George Washington University
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by The GW HatchetOct 28, 2014
“Media Credit: Hatchet File Photo by Cameron Lancaster | Photo Editor
Redshirt freshman Miranda Horn clears a ball in a game earlier this season. As of Oct. 19, Horn ranked second in the conference in both goals against average and save percentage.
When redshirt freshman goalkeeper Miranda Horn played in her hometown of Hamilton, Ontario, her mother had her repeat a mantra that the goalie still uses today.
“Make a decision and stick with it,” Horn said. “I try to play with that in mind everyday. Don’t hesitate, be confident.”
Horn has helped orchestrate a conference-leading defense for GW this season, recently earning her second A-10 Rookie of the Week honor after holding both Davidson and Richmond scoreless. Horn tied her career-high of six saves against the Spiders, leading to a 2-0 weekend and the first 10-win season for the Colonials since 2003.
Horn ranks first in the conference for keepers who have played at least nine games, leading the league in goals against average and save percentage. She’s allowed 10 goals in 14 games through 1,224 minutes of play.
She has recorded five shutouts, contributing to GW’s seven clean sheets this season.
Horn was tasked with replacing alumna Nicole Ulrick, who last season posted eight shutouts and a .84 goals against average through 18 games.
“[Horn] is great to be on the field with,” sophomore forward and midfielder Kate Elson said. “She is very vocal and has a strong presence. I think she really stepped up this year. I think she had big shoes to fill and she has kept progressing and is doing really well.”
Although it’s Horn’s first year on the pitch defending the net for the Colonials, it is not her first year on the team. She decided to redshirt last season, which allowed her to practice with teammates but not compete. Horn played in games during the team’s spring offseason in preparation for this fall.
"She’s so talented, so we thought, 'Let’s just save a year,'" head coach Sarah Barnes said. "All spring, she played in games. She was just playing, no pressure, just go play and get better."
Horn said the redshirt season was crucial for honing her skills, and admitted that she was not quite ready to meet the expectations of collegiate play as a freshman. She worked with GW goalie coach Marla Duncan to further develop at the position.
“I think last year, I came in very ignorant of what was expected,” Horn said. “Spending last year working with Marla really helped me, and going through spring, which was a lot of conditioning, helped me succeed at a really high level.”
Her experience shows not just in her improved skills, but in her savvy as a game manager for the defense. Horn sets up plays and formations for her team on corner kicks: She fielded five in a row against Richmond to close out the game and preserve her shutout.
Barnes said Horn has begun to convert the potential that GW’s coaching staff saw when they recruited the Canadian into big plays and win-preserving saves. Horn is now able to play balls in the air and more skillfully move herself into position.
“She’s gotten so much better at moving her feet to be able to make saves, taking the extra step to extend her range,” Barnes said. “We always knew she had so much potential, but she has really pushed herself and will keep pushing herself, and I believe she has the ability to be the best goalie in the A-10.”
But Horn’s season has not come without its share of tough moments.
On Sept. 14, GW took on Georgetown looking to snap its eight-game losing streak to the District rival and remain undefeated.
In the opening overtime period, Horn came out of the goal to contest a long ball struck by Georgetown junior Marina Paul in the 95th minute. As Horn fought for the loose ball, she was beat by forward Audra Ayotte, who was able to send a pass behind Horn. Forward Crystal Thomas ended the game by tapping the ball into the back of the net.
Horn fell to the ground after watching the game-winner cross the line, and pounded her fist on the grass. She later took a minute to collect herself after an error that cost her the game.
The goalie bounced back following the loss to the Hoyas, with GW since going 5-3-1. As of Saturday, the team sits in fifth place in the conference standings.
“Just like anybody, she has had disappointments and setbacks that have really motivated her. Her determination and persistence have been really good qualities that have helped her,” Barnes said.
Horn, who started playing soccer when she was four years old and began playing competitively when she was eight, is talented with her feet as well as her hands.
She said one of her favorite soccer memories is when she played for a state cup in Canada and the game went to penalty kicks. With the match on the line, Horn both scored the go-ahead goal and saved the game-winning goal.
Horn joked that she wanted to take a shot at the net at the college level, too.
“I’m trying to convince Sarah to let me take one,” Horn said. “But I’ll stick to saving them for now.”
Horn said her first experience with the goalie position wasn’t necessarily by choice. Because of her height (she is listed as 5-foot-10), she said she was “stuck in the net." After she got comfortable defending the goal, though, Horn said she started to identify with the position and goalkeeping became a “huge part” of her life.
And even after posting impressive numbers in her first year of play, both Barnes and Horn said the sophomore has not hit her ceiling.
“It’s still my rookie year, and I have a lot of time to improve,” Horn said.”
by The GW HatchetOct 27, 2014
“Media Credit: Hatchet File Photo by Cameron Lancaster
Sophomore attacking midfielder Kate Elson tussles for the ball against a Davidson defender when the Colonials topped the Wildcats 1-0 earlier this season. Elson is one of 11 women's soccer players to record a goal this season.
Something old, something new.
Women's soccer is in the middle of a breakthrough year, mounting a 10-win campaign so far this season with two regular season games left to play.
The team has excelled to its first 10-win season in more than a decade (10-4-1) by maintaining the factors that worked in 2013, when the team went 7-6-5, while enhancing its depth and spreading scoring around the field.
In her third year as the Colonials’ head coach, Sarah Barnes has had new weapons at her disposal in the form of ripened older talent and an influx of skilled freshmen. At first, last season looked like a rebuilding year, but the team made a trip to the Atlantic 10 that proved a harbinger for future progress.
The critical change has been an improvement in offense to complement an already staunch defense that had helped the team make the tournament for the first time in 11 years.
“I think last year we were pretty good at keeping the ball out of the net. We had a lot of 0-0 ties,” Barnes said. “Really the difference is that we’re better at scoring goals, and it’s not just one person. We’ve had a lot of goals from a lot of different people.”
Led by sophomore goal-scoring talent MacKenzie Cowley, the Colonials have netted goals in all but four games, the team's four losses on the season. The latest came Saturday in a 1-0 shutout at the hands of VCU. Even with those dry spells, GW has netted on average 1.53 goals per game using a varied attack.
