GW Cares

Our Community Responds

The GW Cares update provides examples of how our community is addressing the coronavirus pandemic, including stories of caring from our institution and its people.

For nearly 200 years GW has worked across disciplines for the common good. This continues to be a hallmark of the GW community. We hope that you and your loved ones remain safe and healthy and that you find inspiration and value from the stories and engagement opportunities that follow.

Caring for Our Community

GW hanging banner

Online Guide Connects D.C. Community to Pandemic Resources

In March, fourth-year medical student Harleen Marwah rallied a group of her School of Medicine and Health Sciences classmates to craft “D.C. COVID Connect,” an online guide offering accurate information about COVID-19 in the Washington, D.C., area. Today 70 medical students and faculty post daily transportation updates, information about testing facilities, self-care and wellness resources, and volunteer opportunities.

Check out the guide →

Amtrak train

Helping Keep Amtrak on Track

Researchers at Milken Institute School of Public Health are working with Amtrak to provide ongoing technical expertise and guidance to enhance its comprehensive coronavirus pandemic response. “We look forward to sharing knowledge and data to help Amtrak navigate this ever-changing environment as a result of the widespread coronavirus,” says Melissa J. Perry, professor and chair of the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health at GWSPH.

Read the press release →


GW to Conduct Clinical Trial for COVID-19 Experimental Vaccine

The university will participate as a trial site in a Phase 3 clinical trial of the mRNA-1273 vaccine, co-developed by scientists from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and the biotechnology company Moderna, Inc. GW is one of approximately 90 sites in the U.S. selected to take part in clinical trials.

Learn about GW’s efforts →

social distancing at work

Can We Socially Distance in the Office?

Melissa Perry, Chair of the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health at GW’s Milken Institute School of Public Health, comments on the psychological challenges of socially distancing in the workplace.

Read the Money article →

GW Cares Student Assistance Fund

As the impacts of COVID-19 continue to unfold and affect daily life, many in the GW community are showing support for students by giving to this fund, which assists any undergraduate or graduate student facing financial hardship, including in paying for housing, food or technology expenses; offsetting income from lost part-time jobs; or subsidizing transportation for those traveling home to complete the spring semester virtually.


Learn more and make a gift →

The Latest from GW Science and Health

COVID-19 vaccine testing

GW Labs Leading COVID-19 Vaccine Trials in D.C.

As part of a nationwide effort, GW is conducting Phase 3 clinical trials for the COVID-19 vaccine developed by Moderna and the National Institutes of Health. Dr. David Diemert, professor of medicine, who is co-leading the vaccine trial process with Manya Magnus, professor of epidemiology, says he is “cautiously optimistic.”

Watch the clip →

man spray washing a crocodile statue

Which Office Safety Techniques Really Matter?

While the private sector has stepped in with new tools and strategies to slow the spread of COVID-19, technological solutions can only go so far. David Michaels, professor of environmental and occupational health at GWSPH, says “the most important emphasis should be on controlling airborne exposure.” He notes that more effective mechanisms of reducing airborne transmission are indoor masking, maintaining distance, and increasing airflow.

Find out how the office is changing →

Mona Zaghloul

Miniature Device Could Instantly Diagnose COVID-19

GW researchers from the School of Engineering and Applied Science and Milken Institute School of Public Health have developed a miniscule device that could allow public health professionals to use cell phones to immediately diagnose and track COVID-19 infection. They recently received a $50,000 COVID-19 Technology Maturation Grant to bring their sensor to market faster.

Learn more about this promising tech  →

color-coded chart

An Easy-to-Use Guide to Assessing Risk in a Pandemic

Is going to the dentist more dangerous than grocery shopping? James Phillips, assistant professor of emergency medicine at GW’s School of Medicine and Health Sciences, helped create the COVID-19 Risk Index, a color-coded chart that compares the relative risks of everyday activities.

