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George Washington University

GWU Campus News
Importance
1
Faculty seek guidance on responding to sexual assault allegations
by The GW Hatchet

Jan 12, 2015
“Media Credit: Katie Causey | Hatchet Staff Photographer
Ivy Ken, an associate sociology professor, is a member of the University's sexual assault response committee. The group has brainstormed ideas like small group faculty training or a flowchart to help professors understand how to respond to student allegations of sexual assault.
Though students may approach their professors for advice about a sexual assault, three top faculty members recently said they didn’t know they’re legally obligated to report the allegation, even if a student comes to them in confidence.
Members of the Faculty Senate, a group that has helped shape the University’s sexual assault response, said at a recent meeting that they didn’t know they were required to report sexual assault allegations to the University Police Department and GW officials – and were worried that their colleagues might also be unaware.
GW already sends faculty-wide emails and teaches professors about the University’s sexual assault resources at department meetings and new employee orientation. A faculty member's role in responding to sexual assault is also available online in the University’s 20-page sexual harassment policy.
But faculty say though they do hear about how to help a student cope with a sexual assault, information about their responsibilities can get lost in their email inboxes. And since so many students seek advice from faculty, professors say they want to know the best way to direct them to resources.
Melani McAlister, the head of the American Studies department, said at December’s Faculty Senate meeting that she just learned she must report student sexual assault allegations to the police because she is a department chair. That’s a tricky balancing act, McAlister said, because students also come to her for advice about family issues and problems outside of school.
“We can do well to be more trained in the specifics of what the issues are,” she said.
Faculty should alert students of their role as mandatory reporters of sexual assault without making the student afraid to come forward, said Bridgette Harwood, the executive director of the Network for Victim Recovery of D.C.
“How do you have that conversation with the survivor without discouraging them, but empowering them to understand how to handle the situation?” Harwood said.
She said to make the process smoother, faculty should receive training about the effects of trauma and should know how to accommodate students who may ask for extensions or miss class because of trauma.
Lost in translation
Gregg Brazinsky, an assistant professor of history and international affairs, said that having so many offices working on the University’s response to sexual assault could be confusing for students.
“The bureaucracy surrounding this issue seems to be complex and unwieldy,” he said at the December Faculty Senate meeting. “Might there be a way to simplify it for the students so they have one clear path, very clear route of what they could do?”
To help faculty better understand GW’s policies, Vice Provost for Diversity and Inclusion Terri Harris Reed said her office has started creating an online “module” that tests employees' knowledge about GW’s sexual assault policies using practice scenarios. GW has also linked with eight other D.C. universities to hold trainings and meetings about sexual assault and the best ways for colleges to respond.
Media Credit: Hatchet File Photo by Samuel Klein | Senior Photo Editor
Department chairs such as Melani McAlister, who leads the American Studies department, must report student sexual assault allegations to the University Police Department or the Title IX office. McAlister said faculty should know how to balance that obligation with their role as student mentors.
“The University’s strong preference is that the matter be reported, but does not rule out situations in which the information conveyed by a student, considered in its entirety, cause the faculty member to conclude that the best interests of neither the student nor the University require the matter to be reported to [UPD],” Reed said in an email.
Charles Garris, an engineering professor and the chair of the Faculty Senate’s executive committee, said faculty should know how to direct students to resources, but shouldn’t take a major advising role if a student approaches them to talk about a sexual assault allegation.
“We don’t really have experience in this sort of thing. Who knows what kind of advice they would get? It’s important that the students get professional advice,” Garris said.
Making a 'complicated problem' clearer
A committee of students and faculty focused on the University’s response to sexual violence has floated ideas like small group trainings or a chart to show the sexual assault reporting process. Adding faculty training or creating resources would be the first public changes to come out of the committee, which launched at the end of last semester.
Ivy Ken, an associate sociology professor and committee member, said making resources easier for faculty to access could help them understand a “complicated problem.”
Faculty members will also often reach out to each other to ask for advice about how to handle a new situation, Ken said.
“If there’s a feminist in the department, a woman in the department, if they themselves don’t know what to do, then the first thing a lot of them do is ask each other,” Ken said.
The University could train small groups in responding to sexual assault so they can then teach their colleagues, said Laura Zillman, the vice president of Students Against Sexual Assault and a member of the committee.
Zillman said the group also hopes to create diagrams or shorter, more readable versions of University sexual assault policies so faculty can “be a little more coordinated in their response.”
“Maybe making like a CliffsNotes version or a diagram to give to professors to understanding without flipping through a novel,” Zillman said. “So you know, these are the steps you take if somebody discloses to you.”
Sylvia Marotta-Walters, a counseling professor in the Graduate School of Education and Human Development and a researcher who has studied trauma and the treatment of sexual assault survivors, said faculty can play many roles when talking with students who come forward.
“In the classroom, they can provide accurate information about the scope of the problem or resources that are available,” Marotta-Walters said. “In an advising capacity, students who have solid relationships with faculty can seek them out for specific help in a private setting.””

