Washington, DC
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Reviews 1579 total reviews with an average rating of 3.5

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3 College Senior

Computers: Printing is done primarily at the library unless you have your own printer and costs $0.07 a page for B+W. Unfortunately free printing doesn't really exist. As for the wireless, the network is accessible most places on campus via a laptop or smartphone and generally works pretty well.

3 College Senior

Facilities: The unique thing about GW is our 24-hour Starbucks that is attached to our Gelman Library on the main campus. It is termed 'Gelbucks' by students and is a definite hot spot for students of all years as well as various State Department employees.

3 College Senior

Campus Housing: The upper class housing at GW is pretty good. I am living in Ivory Tower and I think the rooms are well equipped and have a decent amount of space and new appliances. However, a lot of kids at GW have no respect for the school property and thus there is always a lot of trash (beer cans what else) in the hallways and elevators. These hooligans also destroy the hallway ceiling tiles and break the lights in the elevators. The floors in the lobbies are often coated in sticky presumably alcoholic substances. Joy.

2 College Senior

Campus Dining: GW has a decent amount of options on campus for dining, however most of them are highly overpriced. Seniors only receive $500 in student dollars a semester (I guess you eat less when you're a senior??) and no dining dollars for the dining hall. These student dollars (colonial cash) are also what we must use for our laundry services as well as grocery shopping and textbooks. Therefore it runs out pretty quickly especially when going out to grab lunch means spending $11 at SweetGreen or $14 at campus dining for a salad and a pop. My suggestion: Live off of saltines or marry rich.

1 person found this useful Report
2 College Senior

Majors: As an engineering major I think GW has a so-so program. I chose to come here mostly because I received more scholarship money here than any other school I got into. However, the program for students in my year is highly unorganized. It is improving for students entering in years under me, but as for my year we have had an interesting ride with changing professors, unnecessary and outdated courses, and trouble with the SEAS office losing our paperwork. It is stressful enough taking 7 courses a semester in engineering without worrying you won't be able to graduate because all of your advising forms 'mysteriously' disappeared.

4 College Junior

Transportation: The free shuttle that I need to get to the Mount Vernon campus is very convenient for my schedule. Buses run every 5 minutes during the day, every 15 during rush hour, which is understandable.
Metro is a little too expensive for me. I live off campus and the peak fares are a little high.

College Junior

Off-Campus Dining: There is no off campus dining at George Washington University

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Weather: Too Humid for My Liking – I'm from DC, so the weather came as no shock to me; through GW, however, I learned that DC's weather is irregular in that the days can be sunny one hour and thunderstorming the next. I thought this was normal but it's apparently not. (It would be so much nicer if the weather would make up its mind!)
The summers here are hot and humid, which is expected in the mid-atlantic and bay area. But because of the type of asthma I have, I can never go out when it's too humid, so I have to stay inside for a portion of the summer. If you're not from the area and are thinking about GW, I'd recommend making sure you bring your inhaler or check with your doctor to see if you can handle the humidity.
Autumn and spring are usually the most beautiful seasons, but they tend to have dramatic temperature changes (moreso than the other seasons, it seems).
Winter is usually colder and gets a few inches of snow each year.

5 College Freshman

Campus Strictness: A Perfect Balance – As someone who's concerned with her safety, I'd have to say that GW is a great place to be; there are lots of resources available to people who don't feel safe but lots of flexibility and freedom to those who want to have a fun time. We have a system where, if someone were to get too drunk, people can call in for help and not get in trouble (called the "Good Samaritan"); it's to make sure that nobody gets seriously hurt if nobody wants to get in trouble by calling the police.
We're treated like adults and that's wonderful.

3 College Freshman

Off-Campus Dining: DC Dining is Limited – Though DC is a big city, there aren't too many food joints that are both vegetarian-friendly and affordable on a daily basis. A lot of the food here is cooked more artistically (meaning that it has non-traditional flavours), and that can be either good or bad. If you like Asian food, you're in for a treat! DC has tons of that ambrosia.
Of course, there are lots of CVSs and Safeways to buy food from, but dining out more would be nice, too. If students are interested in dining out more, I'd recommend northern Virginia and Maryland; though the food isn't necessarily cheaper, it's more "normal" and there tends to be a bigger variety.

4 College Freshman

Campus Dining: Tasty but Lacking – More restaurants have been added to GW over the past few years and the food is actually quite good; I've heard it's sometimes bad, but I've enjoyed all my meals on campus. It's a bit disappointing that there isn't a wider selection and a lot of the food is served cold. A good portion of the food is more snack food, too; for example, we're getting an Auntie Anne's put in. AA is good and all, but it's not a meal; it's a snack with a lot of sodium.
Everything does seem to have a vegetarian option, but we of course don't want to eat the same thing every day, especially if the option isn't even good. And though DC is expensive, one would think GW would give us cheaper food for on-campus dining, and that's not the case.
Overall, I'd say the dining is livable and improving. When I went for a campus tour, I walked through a fast-food court. Today, that same court is a buffet filled with healthy and international foods.

3 College Freshman

Local Atmosphere: Best of Both Worlds – I'll start off by saying that I'm a bit bias since I was born and raised in DC and have gotten pretty sick of it after 18 years. Alas, I'll try to offer a decent review since most people don't have my situation.

