GW Welcomes Students Back to Campus

From carnival games to a silent disco, enjoy the return to campus with these community events.

Weeks of Welcome logo
August 23, 2021

As the university’s vaccine requirement, in combination with indoor mask-wearing and testing, contributes to GW’s layered approach to the safe resumption of in-person teaching, learning and working this fall, the George Washington University Division for Student Affairs plans a series of free in-person and virtual events to safely bring returning and new students together to kick off the academic year.

Below is a short list of highlights. For more, check out the Weeks of Welcome calendar. 

Aug. 25 at 11:30 a.m. through Aug. 28 at 4 p.m. Welcome Days of Service
Various locations
Registration required

Organize and decorate classrooms at local K-12 schools, rip out invasive species at Rock Creek Park or help transcribe and digitize historic artifacts from the Smithsonian Collection right at your desk—there’s a service opportunity for every set of interests. Join the Honey W. Nashman Center for Civic Engagement and Public Service for this welcome week tradition, featuring both in-person and virtual chances to connect with the community and engage with friends and neighbors.

Aug. 28 at 11 a.m. Convocation
Charles E. Smith Center
600 22nd St., NW

Incoming students start getting to know GW’s academic and civic community, including senior administrators, at this annual opening ceremony.

Aug. 28 at 7 p.m. First Night
University Yard
H St. between 20th and 21st streets, NW

First Night is an annual tradition that brings the entire community together to celebrate the start of a new school year. This year’s outdoor offerings include free pizza, carnival games, inflatable attractions, a 100-foot slide, a GooseChase competitive scavenger hunt and more—including chances to win GW swag, Bluetooth speakers or an iPad.

Sept. 3 at 4 p.m. Org Fair Friday and MSSC Block Party
University Yard
H St. between 20th and 21st streets, NW
Registration requested

Get to know hundreds of student organizations every Friday in September with this ongoing weekly fair. The first Org Fair Friday also includes the MSSC Block Party, an energetic annual celebration and showcase that helps students feel connected to the diverse GW community through the Multicultural Student Services Center.

Sept. 4 at 10 a.m. Hike to Marys Rock
Meet at Kogan Plaza
2121 H St., NW
Registration required

GW’s campus is in the heart of Washington, D.C., but natural beauty is easy to access with the help of GW TRAiLS, the university’s outdoor recreation and leadership group. Register through Engage to join this hike to one of the Appalachian Trail’s most picturesque overlooks—or sign up for other scheduled trips this fall, including a beach trip on Sept. 5, kayaking and paddleboarding on the Potomac on Sept. 6, indoor climbing on Sept. 12 or hiking and yoga at Sky Meadows on Sept. 18.

Sept. 4 at 8 p.m. Program Board Presents: Fall Comedy Show
Charles E. Smith Center
600 22nd St., NW

The Program Board kicks off the semester with its annual comedy show, featuring two major comedians for a night to remember—details to come. The event is open to all GW students and alumni. Follow Program Board on Instagram to stay updated.

Sept. 9 at 9 p.m. Silent Disco
Potomac Square (outdoor event space behind Tonic)
2036 G St., NW
Registration required

All the bops, none of the noise complaints. Enjoy free snacks and a chance to win prizes like AirPods or the TikTok-famous Donwell Galaxy Projector at this headphones-only dance party. To ensure a safe event with access for everyone, students planning to attend should register through Engage for one of three hourlong “dance shifts” between 9 p.m. and midnight.

Student Life