Submit an op-ed to The Hatchet

The Hatchet is a newspaper. But more importantly, it is a part of the GW community. We strive to cover topics and break stories that matter to students at GW and to people throughout the District. Every week, the opinions section brings you a collection of arguments, perspectives and personal essays, giving readers a chance to learn from a diverse and vibrant collection of viewpoints that our writers and columnists bring to the table.

But we also want to make sure other members of the GW community have an opportunity to express their views. That’s why we accept op-eds: opinions pieces written by guests who are not part of the paper.

From fossil fuel divestment to the University’s COVID-19 response to the 2020 presidential election, members of the GW community have written op-eds on a wide variety of pressing topics. If you have a strong opinion about something going on at GW, we want to hear from you. If you think the community would benefit from hearing your take on something based on your subject matter expertise or lived experience, then we want to give you a space to make that happen.

If you’d like to get an op-ed published, please submit it through this form or email opinions@gwhatchet.com. Your submission will be reviewed by myself, Contributing Opinions Editor Shreeya Aranake and Editor in Chief Lia DeGroot at our weekly meeting, and we will get back to you promptly with a decision on whether or not your op-ed is approved.

When deciding whether to approve and publish an op-ed, there are a few general factors that we consider – so please keep these in mind as you write your piece in order to maximize the chances of it getting approved. Almost all of the op-eds we green-light are directly related to something going on at GW or in the District. We tend to only run pieces that are timely – that is, there is a specific recent or ongoing event that makes the piece relevant. We also take into consideration what the writer’s own qualifications are to be speaking about an issue. These considerations do mean that, unfortunately, some well-written or incisive pieces will not end up being published if they are not in response to something acutely happening at GW or something impacting the GW community.

Finally, we also weigh whether or not publishing the piece meaningfully contributes to dialogue on an issue by employing evidence and experience. We actively cultivate an environment of open discourse in the opinions section, and any close reader of our op-eds will almost certainly find their views strongly challenged at times. But we will not run pieces that are hateful or that aim to antagonize rather than present a cogent argument.

Once your piece is approved, it will go through two or three rounds of edits. During that process, we will leave conceptual and structural comments for you to address to make your piece flow better, and we will make stylistic fixes according to Associated Press and Hatchet style rules. We know sometimes it can be frustrating to have someone else’s fingerprints on your work – but please keep in mind that our edits are meant to help your piece convey your point more strongly and clearly. Once the final round of edits is done, we’ll send you the final text of your piece for your approval – and once you approve, we’ll publish. During the academic year, op-eds will usually be published in our Monday print edition, but are occasionally published in our Thursday email edition.

We want to share stories about the people and events that make up our GW community. Your insight, expertise and experience is a big part of doing that – so we would love to hear from you. If you have any questions at all about the op-ed process, please feel free to email me at asugrue@gwhatchet.com.

Andrew Sugrue, a senior majoring in political communication and political science, is the opinions editor.

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