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Importance
1
Even in off year, Atlantic 10 still a multi-bid league
by The GW Hatchet

Jan 12, 2015
“Media Credit: Hatchet File Photo
Kevin Larsen dunks during GW's appearance in the NCAA tournament. The Colonials were one of six A-10 teams to recieve a bid to the tournament, tied for second most of any conference.
Coach K said he would get in trouble for saying it. He questioned whether the Atlantic 10 would deserve six teams in the NCAA tournament.
"Come on," Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski said, leading up to the postseason last year. "I mean, they're good, but put them in our conference and go through the meat grinder that our conference has to go through."
They got all six. GW, VCU, Massachusetts and Saint Joseph’s lost their first games, but Saint Louis got to the round of 32 and Dayton made the Elite Eight.
Did the A-10 peak last year? Now that non-conference play has concluded, the league has laid the groundwork for how conference wins will be perceived nationally. The conference doesn’t look like it will match last season’s strength come March, but it should still hang in there with a handful of bids.
"The A-10 is not the Big 12, ACC or Big 10,” said Charles Bowles, a Mid-Major Madness A-10 writer. “It is a good basketball league on a down year, but the league will likely receive multiple bids for the NCAA Tournament, just not six like last season.”
While that may sound like a middle-of-the-road performance, it's really just the average of an up-and-down performance. The A-10’s roller coaster act this season has baffled analysts who question whether the league is over or undervalued. It has been heralded as the ideal “mid-major” at times and told to leave the work to the big boys at others.
After GW won the Diamond Head Classic over then-No. 11 Wichita State, CBS Sports college basketball analyst Jon Rothstein tweeted that it was a huge win for the A-10, while his colleague Seth Davis tweeted that it was "neither shocking nor upsetting. The Colonials are legit and the Shockers were due."
The A-10 had its fair share of slip ups in the non-conference season, prompting analysts to ask if the league could merit less than three bids for the first time in eight years, even if it could be a one-bid league . Colonials fans fretted over the strength of GW’s conference schedule as A-10 opponents like Saint Louis picked up ugly baggage in losses to Texas A&M Corpus Christi and South Dakota State, but head coach Mike Lonergan said the talk surrounding the league has been overblown.
"It doesn’t matter what the haters say. It matters what the facts are at the end of the year," Lonergan said. "I’m sure the A-10 will be right there with three to six bids again."
The six A-10 teams, including GW and sixth-rated VCU, ranked in the RPI Top-100 give reason to believe in Lonergan’s "shake it off" approach. The Rams had the hardest non-conference slate of games in the nation, according to RPIRatings.com , and the league has six teams, also including GW, in the top 60.
It’s important for the Colonials that their league opponents be viewed as quality squads. The more NCAA teams a conference wants, the more teams that need to build a NCAA-type resume in the non-conference season. That helps boost their fellow conference teams in the regular season, giving them what ESPN College basketball analyst Joe Lunardi called “scalp wins.”
Media Credit: Anna McGarrigle | Senior Designer
Anna McGarrigle | Senior Designer
He said Massachusetts gave the A-10 prime in-conference scalp wins last season after Chaz Williams and the Minutemen went 13-1 in non-conference play, including a win over then-No. 19 New Mexico. Massachusetts’ extremely strong non-conference schedule made GW’s win over the Minutemen in the A-10 quarterfinals look better – and its regular season loss not look as bad.
Given that, how has the A-10 been this year? “The league has been frankly pretty pedestrian,” Lunardi said.
Lunardi released his first over/under values on NCAA bids per conference last week. The A-10 received a number of 2.5, which does not include a team that wins the postseason tournament in Brooklyn to earn an automatic bid.
“If I had to bet a mortgage, I’d bet the under,” Lunardi said.