Find out what’s risky →

Bright Lights

Photos That Will Last a Lifetime
Sonali Shukla, a Class of 2020 Milken Institute School of Public Health graduate student, was having a hard time taking photos in her regalia in front of the Lincoln Memorial. A local photographer saw her struggling and offered to take her photo and send it to her afterwards. The email she shared wasn’t working, so the photographer turned to Twitter in a search for Sonali, and 1,600 retweets later, Sonali got her photo. Class of 2020, we’ll see you next year on the National Mall!

View the Twitter thread →

A Graduation Stage of His Own
After 17 years of dedication and hard work, Darnell Lee earned an Ed.D. from GW’s Graduate School of Education and Human Development in March. He wasn’t able to walk across the Commencement stage like he had dreamed, but his family and friends gave him a celebration he won't forget.

Watch the moving video → 

A Moment of Honor: Light a Virtual Candle
The GW community is invited to honor the memory of someone you have lost or recognize the courage of someone who has cared by lighting a virtual candle. The GW School of Medicine and Health Sciences, The GW Medical Faculty Associates, and GW Hospital created this special dedication for reflection by our GW community.

Light a candle →


Submit Your Own Bright Lights

News and Story Archive

Special Thanks from President LeBlanc

Watch the short video greeting →

Warning: Don’t Fall for this COVID-19 Scam
Buzzfeed journalist and inaugural Knight Fellow for GW's Institute of Data, Democracy, and Politics (IDDP), Craig Silverman and IDDP researcher Trevor Davis have uncovered more than a billion emails promoting disposable face masks at 10 times the market price.

Read the Q & A →

High-Tech Fix Helps D.C. FIrst Responders
To avoid exposure to COVID-19, first responders wear a viral filter on their masks when working with patients in respiratory distress. When supply lines ran dry, GW’s Department of Emergency Medicine Training Center helped 3D-print and deliver more than 1,700 filters to protect DC’s Fire and EMS personnel.

Learn more about this life-saving equipment →

6 Tips for Tackling Stress While Sheltering in Place 
We all face new stressors during a global pandemic. Delishia Pittman, assistant professor of counseling in GW’s Graduate School of Education and Human Development and a board-certified counseling psychologist, shares six simple things you can do each day to minimize stress.

Review her tips →

Who Are GW’s Essential Workers?
While most of the university works remotely, 1,300 designated employees are not. Meet three dedicated essential staff members who are keeping GW moving.

Read the GW Today interview →

Alumnus Delivers Donated Food with FLARE
In 2019 Chris Yeazel, ESIA BA ’06, TSPPPA MPA ’15, launched FLARE, an electric shuttle service offering  sustainable transportation in Arlington, Va. Once the pandemic hit, Yeazel stepped up to help, shuttling hundreds of pounds of  donations to the Arlington Food Assistance Center.

Read more about FLARE →

GW Law Student Helps NYC Get PPE
Thomas Hendrix, a retired Army Green Beret, has been working around the clock to help the City of New York procure critical medical supplies. Hendrix and the team at his venture advisory firm have helped streamline manufacturing, purchase supplies, and find surplus equipment in storage.

Learn more about Hendrix’s tireless work →

Men's water polo goalkeeper is part of team creating touchless hospital screening system
Matt Taylor, the GW water polo graduate student, is working on an interdisciplinary team of university students and faculty seeking to help GW Hospital design touchless screening kiosks for a more efficient check-in process.

Read more →

How Does Twitter Shape the Conversation around COVID-19?
SEAS associate professor David Broniatowski is using web and social media data to understand important problems in public health, including shifting attitudes toward vaccination. His research hopes to show the effect of social media trends on real-world behavior—some of which may not be observable until the future. Mention Knight $5 million and national context.

Read more →

Division for Student Affairs Provides Virtual Support
DSA is providing comprehensive well-being services and activities to students during the virtual learning period.

Learn more →

GW Community Collaborates to Produce PPEs for Hospital Workers
An interdisciplinary team of GW students and faculty 3-D printed masks and face shields to protect health care workers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Read more →

School of Nursing Alumnus is Commanding Officer of USNS Comfort
Patrick Amersbach, SON DNP ‘13, serves as the commanding officer for the USNS Comfort stationed in NYC.