“One of the benefits of using so many subs and having this depth in the team right now is that you have the ability to really give everything that you have,” junior midfielder Kristi Abbate said. “And you know that you have someone on the bench that can do the same work that you do.”
Cowley and Abbate have contributed the bulk of the scoring, with six and three goals, respectively.
Junior midfielder Nicole Belfonti has also netted three goals, some from distance, while junior forward Kyla Ridley and freshman forward Brittany Cooper have each slated two goals apiece. Senior forward Meg Murphy has served as a consistent threat on net, scoring two goals.
Barnes said beyond the uptick in offense, the array of weapons is also confusing to opposing teams.
“For an opponent to look at us, you’ve got Meg who plays a certain way, Kenz and Kyla who play a totally different way and Brittany who doesn’t play like any of those three,” Barnes said. “So that’s a hard team to scout. We’re dangerous because of that versatility.”
Barnes said in preparing for the postseason, the deep roster will mean the team can keep playing on fresh legs with starters getting more rest than they did last season.
By the time the team made the postseason last year, a series of overtime games and increased wear and tear from a season without heavy subbing made the A-10 tournament an uphill battle.
“I remember, end of season last year, in the A-10 tournament playing LaSalle, we were exhausted,” Barnes said. “We just played the same kids over and over every game. We played a lot of overtime games last year – it was like two extra games in the end.
The team has had its share of late game struggles this season, including a 3-0 loss to Saint Louis in the A-10 opener, in which the team allowed two second-half goals to the Billikens. GW also allowed two second-half goals to defending conference champion La Salle, which beat the Colonials 3-0 on Oct. 3.
Still, Senior co-captain defender Alex Brothers said fatigue is not the source of the Colonials' troubles late in games as much as their inability to remain calm down the stretch.
“I think we’re so excited to get that result," Brothers said. "And sometimes we let that energy get us a little too hyped up and sometimes we need to take a breath and calm down and play simple balls.”
Barnes said the players’ late jitters have hindered their ability to keep possession, allowing games to slip away.
Whether the offense is clicking or working through a bump, the GW defense has stayed strong and leads the A-10 with a .73 goals allowed average – the only team with less than 1.00 goals allowed per game in the conference.
Brothers and redshirt freshman goalkeeper Miranda Horn, the two players with the most minutes of play, have been workhorses in blocking the net.
Horn, with seven shutouts on the year, has received two A-10 Rookie of the Week honors so far and has been integral to keeping the team undefeated at home with a 7-7 record and one home game left to play.
They’ve laid the foundation, and the resurgent offense has the team feeling confident about the postseason.
“The goal isn’t to get there. The goal is to win it,” Barnes said.”
by The GW HatchetOct 27, 2014
“Media Credit: Katie Causey | Hatchet Staff Photographer
As the University comes closer to unveiling the Science and Engineering Hall, a spokeswoman said GW will not discuss how much money it has raised to pay for the building's construction costs.
When officials unveil the University’s biggest academic investment in its history this spring – the $275 million Science and Engineering Hall – faculty leaders won’t know how much money GW still needs to raise.
After struggling to pull in money to cover construction costs for the project, GW will no longer disclose how much funding it has secured. Professors have for years casted doubt on plans to heavily invest in science and engineering programs, while scrutinizing how the University will pay for the new building.
GW's tight-lipped approach fits into the well-oiled messaging machine behind its $1 billion fundraising campaign. Specifics about which donations are for building construction or programs and scholarships will not be shared as officials look to keep the message centered on campaign goals, University spokeswoman Maralee Csellar said.
“We look at it as an overall goal now,” Csellar said. “We've launched a campaign now so when we talk, we talk about priorities and initiatives. Behind the scenes, there is paperwork to be done.”
Csellar said if officials released specific details about the project, it would be too “in the weeds.” The University now hopes to bring in a total of $100 million for construction as well as for research, scholarships and professorship funding for the programs housed in the building, she said.
Officials have said that they will rely on a combination of subsidized research dollars and fundraising, and will also pay off the building’s costs in the long-term through debt.
As recently as one year ago, administrators changed their plans from fundraising $100 million to cover a large portion of the building’s construction costs, to hoping to receive $75 million from a combination of fundraising and government subsidies for research. They said that mix would take pressure off the University’s fundraising arm as it struggled to raise money for materials and labor costs.
“We’ve launched a campaign, we have these goals and these are the public figures. The process was different before because there was no campaign,” Csellar said.
The University had brought in just 9 percent of the $75 million it was hoping to raise from outside sources for construction by last November. At that time, Vice President for Development and Alumni Relations Mike Morsberger said he was disappointed in the total.
So far, the University has raised about $43 million total for the project, with about 30 percent of that amount coming in the last fiscal year, Csellar said. She declined to specify what portion of that money is for construction or programs.
Media Credit: Hatchet File Photo
The University had pulled in just 9 percent of the money it had hoped to raise from outside sources by last November. Vice President for Development and Alumni Relations Mike Morsberger said at the time that he was disappointed in the total.
Donald Parsons, an economics professor and member of the Faculty Senate’s finance committee, said the “total failure” of fundraising for the building may contribute to the University’s shift toward silence.
“I think they are sufficiently embarrassed that they decided no longer to expose themselves to ridicule,” Parsons said.
Over the past several years, GW has continued to redraw its plans for paying for the hall. It refinanced its debt in 2013 to take on $200 million of the building's costs. As recently as this summer, officials issued $300 million in bonds to help pay for several construction projects across campus, though they did not say which amounts would go where.
Faculty leaders have questioned the need for an engineering hall over the past several years. The Faculty Senate has asked whether it was worth pouring money into programs that GW is not as well-known for, compared to its traditionally strong areas like political science and international affairs.
The governing body, which listened to some of the first pitches for the building about a decade ago, will ask for another fundraising report at its December meeting, said Charles Garris, an engineering professor and the chair of the Faculty Senate’s executive committee.
Joseph Cordes, who leads the Faculty Senate’s finance committee, said focusing on the $1 billion campaign and building excitement about the goal may keep the University from giving updates on how projects are progressing, especially if the fundraising total is lackluster.
