen in the fall, including New Lancer Days, the G.A.M.E., Convocation, Family Weekend and Oktoberfest.

You can get a taste of what these experiences are all about through the photos and videos below. They’re in approximate chronological order from the beginning of the semester through the beginning of October.

You just might see your Lancer having the time of their life!

Move-in Video

New Lancer Days Photos

Longwood Scarf Reveal Photos

Longwood Scarf Reveal and Pep Rally Video

First Day of Classes Photos

Convocation in the Amazing New Joan Perry Brock Center Photos

Convocation Video

Voter Registration Day with alumnus Mike Burns ’05 Photos

Family Weekend Photos

Oktoberfest Bonfire Photos

Color Wars Photos

Color Wars Video

Oktoberfest Saturday Photos

Oktoberfest Highlights Video

—Sabrina Brown


You’re Invited to Longwood’s First Homecoming, Nov. 10-12: Basketball, tailgating and more

Longwood is planning one of its biggest get-togethers ever—it’s also the university’s first Homecoming weekend—and you’re invited!

Parents and other family members are welcome to join in the fun with Longwood alumni and other members of the Lancer family. Your student may already be involved in some of the activities, like the Lancer Family Tailgate, or planning to attend one of the basketball games that weekend, which will be the first in Longwood’s amazing new Joan Perry Brock Center.

There also will be a Flapper Fashion art exhibition opening and reception, a mentalist who will display his extrasensory powers, a postgame party with a live band and baked Alaska (your chance to try Longwood’s signature dessert), a Rolling Stones tribute band at a local restaurant/club and more.

All this is less than a month away!

But don’t worry—you still have time to get in on the energy and excitement by registering now: go.longwood.edu/homecoming
Adults: $35; children (ages 6-17): $15; children (5 and under): FREE.

Here are more of the details.

Register by THIS MONDAY (Oct. 23) for priority access to basketball tickets. You’ll be provided with instructions on how to purchase tickets after you register and before tickets are released to the public, when they’re expected to sell out. The men play on Saturday; the women on Sunday.

Park in one of the nearby lots on campus and walk in to the Lancer Family Tailgate on Saturday, where you’ll be welcomed as part of the Lancer family. Bring your own chairs, food, beverages (alcohol is allowed within the tailgate area), games, etc. There will be a spirit tent with face painting, giveaway Lancer swag and more.

Baked Alaska for Energy—a Great Dance Band to Burn It Off. The excitement from Saturday’s game will spill over into the after-party that evening, where you can rely on baked Alaska to fuel a night of dancing. We’ve booked a high-energy, nine-piece party band—BOUNCE!—that will play tunes proven to get you moving and challenge you to stand still! Registrants 21+ will receive one complimentary drink ticket.

TGIF—It All Starts on Friday. You can get the party started on Friday evening, Nov. 10, at the Longwood Center for the Visual Arts with the 5:30-8 p.m. opening reception for Flapper Fashion from the 1920s, an exhibition guest curated by alumna Ashley Webb ’07. At 8 p.m. mentalist Craig Karges will display his extrasensory powers in Jarman Auditorium. Then wrap up the evening at the North Street Press Club, where you can rock out to the iconic music of the Rolling Stones courtesy of cover band Mother’s Little Helpers starting at 9 p.m. Looking for something different? Conclude your evening with a (fun, yet spooky) campus ghost tour instead (hot chocolate and apple cider provided).

For a full schedule of Homecoming & Alumni Weekend activities and to register, visit go.longwood.edu/homecoming

The more the merrier! Hope to see you there!

—Sabrina Brown


Practical job-search advice, resume building, networking and more are on tap for Career Week, Oct. 16-19

Students’ success in their academic programs is, of course, important to Longwood faculty and staff—and even alumni—but our commitment doesn’t stop there.

Students’ success after graduation is high on the Longwood community’s list of priorities, as well.

Longwood puts significant resources into providing students with the guidance, experience and skills they need to conduct successful job searches and establish meaningful careers.

These efforts are ongoing throughout the year, but one of the biggest events is happening next week. Career Week is set for Oct. 16-19, and it’s not just for seniors. Any student would benefit from participating. It’s never too soon to start sharpening the skills that can help your student land their dream job or put them solidly on that path.

An encouraging word from you might be all that’s needed to get your student to take advantage of this incredible opportunity. Here are just a few activities coming up next week and what your student can gain from them.

Resume and Cover Letter Workshops
—Learn how to present their experience and skills to best advantage
—Get tips on writing a cover letter that will get noticed

Mock Interviews
—Practice answering common job interview questions
—Get feedback on the impression they make

The Career, Internship and Engagement Fair gives students the opportunity to speak with potential employers about jobs and internships, and university representatives about graduate programs.

LinkedIn and Networking Workshop
—Learn how to build a professional, engaging LinkedIn profile
—Find out how to increase their visibility with employers

Networking Event with Alumni and Employers
—Practice speaking with potential contacts in an informal setting
—Make networking connections
—Find out about career pathways in their fields of interest

Career, Internship and Engagement Fair
—Have a professional head shot photo taken (free)
—Speak with employers (including those offering internships)
—Find out about graduate school programs

For more information, check out the full schedule of Career Week activities.

—Sabrina Brown

Fall break is a great opportunity to support your freshman’s transition to college

Note: Today’s post is from Waleed Ahmed, associate director of enrollment management and student success at Longwood.

Fall break starts this evening, and I’m sure every freshman is looking forward to taking a deep breath after the last few months that have been packed with a lot of “firsts.”

