Diversity and Inclusiveness

International Students

I've never been to Lexington before. What is it like?

Lexington has a small town, friendly feel and is very safe. To learn more about what Lexington offers, look at our Living in Lexington site. Our Center for International Education also has some tips for living in Lexington.

I'm an international student. Can I still work while I am a student?

Students with F and J visas are allowed to work on campus up to 20 hours per week when school is in session and more during breaks, but to work you must obtain authorization. Interested? Check out our Employment Options.

I am worried about being homesick without family nearby.

A lot of students - international or domestic - worry about homesickness. Thankfully Lexington is a close-knit community where homesickness is rare. International students can also apply to get a host family for certain family activities and help easing into American life. Find out more about the Host Family Program - and how to apply - here!

Are there any special forms I have to worry about?

Our Center of International Education has a bunch of forms on their website. If you have any questions about your forms or status, contact your Admissions staffer.

Multicultural Student Organizations

I am looking to explore my own culture - or a different culture. Is that option available to me in Lexington?

Lexington might be small - but you can find the whole world here. We have a host of Multicultural Student Organizations on campus that represent a wide spectrum of countries, cultures, and ideas. Whether you are trying to keep in touch with your own heritage - or discover something new - our Student Organizations are the first place to start.

What I'm looking for wasn't on that list...

All the better reason to come to W&L! We would love to see you come to W&L and start your own multicultural organization. Yes, we are all about that. Our Office of Student Activities helps students start their own club or organization on campus.

I noticed that W&L has a Greek presence. Are there any Multicultural Greek Organizations?

Our campus offers 4 Multicultural Greek Organizations - two fraternities and two sororities. The rush schedule for these organizations is a little different than our other Greek entities, so make sure to keep an ear open when you get to campus! Questions about Multicultural Greek Life can be addressed to the Office of Greek Life.

Gender and Sexuality

I identify as LGBTQ+. What resources can I expect on campus?

W&L has an active LGBTQ+ community that includes students, staff and faculty. Our LGBTQ+ Resource Center holds open and confidential office hours for any student to come and talk. Our campus offers many resources such as All Gender Restrooms, Confidential Support Groups, LGBTQ+ Peer Counselors and more.

How active is the LGBTQ+ community on campus?

Pretty active! Our LGBTQ+ community holds many events on campus that are well attended - such as celebrations during Pride Week. Washington and Lee also hosts an annual Equality Gala as part of the Virginia Colleges Equality Galas series. It is very fancy - and VERY fun. You'll just have to come to Lexington yourself to experience it.

Political Activism

I am a Democrat. Will there be a place for me on campus?

Absolutely! Our College Democrats are active on campus - discussing current events and issues, and taking action!

I am a Republican. Will there be a place for me on campus?

Absolutely! Our College Republicans are active on campus - discussing current events and issues, and taking action!

Wait a minute. Those two answers are exactly the same! You just changed the words.

What can I say? We're bi-partisan. W&L is a place for all political views and stances on ideas. If you come, there is someone who will take your side - and someone who will debate you! - depending on what you're looking for.

I don't know where I stand politically... but I have a stance on some issues.

So do a lot of our student organizations. Care about the environment? Human rights? Animal Cruelty? Or maybe you just like to debate people - no matter the issue. We've got an organization for pretty much everything. Join one of them and they will be very active - politically or not - on that topic.

I am just really into politics! How can I get involved?

Oh boy. Have you heard about Mock Convention? If you're into politics, you've got to come to Washington and Lee - the most accurate college predicting presidential nominees. How accurate, you ask? We haven't been wrong on Republican nominees since 1948 - and have accurately predicted the nominees 20 out of 26 times since 1908.

Religious Life

What is religious life like at Washington and Lee?

Even though W&L is not a religiously affiliated institution, students will find a number of ways to explore and develop their spiritual lives both on and off campus. A great variety of multi-faith, student programs connect with local faith communities. We also have a large number of student religious organizations that organize religious service, hold meetings and service opportunities, as well as discuss issues in both the W&L and global community.

I am not Christian. Will I feel at home at W&L?

Certainly! We have several faith communities are active on campus. Muslim students join together in fasting for Ramadan in conjunction with students at VMI. Our Hillel House holds Shabbat once a month. And our various other student organizations host other festivals and activities such as Dewali Festival and Lunar New Year.

What religious opportunities are available around Lexington?

W&L partners with VMI in regards to some programs for student religious life, but there really are a wealth of opportunities available off campus. Around Lexington, you can find Anglican, Assembly of God, Baptist, Catholic, Episcopal, Lutheran, Pentecostal, Presbyterian, Quaker and Methodist churches, among others. There are also a variety of other religious communities and places of worship in Roanoke, Staunton and nearby Buena Vista.