Granted, he is still cautious about the legitimacy of conference newcomer Davidson (11-3, 2-1). The Wildcats dropped a game at VCU by six points against head coach Shaka Smart’s stymying havoc defense before pummeling Saint Louis 89-54. Lunardi said he was on the fence about the offensive juggernaut Davidson, this prior to the games against the Rams and Billikens.
The problem with Dayton is health and depth, but the team continues to play well, winning its first three conference games to move to 13-2.
If the conference does get a few teams, which will they be? Lunardi has VCU and GW in. Dayton is hanging around despite the injuries. Davidson has emerged as a dark horse after a preseason pick of 12 out of 14 and kept up nicely with VCU in a six-point road loss.
Rhode Island was picked fifth and looks a bit like GW last year – a supposedly rebuilding team with a core group of sophomores making the leap a year early. The Rams are now 3-0 in conference play, with wins at Saint Louis, against Fordham and at Duquesne. They lost to then-No. 11 Kansas and beat then-No. 21 Nebraska in the non-conference season.
“[GW is] the second-best team in the league,” Lunardi said. “I think VCU is a little overrated. But I think they’re very good. Overrated in the sense that people were talking Final Four before the season – I didn’t see that.”
For the most part, A-10 men’s basketball coaches are still sticking up for the conference. They praise GW’s win at the Diamond Classic in Hawaii, and say they have something to prove to the rest of the country.
“It’s obviously critically important the amount of bids we got last year, the way our teams in our league have pushed themselves in the non-conference,” Rhode Island head coach Dan Hurley said. “Some of the great wins that we got this year. The whole reputation of the league continues to grow.”
Dayton’s run to the Elite Eight last year was huge for the conference. Newcomers VCU, George Mason and Davidson have all based their national brands on deep “Cinderella” runs, though those runs were as members of conferences with heavier emphasis on the “mid” in “mid-major.”
But last year was last year. A constellation of stars have departed. Last season’s leading scorer for Saint Joe’s, Langston Galloway, debuted with the New York Knicks on Wednesday. And coaches can admit some shortcomings this season. George Mason head coach Paul Hewitt said his team might have took on too tough of a schedule in parts.
Massachusetts head coach Derek Kellogg agreed that creating the ideal schedule is a difficult art.
“It’s something that every year you got to look in a mirror and decide what’s best for your team and what’s best for the conference,” Kellogg said. “We’ll continue to try to play well and carry the A-10 flag wherever we go.”
Scheduling is tricky in part because perceptions of teams change throughout the season. When GW lost to Penn State and Seton Hall early in the season, Lonergan said he was worried, thinking his Colonials had to at least split them. Now with Seton Hall’s emergence (the No. 19 Pirates have beaten Saint John’s and Villanova) and the lore the Nittany Lions carry as a Big 10 team, Lonergan thinks his team has had no bad losses yet.
“The thing now is we don’t have 16 league games, we have 18,” Lonergan said. “So we have to keep winning and we got to try to get better because we’re so far from thinking NCAA tournament right now.”
No stranger to the Big Dance, Smart admitted that his team had a few tough games early on. He sees it as a dose of humility from which a team can always benefit.
Smart would not put an early number prediction on conference bids, but he knows there is depth and said young teams are starting to find a rhythm. Teams like GW, with what he called the best non-conference win for the A-10 against Wichita State, have already shown it, and teams like Davidson look primed to prove themselves in the future. Still, Smart said, it’s worth acknowledging that things probably couldn’t have gone better in the recent past.
“It remains to be seen [number of bids],” Smart said. “It all depends on how the conference standings shake out. The last couple years things have fallen almost perfect in terms of our league maximizing its number of bids in the NCAA tournament.””

