About the University

George Washington was determined to have a great national university in the nation’s capital. His hope was that students from all parts of the country would gain a first-hand knowledge of the practice as well as the theory of republican government while being instructed in the arts and sciences. He bequeathed 50 shares of The Potomac Company “towards the endowment of a University to be established within the limits of the District of Columbia, under the auspices of the General Government, if that government should incline to extend a fostering hand towards it.” Despite Washington’s intentions, The Potomac Company folded and Congress never extended a “fostering hand,” so the University did not take shape until a group of Baptist clergymen led by Reverend Luther Rice took up the cause. They raised funds for the purchase of a site and petitioned Congress for a charter. Congress insisted on giving the institution a nonsectarian charter stating “That persons of every religious denomination shall be capable of being elected Trustees; nor shall any person, either as President, Professor, Tutor, or pupil, be refused admittance into said College, or denied any of the privileges, immunities, or advantages thereof, for or on account of his sentiments in matters of religion.”

Columbian College, as it was originally named, took up residence on College Hill, a 46-acre tract between the present 14th and 15th Streets extending from Florida Avenue to Columbia Road. The name of the institution was changed in 1873 to Columbian University and in 1904 to The George Washington University.

In 1912, the University purchased 2023 G Street and rented 2024 Street, NW, establishing what would become its Foggy Bottom campus. Today, more than 100 buildings are situated on 43 acres in the heart of Washington, DC, bordered by the White House, John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, State Department, and World Bank, as well as numerous federal agencies and national galleries and museums.

GW’s Virginia Science and Technology Campus, initiated for graduate studies, research projects, and professional development programs, is located along the high-tech corridor on Route 7, just to the west of Route 28, in Loudoun County. In 1998, GW established The George Washington University at Mount Vernon College; the Mount Vernon Campus is on Foxhall Road in Northwest Washington.

Currently, the University’s enrollments total more than 27,100, of which 11,200 are undergraduates, about 15,500 are graduate and professional students, and some 400 are non-degree students. GW students come from all 50 states and about 140 different countries.

Mission Statement

The George Washington University, an independent academic institution chartered by the Congress of the United States in 1821, dedicates itself to furthering human well-being. The University values a dynamic, student-focused community stimulated by cultural and intellectual diversity and built upon a foundation of integrity, creativity, and openness to the exploration of new ideas.

The George Washington University, centered in the national and international crossroads of Washington, DC, commits itself to excellence in the creation, dissemination, and application of knowledge.

To promote the process of lifelong learning from both global and integrative perspectives, the University provides a stimulating intellectual environment for its diverse students and faculty. By fostering excellence in teaching, the University offers outstanding learning experiences for full-time and part-time students in undergraduate, graduate, and professional programs in Washington, DC, the nation, and abroad. As a center for intellectual inquiry and research, the University emphasizes the linkage between basic and applied scholarship, insisting that the practical be grounded in knowledge and theory. The University acts as a catalyst for creativity in the arts, the sciences, and the professions by encouraging interaction among its students, faculty, staff, alumni, and the communities it serves.

The George Washington University draws upon the rich array of resources from the National Capital Area to enhance its educational endeavors. In return, the University, through its students, faculty, staff, and alumni, contributes talent and knowledge to improve the quality of life in metropolitan Washington, DC.


The George Washington University is accredited by its regional accrediting agency, the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

Columbian College of Arts and Sciences

In Columbian College of Arts and Sciences, the bachelor and master of fine arts degree programs in interior architecture are accredited by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation. The Department of Chemistry is on the approved list of the  American Chemical Society. The doctor of philosophy program in clinical psychology in the Department of Psychology and the doctor of professional psychology program in clinical psychology in the Department of Professional Psychology are accredited by the American Psychological Association. The master of arts degree program in speech–language pathology is accredited by the Education and Training Board of the Boards of Examiners in Speech–Language Pathology and Audiology. The master in public administration and the master of public policy degree programs are on the approved list of the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration. The master of forensic science degree programs in forensic chemistry, and forensic molecular biology are accredited by the Forensic Science Education Programs Accreditation Commission. The Art Therapy program is accredited by the American Art Therapy Association. The art and design programs in the former Corcoran College of Art and Design are accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design.