“In campaigns, you want to be consciously presenting positive news,” Cordes said. “You want to present those because there’s a feeling that encourages other people to say ‘Oh, I want to be part of this.’ You don’t want to dwell on areas where the results aren’t what you hoped.”
While the fundraising office is courting potential donors, they may “keep some things a bit under the radar” to protect those conversations, Cordes said.
Officials have said landing a naming gift for the building will be critical. The University has historically struggled to secure naming gifts for halls, though that has recently started to change.
The last naming gift was a $5 million donation from Board of Trustees member Mark Shenkman, which renamed Ivory Tower last spring. In March, $80 million from billionaire philanthropists Sumner Redstone and Michael Milken renamed the public health school.
The GW School of Business, School of Nursing and Law School also need donors to become their namesakes.
Media Credit: Hatchet File Photo
Economics professor and former Faculty Senate finance chair Anthony Yezer said that it will be difficult for the University to raise money for the building without a large "naming gift."
Anthony Yezer, an economics professor and former chair of the Faculty Senate’s finance committee, said it will be a challenge for officials to raise enough for the building without a “big chunk of money” for a naming gift.
“Let’s hope the reason they’re not saying much is there is a whale out there that’s swimming up and down the tidal basin and the hook is in the water and there are negotiations,” Yezer said.
When the ribbon is cut
Bringing in money for the building will become even more difficult once the construction is complete because donors might not believe there is urgency to the project, said Arthur Criscillis, a partner at the fundraising firm Alexander-Haas.
“That is very challenging,” he said. “When the building doesn’t exist you can talk about the need. Once you’ve started building, how can you say you have this need?”
But the lagging fundraising for the building is not because of a lack of effort in courting donors. Across the country, many donors choose programs over buildings, wanting to see their gifts play out in scholarships or professorships.
Nationwide, the percentage of donations going to construction was just 8 percent in 2012, a four percentage point decrease from 2003.
Donors may choose to make a gift because they believe in the institution, but most donate to teaching and research programs, said Richard Allen Ammons, a senior consultant at the arts and education fundraising firm Marts & Lundy.
“While many donors value having their name on a building, donors primarily give because they want to have impact on student learning,” Ammons said.
Ellie Smith contributed reporting.”
by The GW HatchetOct 23, 2014
“Media Credit: Hatchet File Photo by Francis Rivera | Senior Staff Photographer
Freshman defender Christian Lawal heads the ball earlier this season. Lawal, along with freshman Koby Osei-Wusu, started as forward last weekend in head coach Craig Jones' effort to revitalize the offense. Lawal scored his second goal of the season against Saint Joseph's on Sunday.
The men’s soccer team is shaking things up.
After enduring a 4-0 loss to Robert Morris and a 2-1 defeat to Rhode Island, and with several key players sidelined, head coach Craig Jones said he knew he needed to make a change.
While players with a decent amount of experience were at his disposal, Jones instead turned to his freshman class to jumpstart the team’s struggling offense.
Against Saint Joseph’s and La Salle last weekend, Jones started four rookies: Christian Lawal, Koby Osei-Wusu, Oliver Curry and Alex Conning.
It’s not about a player’s class year or the amount of collegiate experience he has, Jones said. In a situation like GW’s, he is simply looking for who will deliver the best results.
“For us, they’re the guys who are playing well,” Jones said after Sunday’s game against Saint Joseph’s. “I don’t really care as a coach whether it’s a freshman, junior, sophomore or senior. We are going to pick the guys who we think are going to be the right fit.”
There to try to turn around GW’s offensive slump were Lawal and Osei Wusu.
Lawal, a defender by trade, had started as both a midfielder and defender at different points this year, while Osei-Wusu had not recorded a single start this season. Both freshmen made their first career starts at forward against the Explorers and Hawks.
Jones elected to start Lawal and Osei-Wusu instead of other forwards on the roster, like sophomores Jopus Grevelink, Angel Valencia and Garrett Heine, who have all seen playing time at the forward position this season.
While neither forward scored against the Explorers, Jones’ risk paid off, as Lawal was responsible for scoring the equalizer against Saint Joseph’s in a game that ended in a 1-1 tie. Curry assisted both goals on the weekend.
“With Christian, we just decided that with his pace and his athleticism, he could create stuff for us up top,” Jones said. “We put him in spells throughout the season, and we just decided to start him there. And I think these last two games, he’s done very well.”
Lawal, who is now tied for second on the team in scoring with two goals, credits the smooth transition to his past experience as a forward.
“I played a lot of different positions throughout my career, so its fun to play up top,” Lawal said. “I think the change of strategy and a bit more freshness is helping us create a few more chances and be able to put them away.”
Osei-Wusu, who was unable to showcase his talent for a portion of the preseason because of injury, is taking advantage of his newfound opportunity as a starter.
Despite missing a penalty kick Friday, Osei-Wusu recorded 152 minutes of playing time this weekend, creating chances on the attack and taking a total of seven shots.
“He’s always had talent and he’s just getting his chance now to express it, and he’s doing very well with it,” senior co-captain Matthew Scott said.
In addition to creating goal scoring opportunities, Lawal and Osei-Wusu are also helping the team on the other side of the ball.
“It’s really helped [our] defenders because that gives us a chance to rest. And I think that was a problem we had earlier in the season, where the ball was going forward and coming back too fast,” Scott said. “But especially with them two up there, we’re holding it up there for a while.”
The Colonials scored eight goals in their first four games to start the season, with three coming from junior Jonny Forrest, who remains the team’s leading scorer. But the usual starting forward duo of Forrest and junior Philip McQuitty soon fell silent when the Colonials dropped five of their next six games, and scored just five goals in that stretch.
An additional blow came when Forrest, who has missed games in each of his last two seasons due to injury, was sidelined again after sustaining what Jones said was a “contact injury” to his leg.
Forrest has not seen action on the field since Sept. 30, but Jones said there is a “50-50” chance that the junior forward will take the pitch against Saint Bonaventure this weekend.
