Open house turnout doubles

Allyson Cuervo’s first day at GW was spent in class and exploring the monuments – a good introduction to Colonial life, if she decides to attend the University.

Cuervo, a high school senior from Florida, attended the multicultural open house this year along with other students from underrepresented backgrounds.

This year’s open house, the sixth in GW’s history, brought more than 120 students from underrepresented backgrounds to campus to sample student life.

The two-day event, organized by the Office of Undergraduate Admissions, enabled prospective students of color to learn about the University’s undergraduate community.

The total cost of the event, including the number of participants whose travel costs were covered by the University, had not been calculated by publication time. Last year, the University paid $4,000 for 10 students to come to GW for the night.

Rahsaan Burroughs, associate director for undergraduate admissions, has coordinated the event for the past six years. He said the program has been “steadily increasing for years,” but this year it experienced a watershed of interest.

Director of Admissions Karen Felton said the program has naturally expanded as “more and more people continue to be excited about GW.”

Felton said the University sent out information via the admissions listserv and worked with high school guidance counselors to recruit students to the event.

Thursday evening, the high school students gathered with the Dean’s Council for a welcome dinner before heading out to their hosts’ residence halls and apartments.

Current and prospective students packed into a room in the Elliott School of International Affairs building as the admissions representatives and staff from the Multicultural Student Services Center spoke about GW.

George Rice, associate director for the center, emphasized the fact that students at GW are able to meet students whom “they wouldn’t normally associate with.”

“Any institution can offer you academics, but not every institution can offer you culture,” Rice told the energetic crowd.

Victoria Suros, a senior and four-year member of the Dean’s Council, said this was definitely the biggest event she’s seen.

Suros has hosted students for the past three years, all of whom have gone on to attend the University. Thursday night she hosted Cuervo, who traveled from Florida to attend the event.

Cuervo, who is also applying to Georgetown and American Universities, said, “GW is definitely my top choice.”

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