School of Business

The School of Business is a member of AACSB International–The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business; the Association accredits its undergraduate and graduate business administration and accountancy programs. The programs in accountancy satisfy the educational requirements for the certified public accountant and the certified management accountant professional examinations.

Graduate School of Education and Human Development

The Graduate School of Education and Human Development is a charter member of the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education and is accredited under the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation as a National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education legacy program and the District of Columbia State Education Agency, Office of the State Superintendent of Education, for its eligible master’s, specialist, and doctoral degree programs; the master’s programs in school counseling, clinical mental health counseling, and rehabilitation counseling, and the doctoral program in counseling are accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs.

School of Engineering and Applied Science

In the School of Engineering and Applied Science, the bachelor of science programs in civil, mechanical,  biomedical, systems, electrical, and computer engineering are accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, Inc. The bachelor of science in computer science program is accredited by the Computing Accreditation Commission of ABET, Inc.

Elliott School of International Affairs

The Elliott School of International Affairs is a member of the Association of Professional Schools of International Affairs.

Law School

The Law School is a charter member of the Association of American Law Schools and is approved by the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar of the American Bar Association.

School of Medicine and Health Sciences

The School of Medicine and Health Sciences has had continuous approval by its accrediting body, which is currently the Liaison Committee on Medical Education, sponsored jointly by the American Medical Association and the Association of American Medical Colleges. The medical laboratory science program is accredited by the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Science. The Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs has accredited the program in physician assistant. The physical therapy program is accredited by the Commission on the Accreditation of Physical Therapist Education of the American Physical Therapy Association.

School of Nursing

In the School of Nursing, the bachelor of science and master of science degree programs in nursing, and the doctor of nursing practice are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education. The bachelor of science program in nursing is approved by the Virginia Board of Nursing; the master of science and the doctor of nursing practice are approved by the Washington, DC Board of Nursing.

Milken Institute School of Public Health

The Milken Institute School of Public Health is accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health. The master of health administration program is accredited by the National Association of Long Term Care Administrator Boards and the Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education.


Board of Trustees

The University is privately endowed and is governed by a Board of Trustees of which the President of the University is an ex officio member.

Nelson A. Carbonell, Jr., Chair
Ellen M. Zane, Vice Chair
Grace E. Speights, Secretary

W. Scott Amey, Chairman, Amyx, Inc.
Gabbi Baker, Account Supervisor, OgilvyOne Worldwide
Christine Piorkowski Barth, Chief Financial Officer and Chief Compliance Officer, Harren Equity Partners, LLC
Charles R. Bendit, Co-Chief Executive Officer, Taconic Investment Partners
Roslyn Brock, Chairman Emerita, NAACP National Board of Directors
Nelson A. Carbonell, Jr., Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Snowbird Capital
Mark Chichester, Vice Chair, Atlas Research, LLC
Amr A. ElSawy, President and Chief Executive Officer, Noblis, Inc.
Peter Harrison, Chief Executive Officer, Snag
Diana Henriques, Contributing Writer, The New York Times
A. Michael Hoffman, Co-founder and Chairman, Palamon Capital Partners
Madeleine Jacobs, Retired Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer, American Chemical Society
Todd Klein, Partner, Revolution Growth
Thomas J. LeBlanc, President of the George Washington University
Chelsea Lenhart, Analyst, U.S. Department of Transportation, Office of Inspector General
Ann Walker Marchant, Chief Executive Officer, Walker Marchant Group
Judith Lane Rogers, Principal, Anne Bradstreet Early Childhood Center
Grace Speights, Partner, Morgan Lewis’s Labor and Employment Practice
Avram Tucker, Chief Executive Officer and Co-founder, TM Financial Forensics, LLC
George W. Wellde, Jr., Former Vice Chairman of the Securities Division, Goldman, Sachs
Ellen M. Zane, Chief Executive Officer Emeritus and Vice Chairman, Board of Trustees, Tufts Medical Center