Since Sept. 27, the Colonials have also gone without senior co-captain Andri Alexandersson, who scored an overtime winner against then-No. 22 Navy last month. Jones said the midfielder participated in warm-ups last Sunday and “will definitely travel this weekend,” to Olean, N.Y.
It remains to be seen how the Colonials will continue to perform as they head on the road, where they will play their next three games. What is certain is Jones seems content with the performance of his freshmen, who haven't lost a game in their short time as starting forwards.
Regardless of what happens in the next few games, the success of GW's freshman class bodes well for the team’s future. Jones said the results from his underclassmen are “very encouraging."
“It’s difficult to probably not start them again,” Jones said. “It was the same lineup on Friday and Sunday, and they haven’t lost. And we want to reward guys who are doing well.””
by The GW HatchetOct 20, 2014
“Media Credit: Nicole Radivilov | Contributing Photo Editor
Board of Trustees Chair Nelson Carbonell, who has donated millions to the University, has said gifts from University trustees are critical to the success of the University's $1 billion campaign. The University has raised $605 million since starting the campaign three years ago.
The University has $400 million left to raise in its largest-ever campaign, just three months after the effort publicly launched.
GW has brought in $605 million since starting to build up the campaign three years ago, making it “substantially more than halfway to its goal,” University President Steven Knapp announced at Friday’s Board of Trustees meeting. That means officials have pulled in $80 million since the campaign’s kickoff in June.
“We still have a long period of time ahead of us, but we’re not going to slow down as a result of that,” Knapp said in an interview after the meeting. “It would be great to finish ahead of time or to raise more than the goal. We have to see what happens.”
Experts say bringing in more than $600 million with four years left in the campaign may cause officials to shift their focus to growing GW's historically small alumni donor base.
A school will typically pull in about two-thirds of its goal before going public with a campaign, and the majority of schools also exceed their goals, according to the Council for Advancement and Support of Education.
After building momentum with large gifts at the start of a campaign, donations the rest of the way are typically smaller, said David King, the president and chief executive officer of the fundraising firm Alexander-Haas. That shift may mean more work for fundraisers, who will need to reach out to more donors while money “accumulates slowly,” he said.
“The work is so much harder because there are so many more gifts to be secured. It takes just as much work to get a $10,000 gift as it does a $100,000 gift, but you have many more prospects who can do that. The volume of work increases a great deal,” King said.
In what could be a new chapter for the campaign, bringing in more small or medium-sized donations would let officials focus on expanding GW’s donor base – which grew 15 percent last year.
The newly announced total also comes about one week after Mike Morsberger, GW's vice president for development and alumni relations, announced he will step down at the end of this month. Morsberger spent four and a half years building the campaign from the ground up – expanding the fundraising office by 30 percent and creating a plan to reach the University’s eye-popping goal.
The foundation that Morsberger put in place will help ensure the campaign's success, even as fundraisers start looking to new donors for gifts, said Mitch Blaser, chair of the GW School of Business’ Board of Advisors.
“The team isn’t going to stop playing cause the coach had to go somewhere else or was replaced,” Blaser said. “There’s plenty of momentum to carry through.”
To continue building excitement, Knapp will travel to New York this week to meet with donors and alumni and kick off the campaign for a second time in the city with GW’s largest alumni population outside of the D.C. area.
The campaign has already helped bring in the University’s largest-ever gift: Billionaire philanthropists Michael Milken and Sumner Redstone gave GW a combined $80 million gift last spring, which renamed the public health school.
Other major buildings on campus also need naming gifts – including the business school, the GW Law School and the soon-to-be completed $275 million Science and Engineering Hall.
Deep-pocketed donors may still come on board as the campaign continues and they see its success, Nilsen said.
“You may get higher-level donors who are maybe not quite ready now. Hopefully seeing the momentum from gifts already given will make them be more willing to give,” Nilsen said. “You’re not in the crunch time, but it will slow down a little bit. This is where the planning tends to pay off.”
The announcement of the new total also came after two multi-million dollar gifts from sitting trustees.
Terry Collins and his wife pledged $2.5 million to fund an endowed scholarship for first-generation college students and an endowed professorship in the School of Engineering and Applied Science.
Collins said his gift, and other donations from trustees, could convince potential donors to support GW, too.
“I do believe that it sets a standard and says ‘OK, people want to invest.’ You want to give what you can give to help and improve the opportunities for students,” Collins said.
Avram “Ave” Tucker pledged $2 million for the athletics department, the business school and the law school last week. His gift will support faculty research in the business school and the law school’s endowed fund for the government contracts associate dean. GW renamed the baseball field at Barcroft Park in his honor.
Board of Trustees Chair Nelson Carbonell said gifts from trustees are “critical to the success of the campaign." Carbonell and his wife gave $2.5 million to start an autism institute at the University last spring, and they have also given more than $150,000 in matching gifts as part of the Senior Class Gift campaign since 2010.
As the face of GW's Board, Carbonell has become a defacto fundraiser.
“When I sit with a potential donor, the fact that I’ve given and many of our trustees have given, it’s not lost on them that the people who have really inside information, the people who really know what’s going on, are ready to support that,” Carbonell said after Friday's meeting.
The University received its largest-ever gift from a sitting trustee last spring, when Mark Shenkman gave $5 million to the business school and career services. GW renamed Ivory Tower as Shenkman Hall in his honor. This fall, Shenkman also donated a statue of George Washington worth about $50,000.
“We ask people if you’re going serve on this board, that GW has to be one of your philanthropic priorities, like No. 1 or No. 2, and I think the Board has stepped up in that way,” Carbonell said.
Chloe Sorvino contributed reporting.”
by The GW HatchetOct 20, 2014
“The Hatchet's editorial board looked at some of the biggest news from the past week, including the departure of fundraising chief Mike Morsberger, the University's $20 million budget shortfall and the possibility of some standardized rules and regulations across GW's 10 schools.
How to fill the shoes of a GW giant
The University's fundraising chief was a big personality on campus, and we’re sorry to see him go. Mike Morsberger has not only been the face of the $1 billion fundraising campaign , but he has also essentially been a GW cheerleader for the duration of his four-year tenure.
