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

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3 College Junior

Nightlife: Night Life Is Rough for People Under 21 – Not being 21 makes it difficult to party in DC. Risks are huge in Georgetown and surrounding areas to use a fake ID because the bars are strict. Parties on campus are pretty exclusive. As a freshman you will attend the frat parties, but they quickly get old. The nightlife is difficult when you can't go out in the city.

3 College Junior

Campus Housing: Pretty Nice Housing All Around – The housing options at GW are diverse. You have a downtown city option living as a freshman, but also a more "green" out of the city option on the Mt. Vernon Campus. This campus is nice because its where the soccer/ baseball fields are located and the public swimming pool. Its conveniently located by its own Safeway and restaurants and has its own dining hall. The shuttle to main campus is about fifteen minutes. The main campus is right in downtown DC a few blocks from the white house and watergate. As a freshman the options are poor, and the buildings are old on this campus. Sophomore-senior year the options are better. A brand new senior apartment style dorm was built in 2010 and its reviewed to be spectacular. New Hall and Ivory are also reported to be excellent sophomore/ junior options.

3 College Junior

Campus Dining: The food granted by on Jstreet dollars can only purchase food at Mt Vernon Campus and J Street on the regular campus. These options are pretty diverse but average grade food. There is a Wendys, ChicFila, Kosher Deli, Chinese place, and Burrito place like Chipotle. There is also Buffet style dinner options at Mt. Vernon and in J Street. The food is overpriced for quality, but better than other college options for sure. The other nice thing about GW dining is that there is a colonial cash option that allows you to purchase food around DC on your student card. This gives you access to many nice restaurants and cafes like, but not limited to Cosi, Bertuccis, Thai Kingdom, Sushi places, and Lindys. This option is very unique to the city and GW students.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Junior

Scholarships: The Most Expensive School in the Country – Truthfully, GW is not the 4th most expensive school in the country. That is due in large part to the high cost of living in downtown DC. GW understands the stress their tuition can place on families and is very helpful in terms of financial aid, especially after the economic downturn.

3 College Junior

Drug Safety: What About My Future Political Career – That is the concern of many students at GW. Because of budding careers in the public sphere GW students do not tend to be hard into drugs. It may also have something to do with the Secret Service headquarters being located on campus. In DC possession of drugs is a federal offense, and most GW students therefore stick to alcohol, which is readily available at any age. There is not much of an underground drug culture. Some kids smoke, but mostly on the weekends

3 College Junior

Academics: The curriculum at GW varies by department, some that are much stronger than others. The university is known for its prestigious business school, the Elliott School of International Affairs. The political science, history, and economics departments are well supported and play a large role at the university. On the other side, I would not recommend attending GW if you are planning on majoring in chemistry. While not of poor quality, the departments are not as well supported. If you are interested in GW, you should also be interested in what the school and DC does best politics. Oh, and watch out for adjunct professors. These professors often teach one class per semester and unlike seasoned academics they do not have their teaching style down, nor are they readily available for help.

4 College Junior

Facilities: Great Internship Opportunities. At GWU, if you are majoring in either Political Science or anything in the Elliott School, then you are set for finding incredible internships that are perfect for your career path. GWU is an excellent place for this.

3 College Junior

Athletics: Not the Focus. Sports are not really the focus at GWU and not many attend the basketball games and the team really is not too good. We need to make this more of a focus to increase campus pride.

3 College Junior

Off-Campus Housing: Expensive, but Good Options – GWU has many options for off campus housing that are pretty good, but they are often much more expensive than living on campus and you might need to live somewhat further away from campus.

3 College Junior

Scholarships: GWU is one of the most expensive schools in the country, and so many people need financial aid. But it is terribly difficult to get the financial aid that you need at GWU and often times you will have to appeal for more money and will have to go through the GWU bureaucracy which is a pain and often is not even helpful. Be prepared to take out many loans and go into debt.

4 College Junior

Transportation: The area around GWU has excellent public transportation with the metro system and metro buses. One cannot survive without them, although they can be somewhat costly at times and do not run late into the night.

4 College Junior

Academics: Excellent Academic Program With Many Opportunities – The Asian Studies major in the Elliott School of International Affairs is by far one of the best majors available. One has access to a great selection of courses and excellent faculty as well as good facilities. The Sigur Center is by far one of the highest ranked centers for Asian Studies in the U.S., and it offers many great training opportunities. The workload is not bad and the classes are helpful. There are many chances to find internships and job opportunities, but the language department is not as good as it could be.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Campus Housing: Very spacious. However quite expensive. Thurston, while the most fun dorm, is a complete s--t hole. I lived there last year and my ceiling fell in... twice.