Read more →

Managing Your Personal Finances During Coronavirus 
GW’s Global Financial Literacy Excellence Center has created a free resource hub, Managing Personal Finances During Coronavirus, that provides guidance on how to manage personal finances during the pandemic as well as resources, articles, op-eds by Director Annamaria Lusardi, and tools to assist with this management and the building financial knowledge. 

View available resources →

Generous Donors Support GW Cares Student Assistance Fund
457 students have received assistance from GW Cares, totaling $179,470 in awards granted to students, mostly for emergency transportation and emergency housing assistance.

Learn more and support →

How GW Faculty Will Help Safely Reopen D.C.

Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser has appointed Dr. Lynn Goldman, dean of Milken Institute School of Public Health, to “ReOpen DC,” the District’s advisory group guiding municipal leaders to bring the city safely back to life. Dr. Goldman heads a working group on Human Services, Social Services, and Health and is joined by GW SMHS professor Jehan “Gigi” El-Bayoumi, MD, RESD ’88, and James D’Orta, MD, RESD ’85.

Learn how the committee plans to reopen D.C. →

Coursework, Volunteerism Preps GW Senior for New Goal

GW Soccer goalkeeper Noah Lubin is playing offense in the fight against coronavirus as an Emergency Department Technician at GW Hospital. The graduating neuroscience major is applying what he learned in a physician-led course in the GW School of Medicine and Health Sciences and as a volunteer EMT.

There’s much more →

Two Alumni Docs Fight On in New York City

When New York City hospitals were overwhelmed with an endless stream of coronavirus patients, Dr. Luke Fey, CCAS BS ’12, and Dr. Alexandra Cummings, CCAS BS ’14, found themselves on the front lines of a global crisis.

Fey and Cummings share their experiences →

A Message from President Emeritus Stephen J. Trachtenberg

The former GW president shares a personal message of encouragement for the GW community.

Watch his brief video message →

GW Fund Helps Grad Student Trapped by Closed Borders

An Elliott School student from France boarded a plane for a trip home just a few hours before the U.S. suspended travel from Europe. Travel inside France was banned, too, so he lives in limbo in a rented room in a town far from family or friends. Thanks to generous donors, GW Cares was able to support him in his time of need and enabled him to focus on his last semester of classes.

Give to the GW Cares Student Assistance Fund or GW COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund today →

Students and Faculty Volunteer in Communities Nationwide

More than 500 GW students and faculty members have continued volunteer work and service-learning projects while at home — sewing masks for the Navajo Nation, volunteering at homeless shelters in NYC, and delivering groceries to neighbors.

See how the GW community takes action →

Assessing Your Risk: Should I Stay or Should I Go?

As many states begin to reopen, people have questions about which activities are safe. Over the last month the media has sought out GWSPH professor of epidemiology Amanda Castel, an expert in infectious diseases, for guidance on staying safe as we adapt.

Read Dr. Castel’s recommendations →

Nanofiber Research Could Spin New Solutions to Mask Shortages

The National Science Foundation has funded SEAS associate professor Danmeng Shuai to develop nanofiber fabrics for masks and air filters to more effectively prevent transmission of COVID-19. Dr. Shuai and his collaborator and wife, Yun Shen, an assistant research professor in GWSPH, are developing mesh so fine that the fibers are invisible to the naked eye.

Read about the research that could revolutionize PPE →

GW Directs All CARES Act Funding to Support Students

The university has been allocated approximately $9.1 million from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund, and will distribute all of the funds to students. GW will distribute grants to more than 4,600 undergraduate, graduate and professional students who demonstrated the highest financial need.

Learn more about how GW is using CARES Act Funding →

Temporary Housing Keeps Newborn Safe

At the end of December, Dr. William Fenner Griffin became a father. A few weeks later COVID-19 forced much of the country to a standstill, and the radiology and diagnostic resident at GW Hospital found himself torn between his commitment to save lives and concern for putting his newborn at risk. The GW Graduate Medical Education Office and the GW COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund stepped in, and Dr. Griffin received free temporary housing so he could remain isolated from his family and help keep GW Hospital running.