At a school where just a handful of administrators are accessible, Morsberger’s passion was readily apparent, and his openness will be missed. He joins a line of recently departed officials who had the same qualities – former Deputy Title IX Coordinator Tara Pereira and former Senior Vice President for Student and Academic Support Services Robert Chernak among them.
Although there’s no good time for the head of a hefty fundraising campaign to depart, experts seem confident that Morsberger and his office have already laid enough of the foundation that the campaign will remain steady. And since Morsberger said he left for personal reasons, he was likely making the best choice for himself.
It will be crucial, though, that GW find a replacement who will maintain the momentum. Morsberger was a massively successful fundraiser and powered GW’s office from the paltry operation it once was to the behemoth it’s now trying to become. That’s no easy feat, and obviously a replacement exactly like him isn’t just waiting around the corner.
It’d also be excellent if Morsberger’s successor was as personable and committed to this school as he was. If anyone on this campus should bleed buff and blue, it’s the chief fundraiser. We had that in Morsberger, and we hope we can see that in the future, too.
Unpleasant surprises in the University's budget
We recently found out that GW has had to make up for a $20 million budget shortfall. Admittedly, $20 million is only about 1 percent of the University’s annual operating budget, so we don’t have to panic over this deficit. Faculty leadership have assured us that the $20 million isn’t earth-shattering and GW has done its best to minimize the impact.
But there were still significant ramifications: 10 percent of the resulting cuts have affected schools.
It’s clear that the University has tried to concentrate the cuts in non-academic areas, like the offices of the treasurer and the president. That’s encouraging, since GW has had issues with administrative bloat in the past, and we would hope that its first move would be to look for cuts in administrative departments.
GW lost $10 million in projected revenue because of a drop in graduate enrollment, which is unfortunate and largely out of the school’s control. In fact, declining enrollment in graduate schools is a problem across the country , not just at GW.
The other $10 million, though, was used to cover surprise costs. Unsurprisingly, administrators have neglected to explain exactly what those surprises were.
Such a blatant lack of transparency and accountability is a scary precedent to set. Since almost anything could be called “unexpected,” there’s potential for more costs to be passed off that way in the future. The University has made cuts in areas that directly affect students, and we only know half the reason why. Refusing to give us a breakdown of the $10 million makes the University appear like it is trying to hide something.
The Faculty Association is pushing GW to be more transparent in its budgeting process, and the Board of Trustees hopes to gain more oversight. This is something the student body should readily stand behind – since we’re already wary of the secrets the University keeps from us.
Soon each of GW’s 10 schools could be required to set uniform rules and regulations about certain topics. Chair of the Board of Trustees Nelson Carbonell has established a set of working groups to undertake a review of the faculty code and streamline practices across campus.
If this sounds familiar, that’s because Carbonell started this process almost exactly a year ago. Back then, though, he jumped into it without much planning – for starters, he admitted he hadn’t even read the code. It prompted outcry from professors (as well as this editorial board ) who feared the University’s highest governing body would rewrite how they operate without faculty input. Soon after, Carbonell backtracked . But this time, he is taking a more steadied approach, and professors are coming on board.
The review will aim to standardize some of the more big-picture rules that all schools have in common, like the processes for giving professors tenure and conducting dean searches. Those are two areas that have caused a good deal of faculty strife , and among other things were the reasons the Faculty Association formed as an opposition group to the Faculty Senate in the spring.
Carbonell doesn’t have to reinvent the wheel, here, either. If the review takes into account the recommendations of faculty members, it will be able to evaluate the best practices of each of the schools, determine who has the smoothest processes and apply them across the board. This may go a long way in soothing some recent faculty tensions.
Carbonell might not be able to unite the faculty again as one big happy family, but reworking the rules that govern their lives to make them more efficient would certainly be an improvement.
The editorial board is composed of Hatchet staff members and operates separately from the newsroom. This week’s piece was written by opinions editor Robin Jones Kerr and contributing opinions editor Sarah Blugis, based on discussions with managing director Justin Peligri, sports editor Sean Hurd, copy editor Rachel Smilan-Goldstein and design editor Sophie McTear.”
by The GW HatchetOct 20, 2014
“The Metro is the third-most popular public transportation system in the country. For the 800,000 people who ride it every day, the “doors closing” announcements are all-too-familiar. We caught up with the woman behind the voice, Randi Miller, to chat about making a living as a voice actress and avoiding the train.
How did you become involved in the project, and what was the process like for you?
Randi Miller: I was working at a Lexus dealership in Alexandria, where I had been forever. And my boss, who was the general manager, actually yelled across the hallway to me one day and said, “Hey, Randi, Metro’s looking for a new voice, you should enter the contest that they’re having.” And I said “Sure.” Of course, I didn’t. And then a couple of the sales people came up to me and said the same thing. And I had no idea there was a contest, no clue. So I went online to check it out and I saw that they had a script posted online, and you had to record the script and burn it to a CD and send it in. So I waited until the day before the entry was due and decided, "Well, what the hell, I should probably enter because everybody keeps telling me I should," so I did and I won.
Did you then have to re-record your voice for the actual train, or did they just use what you sent in?
RM: What they did was they narrowed the field. There was 1,259 people that entered from all over the country and they narrowed it down to 10 finalists. And they called me and of course when they called me, my reaction to “Hi, this is Ron from Metro” was “What are you selling?” you know? I wasn’t very nice to him, I confess, because I didn’t realize. And he told me, “We narrowed it down to top 10 finalists, we’d like you to be one of them,” and they had us all come down to a studio in D.C. and record actual announcements to be the final audition basically for the gig. So we all did and then they had a press conference and they announced the winner at the press conference and there was a sea of photographers and camera people and reporters and “Good Morning America” and all these other people and I was just like “Really?” I had no idea that this was such a big thing, you know? So they announced that I won and then I had to go into another studio and record the actual train announcements and a few station announcements, including things like “Stepping onto a crowded platform can be overwhelming, please step to the side.” Stuff like that. And that was it. I never had to record anything else.
What was the voice like before this competition?
