Even as GW seniors eagerly accept their diplomas and experience a once-in-a-lifetime sense of opportunity and elation, the GW community is not immune to the deep sadness of the loss of sophomore Taylor Hubbard. Hubbard, who fell out of a fifth floor window in Guthridge Hall early Saturday morning, passed away at GW Hospital on Sunday. During Sunday’s Commencement ceremony on the National Mall, President Steven Knapp expressed his sadness and requested a moment of silence in Hubbard’s honor, and we too share our deepest condolences over the loss of a fellow student.
Hubbard was a biomedical engineering student. He enjoyed playing ultimate frisbee and soccer, and was described by a friend as “incredibly athletic.” He was also a member of the Alpha Pi Chapter of Alpha Chi Sigma, a co-ed professional fraternity in chemistry.
Despite his heavy workload and dedication to his studies, peers described Hubbard as someone who was always willing to help others with their work. Hubbard’s friends and family remember his outgoing personality and happy demeanor, and note that he could always be seen with a smile on his face. They also described him as someone who liked everyone he met, and who developed many friendships throughout his time at GW. He will be greatly missed by those who knew him, and by others here on campus.
Regardless of your personal connection to Hubbard, it is understandable that one may feel sadness over this tragedy. GW students can relate to the life Hubbard led at GW, as he was a student, teammate and member of Greek-letter life. One did not need to know Hubbard personally to feel sadness over his death, as this loss is one the entire University shares.
The school year officially ended last week, and with that the student body has been dispersed far beyond the boundaries of Foggy Bottom. In the wake of a tragedy, coping with grief never follows an established time line. Students could feel sadness almost immediately, or that sadness could be delayed until the fall semester begins. But you should not feel alone. Whether you are home for the summer or staying in the District, there are resources available for confronting grief. For those students no longer on campus, the University Counseling Center offers help and is accessible by phone. Students who remain on campus can also use the UCC by either calling or visiting the center in person.
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This article appeared in the May 17, 2010 issue of the Hatchet.