“It was a huge relief” — read Dr. Griffin’s story →

On Justice: Reflections from GW Administrators and Faculty

The recent racial incidents in our nation spark deep emotions and memories. GW faculty and administrators share their reactions to the deaths of black Americans.

Read their reactions →

A Tale of Two Pandemics

Dr. Venessa Marie Perry, GWSPH MPH ’99, explains that Black Americans are battling two pandemics at once — COVID-19 and racism. She calls for people to “recognize the disproportionate burden” on Black people and to “check on your Black friends and colleagues. We’re not okay. And you shouldn’t be either.”

Read her powerful message →

Protesting in a Pandemic: How to Protect Your Health

James Phillips, MD, assistant professor of emergency medicine at GW, also serves as a medical analyst for CNN. As protests over racial bias unfold in communities nationally, Dr. Phillips and state officials weigh in on containing a virus that already disproportionately affects communities of color.

Protect yourself and others →

Infodemic: The Battle Against COVID-19 Misinformation

The World Health Organization calls COVID-19 an infodemic: “an overabundance of information” that makes it nearly impossible to find trustworthy, reliable guidance. As analysts track false rumors to curb their spread, Neil Johnson, physics professor and researcher with GW’s Institute for Data, Democracy, and Politics, explains his research into online communities that are exploiting the pandemic to spread racism and misinformation.

Learn how a pandemic became an infodemic →

Navigating the Post-Pandemic Job Market

Whether you are recently unemployed because of pandemic-related shutdowns or a new grad entering the workforce, this job market is unfamiliar to all. Professor Nancy Augustine from GW’s Trachtenberg School of Public Policy and Public Administration joins the Kojo Nnamdi radio show to offer advice for job-hunting in a new economic reality.

What will it take to land your next gig? →

For Black Emergency Doctors in D.C., the Pandemic Is Personal

“I think as a black doctor, it’s my responsibility to do everything in my power to make sure that a black patient is getting fair treatment,” says Dr. Janice Blanchard, associate professor of emergency medicine at SMHS, speaking on the disparity in death rate for black D.C. residents. She and Dr. Marcee Wilder, an SMHS research fellow and physician, share their perspectives on treating black patients who make up 75 percent of the District’s COVID-19 fatalities.

Read their stories →

Back to Campus: Medical Students Resume Clinical Rotations

A cohort of about 80 fourth-year medical students returned to campus this week to finish clinical rotations, marking the beginning of the university’s return to an in-person academic operation.

Read about their return to Foggy Bottom →

How One Pandemic Exposed Another

Black Americans are disproportionately bearing the brunt of multiple crises: high unemployment, police violence, and a deadly infectious disease. Dr. Leana Wen, visiting professor of health policy and management and distinguished fellow in the Fitzhugh Mullan Institute for Health Workforce Equity at GWSPH, first declared racism a public health issue in 2015. This week, she says “these are interrelated crises — the crisis of racism and inequality that is now converging with the crisis of COVID-19.”

Read the New York Times article →

The Post-Pandemic Economy: Is There a Road to Recovery?

COVID-19 has decimated the U.S. economy with more than 20 million jobs lost and a forecasted second quarter GDP loss of over 30 percent — the biggest quarterly decline ever. Is there a blueprint for recovery? Associate Professor of Economics Tara Sinclair discusses where the economy goes from here — and how to prepare for a new normal.

Read the Q&A →

In Photos: Devotion and Defiance at D.C. Protests

Eric Lee, a photojournalist and master’s student at the Corcoran School of the Arts and Design, has been covering the Black Lives Matter protests in Washington, D.C. For Lee, it is his duty to be at the center of the action, chronicling the raw and painful demonstrations with nuance and compassion.

See Lee’s powerful photos →

First Look at the Fall 2020 Back to Campus Plan

President Thomas J. LeBlanc shares details of the plan, which focuses on the measures GW will undertake for the health and safety of the university community this fall.

Read the president’s message →

GW Gradually Ramps Up On-Campus Research Activities

GW opened laboratory spaces last week, allowing some researchers to resume their work under newly implemented guidelines from local, state, and national public health authorities.

