Tag Archives: honors housing

What It’s Like To Live In West Hall [Honors Housing]

11 Apr

The following post is written by UHP freshman, SPA member, and West Hall resident Dan Grover. —-

One of the biggest challenges about the college process isn’t the applications, it isn’t the essays, or even getting in. It’s figuring out where to go. Hopefully, by reading this, you’ve already settled on GW, (but just in case you haven’t, totally come to GW). Once I’d finally made that choice and let some relief settle in, I was confronted by an even tougher decision: do I choose to live in Honors Housing?

I’m sure I had some of the same fears that you prospective students are having now; will all of my friends be only Honors kids, will I make no friends outside of West Hall, will I be sad all the time on the Vern and so on. After much agonizing, I bit the bullet and went through with Honors Housing.

I don’t regret it for a moment. Continue reading

Still Time for Sophomore Honors Housing

31 Jan

Living in the UHP community as a sophomore is a great way to lock down your space and roommates.  The clock is ticking to apply, so apply for sophomore Honors housing now!

Continue reading

Sophomore Honors Housing – Apply Now!

17 Jan


For the 2012-2013 academic year, we are pleased to offer the a group of doubles and triples in Munson Hall as our sophomore Honors housing community!

You may request desired roommates if you wish.  All roommates must be members of the Honors Program and each roommate must submit a separate form – no one can be signed up by proxy.  Those who apply for a triple will not be divided into doubles, but will be contacted if there are doubles available.

To apply: submit the sophomore Honors housing application, available right now online, by Wednesday, February 8 at 5pm.  Spots are limited, and housing assignments will be made on a first-come, first-served basis.  Those assigned to Honors housing will be notified via email by Thursday, February 9 and their names will be submitted to GW Housing Programs.

If you have any questions, please contact us at uhp@gwu.edu or 994-6816.

Hatchet Opinion on UHP in Thurston Way Off Mark

21 May

In a recent opinion article at the GW Hatchet Sophomore Phillip Ensler stumbles through a baffling series of outlandish assumptions and misconceptions about the living communities set to be in Thurston Hall next year (one of which, of course, is the Honors Community.)  Here’s what he has to say about UHP housing:

Moreover, Housing erred in its decision to place the honors, engineering and seven-year B.A. and M.D. students in Thurston. Although there certainly are some students from those communities who would gladly reside in Thurston, the University has previously made the deliberate decision to house such students in “quieter” dorms such as Lafayette for specific reasons. Students enrolled in such programs-as well as those seeking a substance-free environment-generally prefer more reserved living quarters. Thurston is everything but reserved and it is unwise to force such an amalgam of communities to concurrently reside there.

(Emphasis added.)

Ensler’s basic argument, which seems to boil down to “people who are different shouldn’t live near each other” almost leaves me speechless.  Still, I’ll give Ensler the benefit of the doubt and assume he bases his argument on a few uninformed assumptions.  Let’s inform him:

  1. Honors housing is a choice. That’s right.  About half of our freshmen choose to live in UHP housing, and coincidentally, that tends to be about as much room as we are allotted for them.  Honors students are not forced to live in UHP housing, and so are not forced to live in Thurston.  That leads into the next point…
  2. About half of UHP freshmen have historically chosen not to live in UHP housing. There are a lot of reasons students might choose not to live in UHP housing, but the ones I’ve heard most frequently from students tend to be a) “I’m worried about being too isolated,” and b) “I’d rather live in Thurston.”  So, basically that means…
  3. UHP students are living, breathing, college students, much like yourself. And just like any group of adventurous 18 year-olds, some of them want to live in huge, social dorms where they can be surrounded by lots of different kinds of people, and some of them want to live in a more mellow place.  The UHP population actually reflects the larger GW population pretty well, and so is quite diverse — the main difference between UHP students and other students typically is that they do better in their classes and are generally more engaged, and not that they dislike social places.  If those reasons alone don’t convince you…

  4. There’s been a 30% increase in UHP housing requests now that it’s in Thurston. Fortunately, because it’s in Thurston, most (if not all) of those requests will be accommodated.  We’re pretty happy about it.

I can certainly confirm that some UHP students are disappointed that UHP housing will be in Thurston this coming year.  I can also confirm that some are relieved that they can now choose to live in UHP housing without giving up life in the largest, most active dorm on campus.  You can’t please everybody!  There’s just no way to give everybody everything they want all the time. But hey, that’s why students get to make their own living choices, right?

Common Questions about UHP Housing

7 Apr

So word has reached me that some of you – particularly the incoming Honors freshmen – are curious about Honors housing. I’ll give you my perspective the subject and hopefully answer some of the questions you may have about living in the Honors dorm!

First, a brief nota bene. I didn’t actually live in Honors housing my Freshman year. I lived in Somers on the Mt. Vernon campus! While I wouldn’t trade that experience for anything in the world (I do love the Vern), I know that there were many times I wished I lived with the other Honors kids instead.  Even though I didn’t live in Lafayette with other UHP Freshmen, I hung out there a LOT and heard a lot of stories about their experiences. These stories help me answer the common questions from students who are considering Honors housing.

Will I be isolated from other students?

No! This is the most common question I hear from incoming freshmen. You will most certainly NOT be isolated from other freshmen. It’s true that you will be both studying and living with many of the same people, but you are in no way sequestered off from the rest of GW. You’re still in a building with hundreds of other non-honors students, who you will run into when doing laundry, cooking dinner, or exploring the other floors. Plus GW offers tons and tons of extracurricular activities in which you will likely meet some of your closest friends. What Honors housing really does is create the “scaffolding” for a close-knit community, but it does not enforce it. Just as you had high school friends outside of your home room, AP/IB, or sports team, you will have friends and opportunities outside of the UHP living community.

Will dorm life be any different for me?

Possibly. Each dorm – from Clark all the way to Thurston – is different. The number and type of students living there affects the nature of life in that dorm.  I remember on the Vern that Clark was the “dinner night” dorm, and Somers was the poker dorm, just because a large number of students preferred doing those activities together. Obviously having a large group of Honors students in one place is going to create different living conditions than a large group of basketball players.

The biggest difference between living with UHP students and living with other GW freshmen is that, in UHP housing, you have more immediate access to your classmates. When it’s time to work on an Origins paper or a science project, you’re right next to your group members. In Honors housing, everyone is working on similar things at similar times. Your schedules are comparable, and you have more class-related things in common with your roomies/neighbors. Naturally that means there will be a few differences between your floor and the other floors in Thurston, BUT as each UHP student is different, you’re just as likely to have an interesting and fun group of people as any other dorm at GW!

What is the Honors Living Community like?

That changes from year to year, but in general it is a fun and studious group of kids who enjoy a LOT of different activities. You’re likely to find that you have more things in common with your neighbor (AP/IB history, classes, hobbies, etc.)  than people on other floors, but there is still an eclectic mix. It’s kind of like a college version of your advanced high school classes! My freshmen year, the honors community was famous for their themed parties. There was a toga night where everyone gathered in the basement to watch 300, and on Passover there was a potluck and screening of “Prince of Egypt”. Your mileage may vary – but it’s safe to say that the Honors community is just as fun, funny, intelligent, and diverse as any other floor; if not more so! You put a bunch of smart college kids together after hours, you never know what’s going to go down…

Honors living may not be the choice for you – that’s totally OK! You’re still going to make friends and have good times no matter where you live. The answers above just point out the general conditions of Honors living, and are not the same for everyone. If you have more questions about Honors housing, feel free to call up the Honors office and ask the students at the front desk.