Officials announced 10 moniker options to replace the nearly century-old Colonials moniker in a release Wednesday.
Officials released a list of moniker choices – Ambassadors, Blue Fog, Catalysts, Fireworks, Independents, Monumentals, Revolutionaries, Sentinels, Squad and Truth. Officials will gather feedback on the options through a random online survey, an online rating system and an “in-person activity” at an upcoming men’s basketball game against Atlantic 10 rival Virginia Commonwealth University March 4.
Ellen Moran, the vice president for communications and marketing, said in the release that input from the community will play a “critical and valuable role” in selecting the new moniker.
“We invite all students, faculty, staff and alumni to remain engaged in this process so the new moniker is representative of the collective feedback from the University community,” she said in the release.
The potential monikers come after students participated in private focus groups discussing 15 moniker options earlier this month. In Wednesday’s rendition of the moniker list, officials removed the Fog, Fogriders, Foghoppers, Cavalry, Firecrackers, the Buzz and the Independence from the list of monikers they presented to some focus groups. The new list adds the Catalysts, Squad and Truth.
The release states other “popular” options for the University’s new moniker, like the Patriots, Eagles and Capitals, were not considered for the final list of moniker options because other professional and academic organizations already use those names.
The release states officials will launch “Moniker Madness,” a series of activities to create opportunities for students, faculty and staff to continue giving feedback on the moniker options.
Officials will begin the first round of feedback collection in a “First Impressions” stage from Feb. 16 to March 6, offering opportunities for input like randomly sampling students for a 15-minute online survey, opening an online rating system for all GW community members and an event during the men’s basketball game March 4 where attendees will be able to voice their moniker preference.
The announcement comes after the University’s Board of Trustees voted to retire the Colonials’ moniker in June after years of student pressure due to its connections to colonialism, slavery and racial discrimination. Officials plan to select a moniker for the 2023-24 academic year.
In January, officials released a set of guiding principles for the new moniker’s selection, ruling out the possibility of any variation of the Hippos, GW’s unofficial mascot since at least 2001, as the University’s new moniker.
This article appeared in the February 16, 2023 issue of the Hatchet.