Posts Tagged “D.C.”
It’s a wonderful day in Georgetown’s neighborhood!
While Georgetown’s town-gown relations can get pretty testy, according to researchers at Westfield State College, GU is actually one of the best neighbors in the country [PDF]. Georgetown made their “Best Neighbor” honor roll in their recent survey of colleges and universities.
The presentation, “Saviors of Our Cities: A Survey of Best College and University Civic Partnerships” emphasizes that the current state of the economy makes the relationships between universities and their surroundings even more important than ever before.
They ranked universities that they felt “demonstrated…long-standing cooperative efforts with community leaders to rehabilitate the cities around them, to influence community revitalization and cultural renewal, and to encourage economic expansion of the local economy, urban development and community service.”
While Georgetown didn’t earn a spot in the top 25, we did make the honor roll. The honor role highlights over 100 colleges and universities that “figured prominently in lengthy cooperative efforts with community leaders to rehabilitate the cities around them.”
Georgetown’s Vice President of Student Affairs Todd Olson cited programs run through the Center for Social Justice, such as business consulting with non-profits, direct service and tutoring and working with local jails and prisons as evidence of Georgetown’s commitment to the local community.
“Across the city and region there’s a lot that we do really well,” Olson said. “There are a lot of needs in this community. We need to continue looking around and keep building those connections. We haven’t finished that work, but I believe we have a laudable track record.”
Much of Georgetown’s community service is created through student-run initiatives, such as Grassroot Hoyas, a student-founded and run group that goes into D.C. schools to promote AIDS awareness.
“What I admire most about Georgetown is its deep commitment to social justice,” Grassroot Hoyas founder Tyler Spencer said. “While so many students volunteer in amazing ways around the world, Grassroot Hoyas has helped us realize that we can and should work to solve problems that exist right in our backyard.”
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Starting Thursday night and rolling on through Sunday, Washington D.C. will be treated to a series of free (FREE!) concerts, courtesy of the Kia Soul Collective Tour. Yes, that KIA, better known for mediocre motorcars than music, mirth, and mayhem.
No comment on the cars, but as for the music, they brought the goods: five of the rockinest, the groovinest, and the dancinest acts in the world, including MGMT, Wale, and Dan Deacon. Just check the lineup, pick your night(s) and show up!
Tickets are free (FREE!) but, fair warning, the MGMT show may cost you your dignity: to get tix, you’ll have to test drive a KIA car. And for the Thursday show, you’ll need to RSVP and have an ID that says you’re 21. But for all the rest, just show up to 3330 New York Ave NE and get on with it!
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Monument-filled AND college-kid friendly!
A new report by the American Institute for Economic Research ranked Washington D.C. as the fourth best metropolitan area to attend college, according to the Washington Post.
The report highlighted the 75 best college locations in America, subdividing the list by city size. D.C. was grouped into the major metropolitan category, and finished behind only New York, San Francisco and Boston.
The rankings were determined based on 12 factors, including the number of college students per every 1,000 residents and the cost of living. D.C. particularly excelled in the student to resident ratio category, with 81 students for every 1,000 residents. We also had the lowest unemployment rate and the second-highest average income of the major metropolitan areas in the study.
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The eternal conflict: curmudgeonly neighbors v. rowdy co-eds
With new neighbors’ groups popping up left and right, it looks like we’re in for another year of fights between residents and the University. But Georgetown’s not the only school dealing with a seemingly perpetual town-gown rift—as an article in yesterday’s Washington Post makes clear, other local colleges are also plagued by conflicts over students living off-campus.
So what exactly are our nearby peers dealing with?
At Catholic, neighbors are pressuring the Metropolitan Police Department to enact a zero tolerance policy for disorderly conduct. For UMD-College Park, a recent debate about whether to maintain rent control for single-family houses turned into a fight over whether or not students should be living off-campus.
Permanent residents can make trouble for administrators as well as students, the article points out, by leveraging their power over zoning and construction issues to pressure schools. For example, in 2001, GWU was not allowed to increase enrollment or begin new construction projects until it started housing at least 70% of its students on-campus.
Read the rest of this entry »
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Ever get the feeling that 2010 is just way too long to wait for the next D.C. mayoral campaign? Well the New Organizing Institute, a progressive advocacy and campaign training program, has got you covered. As part of their summer BootCamp they’re holding a mock election for D.C. mayor.
Alfredo Fletes (SFS ’09) emailed us and asked us to support his candidate, Batwoman, “a feisty, Jewish, lesbian, red-headed, former circus performer and superhero.” Batwoman sounds promising, but she does have some stiff competition—the Atom, Batgirl, Cyborg, the Green Lantern, Spiderman, Superman and Wonder Woman are all in the running as well.
What solidified Batwoman’s place in our hearts, though, is her stance on one of the most pressing problems of our time: the Sellinger Sparrow.
Every time I stroll by Sellinger Lounge and catch a glimpse of the lonely sparrow pecking at a leftover stale bagel, or chirping at his own sad reflection in the window, my heart aches knowing that he or she can’t indulge in the same pleasures of being a free bird.
It’s time that we come together as a student body to FREE THE SELLINGER SPARROW. And Batwoman wants help lead the release efforts; she takes bird equality seriously …
How should we go about liberating the Sellinger Sparrow? Should we work with University Facilities? Call DC Animal Control? Or ask the Corp to fund his release?
The vote will take place this Friday, but to show your support before then you can follow the candidate of your choice on through their individual websites and their Twitter and Facebook accounts.
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Although the prognosis was positive a few months ago when Obama took office and the Democrats swept Congress, it looks like the quest for D.C. voting rights has been derailed once again.