All of those “firsts” typically cause a whirlwind of emotions—some positive and some challenging—and, as a parent, it’s not always easy to know how to help your student handle the newfound independence of college life and the challenges of higher-level classes.

I’d like to share some resources with you that may help as you welcome your freshman back with loving arms and support them over the break.

If your child is experiencing a lot of emotional and psychological strains, please encourage them to contact Longwood Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) when they return next week. CAPS is a valuable resource dedicated to providing support for students in need.

—Waleed Ahmed

An Oktoberfest Primer: What your student may not have told you about one of Longwood’s favorite traditions

Has your student mentioned anything about Oktoberfest?

If not, I thought you might like to know a little about one of Longwood’s favorite annual traditions. With a Farmaritaville theme this year, Oktoberfest is a week of events that kicks off this Sunday, Sept. 24, and concludes with a full day of events on Saturday.

Oktoberfest is a refresher for students at about the midpoint of the semester. Here’s what your students will be experiencing next week:

Bonfire, the traditional kickoff to Oktoberfest, is on Sunday
Spirit activities Monday through Friday, including Beach Day (imagine the campus full of students dressed as if they’re on a tropical vacation) and a Pink Out, where everyone wears pink to kick off Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Service Walk on Thursday
Color Wars on Friday (more about this class-based “paint war” further down)
Saturday, the main event: student organization booths, the Oktoberfest procession followed by the Klown dance and spirit leader performance (in lederhosen, of course), student entertainment and an evening concert featuring four live bands

Bring in the Klowns! It’s a time-honored part of Oktoberfest.

Student organizations set up booths to promote awareness and raise money.

Color Wars, which is part of Oktoberfest, is a tradition on its own, pitting the green classes (students who entered in odd years/freshmen and juniors) against the red classes (students who entered in even years/sophomores and seniors). Most students wear a white T-shirt to this “battle,” which involves slinging as much paint as possible on your opponents, resulting in a unique memento of the event. A winner is usually declared, but it really doesn’t matter which team gets the most paint on the other because “red + green = blue!”

Color Wars is a friendly “battle” of red and green paint.

Oktoberfest is organized by the Longwood Geist Chapter of Mortar Board, a national union of senior honor societies whose mission includes recognizing and encouraging leadership and establishing opportunities for a meaningful exchange of ideas.

—Sabrina Brown

U.S. News rankings put Longwood in the South’s top 10 regional public universities

For the eighth straight year, Longwood has been named a top-10 regional public university in the South in the U.S. News & World Report rankings, which were released today.

Over the last decade, Longwood has secured a place in the upper echelon of the regional collegiate rankings. This year, Longwood is ranked No. 8 among all regional public universities in the South.

Also notable in the rankings this year: Longwood is among the top 25 public and private universities in the South (for the fifth straight year) and has climbed a total of 17 spots over the past three years on the Best Value in the South list.

Other U.S. News shoutouts this year went to the nursing, psychology and undergraduate business programs.

In addition, Money magazine’s 2023 rankings named Longwood as one of America’s Best Colleges, and Niche.com included Longwood in its Best College Dorms and Best Value Colleges lists.

The full story from Longwood’s website is below.

Happy Monday!

—Sabrina Brown

P.S. It was great to see so many families here for Family Weekend! I hope all of you who made the trip to Farmville had a great time and, most of all, a meaningful visit with your Lancer.

Longwood ranked top 10 in South Region for eighth straight year

For the eighth straight year, Longwood University is a top-10 regional public university in the South, according to the annual U.S. News & World Report rankings out today.

Over the last decade, Longwood has secured a place in the upper echelon of the regional collegiate rankings. This year, Longwood is ranked No. 8 among all regional public universities in the South. This year also marks the fifth straight year of Longwood’s being ranked in the top 25 public and private universities in the South, as well as a climb of 17 spots over the past three years on the Best Value in the South list.

The rankings rise coincides with a continued investment in small classes taught by full-time professors, a course of action few public universities have taken. More than two-thirds of Longwood classes have 20 or fewer students, the highest percentage of any Virginia public college or university. Civitae Core Curriculum classes, the foundational courses that all students take as they develop into citizen leaders, are capped at 25 students.

“The source of our strength is our small classes taught by full-time faculty, individual attention for students, and the opportunities for personal and professional growth that can only be found in a residential academic community,” said President W. Taylor Reveley IV. “Rankings can never paint a complete picture of life on campus, but they can reflect the kind of meaningful investments in academics and faculty that we have made over the past 10 years at Longwood.”

Longwood’s latest U.S. News ranking—used by millions of high-schoolers and families to make decisions about higher education—is bolstered by a climb in the rankings on its Best Schools for Social Mobility list. U.S. News announced that their ratings formula changed this year, favoring metrics like prestige of faculty publications over past measures like alumni donation rates.

The nursing program, which was named the Best BSN Program in the Southeast for 2022 by NursingProcess.org, again made the nationwide U.S. News list, bolstered by its near-perfect pass rate on nursing licensure exams over the past seven years. Longwood’s psychology and undergraduate business programs are also highlighted on nationwide lists.

“I’m particularly proud of our measurement on social mobility,” continued Reveley. “We have always considered it a great strength of Longwood that students from all walks of life—from those for whom college is a given to those who thought it was out of reach—don’t just earn a degree at this university, they flourish as people. I’m proud of our continued investment in them and in programs that support their success.”

Longwood was also named one of America’s Best Colleges by Money magazine and is featured on Best College Dorms and Best Value Colleges by Niche.com.