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Importance
1
Student's death, ruled accidental, was caused by mix of drugs and alcohol
by The GW Hatchet

Jan 12, 2015
“Media Credit: Photo Courtesy of William Gwathmey's Family
Twenty-year-old junior William Gwathmey died from the “combined toxic effects” of cocaine, oxycodone and alcohol. His death is the third related to drugs at GW in as many years.
The 20-year-old junior pronounced dead at GW Hospital in September died from a lethal mix of cocaine, oxycodone and alcohol, according to a recently filed report from D.C.’s medical examiner.
William Gwathmey, who died on Sept. 19, is the third GW student in as many years to die from a mix of drugs. Since 2011, two other students have died after using substances such as oxycodone, heroin, Adderall and alcohol.
GW’s top student life official, Peter Konwerski, said he has “not seen a trend in regard to drugs on campus,” though he and other administrators "continually review and discuss with students our alcohol and other drug-related outreach programs and policies."
“Nothing is more tragic than the loss of a student's life, and we are deeply concerned about the health and safety of our students and hope they utilize the array of resources in Colonial Health Center and other parts of campus to support healthy decision-making,” he added.
Benjamin Gupta , a graduate student, died in his D.C. home from a mix of oxycodone and alcohol in late 2011. A year later, law student John Hroncich died at his home in New Jersey from an accidental overdose of heroin and Adderall.
A former student, 20-year-old Dean Smith, died in the District in January 2013 from an overdose of heroin, diazepam and cocaine. He was not attending GW at the time of his death.
Gwathmey’s death resulted from the “combined toxic effects” of the drugs and alcohol, said Beverly Fields, chief of staff for the D.C. Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.
While cocaine is a stimulant drug, which makes the heart beat faster and blood pressure rise, alcohol has sedative effects that cause respiratory rate to slow down, said Cathleen Clancy, a doctor with expertise in toxicology and the associate medical director at the National Capital Poison Center.
“You have both things acting together,” Clancy said. “If cocaine is getting you too amped up, you might drink alcohol to amp you down, or vice versa.”
Using oxycodone, an opiate drug prescribed for pain relief, can lead to a drop in blood pressure, sleepiness and slowness of breath. Clancy said it can be difficult to predict when all three drugs – oxycodone, alcohol and cocaine – will peak in their effects.
“People use these drugs and they don’t really understand the time of onset,” she said, adding that how much of a drug is taken and the way the drug is taken can also be factors. “All can play a big role in how sick someone gets.”
Police said Gwathmey had gone to several nightclubs the night of his death and then returned to an apartment at The Residences at the Ritz-Carlton on 23rd Street. He was later found unconscious on a couch, according to a police report.
His death was ruled an accident. His parents, Gaines Gwathmey and Rose Harvey, did not wish to comment.
The economics and finance major was remembered as close to his family and constantly surrounded by friends, hoping to one day work on Wall Street. Family and several members of his fraternity, Alpha Epsilon Pi, started a foundation in Gwathmey’s honor for low-income D.C. students to learn basketball skills.
Konwerski, GW's dean of student affairs, said Health Promotion and Prevention Services, formerly the Center for Alcohol and other Drug Education (CADE), offers a workshop with information about combining alcohol with other drugs. It also explains how alcohol can affect the body and what students can do in an emergency.
“The University is committed to promoting the health and safety of GW students and offers many services and resources to educate and support healthy lifestyles and responsible decision-making about alcohol and drugs,” Konwerski said.
Nationwide, drug overdose death rates have more than doubled between 1999 and 2012, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In 2012, nearly 80 percent of drug overdose deaths were unintentional.
That same year, more than 70 percent of deaths related to pharmaceutical overdose involved prescription painkillers.
Colleen Murphy contributed reporting.”

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Importance
1
Visualized: Community colleges and GW
by The GW Hatchet

Jan 12, 2015
“Media Credit:
Information from The GW Hatchet and the Washington Post .”

