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    This article is about the private research university in Washington, D.C. commonly abbreviated as GWU. For other uses, see GWU .

    The George Washington University (GW or GWU ) is a private research university in Washington, D.C. It was chartered in 1821 by an act of the United States Congress .

    The university is organized into 14 colleges and schools, including the

    Columbian College of Arts and Sciences , the Elliott School of International Affairs , the GW School of Business, the School of Media and Public Affairs , the Trachtenberg School of Public Policy and Public Administration , the GW Law School and the Corcoran School of the Arts and Design. George Washington's main

    Foggy Bottom Campus is located in the heart of Washington, D.C., with the

    International Monetary Fund and the

    World Bank located on campus and the

    White House and the U.S. Department of State within blocks of campus. GWU hosts numerous research centers and institutes, including the National Security Archive and the Institute for International Economic Policy. GWU has two satellite campuses: the Mount Vernon Campus, located in D.C.'s

    Foxhall neighborhood and the Virginia Science and Technology Campus. It is the largest institution of higher education in the District of Columbia.

    George Washington, the first President of the United States , advocated the establishment of a national university in the U.S. capital in his first State of the Union address in 1790 and continued to promote this idea throughout his career and until his death. [2][8] In his will, Washington left shares in the Potomac Company to endow the university. However, due to the company's financial difficulties, funds were raised independently. [9] On February 9, 1821, the university was founded by an Act of Congress , making it one of only five universities in the United States with a

    Congressional charter .[2][1]

    George Washington offers degree programs in seventy-one disciplines, enrolling an average of 11,000 undergraduate and 15,500 post-graduate students from more than 130 countries. [10] The Princeton Review ranked GWU 1st for "Top Colleges or Universities for Internship Opportunities." [11][12] As of 2015, George Washington had over 1,100 active alumni in the U.S. Foreign Service , one of the largest feeder schools for the diplomatic corps. [13] GWU is consistently ranked by The Princeton Review in the top "Most Politically Active" Schools.

    George Washington is home to extensive student life programs, a strong Greek culture , and over 450 other student organizations. The school's athletic teams, the George Washington Colonials , play in the

    Atlantic 10 Conference . GW is known for the numerous prominent events it holds yearly, from hosting U.S. presidential debates and academic symposiums to the being the host of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund 's Annual Meetings in DC, since 2013. [14]

    George Washington alumni, faculty and affiliates include numerous prominent politicians, including 16 heads of state or government, current U.S. Cabinet members , Fortune 500 CEOs, Nobel laureates, MacArthur fellows , Olympic athletes , Academy Award and Golden Globe winners, royalty , and Time 100 notables.

    History

    College/School Year founded

    Arts and Sciences 1821

    Medicine 1824

    Law 1865

    Engineering 1884

    Arts and Design 1890

    International Affairs 1898

    Education and Human Development 1909

    Business 1928

    Media and Public Affairs 1938

    Political Management 1987

    Public Health 1997

    Professional Studies 2001

    Public Policy and Public Administration 2003

    Nursing 2010

    President George Washington, GW's namesake, left shares in his last will to endow a university in the nation's capital.

    Founding

    The first President of the United States ,

    George Washington, long favored the establishment of a university in the

    capital of the United States . He wrote to the U.S. Congress and others in favor of it, and included a bequest in his last will and testament, though the shares lost their value and no educational institution ever benefited from them. [15][16]

    The Baptist missionary and leading

    minister Luther Rice raised funds to purchase a site in Washington, D.C. for a college to educate citizens from throughout the young nation. A large building was constructed on College Hill, which is now known as Meridian Hill, and on February 9, 1821, President

    James Monroe approved the

    congressional charter creating the non-denominational Columbian College. [17]

    The first commencement in 1824 was considered an important event for the young city of Washington, D.C. In attendance were President Monroe,

    John C. Calhoun, Henry Clay , Marquis de Lafayette and other dignitaries.

    The George Washington University, like much of Washington, D.C., traces many of its origins back to the Freemasons . The Bible that the President of the George Washington University uses to swear an oath on upon inauguration is the Bible of Freemason George Washington. Freemasonry symbols are prominently displayed throughout the campus including the foundation stones of many of the university buildings. [18]

    19th century

    During the Civil War , many students left to join the Confederacy and the college's buildings were used as a Union Army military hospital and barracks. Walt Whitman was among many of the volunteers to work on the campus.