Read the guidelines →

5 Ways to Be an Ally Beyond Social Media

Imani Cheers, professor of digital storytelling, and Antwan Jones, professor of sociology, identify ways everyone can be an ally to the black community. “Do not let this be a moment, but a new or renewed way of interacting with the world around you,” says Jones.

Learn how to take action →

What Virtual Pride Month Celebrations Mean for Queer Youth

Without in-person Pride celebrations this year, LGBTQ+ advocates and parents are working to find new ways to send their hugs to vulnerable queer youth. A 2019 study by David Huebner, MPH, an associate professor of prevention and community health, found that two years after children come out as lesbian, gay, or bisexual, many parents still say it’s moderately or very hard for them to adjust to the news.

Learn how to lend your support →

Zooming with the Stars

Richard Weitz, CCAS BA ’91, and his 17-year-old daughter, Demi, are the masterminds behind Quarantunes, intimate, invite-only Zoom concerts that have become a way for celebrities to help their communities during the pandemic. In May, they raised $3 million in donations for charities around the country with help from performances by Seal, Hozier, and more.

Check out the A-listers who’ve tuned in →

E-learning Tips

Graduate School of Education and Human Development Professor Ryan Watkins shares his tips for e-learning as many students transition to virtual learning environments.

Watch the video on YouTube

GW Lab Scales Model COVID Testing with U.S. Military
Easy, scalable COVID-19 testing is key to understanding the virus and reopening the economy. The Milken Institute School of Public Health’s specialized Biosafety Laboratory is partnering with Curative, Inc. and the U.S. Air Force to process 50,000 COVID test per day, inform research, and model the rapid testing system our nation urgently needs.

Learn more about this innovative partnership →

GWSPH Dean Tapped for National Science Advisory Group
The nation’s brightest minds are working around the clock to produce COVID-19 treatments and vaccines. Scientists to Stop COVID-19, a 12-person team of prominent scientists, including GWSPH Dean Lynn Goldman, is advising national policymakers with key proposals to fight the novel coronavirus and restart the economy safely.

Read about these proposals →

How One Doctor Tells Patients They Have COVID-19
Every day Caroline Schulman, M.D., a third-year resident in emergency medicine at GW Hospital, calls patients who have tested positive for COVID-19. She shared her personal story with STAT, offering a rare peek into the ways that law, medicine, and social conditions impact her patients.

Read her personal story → 

Med Student Volunteers Offer Crucial ICU Support 
COVID-19 has brought a crushing workload to the intensive care unit at GW Hospital. A medical student and a professor invented a new volunteer program to engage medical students as scribes to help physicians document patient treatment plans.

Read the story →

New COVID-19 Specimen Bank Accelerates Research
A new coronavirus specimen bank housed at Science and Engineering Hall, will allow GW researchers to pursue cutting edge questions about the virus, antibodies and vaccine development.

Read more about projects in the works →

5 Things New Moms Should Know About COVID-19
Dr. Leana Wen gave birth to her second child just a few weeks ago. Get advice for new mothers from Dr. Wen, a visiting professor at Milken Institute School of Public Health and the former health commissioner of Baltimore.

Get Dr. Wen’s advice for new moms →

Why Are We Having Strange Dreams During COVID-19?
Dr. Daniel Lieberman, SMHS professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences, explores why some people are having intense dreams during the stay-at-home lockdown.

Find out more →

Listen: Surviving a Pandemic in the Navajo Nation
Orthopedic surgeon Dr. John “Bull” Durham of the Navajo Nation in Arizona describes the dire lack of personal protective equipment in his community in the third episode of the “Healthy You: Surviving a Pandemic” podcast from GWSPH/SMPA.

Listen to Dr. Durham discuss their reusable gown program →

GW Nursing Alum Leads California Field Hospital
GW Nursing alumna Leah McElhanon, BSN '18, MSN '19, wasn't going to let a furlough stop her from helping during the coronavirus pandemic. Now, she's leading the charge at a field hospital at the Santa Clara Convention Center, working 12-hour shifts to help COVID-19 patients.