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Importance
1
Cartoon: Time to emerge from winter break hibernation
by The GW Hatchet

Jan 12, 2015
“Media Credit: Cartoon by Juliana Kogan”
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Importance
1
Calendar
by The GW Hatchet

Jan 12, 2015
“Monday, Jan. 12
An Exquisite Future
Ponder the possibility of a world with fewer honeybees at this book launch hosted by the Corcoran School of the Arts and Design.
11 a.m.
Gelman Library Room 219
Tuesday, Jan. 13
Academic Success: The Do’s and Don’ts of Your College Experience
Explore ways to strive for academic success at this presentation showcasing University resources.
4 p.m.
Marvin Center Room 302
Wednesday, Jan. 14
Corcoran Student Services Fair
Learn about the student services GW offers at this fair hosted by the Administration and Hallmark Programs.
1 p.m.
White Halls, Corcoran School of the Arts and Design
Thursday, Jan. 15
Cookies and Cocoa Social
Meet members of GWise as they discuss peer education opportunities during the semester.
7 p.m.
Thurston TV lounge”

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Importance
1
Crime Log
by The GW Hatchet

Jan 12, 2015
“Robbery Pick Pocket
2300 block of I Street
1/1/15 - 9:55 p.m.
Case closed
A man reported that his cell phone was stolen while using the Foggy Bottom Metro station escalator. The Metropolitan Police Department was at the scene and detained one possible subject. Metro Transit Police were notified and responded. The detained subject was released and barred from campus.
Referred to Metro Transit Police
Hit and Run
Medical Faculty Associates Building
1/1/15 - 10:50 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Case closed
A woman, not affiliated with GW, reported that she had parked her vehicle in the garage and later noticed damage to the bumper.
No suspects or witnesses
Simple Assault
900 block of New Hampshire Avenue
1/4/15 - 8:15 p.m.
Case closed
A student reported that a subject ran up to him and started a fight. U.S. Secret Service officers were present and broke up the pair.
No identifiable suspects
Threats/Harassment
Gelman Library Starbucks
1/5/15 - Multiple times
Case closed
A student reported threats and harassing phone calls from her former boyfriend, another student.
Referred for disciplinary action
Harassment
2129 I St.
Multiple dates – Multiple times
Case closed
A staff member reported harassing phone calls from a former student.
No further action
Theft/Credit Card Fraud
Gelman Library Starbucks
1/6/15 - 5:30 to 8 p.m.
Case closed
A student reported the theft of her wallet and credit card. The stolen credit card was used fraudulently.
No suspects or witnesses
-Compiled by Eva Palmer”

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Importance
1
Trekkies, rejoice: Museum of Science Fiction hopes to open in D.C.
by The GW Hatchet

Jan 12, 2015
“Media Credit: Photo Courtesy of Museum of Science Fiction
The Museum of Science Fiction's small preview museum will include architecture designs by local artists, who submitted their work last fall in an open contest.
Dust off your Wookiee costume – a new sci-fi museum could be coming to a neighborhood near you.
As soon as this fall, a D.C.-based nonprofit hopes to open a Museum of Science Fiction in D.C., featuring props from popular extra-terrestrial films alongside high-tech exhibits on sci-fi novels.
Before the full museum opens to starry-eyed fans, the group plans to open the doors of a smaller preview museum late this year, showing a few exhibits of undisclosed artifacts and multimedia presentations of popular sci-fi feature films and books.
The museum, run by about 100 volunteers, called on potential visitors to leave their mark on the preview museum by submitting architectural designs for the space. In a contest last fall, executives sifted through more than 460 applications for the perfect rendering “to inform the actual design for what will be a street-level, retail-sized mini museum in the D.C. area,” said museum spokesman Neeraj Agrawal.
Looking to its full-size counterpart, the museum is also hosting a concept art competition that allows sci-fi artists to submit art in any medium that thematically relates to one of the museum’s seven proposed galleries , from “Time Travels” to “Aliens, Creatures and Altered Life.” A grand prize winner will receive $1,000.
Winning pieces will also be used in promotional materials for the museum. Submissions are due Feb. 28 at 5 p.m.
“Concept art and science fiction, they go hand in hand,” Agrawal said. “We want to give [science fiction artists] a chance to be rewarded for their craft.”
The museum is the brainchild of the organization’s executive director, Greg Viggiano. He said while on a vacation in London, he and his daughter were museum-hopping, visiting all types of museums with different themes. He sought out a science fiction museum to complement research for a screenplay he was writing at the time, but couldn't find one.
“I thought, ‘Gosh. That's weird. They've got museums for everything else, but why isn't there a science fiction museum?’" Viggiano said. "And then I started to discuss the idea with some friends and they said, ‘Well, we've got to do something about this.’”
The preview aims to draw big-name, science and math-driven donor companies like Google and eBay, with the goal to expand the museum into a full-sized facility – at a currently undecided location – within the next three years.
Viggiano said the museum aims to raise $5 million for its initial preview museum. Last spring, the museum failed to meet an Indiegogo fundraising goal of $160,000, falling about $110,000 short.
While the Museum of Science Fiction has the potential to carve out a niche among tourists, Legro pointed out that it will have to compete with the museum attractions all over the District that have no admission fee, like the Smithsonian Institution museums.
The preview museum’s admission fee will be “competitive with other private museums in the area,” Agrawal said, like The Newseum, which charges $25 for admission, and the International Spy Museum, where tickets run $20 each.
Families come to D.C. with finite time and money to spend, said Patrice Legro, director of the Marian Koshland Science Museum in D.C., putting pressure on attractions to stand out.
“You can spend much more than a week in the Smithsonian museums and all of the outdoor memorial sites,” Legro said.
She applauded the Museum of Science Fiction’s vision and plans. While the Koshland Museum represents “serious science,” she said, the Museum of Science Fiction adds a fresh concept to the D.C. museum scene — that hard science education can be tied into something as culturally popular as science fiction.
“I think that we should always welcome innovation," Legro said. "Nobody has a corner on that market, and so in that regard, it's always wonderful to see new innovative ideas coming to the floor."
In the last 10 years, multimedia interactive exhibits have won over tourists, she said. The Museum of Science Fiction is staying ahead of the curve, and Legro said she likes “how they're trying to hook [science-related] education to a popular culture interest.””