    Following the war, in 1873, Columbian College became the Columbian University and moved to an urban downtown location centered on 15th and H streets, NW.[19]

    20th century

    In 1904, Columbian University changed its name to the George Washington University in an agreement with the

    George Washington Memorial Association to build a campus building in honor of the first U.S. President. [20] Neither the university nor the association were able to raise enough funds for the proposed building near the National Mall; however, the institution retained the name and the money that was raised went to the eventual construction of Lisner Auditorium. [21] The university moved its principal operations to the D.C. neighborhood of Foggy Bottom in 1912. [22]

    A conversation between U.S. President Barack Obama and

    Stephen Colbert held at GWU's

    Lisner Auditorium ; 2014.

    Many of the Colleges of the George Washington University stand out for their age and history. The Law School is the oldest law school in the District of Columbia. [23] The School of Medicine and Health Sciences is the 11th oldest medical school in the nation. [24] The Columbian College was founded in 1821, and is the oldest unit of the university. The Elliott School of International Affairs was formalized in 1898. [25]

    Historic F Street House is the

    President of GWU 's official residence. Behind is the HQ of the International Monetary Fund .

    The majority of the present infrastructure and financial stability at GW is due to the tenures of GW Presidents Cloyd Heck Marvin , Lloyd Hartman Elliott and Stephen Joel Trachtenberg . In the 1930s, the university was a major center for

    theoretical physics. The cosmologist

    George Gamow produced critical work on the Big Bang theory at GW in the 1930s and 1940s. In one of the most important moments in the 20th century,

    Niels Bohr announced that Otto Hahn had successfully split the atom on January 26, 1939, at the Fifth Washington Conference on theoretical physics in the Hall of Government. [26]

    During the Vietnam War era, Thurston Hall, an undergraduate dormitory housing 1,116 students [27] was a staging ground for student anti-war Demonstrations. (At 1900 F Street NW, the building is 3 blocks from the White House .)

    In 1996, the university purchased the

    Mount Vernon College for Women in the city's Palisades neighborhood that became the school's coeducational Mount Vernon Campus. The campus was first utilized in 1997 for women only but became co-educational in a matter of years. The Mount Vernon campus is now totally integrated into the GW community, serving as a complement to the Foggy Bottom campus.

    In 1999, GW hosted the Town Hall with President Clinton , the first presidential town hall to ever be webcast live.

    21st century

    In December 2006, the university named Johns Hopkins University provost Steven Knapp as the next

    President of the George Washington University . He began his presidency on August 1, 2007. [28] In 2017, Thomas LeBlanc , provost of the University of Miami, was named the current

    President of the George Washington University .

    In July 2020, the university began forming special committees to look at possible name changes to an on-campus building and the school moniker. In a statement on the university’s website, George Washington University President Thomas LeBlanc said one of the panels will examine the Colonials’ nickname, which critics say is antiquated and conjures up racism, violence and genocide. George Washington University law professor and Ward 3 D.C. Council member Mary Cheh will serve as chair of that committee. Another panel, to be chaired by George Washington University law professor Roger Fairfax Jr., will look into renaming the Marvin Center. The building is named after former school President Cloyd Heck Marvin, who was a known segregationist.[29]

    Campuses

    University Yard is GW's largest open space in Foggy Bottom.

    Main articles: Campuses of George Washington University and George Washington University residence halls

    The George Washington University has three fully integrated campuses in the D.C. area. These are the Foggy Bottom Campus, the Mount Vernon Campus, and the Virginia Science and Technology Campus. The Foggy Bottom Campus houses the vast majority of academic programming. Residence halls exist on the Foggy Bottom and Mount Vernon campuses.

    The George Washington University library system contains the Gelman Library, [30] the Himmelfarb Health Sciences Library, [31] the Burns Law Library, [32] the Eckles Memorial Library, [33] and the Virginia Science and Technology Library.[34] The GWU Library System is a constituent member of the Washington Research Library Consortium , which allows for resource sharing among the university libraries of the Washington metropolitan area .

    Foggy Bottom

    GWU's Corcoran School of the Arts & Design is housed in the

    Corcoran Gallery, D.C.'s oldest private cultural institution and a

    National Landmark, located on

    The Ellipse , facing the White House .

