The Aston to house law students starting Aug. 1

by Bryan Han

When the University reopens the The Aston after a year of renovations this spring, it will become the first residence hall solely for students in a specific graduate program.

Located on 21st Street and New Hampshire Avenue, The Aston will reopen Aug. 1, after more than one year of being closed to students for renovations, University officials said.

"The Law School feels very fortunate that the University was able to dedicate this building for Law School students," said Thomas Morrison, senior associate dean of administrative affairs in the Law School.

The Law School has also begun offering merit scholarships that include a year of housing for incoming students. Associate Dean Anne Richard said the school has given out a couple hundred of these scholarships, and expects to have about 60 students come to GW and accept the offer.

GW Law School also started a binding, early decision acceptance process this year. Those accepted in the early decision process will be awarded a three-year full-tuition scholarship and a year of housing.

Richard said having housing is important when trying to attract the best possible applicants.

"I think it's critically important to have (housing) available, especially with students who are unfamiliar with D.C. and haven't spent much time here," she said. "It makes it much easier for them to just come here with their clothes and have a room fully furnished."

Other first-year law students wanting to live in The Aston can contact the school to be put on a waiting list, Richard said. The residence hall will only house first-year law students in future years in order to help them adjust to living in D.C.

The school offered housing scholarships last year as well, anticipating the use of The Aston. But when University administrators reassessed the cost of renovating the building, they decided to close it for construction this school year.

Law School officials said all 79 law students with housing scholarships were accommodated successfully with other housing options last year.

The Aston has approximately 114 singles with private kitchens. Renovations this year have included upgraded sprinklers, painting and carpeting.

The other GW-owned graduate housing on campus is the Hall on Virginia Avenue, which have housed graduate students since 2006.

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