Read more →

The COVID-19 Death Rate for Black Americans Outpaces Any Group 
GW Nursing alumna Leah McElhanon, BSN '18, MSN '19, wasn't going to let a furlough stop her from helping during the coronavirus pandemic. Now, she's leading the charge at a field hospital at the Santa Clara Convention Center, working 12-hour shifts to help COVID-19 patients.

Read more →

New Tool Shows Which States Could Face Healthcare Workforce Shortages 
Dr. Polly Pittman and researchers at the Fitzhugh Mullan Institute for Health Workforce Equity, based at Milken Institute School of Public Health, have created a new tool that reveals which states could face shortages of essential health care workers as COVID-19 infections peak.

Read more →

Public Health Webinar
Tune in every Friday at 11:30am for COVID-19 updates from GWSPH Dean Lynn Goldman.

Connect with WebEx →

Dialysis Care During COVID-19
Fresenius Kidney Care in Hyattsville, Maryland, is working in collaboration with the Division of Renal Diseases and Hypertension at GW to provide care to patients with kidney disease who are under investigation for COVID-19 and for COVID-19 positive patients.

Read more →

US News & World Report: Alumnus Sees Patients Differently in the Time of Coronavirus
Matt Hahn, SMHS MD '97, practices family medicine in a rural part of Maryland. He shares with US News & World Report how his practice is adapting to telehealth.

Read more →

Sustaining Our Critical Health Workforce During COVID-19
Dr. Polly Pittman, director of the Fitzhugh Mullan Institute for Health Workforce Equity, worked with directors of health workforce research centers to author a new piece in the New England Journal of Medicine that highlights state strategies to ensure and sustain the health workforce to meet patient needs during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Read more →

Pandemic May Trigger Increase in Domestic Violence
Dr. Amita Vyas authored a blog explaining why public health strategies to slow the spread and mitigate COVID-19 may lead to a rise in domestic violence.

Read more →

GW Physicians, Students Support DC COVID-19 Testing 
Mayor Muriel E. Bowser activated the Medical Reserve Corps (MRC), which supports the DC Department of Health by recruiting, training, and deploying volunteers to assist with emergencies. DC DOH asked GW SMHS to be the trainers and the planners to help them develop multiple drive-through testing sites in D.C. and a specific drive through testing process for first responders.

Read more →

Dr. Rachel Brem is a Breast Cancer Survivor and now a COVID-19 Survivor
Rachel Brem, M.D., professor of radiology at SMHS, and vice chair of radiology and director of the Breast Imaging and Intervention Center at the GW Medical Faculty Associates, shares her personal story about surviving breast cancer and COVID-19.

Read more →

Virtual reality technology enables the GW Hospital medical team to see into lungs of a COVID-19 patient for assessment and treatment.

Story and podcast →

Dr. William Borden, Chief Quality and Population Health Officer, offers some advice for dealing with the myriad of concerns during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Watch video →

5 things every woman needs to know about coronavirus, featuring Leana Wen, visiting professor of health policy and management and distinguished fellow at the Fitzhugh Mullan Institute of Health Workforce Equity

Story and interview →

Dr. Daniel Lieberman of the Department of Psychiatry and Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at GW School of Medicine and Health Sciences offers ideas on how to stay socially connected while social distancing.

Watch video →

Meet GW’s Virus Hunter

Virologist Dr. Christopher Mores works 14-hour days racing to stop the spread of COVID-19 from his GWSPH lab. He told NPR, “I’ve always liked the idea of hunting the thing that wants to hunt us.” Stumbling into biology as a sophomore, Mores is now a leader in research on an antibody test.

Dr. Mores discusses the hunt →

Health Crisis Highlights Disparity for African Americans in D.C.

In Washington, D.C., African Americans comprise less than half of the population, but account for nearly two-thirds of COVID-19 deaths. The Rodham Institute, housed at GW SMHS, is taking action to provide emergency food and other assistance to residents and health care workers in southeast D.C.

