Admissions dean backs prospective students who face discipline for protests

The top official in the admissions office released a statement Friday supporting students who peacefully protest.

As high school students marched for more gun control across the nation this week, Dean of Admissions Costas Solomou said protests are a “legitimate” way for students to exercise their “Constitutional right to advocate for what is just.” If students are punished for protesting, he said GW would not let that affect its admissions decisions.

“If you are disciplined or suspended by your school as a consequence of peacefully and lawfully exercising your right to protest, such measures will have no effect upon your admissions decision,” Solomou said.

After a mass shooting killed 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida last week, high school students from across the D.C. area walked out of classes and marched to Capitol Hill to join the calls to demand gun control.

High school students across the United States – including Maine, Arizona, Florida and Texas – also protested gun violence this week. But some high schools around the country have threatened to suspend those who participate in the walkouts.

Solomou said students at GW often get involved in public and political conversations around issues that impact people across the country.

This week, students on campus gathered in Kogan Plaza to honor the Florida shooting victims and draw attention to the need for stricter gun control polices.

Institutions like Boston University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology also released statements to say they will still be considered for admissions, regardless of discipline for peaceful protests.

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