5 College Sophomore

Scholarships: Most people here have some form of scholarship. I know I wouldnt be here without one.

3 College Sophomore

Health & Safety: I feel semi-safe on campus. The only issue is people who arent from campus can come on and wreak havoc. We often receive emails about crimes that happen on or around campus. I have never heard of a student being hurt by anyone or anything, but considering the fact that it is a city, you never know whats coming your way.

4 College Sophomore

Facilities: Gelman Library – The library, while complained about often, is actually quite nice. There are easily accessible computers for students to use, and a ton of books which are easy to find as long as you know what you are looking for. There are sections to sit in and study in no matter what your preferred study atmosphere is. There are floors filled with places just for group study, floors with desks, and even a floor with lounge chairs. Also, each floor has up to ten rooms that you can reserve for study groups. All in all, I couldn't imagine a better library. The only reason people complain about it is because it is a library, and therefore, boring.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Scholarships: They'll Help You Out – Personally, I had a smooth time with dealing with financial aid at GW. I qualified for a good bit of aid and was able to attend the university even though my mother does not make very much money. The financial aid department is also very easy to work with. They are always available to meet with, and if you go directly to a senior financial aid counselor, they know a lot and are always willing to answer your questions and help you. A student just needs to make sure he or she is keeping in touch with financial aid if questions arise.

5 College Sophomore

Diversity: There Is Not a Better Place – If you're looking for diversity, GW has one of the most diverse student bodies you will ever find. Since it's main focus is International Relations, kids from all over the world come to study. And since it is located in the heart of our nation's capital, it attracts diversity of all kinds. I've met students from almost every continent, every religion, and every state. I've even met kids that are the offspring of foreign ambassadors! GW is a wonderful place to really experience diversity and how beautiful the mixing of cultures is.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Campus Dining: Tasty for a Price – The dining on campus is pretty appetizing. We have fast food places like Chick-fil-a and Wendy's in our cafeteria along with mexican, asian, and buffet-style cuisine. We are also able to spend our monthly meal plan on restaurants close to our campus like Au Bon Pain, Thai Place, Starbucks, and others. It allows for many delicious meal options that satisfy everyone on campus--from students who need a healthy diet for athletics to students trying to keep kosher! The only problem is, being in the middle of downtown D.C., the dining is very expensive. So learning how to budget food money is a must!

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Senior

Facilities: Take advantage of living in DC. There are many awesome political events (CPAC, inauguration, Senate and House meetings, rallies and protests, speakers, etc.) There's also fun sporting events in the city (the Nationals have 5 dollar tickets and the Caps are always awesome). Some pretty great concerts also come through the city. The museums and monuments are breathtaking and plentiful.

4 College Senior

Overall Experience: I have absolutely fallen in love with the city of DC. Its an amazing area with tons of things to do. If politics aren't your thing GW might not be the place for you. Most students talk politics pretty constantly. We do of course talk about other things, but if you hate politics and talking about them, GW is probably not for you. If you love politics though, you will fit right in. We love our politics and take them seriously. There are amazing opportunities for internships and jobs and we have some fantastic professors. Like the bureaucracy in the government GW can be filled with red-tape so thats also a caveat. There's also some demeaning stereotypes about GW students (legging wear, Starbucks drinking, Iphone toting, rich kids) that are true for some students. But we're not all like that!

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Senior

Nightlife: Lots to Do – There's a lot to do for both underage and the 21+ crowd throughout DC. Check out different neighborhoods like Chinatown (lots of bars), U Street (fun clubs and concert venues like the Black Cat and the 9:30 club), Capitol Hill (Hawk and Dove a mainstay for underclassmen), Georgetown and Adams Morgan are excellent for the 21 and up crown, and McFaddens near campus is always packed with students.

3 College Freshman

Greek Life: Under Probation at the Moment – Greek life is not a central part of GW but having said that I find it central to my life here. joining a sorority or frat is a great way to meet people and get involved. Here at GW they provide great opportunities for networking and getting amazing internships.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Off-Campus Dining: Pretty Good – I mean it's D.C. of course there's variety and decent quality. But some of it can be on the pricey side.

3 College Freshman

Local Atmosphere: People here are extremely stuck up and snotty. There are alot of things you can do, but if you don't have a group of firneds it will be awful.


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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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