Caught between a rock (the Ensign amendment that was tacked onto the bill and would have undermined the District’s gun control regulations) and a hard place (the ongoing slight to democracy that is D.C.’s lack of representation), Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton has decided to kill the D.C. House Voting Rights Act for now, according to City Desk.
In a statement to legislators and voting rights advocates, Norton said:
[T]he Majority Leader and I met on Friday afternoon to discuss our bill, a draft of a compromise gun amendment from his office, and other options for moving the voting rights bill to the House floor now.
We sent a memo summarizing the content of the meeting with the Majority Leader and of the compromise amendment and shared the memo before a conference call on Sunday with the bill’s major advocates whom we could reach, including the DC vote coalition. The conference call discussed in detail all of the options available to us at this time, none of which would result in the elimination of the Ensign amendment, as well as the split in opinion in the city about attaching a bill that carries a danger to public safety and elimination of the city’s authority over gun legislation. All agreed that there were good reasons to wait for now. Please understand that we are holding the bill for now, not giving up on voting rights.
Photo from Flickr user ellievanhoutte, used under a Creative Commons license.
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Brace yourselves, it’s that time of year again…
With intern season officially upon us, it’s about time the local blogosphere came out with its annual anti-intern novelty blog (because what’s a D.C. summer if not a chance to hone your superiority complex?). Last year, it was the short-lived but stupendous M4Intern (“D.C.’s most common sexual preference”), a compilation of the best intern-directed Craigslist solicitations. This year it looks like the mantle will be taken up by Spotted: DC Summer Interns.
The blog got off to a rocky start, initially plagiarizing from the brilliant Look at My Striped Shirt! in its intro post, earning demerits from DCist (the intro has since been re-written), but it seems to have bounced back from the false-start by relying on crowdsourced intern call-outs.
Posts range from stories of unmerited self-importance (“Intern 1 to Intern 2: ‘Aren’t there places for staff like me to watch the House floor, you know, where I don’t have to sit with the general public?’”) to sartorial snark (“[T]he worst of all was the Skintern wearing a zebra print tank top, with soaking wet hair. I guess she spent so much time on her Friday-night-going-to-McFaddens-makeup that she didn’t have time to dry it?”) to tales of woeful ineptitude (“We asked an intern to summarize a book we received for the Member … The summary he turned in three days later was off the inside of the book’s jacket. Verbatim.”).
Of particular interest to Georgetown students, though, might be this post from yesterday afternoon:
People come from all over the country to work on the Hill, but a good chunk of Hill staffers attended college right here in the nation’s capital. Georgetown interns: yes, we all know your school is hot shit, and it goes without saying that Georgetown is the top name school in Washington, DC.
However, before proceeding to rip mercilessly on GW, AU, and CUA, you might want to do a little research to see if any of your superiors attended GW, AU, or CUA. There’s a good chance at least one if not a few of them did.
Photo from Flickr user jGregor, used under a Creative Commons license.
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Fun Fact: Everyone in D.C. looks like this
In its annual American Fitness Index the American College of Sports Medicine reported that Washington, D.C is the healthiest city in the United States. The D.C./Alexandria/Arlington area ranked 1st on a list of the nation’s 50 largest metropolitan cities, beating out other top contenders like Denver, San Francisco, Seattle, and Portland.
The index takes into account a range of health and wellness factors: from fruit and vegetable consumption and exercise to the number of parks and doctors in each city. The Capital area’s full report scored a total of 74.4, buoyed by a physically active population with relatively low levels of obesity (21.5%), diabetes (6.6%) and smoking (13.7%). The District also has a high percentage of parkland to city area (19.4%) and health insurance coverage (89.7%). According to the report, the major area D.C. could improve on is parkland per capita (whether that be dog parks, playgrounds or golf courses).
On a related note: it looks like Georgetown’s doing its part to contribute to a healthier city, recently winning the gold status designation from the American Heart Association for its GUWellness program.
Photo from Flickr user d_vdm, used under a Creative Commons license. Via forbes.com
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Rep. Dan Boren (D-Okla., left) and Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio,right), totally more qualified to make laws for D.C. than people elected by D.C. residents
Just a few weeks after the D.C. Council almost unanimously passed a bill recognizing same-sex marriages performed in other states, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) and Rep. Dan Boren (D-Okla.) introduced the “D.C. Defense of Marriage Act” yesterday, which would define marriage in D.C. as “a union of one man and one woman.” The bill has thirty co-sponsors, including one Democrat besides Boren.
So what are the bill’s chances of success? According to an aside in the Politco article on it, not so hot, thankfully:
It’s not clear if there’s any legislative vehicle for the anti-gay-marriage bill or whether Democrats would even allow a vote on the measure.
Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.), for one, seems skeptical about the bill’s prospects. When asked about the bill, Norton’s spokesperson said her May 5th statement—”I do not believe a serious attempt to overturn the council bill will be made or would be successful”—still stands.
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It’s been a big week for same-sex marriage. On Friday, the Iowa Supreme Court ruled the state’s same-sex marriage ban was unconstitutional. Today, as the Vermont Legislature overrode their Governor’s veto of a bill legalizing gay marriage, the D.C. council unanimously passed a bill to legally recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states.
Predicting big Democratic wins in November, many speculated last fall that the Council would introduce a same-sex marriage bill of its own. However, after the passage of California’s Proposition 8 and D.C. voting rights hanging in the balance, the Council has been cautious about provoking Congress’s ire.
When he spoke at Georgetown a few weeks ago, Councilmember and Georgetown alum David Catania (I—At Large) said introducing a gay marriage bill would jeopardize the success of voting rights, but also added that “It’s the undying civil rights issue of our time and I intend to go forward with it.”
Photo from Flickr user M.V. Jansen used under a Creative Commons license.
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