    The main GW campus consists of 43 acres (170,000 m 2 ) in historic Foggy Bottom and is located a few blocks from the White House , the World Bank ,

    International Monetary Fund , State Department and the National Mall. Barring a few outlying buildings, the boundaries of campus are delineated by (running clockwise from Washington Circle ) Pennsylvania Avenue, 19th Street, E Street, Virginia Avenue, 24th Street, and New Hampshire Avenue. The university owns much of the property in Foggy Bottom and leases it to various tenants, including the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. Other nearby institutions include the Harry S Truman Building (Department of State headquarters),

    John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, United States Institute of Peace, Watergate complex and the embassies of Saudi Arabia , Mexico ,

    Spain, Uruguay and Bosnia and Herzegovina .

    The University Yard is the main open space and historic heart of the university. Along with George Washington's main library, Gelman Library, it constitutes the hub of the main campus. The seven-story Gelman Library building contains over two million volumes and is constructed in the Brutalist architectural style of the 1970s. It features a concrete fa├žade punctuated by windows that are divided by projecting vertical slabs. For most of the year, parts of the library are open 24 hours a day, seven days per week for use by students, faculty, and staff. The seventh floor of the library includes the Special Collections Research Center, National Security Archives , Global Resources Center and Kiev Library.

    "Trump's First Year," a 2017 event held with White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders and the chief correspondents from The New York Times , CNN , Fox News , and the president of the White House Correspondents' Association , held by the School of Media and Public Affairs .

    Foggy Bottom during Winter.

    The National Security Archives (NSA) is a research institution that publishes declassified U.S. government files concerning selected topics of

    American foreign policy . It was a National Security Archive Freedom of Information Act request that eventually made the Central Intelligence Agency 's so-called "Family Jewels" public.[35]

    Close to the library is Lisner Auditorium and a large open area between them is known as Kogan Plaza. Southeast of the plaza and located near Monroe Hall and Hall of Government is the Monroe Court, a landscaped area with a large fountain. The Foggy Bottom–GWU

    Washington Metro station is located at the intersection of 23rd and I Streets NW due south of Washington Circle , and provides access to the Orange ,

    Blue and Silver lines . The University Hospital is located next to the Metro station entrance. [36][37][38]

    The Foggy Bottom campus contains most of the residence halls in which GW students live. The most notable include Shenkman Hall, Thurston Hall,

    Madison Hall , Potomac House,

    Fulbright Hall , Mitchell Hall, Munson Hall , Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis Hall , Phillip Amsterdam Hall, Guthridge Hall, Madison Hall, Townhouse Row, South Hall, and the newest, District House, which opened in 2016.

    In late 2007, construction began on a large mixed-use residential, office and retail development located on the site of the old GW Hospital (Square 54) and just east of the Foggy Bottom–GWU Metrorail station. It was the second-largest undeveloped lot in the District of Columbia at the time of initial construction activity. [39] In 2014, the university assumed ownership of the

    Corcoran Gallery of Art, the oldest private art museum in Washington D.C. and independent college of art and design. The college of art and design became The Corcoran School of the Arts and Design under the Columbian College of Arts and Sciences. The

    National Gallery of Art will acquire many of the 17,000 pieces of art from the Corcoran and the rest will be donated to other museums around the country. [40] In May 2014, GW opened the Milken Institute School of Public Health , a nine-story building that received LEED certification for sustainability features including a green roof, rainwater collection system, and special heating and air conditioning technologies that helps mass air displacement. [41] The Textile Museum reopened to the public in March 2015 after the institution merged with the university in 2011 and closed it for renovations two years later. [42]

    Mount Vernon Campus

    Lieutenant General George Washington , by Clark Mills, on

    Washington Circle, on the northern edge of the Foggy Bottom campus.

    In 1996, the university purchased the

    Mount Vernon College for Women in the city's Palisades neighborhood that became the school's coeducational Mount Vernon Campus. Initially, the Mount Vernon Campus remained exclusively a women's college until 1999 when GW changed its operations to a co-ed facility. [43] Now known as the Mount Vernon campus, it is totally integrated into the GW community, serving as a complement to the Foggy Bottom campus. [44] The campus has transportation systems connecting the students to the GW campus in Foggy Bottom. It also includes Eckles Library, six residence halls, Lloyd Gymnasium, The GW-Mount Vernon Athletic Complex and other various campus facilities. [45]

    Virginia Science and Technology Campus

    Main article: George Washington University Virginia Campus

    The George Washington University also operates a research and graduate campus in Ashburn, Virginia (near