Rodham Institute takes action →

GW Launches COVID-19 Study to Protect Health Care Workers

Researchers at GWSPH, in collaboration with GW Hospital and GW SMHS, launched a new study testing GW health care workers for signs of infection and immunity to the virus that causes COVID-19. The study will identify asymptomatic health care workers so they can better protect their patients, colleagues, and families.

Learn more about the life-saving study →

How to Reduce Skin Irritation from Masks

Adam Friedman, MD, interim chair, Department of Dermatology at the School of Medicine and Health Sciences, shares helpful tips on avoiding skin irritation while wearing a face mask.

Dr. Friedman’s tips to save your skin →

Michigan’s Top Doctor Got Her Start in Health at GW

Joneigh S. Khaldun, MD, MPH ’13, is leading Michigan’s public health response and one of the strongest stay-at-home orders in the country. The practicing emergency medicine physician and chief medical executive for the state first learned how to integrate policy with public health science as a student at GW.

Learn how GW helped launch Dr. Khaldun’s career →

Alumna’s Clinic in a Suitcase

GW Nursing alumna Emily Ramshur, MSN ’15, is a family nurse practitioner and site lead at a quarantine hotel for the homeless in Washington, D.C. To fight the coronavirus, a rolling bag became Ramshur’s clinic, as she and her team care for the complex health needs of some of D.C.’s most vulnerable.

Read about her mobile clinic →

Tip Well: How to Stay Safe When Dining Out

As states reopen, restaurants are coming back to life. Michael Knight, MD, assistant professor of medicine and the patient safety officer at The George Washington University Medical Faculty Associates, comments on the risks of dining out and what you can do to keep yourself and others safe.

Should you go out to eat? →

Alumnus Developed Anti-Viral Drug Treating COVID-19

Richard Whitley, SMHS MD ’71, helped develop remdesivir, an antiviral medication created to combat MERS that is now being used to treat COVID-19. In a recent interview, Dr. Whitley offers a glimpse inside the race to develop a new drug and the process to get FDA approval for new treatments.

Read the interview →

GW Data to Help States Reopen Safely

According to a tool created by the Fitzhugh Mullan Institute for Health Workforce Equity, the U.S. will need 184,000 COVID-19 contact tracers to safely reopen and limit future waves of the virus. The Contact Tracing Workforce Estimator will help public health officials plan for the staff they will need to identify those at risk and keep the public safe as states reopen.

See the data for your state →

National Study Seeks to Better Define COVID-19

Andrew Meltzer, MD, associate professor of emergency medicine, is leading a comprehensive study to synthesize a clearer understanding of COVID-19 to better prepare in the event of a resurgence. The research team is working with 40 sites around the country to analyze 20,000 patients and develop a portrait of COVID-19 symptoms, risks, and positive outcomes.

Find out more about the study →

Nursing Alumna Supervises Intensive Care Group

Elizabeth Bailey, SON MSN ’20, trained to be a combat pilot for the U.S. Navy. The recent Nursing alumna reflects on the lessons she has learned managing a hospital COVID-19 unit in Annapolis, Md., and how GW helped her get started.

Read her story →

Researcher Advances Genetic Analysis to Combat COVID-19

What makes COVID-19 so uniquely infectious? Dr. Ali Rahnavard of the Computational Biology Institute at GWSPH received funding from the National Science Foundation to study genetic variability in the virus that causes COVID-19.

Learn about this game-changing technology →

Are You Staying Safe in the Sun?

As states loosen their stay-at-home orders, many of us are excited to get outside. But Adam Friedman, MD, interim chair, Department of Dermatology at the School of Medicine and Health Sciences, tells CNN listeners to practice safe sun.

How to have fun in the sun →

NASA Grant Funds Study of COVID-19’s Impact on Air Quality

Milken Institute School of Public Health has received a grant from NASA to study the impact of social distancing on air quality in cities around the world. Over the next year, the project will evaluate how air pollution has changed after schools and businesses shut down to contain the spread of the coronavirus.