Officers of Administration

The University

Thomas J. LeBlanc, President
Forrest Maltzman, Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs
Mark Diaz, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer
Beth Nolan, Senior Vice President and General Counsel   

Deans of the Schools

Columbian College of Arts and Sciences—Paul Wahlbeck, Interim Dean
School of Business—Anuj Mehrotra
Graduate School of Education and Human Development—Michael J. Feuer
School of Engineering and Applied Science—Rumana Riffat, Interim Dean
Elliott School of International Affairs—Reuben E. Brigety II
Law School—Blake D. Morant
School of Medicine and Health Sciences—Jeffrey S. Akman
School of Nursing—Pamela R. Jeffries
College of Professional Studies—Christopher J. Deering, Interim Dean
Milken Institute School of Public Health—Lynn R. Goldman

Degrees offered by the George Washington University

Columbian College of Arts and Sciences: Bachelor of Arts (B.A.), Bachelor of Fine Arts (B.F.A.), Bachelor of Science (B.S.), Master of Arts (M.A.), Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.), Master of Forensic Sciences (M.F.S.), Master of Public Administration (M.P.A.), Master of Public Policy (M.P.P.), Master of Science (M.S.), Master of Philosophy (M.Phil.), Master of Psychology (M.Psy.), Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.), and Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.)

School of Medicine and Health Sciences: Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences (B.S.H.S.), Master of Science in Health Sciences (M.S.H.S.), Doctor of Medicine (M.D.), Doctor of Occupational Therapy (O.T.D.), Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.), and Doctor of Physical Therapy (D.P.T.)

Law School: Juris Doctor (J.D.), Master of Laws (LL.M.), Master of Studies in Law (M.S.L.), and Doctor of Juridical Science (S.J.D.)

School of Engineering and Applied Science: Bachelor of Science (B.S.), Bachelor of Arts (B.A.), Master of Science (M.S.), Master of Engineering (M.Eng.), Engineer (Engr.), Applied Scientist (App.Sc.), Doctor of Engineering (D.Eng.), and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

Graduate School of Education and Human Development: Master of Arts in Education and Human Development (M.A.Ed.&H.D.), Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.), Master of Education (M.Ed.), Master of Human Resource Management (M.H.R.M), Education Specialist (Ed.S.), Doctor of Education (Ed.D.), and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

School of Business: Bachelor of Accountancy (B.Accy.), Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A.), Bachelor of Science (B.S.), Master of Accountancy (M.Accy.), Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.), Master of Science in Business Analytics (M.S.B.A.), Master of Science in Finance (M.S.F.), Master of Science in Government Contracts (M.S.G.C.), Master of Science in Information Systems Technology (M.S.I.S.T.), Master of Science in Project Management (M.S.P.M.), Master of Tourism Administration (M.T.A.), and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

Elliott School of International Affairs: Bachelor of Arts (B.A.), Master of Arts (M.A.), Master of International Policy and Practice (M.I.P.P.), and Master of International Studies (M.I.S.)

Milken Institute School of Public Health: Bachelor of Science (B.S.), Master of Science (M.S.), Master of Public Health (M.P.H.), Master of Health Administration (M.H.A.), Doctor of Public Health (Dr.P.H.), and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

College of Professional Studies: Associate in Professional Studies (A.P.S.), Bachelor of Professional Studies (B.P.S.), and Master of Professional Studies (M.P.S.)

School of Nursing: Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.), Master of Science in Nursing (M.S.N.), Doctor of Nursing Practice (D.N.P.)