GW leases hotel, finds more beds for growing student body
GW agreed to lease rooms in the former St. James Suites hotel, Pennsylvania House and convert double rooms in the Hall on Virginia Avenue to triples, to make way for a larger than expected incoming freshman class.
The University added 779 spaces after 350 more freshmen than expected choose to enroll, leasing all rooms in the former St. James Suites Hotel, 78 rooms in the Pennsylvania House apartment building and converting 70 HOVA doubles.
GW signed a 15-year lease for the St. James June 29 and re-named the building City Hall. The University will occupy the Pennsylvania House apartments for three years.
Director of Housing Services Andrew Sonn said the University would offer City Hall and Pennsylvania House rooms to the 160 students on the guaranteed waiting list and then allow returning students from the buildings designated for freshmen to choose rooms in the new residence halls.
“We’re really excited to have this opportunity for students,” Sonn said in July. “It’s been a great response so far.”
GW saw its largest enrollment jump in at least a decade with 35 percent of accepted freshmen choosing to enroll, a six-percent jump from last year.
To provide housing for the 2,250 incoming freshmen, GW also assigned freshmen to rooms in 2109 F. St., Crawford, Fulbright, and Madison halls.
City Hall will offer 543 extra beds for upperclassmen, and the Pennsylvania House provides 164. Both properties lie outside the campus boundaries defined by the University’s campus plan.
The D.C. Board of Zoning Adjustment ordered GW last spring to house 70 percent of students within campus boundaries. A District Court judge has since lifted this requirement for one year, pending a University lawsuit against the plan order.
Judge convicts Cosby of seven charges
A D.C. Superior Court judge convicted GW basketball player Attila Cosby of seven misdemeanor charges July 17 for sexually assaulting an alleged prostitute with a broomstick at gunpoint in May 2000.
The senior is currently in jail without bond awaiting a sentence hearing Sept. 10. He faces as many as three-and-a-half years in prison.
Cosby, who was dismissed of felony charges the summer before, was convicted of seven charges by Judge Neal E. Kravitz:
o one charge of misdemeanor sexual abuse for assaulting the woman with a broomstick
otwo charges of attempted threat
oone charge of simple assault
otwo charges of attempted possession of a prohibited weapon for possessing a gun and using a broomstick as a weapon.
oone charge of theft for stealing a $10 roll of quarters from his accuser
GW suspended Cosby from the University following his conviction.
Basketball coach Karl Hobbs previously suspended Cosby from the team July 5 citing academic reasons.
During the three-week trial, Kravitz heard testimony from Cosby’s accuser — a 47-year old crack cocaine user — DNA experts, University officials and Metropolitan Police officers.
U.S. attorneys Ben Friedman and Sharon Marcus-Kurn led the prosecution. Billy Martin, family lawyer for Chandra Levy, and Pat Woodward defended Cosby. For full coverage of the trial, visit gwhatchet.com.
GW alumna commits suicide
A 24-year-old GW graduate was found dead in the trunk of her car July 25 in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., after reportedly committing suicide.
Jamie Moore ingested prescription pills before crawling into the trunk of her white Audi Quattro to avoid discovery, according to The Miami Herald. Police found the car in a parking lot behind a Chinese food restaurant, after a caller complained about an abandoned car.
There were no signs of trauma on the body or forced entry into the car, police told The Herald. They found Moore’s car keys and bottles of prescription drugs near her body.
Moore reportedly had a history of mental problems, including severe depression.
Raised in Swampscott, Mass., Moore graduated from GW in 2000 with a degree in speech pathology and academic development.
Friends said Moore struggled with a bulimia and severe depression, according to reports. She had attempted suicide once before.
A University of South Florida expert on suicide described the death as carefully planned.
“This was not a call for help,” Dr. Donna Cohen said, according to The Herald. “This is her saying, `I do not want to be found, and I do not want to be saved.'”
Laborers protest GW construction contractor
About 100 D.C. workers and supporters rallied outside the University president’s office June 27 to draw attention to labor practices of Miller & Long Co. GW hired the Bethesda-based concrete firm to work on the new Elliott School of International Affairs building at 1957 E St.
The protestors outside GW President Stephen Joel Trachtenberg’s office charged GW with supporting illegal practices by sub-contracting a firm they say is breaking a D.C. law. The District requires contractors to establish an approved apprenticeship program for training and hiring D.C. residents.
The company failed to get D.C. approval to establish an apprenticeship-training program, which is required for projects that receive more than $500,000 from the city such as the Elliot School site.
At the time, University Senior Counsel Charles Barber said GW would work to get Miller & Long in compliance with the law.
GW officials had previously agreed to bring Miller & Long into compliance with the apprenticeship requirement. D.C. gave Miller & Long a May 31 deadline to adopt an acceptable program.
The University’s decision to use a contractor without an approved apprenticeship program could hurt future bids for city assistance, protesters said.
-compiled from staff reports