DC -- GWU (George Washington University):
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- GWU_200829_11.JPG: I didn't know if the bust of George Washington which had been here had been destroyed or taken down for maintenance or something.
- Wikipedia Description: George Washington University
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The George Washington University (GW), is a private, coeducational university located primarily in the Foggy Bottom neighborhood of Washington, D.C. The school was founded in 1821 as The Columbian College in the District of Columbia by Baptist ministers who were in part trying to fulfill the vision of George Washington for a institution of higher learning in the nation's capital. It has since developed into a nonsectarian research institution known especially for its social sciences, international affairs, medical and law programs.
Most of the university's undergraduate and graduate studies are conducted on its 43-acre, downtown Foggy Bottom campus, which is situated just a few blocks from the White House and the National Mall. Barring a few outlying buildings, the boundaries of campus are delineated by Pennsylvania Avenue, 19th Street, E Street, and Virginia Avenue. However, 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. GW is said to be the second-largest land-owner in the District of Columbia, following the federal government.
Since the GW campus is integrated with the city, it has less of a traditional campus than those of other major universities. However, the university has a significant presence in the area. Signs indicating the relative location of various university buildings can be found on almost every street corner. The student union (known as the Marvin Center), several residence halls, the Media and Public Affairs building, and other major academic buildings are located within a three-block radius of the University Yard (the original quadrangle on campus).
The nearby area surrounding GW's main library, Gelman Library, forms the busy heart of the campus. The seven-story library building, which contains over two-million volumes, is constructed in the popular Brutalist architectural style of the 1970's. It features a concrete fašade punctuated by windows that are divided by projecting vertical slabs. For most of the year, parts of the library are open 24-hours, 7 days per week for use by students, faculty and staff. The library's upper level is home to the National Security Archive, a highly-respected research institution that publishes declassified U.S. government files concerning selected topics of American foreign policy. For example, in June of 2007, the organization made the Central Intelligence Agency's so-called "family jewels," which detail twenty five years of misdeeds, available to the public .
Adjacent to the library is Lisner Auditorium and a large open area known as Kogan Plaza. The Foggy Bottom Metro Station Station is located at the intersection of 23rd and I Streets, due south of Washington Circle. The University hospital, where many politicians in the city often seek medical treatment, is located next to the Metro station entrance. Sometime in late 2007, construction on a large commercial development (known currently as "Square 54") is expected to begin on the currently-vacant lot previously occupied by the old GW Hospital. It is the second-largest undeveloped lot in the District of Columbia.
In 1999, the university acquired the 23-acre Mount Vernon College for Women campus and renamed it The George Washington University at Mount Vernon College. Nicknamed "The Vern," the campus is served by a twenty-four hour shuttle service known as the Vern Express. Despite the fact that its dorms are now fully co-educational, the campus' legacy as a former women's college has been retained with the Elizabeth Somers Women's Leadership Program, a unique residential-academic program for first-year female undergraduate students.
Ashburn and Other Centers:
The George Washington University also operates a postgraduate-geared campus in Ashburn, Virginia. Several other satellite education centers are maintained by the university, including the Alexandria Graduate Education Center in Alexandria, the Graduate Education Center in Arlington, and the Hampton Roads Center in Newport News.
George Washington had long argued for the creation of a university in the District of Columbia. In his will, he bequeathed fifty shares of the Potomac Company to support such an institution. He wrote, "I give and bequeath in perpetuity the fifty shares which I hold in the Potomac Company (under the aforesaid Acts of the Legislature of Virginia) towards the endowment of a University to be established within the limits of the District of Columbia, under the auspices of the General Government, if that Government should incline to extend a fostering hand towards it." The shares turned out to not be worth very much, but Washington's idea for a university continued.
Aware of Washington's wishes, a group of men led by Baptist missionary and minister Luther Rice raised funds to purchase a site for a college to educate citizens for work as missionaries and clergy. 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 Columbian College. President Monroe, John C. Calhoun, Henry Clay, the Marquis de Lafayette and other dignitaries attended the college's first commencement exercises in 1824.
The college's buildings were used as a hospital during the Civil War. At times, academic and administrative departments have occupied other buildings around Washington, including what is now the National Museum of Women in the Arts on New York Avenue in northwest Washington.
The name of the institution was changed to Columbian University in 1873 and, in an agreement with the George Washington Memorial Association, to The George Washington University in 1904. The university was among the first American institutions to grant a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in 1888.
During the Vietnam War era, Thurston Hall, an undergraduate dormitory housing 875 students was (according to campus folklore) a staging ground for Student Anti-War Demonstrations (at 1900 F street, the building is just 3 blocks from The White House).
Since the 1970s, through the presidencies of Lloyd Hartman Elliott and Stephen Joel Trachtenberg, GWU has become a major undergraduate and graduate institution. In December 2006, the university named Johns Hopkins University provost Steven Knapp its next president, to begin his term on August 1, 2007.
In 1996, the university purchased the Mount Vernon College for Women in the city's Foxhall neighborhood that became the school's co-educational Mount Vernon Campus. The campus was first utilized in 1997 for women only, but became co-eduational in a matter of years. The Mount Vernon campus is now totally integrated into the GW community, serving as a great compliment to the Foggy Bottom campus.
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