DC is a great place for people who are into politics and like to be in the center of it all; there's lots of restaurants and shopping to do, and, of course, lots of events such as protests and plays (DC is a very theatre-friendly town). The metro is pretty small, though, and doesn't go many places, but it's great for getting to nearby spots in Virginia and Maryland. There's also room for people who prefer to walk, like I do.
Aside from the monuments and the mall, there's also nice stuff for the people who don't necessarily like to be in all the action, like me. Here, there are lots of beautiful residential neighbourhoods and parks, particularly near the Mount Vernon campus. DC is a very green city with lots of trees and plants; in fact, downtown DC is relatively small compared to all the calm places in the more suburban areas. Then there's also the lovely Old Town Alexandria nearby, a perfect blend of restaurants & shops and peace & beauty.
As for the people? DC is a working city, so yes, some people here are a bit snobby as they probably have deadlines and all. People try too hard to be like a DC native; I can't tell you how many times people have told me "what people do in DC." (See the above.) But, otherwise, you can and will find several friendly and amazing people.

2 people found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Campus Housing: The Dorms are Awesome! I have to give GW a thumbs-up for their housing! Of course not all of it is perfect, but the rooms are very spacious, include all the essential furniture (even a mini-fridge and microwave), and the bathrooms get cleaned once a week. My dorm closet is a walk-in, actually, which is much bigger and nicer than the one I have at home! Both the Foggy Bottom and the Mount Vernon campuses have great locations and a nice variety from which to choose (though freshmen who choose to live on the Vern are more likely to get what they want). Also, I've yet to hear of a roommate situation that didn't work out very well; in fact, several roommates here end up being best friends. Be sure to look up the "personalities" of different dorms before you list your preferences, though, because each dorm pretty much does have its own personality. *cough* Thurston.
Especially compared to most colleges, living at GW is like living in a palace and this is really what we should be getting for our money.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Sophomore

Local Atmosphere: DC Is Excellent! Living and going to school in DC is absolutely excellent. There is an unending amount of stuff to do in DC, whether you head into Georgetown or Dupont Circle or out to Arlington. Everything about DC is awesome. There are tons of clubs and bars within walking distance, just like everything else.

3 College Sophomore

Guys & Girls: GW is decent in terms of looks, though finding someone who will be interested in you is a lot more difficult! GW is very preppy when it comes to dress (you'll rarely see sweatpants on anyone other than athletes, except during finals week!) and you'll see a lot of blonde and brunettes here. They're generally Northeastern prepsters. Think Gossip Girl.

3 College Sophomore

Athletics: Oops, Sports Suck! I love GW, I really do, but the sports are pretty fail.

5 College Senior

Diversity: International School – This is an international school so just about every ethnicity is represented. However, some groups are more prominent than others, such as, Indian, Chinese, Korean, Jewish, Middle Eastern, etc. If you're looking for a place to fit in then GWU is a great place. However, if you are racist towards other ethnic groups then this is not the school for you.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Senior

Overall Experience: Unique Experience – The campus is in the heart of D.C. so there's lots to do and see. There are job and internships you can't find anywhere else and the school has a lot of connections to these opportunities. If you're a transfer student things are a little different. The school has lots of activities for Freshman but barely any support or activities for transfer students.

2 College Senior

Facilities: Not Many Green Areas – Down side of being in a big city there is a lot of concrete. There's one nice green yard in front of the law school. Of course you can always go to the Mall or Washington Monument to find some nice grassy areas.

4 College Senior

Campus Housing: Upperclassman Dorms – If you don't get into South Hall as a senior it's ok because E Street is just as good. E Street is open to juniors and seniors but it's a small dorm with nice apartment type rooms. Each apartment has 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, a full kitchen, and a nice living area. Each of these dorm rooms houses four people.

3 College Freshman

Weather: It's hot and humid in the early fall and then turns freezing in december. but overall, not too bad

5 College Junior

Transportation: Access to Metro, the bus system, and the Mount Vernon Express connects the two campuses. DC is also a very walkable city and the university's location provides close proximity to many parts of town.

5 College Junior

Majors: Great Program – IA is a great program: thorough analysis of the topic. Access to excellent professors who work in the field and can connect students to different agencies in DC for potential careers.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Junior

Majors: Opportunity and Experience – Most DC internships are unpaid, but employers give interns opportunities to work on projects related to their course of study and the mission of the agency/institutions. Interns are made a part of the team and gain valuable work experience!

5 College Junior

Majors: Access to great professors, classes, and networking for careers and internships!


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Professor's Gate
Professor's Gate

Overall ExperienceWhat's This?

David Glidden
Fuquay-Varina, NC
International Affairs (Spanish minor)
View all previous student authors

Students at GW tend to complain a lot about the pricey tuition, lack of school spirit, perhaps unnecessary new facilities, and excessive nickel-and-diming. However, most students stay at GW for four years—GW’s retention rate is 91 percent. Many students are also upset about how GW compares academically to other schools, and that the science labs and facilities are run-down and old. GW students want the best and sometimes the University does not live up to their expectations.

Although GW provides students with a large variety of entertaining on-campus activities, students can also go off campus and enjoy the city. The University’s location in DC makes most GW students’ experiences worthwhile and interesting. GW would not be the same, nor as wonderful, if it were not located in DC. The city adds life, variety, and uniqueness to the campus environment. Students have the opportunity to land incredible internships while taking classes. The city also offers countless off-campus shows, productions, sporting events, restaurants and bars, museums, and (of course) the monuments to visit. Washington is the perfect college town because it attracts young people from all over the country, gives students amazing opportunities, and is easy to manage. GW is a great place to be—most students are happy to spend their four years here.

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