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Grapple with tough ethical questions. Examine political theories and contemporary feminist thought. Examine the ideas that have shaped the cultures both east and west. Learn and master the fine art of argument. Discover how language provides a clue to the world both seen and unseen. Learn to express beautifully why the beautiful is indispensable to human life.

Students can pursue a minor in philosophy.

Why study philosophy at Mary Baldwin University?

Students study philosophy at Mary Baldwin University because we provide a context in which the exploration of the self is empowered.

Students will:

  • acquire facility in determining the difference between good and bad reasoning
  • acquire skill for recognizing what the Greeks called “The Excellences”
  • refine their awareness of the real
  • appreciate the power of wonder

The American Philosophical Association

American Philosophical Society

Ancient Philosophy Society

Continental Philosophy

Habitat for Humanity

The Husserl Circle

The Heidegger Circle

North American Levinas Society

Philosophy Documentation Center

The Philosopher’s Index


Society of Biblical Literature

Society for Phenomenology and Existential Philosophy

Society for the Study of Africana Philosophy

Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Service and Walk for Peace and Justice

In 1992 the Department of Philosophy and Religion, in concert with the local chapter of the NAACP, inaugurated an annual event that brings together the college and local communities. The event, held on the Martin Luther King Jr.’s holiday, begins with a candlelight march through the city of Staunton and culminates with a memorial service honoring the life and legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. Both the march and service lift up the values of peace and justice for which Martin Luther King, Jr. lived and died. The service also encourages attendees to bring canned goods in support of the local area food bank.

Ethics Bowl Debate Team

Each February the Ethics Bowl Debate Team, made up of four or five Mary Baldwin students, participates in an “Ethics Bowl” competition with other colleges and universities in Virginia, an event sponsored by the Virginia Foundation for Independent Colleges. Recent debate topics include Ethics and War, Ethics and Political Campaigns, Ethics and Sports, and Ethics and Medicine.


Edward A. Scott

Associate Professor of Philosophy; BA, Slippery Rock State College; MA, PhD, Duquesne University...
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Roderic L. Owen

Professor of Philosophy; BA, College of Wooster; MA, Kent State University; EdD, College of...
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Amy Sims Miller

Assistant Professor of Asian Studies and International Student Advisor; BA, Wesleyan University;...
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Katherine Low

Assistant Professor of Religion and College Chaplain; BA, Doane College; MDiv and PhD, Texas...
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Andrea Cornett-Scott

Adjunct Faculty Member and Associate Vice President for Inclusive Excellence; BA, Morris Brown...
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Kenneth A. Beals

Adjunct Faculty Member; BA, Wittenberg University; ThM, ThD, Boston University School of...
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Gifts That Mean The World

“My goal, as we sailed from New York on the SS Independence, was to take it all in,” said M. Elizabeth “Betty” Swope when recalling her trip to Spain through Mary Baldwin’s Junior Year Abroad program. That year, and that trip, set the...
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Students Give Back Through Social Work Program

When Rob and Sue Warfield Caples ’60 gave to Mary Baldwin College to start an accredited social work program, they left a lasting mark on the college community. In 2007, 148 students petitioned the college to begin accreditation processes for a Bachelor of Social...
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Tracy “Lolita” Burks Healy ’87

It started as an ordinary night out with girlfriends. Lolita Healy and her friends kicked back and ordered cocktails, but when the drinks arrived, Burks thought something was missing; the glasses needed color, style, and personality to match the women sipping from...
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Jessica Gatewood ’00

After earning a BA in biopsychology at Mary Baldwin and a master’s degree at the University of Richmond, Jessica Gatewood was working as a biochemistry research assistant at the University of Virginia when she reached a turning point in her professional life. Instead...
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Monique Burgess ’14

College life was not a passive experience for Burgess. Her influential roles on campus included peer mentor, resident assistant, Anointed Voices of Praise Gospel Choir singer, and member of the national leadership honor society Omicron Delta Kappa — applying her...
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