Next Stop GW #3 - Academic & Student Success

June 03, 2020

A Note to Our Community

We want to take a moment to acknowledge and reflect on recent racial incidents in the U.S. involving black Americans. As fellow GW students and student leaders, we reject any and all forms of racism and are committed to educating one another and elevating the voices of the Black community.

To our Black students - current and incoming - we see you, we stand with you, and we support you. As an Orientation team, we promise to dedicate our time and energy into listening and learning and to engage in thoughtful change. We will be advocates for and with you. Our efforts are focused on creating an inclusive, diverse, empathetic, and engaged student community.

Here are some GW resources:

Be well and continue to Raise High,

Alex, Asher, Foon and the 2020 Orientation Team

Newsletter Overview

Congratulations! We know many of you are closing out your high school career over the next few weeks. We hope you are staying safe and finding creative ways to celebrate such an exciting and important life milestone!

Here's what you can expect in this edition...

  • A message from your 2020-21 Student Association President
  • An introduction to student and academic support resources
  • Disability Support Services reminder
  • An update about the upcoming Real Talk episode
  • Student spotlight: Nikki Vivekanandan

A couple of reminders:

  • Housing Application closes on Monday, June 8
  • Register for First-Year Orientation in your admitted student portal (located in Next Steps)

Back to Campus Initiative: the President recently released an update about fall operations. With this news, please keep in mind that there is still much to be determined around move-in and Orientation schedules. Please do not make travel plans until you receive an update on move-in. Continue to check our website for program updates and campus advisories for university updates.

Welcome from the Student Association President

Hello new students of GW,

My name is Howard Brookins and I'll be serving as your Student Association President for the 2020-21 academic school year.

I understand the hurt and pain many of you must be feeling and experiencing as we continue to send thoughts and prayers to the families of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, and Ahmaud Arbery. The GW community needs to now more than ever stick together and I want it to be known that the Student Association is here for you. I encourage you to continue to make your voices heard regarding issues of bigotry and remember that it is through unity that we shall make strides toward change.

I can't wait to welcome you to your new home at GW and I am eager to learn more about you, your unique stories, and diverse experiences.



What is the Student Association?

The mission of the Student Association (SA) is to further the interests and promote the welfare of all students at GW. Responsibilities of the SA are defined in four ways: advocate, allocate, advertise, and assist.

Learn more about what the SA does and how it works, how to get involved, and more!

Stay connected with the SA on InstagramFacebook, and Twitter.

The CARE Network

At GW we emphasize the importance of taking care of self and others. Reaching out and asking for help can be hard, but is strongly encouraged. If you find yourself having trouble adjusting to college life (academics, making friends, living away from home, and the like), then please seek help through the CARE Network. Similarly, if a friend or classmate is struggling, utilize this important resource. You will learn more about this important resource in later editions. We're all in this together.

Academic Support Resources

Student Success Coaching Program

The Office for Student SuccessStudent Success Coaching Program provides student-to-coach 1:1 sessions to help students build the needed foundation for a successful semester and beyond. Students are connected with a Coach to:

  • Develop personal and professional goals
  • Implement effective time management strategies
  • Establish healthy study & learning habits
  • Cultivate self-advocacy skills
  • Build campus support systems

Academic Commons

Academic Commons is a one-stop shop for academic resources, services, and questions. You can get personalized help from student navigators who will connect you with the right resources for your specific need.

College courses are different from high school and sometimes even the best students require additional help. Successful students seek out help as soon as they see a problem. Here are some tips to get you started on the right track:

Campus Libraries

GW has five libraries, but most new students will use Gelman Library on the Foggy Bottom campus and Eckles Library on the Mount Vernon campus. Both offer a safe, comfortable place to study and are open to all GW students. Library resources are available 24-hours online. We offer a Top Textbooks program, so you don't have to buy your books, but instead, can borrow them!


Get an overview of GW technology, including suggestions for what you will need, how to get started, common academic software, and how to get help. All GW students can download the following software for FREE! Some of the software available is:

  • Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, etc.)
  • Adobe Creative Cloud (Photoshop, Illustrator, etc.)
  • Symantec anti-virus software
  • ...and more!

Disability Support Services

Are you interested in receiving accommodations for the fall 2020 semester? Disability Support Services (DSS) offers an array of accommodations and services to students who need it. Visit the DSS website to learn more about the documentation and registration processes. Information can also be found on page 11 of the student Buff & Blue Book. For questions, please email [email protected].

Real Talk GW

In support of our current and incoming Black students, the Real Talk GW episode scheduled for today at 7:00 PM EST has been postponed.

We will be hosting a special episode, Understanding the Black Experience, with current members of GW's Black Student Union and Black Men's Initiative. They will share their experiences as Black students at GW.

Join us on Instagram Monday, June 8 at 7:00 PM EST for this important conversation.

Student Spotlight

Meet Nikki Vivekanandan, Class of 2021

Hometown: Columbus, OH
Major: Nutrition Science (Milken Institute School of Public Health)

Nikki is the Vice President of Communications for Capital Peers, a student organization that works to promote health and wellness resources on campus. Capital Peers' goal is to make students aware of all services from medical to recreation! There are so many components that contribute to wellness and many ways to maximize your health at GW!

Words of advice: take an LSPA (Lifestyle, Sport, Physical Activity) course! It's a great way not only to stay active, but to pick up a new hobby and learn more about yourself in the process.

Stay connected with Nikki by following her on Instagram.