Info for... William & Mary
William & Mary W&M menu close William & Mary

Aubrey Lay

Stamps 1693 Scholaraubrey lay

Stamps logo


Bethesda, MD (Walt Whitman HS)

Areas of Interest

Chinese, Linguistics, International Relations, Government

Why W&M

I grew up with William & Mary as a household name, as my step-father and step-brother attended the school. I knew it was an academically rigorous institution, a neighbor to Colonial Williamsburg, and home to more bricks and trees than could fit into any college pamphlet. While I had visited the colonial town multiple times, I had never set foot on William & Mary’s campus. I entered my college applications with little idea of what I truly wanted out of the next four years of my life. However, I knew the school’s small size, sense of community, and academic programs seemed a good fit from afar, and I never questioned my decision to apply. It wasn’t until I was admitted as a finalist to the 1693 Scholars Program that I had a closer look.
Where some communities of such a high academic caliber might turn overly competitive, I saw William & Mary’s community exhibit exactly the reverse. Whether discussing topics from that day’s philosophy class in a dorm common room or helping one particularly nervous 1693 Finalist find a quiet place to practice his research proposal presentation, members of William & Mary’s Tribe seemed ever ready to help others succeed. During the 1693 Scholars Finalist Weekend, I was entirely smitten by the enthusiasm of the students and faculty I met. Those I talked to were excited to discuss what fascinated them both in and outside the classroom. This passion drove William & Mary’s strong culture of undergraduate research. I came to realize that at William & Mary, I would be able to learn, but also to put this learning into real action. The benefits of the 1693 Scholars Program—research funding, advising, community, and so much more—were unparalleled by my other college choices. When Dan told me that I could join this community, I immediately knew what I wanted out of my next four years.

W&M Activities
High School Activities
  • President, Tryka Film Coalition
  • Head tutor and volunteer, Vike2Vike Peer Tutoring
  • Co-President, Pride Alliance
  • Co-President, Filmmakers’ Club
  • Summer internship, Georgetown University Bioethics Research Library
  • Work on numerous student film sets as Assistant Director, Sound Mixer, Production Assistant
Awards / Distinctions
  • National Merit Scholarship Recipient
  • AP Scholar with Honor
  • Montgomery County Certificate of Meritorious Service for volunteer efforts