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Importance
1
Off-campus classrooms to find on-campus homes
by The GW Hatchet

Jan 12, 2015
“Media Credit: Samuel Klein | Senior Photo Editor
Senior Vice Provost for Academic Affairs and Planning Forrest Maltzman detailed plans for shifting academic classrooms and office spaces around campus when new space in the the Science and Engineering Hall becomes available this month.
This semester will be the last for classes at 2020 K St.
GW will move all off-campus classes to spaces that became available with the opening of the Science and Engineering Hall this month, said Senior Vice Provost for Academic Affairs and Planning Forrest Maltzman. The 1776 G St. building will remain occupied until 2016.
“Students complain about them, faculty don't like going over there, so we're going to put those back onto the campus,” Maltzman said in an interview. “So that is going to be a good portion of the backfill.”
The University will wait for the leases to expire instead of canceling them early. The end of the leases could help cut costs after a drop in graduate enrollment forced departments to trim budgets and slow down plans to open new faculty positions.
Maltzman said $41.7 million had been set aside from the capital budget for backfill projects.
Four years ago, GW’s Innovation Task Force announced an effort to cut down leased spaces by two-thirds by 2017, in the hopes of saving the University $3 million a year.
And as professors and researchers finish moving into the Science and Engineering Hall, the spaces left behind will be filled by science classes that couldn’t fit into the new building and other departments like philosophy and math.
Provost Steven Lerman said the University will have to determine what best to do with those vacant buildings, especially since some, like Corcoran Hall, are considered historic buildings and will have a permanent place on campus.
“We try to invest more of our resources in places that we're going to have forever and make more strategic decisions in how much to invest in places, buildings that we may ultimately want to tear down to build other things,” he said.
He added that Tompkins Hall will be renovated, but not as extensively as Corcoran and Bell halls.
Charles Garris, a professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, said most faculty have been in the dark about which departments are going where, but he believes Tompkins will continue to serve as a home for some engineers.
He said labs in the Tompkins basement will probably continue to be used, but space on the first and fourth floors of the building could be converted into classrooms.”

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Importance
1
Snapshot
by The GW Hatchet

Jan 12, 2015
“Media Credit: Katie Causey | Hatchet Staff Photographer
Following a vigil for transgender teen Leelah Alcorn, who committed suicide in December, protestors marched toward the Department of Justice in a rally for the rights of transgender and gender non-conforming individuals, organized by the D.C. Trans Power Coalition.”

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