RM: (laughs) I know exactly what the voice sounded like before me because when the train first started running in 1976, and I just told you how old I am, we all skipped school, a bunch of us and rode the subway because it was such a big deal. And Sandy Carroll was a Metro employee who had recorded the announcements originally, and it was her voice that was on the train for the first 30 years. So for the first 30 years, what you would hear was, “Bing bong, door is opening. Door is closing.” And that’s all I heard and I used to mock her all the time, so it’s very ironic that I ended up being the voice that I used to make fun of.
Had you had any experience beforehand with recording your voice or being a spokesperson?
RM: My experience as a voice person was limited to singing and writing songs and performing from the time I was 11. And then in the early 90s, or mid-90s I guess, I worked for a video production company, and we had some industrial videos that we did that needed narration. If we couldn’t find anybody else to do it, I would step up to do it. But it’s not like I did it for a living or got paid for it or anything. But that was the extent of my experience.
Is it strange for you when you have to ride the Metro at all?
Media Credit: Zach Montellaro | Hatchet Staff Photographer
Randi Miller became the voice of Metrorail after she won a competition in 2006. Miller worked at a car dealership and was encouraged by her boss and coworkers to enter the contest, where she beat out 1,259 contestants.
RM: When my voice first went live on the train and I found out that it was on the train, initially they had me come down and be on a train in D.C. with media on the train as well for the big unveiling. And unfortunately when they realized that the clip was too long for the little chip that was in every train, what they did was they took pieces of it and they mashed it all together and it sounded horrible. I was so mad. And I was live on TV listening to it for the first time and of course all my friends, including my mother, called me later and said, “You hated it, didn’t you?” I’m like, “Oh, yeah.” Because it sounded like, “Step-back-doors-opening.” It was really weird, the way they pieced it together. But then when it actually did go live, I ran down to the King Street Metro station, which was right down the street from the dealership where I was working because I couldn’t wait to hear it. And so I stood on the platform and I would listen, you know, “Nope, that’s her. Nope, that’s her. Nope, that’s her.” And then I heard me and I jumped onto the train, I couldn’t wait to hear it. And then after about three stops I couldn’t wait to get off because I couldn’t stop saying it with myself and it was just very, very strange. So I very seldom ride the train.
To your knowledge, has Metro ever thought of doing another competition like this?
RM: There was some discussion. There’s been actually a lot of discussion about having me do station announcements, stop announcements, because the drivers are so difficult to understand but other than that, there’s been no discussion of doing any additional voices. What they did with the other top-10 finalists was they had them record some station announcements as kind of a consolation prize.
Has anyone stopped you and said, “Your voice sounds awfully familiar?”
RM: All the time. I meet people all the time and it’s very funny because they’ll say, “Have I met you before? Because there’s something about you that’s so familiar.” And then we’ll go through the whole where’d you go to school, where have you worked and then finally I’ll say, “How do you go to work?” and then they’ll tell me they ride the Metro and then I’ll be like, “Close your eyes,” and I do the thing. Pretty much every waiter in Montgomery County knows who I am because of my mother. Every time we go out to dinner, she never loses an opportunity or misses an opportunity to tell everybody, “You’re waiting on a celebrity. Do you ever ride the Metro?” and then I have to do the whole performance. And people get a huge kick out of it, it’s fun. And I’ve gotten a lot of voice work as a result. It’s very cool.
Is the reason you don’t ride the Metro because it’s not convenient, or is the reason you haven’t rode it in the past seven years because you don’t want to hear yourself talk?
RM: My primary reason for not riding the Metro is that there is no Metro in Woodbridge where I live. When I do come up this way into Maryland or need to go into D.C., I do prefer to take the train into D.C., I just haven’t had much occasion to do it. Secondary of course is that I can’t stand to listen to myself on the train because I can’t not say it with me and it’s just embarrassing to sit there and go, “Step back, doors opening. When boarding, please move to the center of the car.” And everybody looks at me like, “Who are you and why are you doing that?” I’m just some crazy person, that’s all. Ignore me, I’ll be fine.
Is there a particular announcement that you really like? And if you could re-record one, would there be one you'd re-recorded?
RM: I like the ones where I sound like a nicer person. When people don’t get out the way, I sound very mean and bitchy and I don’t like that because I’m not that way. But you have to be bitchy because the doors don’t stop. It’s not like an elevator door and people don’t get it and that’s the whole reason they did these announcements. But I would have to say my favorite one is when I say, “When boarding, please move to the center of the car.” I don’t know why, but I really like that one.
RM: There was a lot of hooplah from professional voice-over people that refused to enter the contest because it didn’t pay anything and everyone was so mad about that. You know, the Metro slogan is “Metro opens doors,” and it’s true. I didn’t care. People asked me, “Aren’t you mad that they’re not paying you? Do you get any royalties? Do you get anything?” I got a baseball hat that says “Metro” on it, I got a Monopoly game – the D.C. version – and I think they gave me a $10 fare card because I had to come down and do a lot of press stuff and at the time $10 went a long way. But, to be honest with you, no, I didn’t get paid anything, but I got instant celebrity, which is what I always wanted when I was a kid. I thought I’d be a famous singer. I never thought I’d be a famous transit person, you know what I mean? And I’ve since done – I’m the voice on a bus in California, you know the Smart Bus, it’s kinda cool. But it’s been a wonderful experience, it really does open doors and I just really love being the voice of Metro. It sounds so stupid and I never thought that it would be a big thing, but it really has made some amazing changes in my life. It’s been a lot of fun and I’ve gotten a lot of work as a result. And as it turns out, I’m really good at being a voice-over person and I’m never happier than when I’m in the studio, and I never thought I would ever say that.”
by The GW HatchetOct 17, 2014
“Media Credit: Cameron Lancaster | Photo Editor
Senior Jack Persons is on track to having the best season scoring average in program history after posting the worst numbers of his career during the 2013-2014 season.
Like the courses he’s played on the last three years, senior Jack Person’s career has had its fair share of peaks and valleys.
Persons set school 36-hole and 54-hole records as a freshman, and helped his team win the Atlantic 10 championship. The following year, he posted the eighth-best season scoring average in program history at 75.3.