    Dulles International Airport ) which was established in 1991. Starting with a donation of 50 acres (20 ha) from Robert H. Smith, the campus grew to 101 acres (41 ha) by 2010. [46]

    Additionally, the university also operates several other graduate satellite education centers. These include the Alexandria Graduate Education Center in Alexandria, the Graduate Education Center in Arlington , and the Hampton Roads Center in

    Newport News . The Virginia Science and Technology Campus hosts research and educational partnerships with industry and government officials and offers more than 20 graduate degrees. [47]

    The Virginia Science and Technology Campus is home to the first walkable solar-power sidewalk in the world. The project began in 2012 and was completed two years later, inaugurated in October 2014. [48]

    Organization

    The George Washington University is governed by the GW Board of Trustees, the President of the George Washington University , provost, vice presidents, deans, and department chairs. The university employs over 6,000 faculty members, administrators, and support staff. [49] In 2007, Steven Knapp was named the university's

    sixteenth president .[50] ; he had previously taught at the University of California, Berkeley and was later the provost at Johns Hopkins University . The current President of the George Washington University is Thomas LeBlanc .

    Schools and colleges

    Undergraduate & The George Wa

    Columbian College

    of Arts and Sciences

    School of Business

    Elliott School

    of International Affairs

    Milk Insti Sch

    o Pub Hea

    Graduate Schools Washington U

    Graduate School of Political Management

    Medical School

    Law School

    Gradu School Educati Huma Develop

    GW is organized into fourteen schools and colleges, each with a different dean and organization. [51] The Columbian College of Arts and Sciences was the original academic unit of the university. [52] The Medical School is the 11th oldest medical school in the nation and the first to open in the District of Columbia. [53] The Law School was also the first law school in the District of Columbia. [23] Each academic unit has a distinct identity within the broader university. The Graduate School of Political Management and the Corcoran School of the Arts and Design were organized outside of the university, later to join in 1987 and 2014, respectively.

    Columbian College of Arts and Sciences

    Rome, Phillips, and Smith Halls, home of the Columbian College.

    The Columbian College of Arts and Sciences (CCAS) is the oldest and largest college in the university. It was founded in 1821; at the beginning of the university's history, there was no distinction between this college and the university. The School of Media and Public Affairs (SMPA), and the Trachtenberg School of Public Policy and Public Administration (SPPPA) belong to this college, although they are run separately. The Columbian College was among the first American institutions to grant a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.), in 1888. [54] The Columbian College is notable for its academic diversity, and offers a wide range of majors and courses of study. [54] The Columbian College contains the Trachtenberg School of Public Policy and Public Administration, the School of Media and Public Affairs, and the Corcoran School of the Arts and Design. The Columbian College is primarily housed in Philips Hall, Rome Hall, Smith Hall of Art, MPA Building, Monroe Hall, Hall of Government, 1922 F Street, Corcoran Hall, Bell Hall, Samson Hall, Lisner Hall, and many other places around campus. The college is also present on the Mount Vernon and Virginia Campuses.

    Trachtenberg School of Public Policy and Public Administration

    The Trachtenberg School of Public Policy and Public Administration is a graduate school in the Columbian College of Arts and Sciences. [55] The Trachtenberg School offers Master of Public Policy, Master of Public Administration , and PhD degrees in

    Public Policy and Public Administration . The school works in partnership with the Elliott School of International Affairs , the School of Public Health and Health Services, and the Graduate School of Education & Human Development to offer a variety of concentrations for its graduates. For

    Public Affairs Schools , it is ranked 12th nationwide by U.S. News & World Report , and 10th in Public Management Administration. [56]

    School of Media and Public Affairs

    The George Washington School of Media and Public Affairs .

    The School of Media and Public Affairs (SMPA), although run separately, belongs to the Columbian College of Arts in Sciences. [55] It offers two undergraduate degrees, Journalism and Mass Communication and Political Communication and a master's degree in Media and Public Affairs. It is housed in the same building as the

    Graduate School of Political Management .

    The Public Affairs Project at GW, part of SMPA, is responsible for the creation and production of the PBS special, Planet Forward. School of Media and Public Affairs (SMPA) was the first in the nation to offer a bachelor's degree in Political Communication. The program boasts a faculty of retired and current professionals – including CNN correspondents, journalists, political analysts, and campaign professionals. The school is consistently ranked in the top 10 programs in the nation.

    Corcoran School of the Arts and Design

    The Corcoran School is housed in the former Corc

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