George Washington University

Washington, DC: I have to admit that I was extremely skeptical about considering a college in the middle of a big city. What about a campus? Didn’t you always picture strolling to class across endless green spaces between ivy-covered buildings? I was convinced that if there was no green, it wasn’t for me.

Nonetheless, I found myself in downtown Washington, D.C., on a tour of George Washington University. Our first stop was the dorms; with each room boasting a private bathroom, my jaw dropped. Of course, you can’t choose a school simply because there are only two people sharing each bathroom, but it certainly is a perk.

The various classrooms and lab spaces seemed to be the most up-to-date that I had seen. Our guide told us about his experiences at GW. Because of the school’s unique location, he had professors who not only taught at the university but also worked in the government and were literally coming from the White House to teach class.

As the tour continued, GW (and even the city) began to look more and more appealing. Our guide explained that many of the classes go out into the city on a regular basis to take advantage of all it has to offer. Trips to the Smithsonian are common in a number of classes.

My mom’s questions for every school we visit are always related to safety. She wants to be certain that I will be in no danger. So, when our tour guide responded that GW has the blue-light system, which most schools have, but also the GW police, the D.C. police, and the Secret Service all patrol the campus, it became clear that GW is extremely safe.

I realized I had come to terms with the idea of going to college in a city. It seemed to me that by attending college in Washington, you get the college experience, plus a bustling community that’s completely separate from the university. Why hadn’t I thought of that?

By the end of the tour I was almost sold, and then our guide mentioned the Mount Vernon campus, a smaller campus 10 minutes away. It is exactly what you would picture as a college; with endless green spaces and ivy-covered buildings! There is the option to live in Mount Vernon and take classes there. Let’s just say I’m not so skeptical about a big city college anymore.

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