But then as a junior, Persons endured the worst statistical year of his career. He finished five events on par compared to seven-par and six-par finishes in his first two seasons, respectively, and his stroke average of 76.16 was the highest of his career.
Now in his final year on the team, Persons is on track to have his best season yet as a Colonial. Through 12 rounds of play this season, the San Francisco native is in position to post the best season scoring average in program history.
“I haven’t yet played to what I think my ability is,” Persons said. “I’m still waiting for my breakout round.”
After posting just one top-10 finish in both his sophomore and junior seasons, Persons has a top-five finish and two top-10 finishes through just four events this year.
Persons placed fifth out of 104 players at George Mason’s Patriot Intercollegiate last week, carding an even par total of 213 (72-71-70) and helping the team to its eighth-lowest 54-hole team total (876) in program history. Persons’ 213 was also the seventh-best 54-hole total in program history, and seven shots off his freshman record of 206.
He followed that performance with a 54-hole total of 223 (73-78-72) at the Wolfpack Intercollegiate, good enough for a tie for 36th in the 93-player field. And Tuesday, he finished tied for ninth at the Terrapin Invitational out of a 75-player field.
Persons credits his strong performances this season to a mental switch, and head coach Chuck Scheinost said he’s seen Persons show increased resilience during tricky rounds, when in past years he might not have scored well.
“In other years his ‘bad’ round may have been an 80 or an 82, but now he’s getting to the point where it’s a 76 or 78 because he’s really sticking with each round for the team’s sake,” said Scheinost, now in his second year as coach. “He’s also showing that ability to put together a ‘bounce back’ round.”
As the lone senior on this year’s roster, Persons is not only tasked with getting back to form but with leading GW in the huddle.
The soft-spoken Persons prefers to lead with his golf clubs rather than his voice. While he said he has tried to become more expressive with his teammates, his actions on the course are what junior Steve Piela said younger players notice most.
“He is always the first one to arrive at practice and stays late,” Piela said. “He’s very approachable, so I think that makes it easier for the younger guys to settle in, and for all of us to come together to achieve the same goal.”
Persons called this year’s team the most talented and dedicated group of players he’s played with – a team capable of reaching even greater heights than the 2011-12 breakout club.
“These guys really want it,” Persons said. “I’d like to qualify for regionals as a team, and I think we’re going to have to win the A-10 in order to do that, but we are fully equipped to do just that.”
And his high hopes have rubbed off on the rest of his teammates.
“The mindset is definitely different this year, and I think Jack is a big part of that,” Piela said. “We understand that we have the capability to achieve what we want to achieve, we just need to keep putting that work in.””
by The GW HatchetOct 13, 2014
“Media Credit: Andrew Goodman | Hatchet Staff Photographer
Professor Anthony Yezer will hold a course over parents weekend called “Why Do Education Levels Rise With City Size and Gay Men Live in San Francisco?" The class will explore regional economics' one factor that explains differences in city distributions.
Class is in session this weekend, but don’t worry – this isn’t on the midterm. Leave your notebook at home for these 50-minute crash courses, all taught by GW professors for students and their families.
From a discussion of Jackie Robinson as a catalyst for civil rights to a class on social networking tips, there's a topic to pique the interest of every family member.
“Why Do Education Levels Rise With City Size and Gay Men Live in San Francisco?” | Anthony Yezer
Saturday Oct. 18, Marvin Center Room 308, 4 p.m.
If you’ve ever wondered why gay men are concentrated in San Francisco, whether you can predict which town Taylor Swift is most likely to move to or the truth behind D.C.’s restrictions on building heights, economics professor Anthony Yezer is your man. Yezer, who compares regional economics to “detective work,” will reveal the single factor that explains these odd differences in city distributions – and you’ll never guess what it is.
“I work on a lot of topics, but [regional economics] is the most fun," Yezer said. "We love to kind of solve puzzles."
“Teaching Students Nobel Prize-Winning Innovation: Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)” | Jason Zara
Saturday Oct. 18, Marvin Center Room 309, 4 p.m.
Stop by this event and you’ll win a Nobel Prize. Well, kind of. Jason Zara, an associate professor in the School of Engineering and Applied Science, invites visitors to try to “invent” the Nobel Prize-winning MRI by coming up with the key innovations behind it, an exercise he uses with his biomedical engineering students. Zara aims to teach visitors how to “think like engineers” when solving problems.
“Engineers see problems that need solving, carefully consider what they know about the problem and then come up with a plan to attack the part of the solution they don't already know,” he said. “We try to teach students these problem-solving techniques from a very early stage.”
“Social Networks, Leadership and Organizations” | Andrew Cohen
Friday Oct. 17, Marvin Center Room 307, 5 p.m.
*Good for older siblings
The hours you spend crafting the perfect Twitter bio, editing your LinkedIn page and chatting up old friends aren’t a waste of time, and assistant professor of management Andrew Cohen is here to explain why.
Cohen, who teaches courses in organizational behavior, leadership and human resource management, will explore how students can use social networking to their advantage in pursuing a career or leading an organization. He’ll touch on how institutions like schools, businesses and nonprofits use networks to achieve goals, and what leaders of those organizations can do to help.
“The notion of how networks, the web of interpersonal relationships among members of an organization, might shape and be shaped by the leadership of the organization is particularly important,” he said.
“Sex, Drugs, and Rock ‘n’ Roll: A Look at Some of the Big Cases in the Supreme Court’s 2014-2015 Term” | Jill Kasle
Saturday, Oct. 18, Marvin Center Continental Ballroom, 3 p.m.
Jill Kasle, an associate professor of public policy and administration who describes law as “the only club I ever wanted to belong to,” said she decided to become a lawyer at age 9 after a visit to the Supreme Court building.
With a lifetime of experience, Kasle will now share her knowledge of the biggest upcoming Supreme Court cases on topics ranging from gay marriage to the Affordable Care Act. Whether you’re a law student or more closely resemble a pre-Harvard Elle Woods, don’t miss this refresher.
“Celebrating the Impact and Legacy of Jackie Robinson” | Richard Zamoff
Friday, Oct. 17, Marvin Center Room 308, 5 p.m.
