Updated on July 15 at 9:48 p.m
Students will be required to live on campus through their junior year, starting with freshmen who enter GW in fall 2014.
The requirement is intended to “further support students’ academic and campus experiences,” according to a University release Monday. Students can currently move off campus at the end of their sophomore year. In 2011, University officials had floated the option as a way to raise $2.6 million to support academic and research efforts, but never followed through with the move.
The announcement comes just as the University begins construction on a $130 million residence hall, slated to open in 2016, that will add 300 beds to campus. It will house nearly 900 sophomores and juniors.
About 40 percent of students live off campus after their sophomore year, according to the release.
The mandate will also appease local residents, who have repeatedly criticized students living off-campus as disruptive to the neighborhood.
“By requiring that students live six semesters on campus, we’re taking another important step to minimize impacts of students living in the surrounding neighborhoods,” Britany Waddell, director of community relations, said in the release.
The change out of the mainstream among other urban universities, which can sometimes have a difficult time finding enough space on campus to house students.
Georgetown University, which has a historically discordant relationship with neighbors, requires all freshmen and sophomores to live on campus, as well as junior transfer students.
Boston University requires only freshmen to live on campus, and American University and University of Southern California allows all students to live off campus. In downtown Boston, Suffolk University students are only guaranteed one year of on-campus, and students in the Honors Program are guaranteed two years.
– Cory Weinberg and Mary Ellen McIntire contributed to this report.
This post was updated on July 15, 2013 to reflect the following:
The Hatchet reported that Georgetown University requires freshmen to live on campus. In fact, they require freshmen and sophomores to live on campus. We regret this error.