Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet


The GW Hatchet

Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet

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Notable and quotable

Aspiring politicians at GW have big shoes to fill once they become alumni of the University. Former Secretary of State Colin Powell, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, former First Lady Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis and 14 current members of Congress are among those who have graduated from GW and call Foggy Bottom their old stomping ground.

Dan Glickman, president of the Motion Picture Association of America, and former secretary of agriculture, said he remembered politics as shaping much of his experience at GW. He worked for a senator on Capitol Hill, and saw student riots unfold around him. Glickman received his J.D. from GW’s Law School in 1969.

His advice for current GW students, “Be either civically or politically engaged. Don’t overly focus on money, at least at first. Be a citizen of the world and be involved in the world around you.”

Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii), received his J.D. from the Law School in 1953. In May, he returned to campus and attended Commencement.

Inouye said GW was much different during the 1950’s. Men wore ties, women wore dresses and residence halls and Greek-letter houses were segregated. He said he is still struck by how much students’ skin color could determine what they were able to do and where they were able to live.

“Learn as much as you can about your environment and fellow students and life around you and life will be good,” Inouye said.

Steve Israel (D-N.Y.), said he lived on the politics-themed hall in Mitchell. He had a job on Capitol Hill, and enjoyed ordering Chinese food or going to Roy Rogers to avoid the food that came with the meal plan. He received a Bachelor’s degree from GW in 1985.

Israel urged students to get real world experience while studying and added that he often hires GW students as interns in his office.

“One of the reasons I’m in Congress now is because I went to GW,” he said.

Even though Israel attributes his success in politics to his alma mater, GW’s price tag still makes him cringe. In his blog, Israel wrote about how his daughter once considered attending GW, but all he could think about was the more than $50,000 a year tuition. His daughter attended a State University of New York school instead.

“I don’t want America to be a place where any parent tells a child; ‘I know you’re smart enough to get into GWU. We’re just not rich enough to send you,'” Israel wrote on his blog in November.

In an interview with The Hatchet, Israel said there should be tax cuts for those paying college tuition.

“(GW’s tuition) is ridiculously high. If Congress could afford billions of dollars of tax cuts for the richest oil company executives on earth to subsidize their lifestyle, we can afford to subsidize tuition at GW by allowing families to deduct a good portion of those expenses from their taxes.”

Starry-eyed students attending school in Foggy Bottom can see their share of politicians and other well-known alumni. Former Secretary of State Colin Powell and Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.) have remained connected to GW by giving speeches on campus.

“We’re fortunate, being in Washington,” said Matt Lindsay, director of Alumni Communications. “It’s a good place to come back and visit.”

But even “ordinary” alumni can be inspiring career advisors for current students. This spring, the Office of Alumni Programs and the GW Career Center launched the GW Career Advisor Network, a database that matchesalumni with seniors and second year graduate students.

About 450 alumni have registered for the network, Lindsay said. The network will open to interested students this fall.

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