*Good for the whole family
Richard Zamoff, a professorial lecturer in the sociology department, is the biggest Jackie Robinson fan around – but not just in terms of baseball.
Zamoff has dedicated much of his career to the study of Robinson as an “informal civil rights leader,” whose courage and commitment to social change outweighed any achievements on the playing field. Take the course for a new perspective on sports, and learn how Robinson was a catalyst for changes like Brown v. Board of Education and President Harry Truman’s desegregation of the military.
“Most students only knew him as baseball, and I thought that was a terrible and significant omission in education," Zamoff said. "He was an important civil rights person. I wanted to fill in those blanks."”
by The GW HatchetOct 13, 2014
“Media Credit: Hatchet File Photo by Jordan McDonald | Hatchet Photographer
Without men's soccer leading scorer Jonny Forrest in the lineup, players like sophomore Garrett Heine will need to step up offensively for the Colonials.
Men’s soccer is in a state of emergency.
After losing five of the last six games, the Colonials must turn the corner in conference play, and quickly, if they hope to reach the Atlantic 10 Championships. Last season, they missed the postseason by a single win.
But struggles continued for GW on Saturday in the team’s conference opener against Rhode Island. The Colonials, outshot 18-5 by the Rams, fell to URI 2-1.
GW has played without two key players in recent games. Senior Andri Alexandersson has missed the past three games with an injury, and after playing limited minutes against Saint Peter’s and Longwood, junior Jonny Forrest has also been out with an injury for the past two games against Robert Morris and Rhode Island.
Forrest leads the team with three goals, while Alexandersson leads with eight shots on goal and a .727 shots on goal percentage. Out of GW’s four wins in the season, both Forrest and Alexandersson have each netted a game-winning goal – with Forrest’s game winner coming against Harvard on Sept. 7, and Alexandersson’s coming against then-No. 22 Navy.
The loss of Forrest and team captain Alexandersson are crucial for a squad that has been unable to generate offense in its last six games and has been outscored by opponents 15-5. While nine different Colonials have combined to score the team’s 13 goals through 10 games this season, GW has been unable to produce consistent offense and was shutout in four of its six losses.
The Colonials’ recent skid comes after the team showed promise, starting the season 3-1 and outscoring the opposition 8-5.
“We just want to get everybody fit and know that we have the full squad to pick from if we can,” head coach Craig Jones said Saturday after the team’s loss to Rhode Island.
On the other side of the field, junior goalkeeper Jean-Pierre van der Merwe has struggled in front of the net after performing solidly in the season’s early going. While he ranks fourth in the conference in saves, averaging 4.7 per game, he does not rank in the top 10 in save percentage or goals against average.
In recent weeks, van der Merwe has struggled defending against forwards in the open field, often coming off his line and leaving the net vulnerable when he is unable to get back.
While Jones said van der Merwe’s performance against the Rams was an improvement from last week, he is unsure if van der Merwe will play or sit in place of junior Jack Lopez or senior Luke Farrell.
“I guess we’ll see what happens this week at practice and see if his confidence is high or if we think he needs a break,” Jones said. “Probably right now if you ask me, it would probably be him, but again with a full week of practice and two home games, we’ll see what happens.”
Jones said the tools GW needs to succeed are present, but oftentimes either the offense is unable to keep up with the defense, or vice versa.
“The pieces are there, its just putting them together and getting our defensive and offensive units on the same page and both producing, not one or the other,” Jones said.
But with just seven games left in the regular season for the team to click as a unit on the field, the Colonials may find themselves in a similar situation – fighting to grab the eighth and final spot in the postseason.
To do so, GW doesn’t have to knock off the top teams in the conference, but they must capitalize on the winnable games against weaker conference teams to steal wins from top A-10 teams.
Here is a look at which squads GW will need to beat to make a run at postseason play.
Saint Joseph’s (6-3-3, 1-1)
GW fell behind 3-0 last season against Saint Joseph’s before then-junior Farhan Khan scored with 86 seconds remaining in the game, bringing the score to 3-1 and preventing a shutout.
Through its first 11 games of the season, Saint Joseph’s has been able to convert on goal scoring opportunities, outscoring opponents by a margin of 15-10. The Hawks have three players – junior Emmanuel Temeh, seniors Jake Nelson and Mike Glazer – who are tied with Forrest with three goals scored this season.
Duquesne (6-3-2, 1-0)
This season, the Dukes are the top-scoring team in the conference, as they lead the A-10 in scoring at 1.90 goals per game and in shots averaging 16.30 shots per game. But on the defensive end, Duquesne ranks ninth in the conference in goals allowed, averaging 1.40 goals allowed per game.
Individually, the Dukes are led by sophomore Kadeem Pantophlet and freshman Fredrik Borenstein, who have each scored four goals.
The Colonials will face a tough matchup on the road Oct. 26, against a Duquesne team that is undefeated (5-0) at home.
La Salle (4-6-1, 0-1-0)
Last fall, the Colonials saw their season end with a loss to La Salle that kept them out of the playoffs. This year, GW takes on La Salle early under pressure to pick up points on the front end of conference play on Friday.
La Salle is a team that creates opportunities, taking 12.82 shots per game to GW’s 11.40, but the Colonials have the edge in accuracy with 1.30 goals per game to La Salle’s 0.91.
The Explorers have been slightly tougher on defense than the Colonials, averaging 1.41 goals per game to the Colonials’ 1.95. This is a beatable team for GW, but the Colonials will have to exorcise some of the demons of the past to do so.
VCU (4-7-2, 1-0-1)
This season, the Colonials’ matchup against the Rams is the last major test they will have. GW last played VCU in 2012, losing 3-1 after giving up three goals early.
The Rams are 1-0-1 in conference play after defeating then-No. 20 George Mason and tieing Massachusetts.
Despite a losing record, the Rams have played five top-25 teams this season, defeating Mason and No. 5 Georgetown. VCU lost to then No. 1 Notre Dame and then No. 15 Virginia by just a single goal.
Rams redshirt junior goalkeeper Garrett Cyprus has a save percentage of 0.771, allowing 11 goals through 12 games.
Mark Eisenhauer contributed reporting.”
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