Check in on air quality →

School of Nursing Receives $2.5 Million for Veterans’ Financial Assistance

William Conway, co-founder of The Carlyle Group, and his wife, Joanne, have given $2.5 million to the GW School of Nursing to offer financial assistance to veterans pursuing a bachelor of science degree in nursing. The largest gift in the school’s history will launch the William and Joanne Conway Transitioning Warriors Nursing Scholars Initiative, which will support more than 65 students over the next five years.

Learn more →

Road to Reopening: “This is a Marathon, Not a Sprint”

Dr. Amanda Castel, associate professor of epidemiology, contributes to the discussion about what socializing, going to work, and returning to school might look like as states reopen. Even then, will we find a new “normal”?

What to expect →

SMHS Students Put Skills to Use at Nonprofit Testing Site

Students at the GW School of Medicine and Health Sciences partnered with Bread for the City to help with testing, track results, and educate residents. Fourth-year medical student Margot Quinn says, “It has been amazing to feel engaged with patients again, to hear their stories, and to help advocate for the health and safety of our community.”

Read about their volunteer work →

Can COVID-19 Be Sexually Transmitted?

Dr. Melissa Perry, chair of the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health, calls for urgent research into whether COVID-19 can be sexually transmitted, its implications on male fertility, and preventative practices to combat the potential for secondary infections.

Read more about her hypothesis →

Rodham Institute Hosts Hillary Clinton for Impact Speaker Series

Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton joined Dr. Jehan “Gigi” El-Bayoumi, MD, RESD ’88, founding director of the Rodham Institute and professor of medicine, for a forum on “Working Toward Health Equity.” Discussing recent events, Clinton stated, “You have to start with the earliest experiences and you have to tackle the environment, tackle the stresses, and improve the function of our institutions if we’re going to take better care of everybody.”

Hear more from their discussion →

Stay Safe as Things Open Up

Dr. Michael G. Knight, patient safety officer and assistant professor of medicine, explains the risks of venturing out and ways to protect yourself when returning to restaurants, beaches, hair salons, and more.

Read the AARP Q&A →

How to Get Back to the Gym

As businesses reopen, Dr. Amanda Castel, MPH, professor of epidemiology, says we should exercise caution when returning to the gym. “Gyms do tend to be places where we do see a lot of germs,” says Castel.

See what to look out for →

Growing a Family in the Shadow of a Pandemic

Dr. Pooja Lakshmin, clinical assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences, spoke with The New York Times about the difficult decisions families face when conceiving and carrying a child during the COVID-19 crisis.

Read six families’ stories →

$25 Million Grant Helps Combat HIV in D.C.

The GW Milken Institute School of Public Health has received a five-year $25 million grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. In support of GW’s efforts to end the HIV epidemic, the grant will expand ongoing work to improve care and treatment for the diverse population of persons who are HIV positive.

Learn more →

Called to Serve: Veteran Graduates from GW School of Nursing

One GW Nursing graduate, Allison Hoffman, BSN ’20, who was awarded the Johnston Trust Scholarship for the summer of 2019, shares her story of how a scholarship to GW made the difference.

“To me, receiving this scholarship was confirmation that I was doing the right thing at the right time for the right reasons: attending nursing school at GW and focusing my full energies on that and not on trying to earn a living simultaneously to offset the costs. I was so energized and encouraged by receiving this scholarship,” says the former U.S. Marine.

Read the full story →

Call for Nominations: Monumental Alumni 
GW alumni change the world. To mark GW’s bicentennial, the university is launching a prominent new award to recognize alumni who have made significant contributions to society through their work and service.

Nominate an alumnus/a →

May 17: Cheer for the Class of 2020 
Save the date for May 17 at 11am and tune in for GW’s Commencement exercises.

Learn more →

Shake Things Up with a Quarantine Cocktail
"During a crisis, cocktail hour can be almost any hour," says alumna Ina Garten, the prolific chef, author, and television personality.

Make her favorite Cosmopolitan →

May 14: Toast GW Nursing’s 10th Anniversary
Ten years ago GW chartered GW Nursing. Raise a glass to a decade of changing lives!  

Say cheers →

May 6: Alumni Virtual Networking Hour
Connect with GW alumni around the world during a fun and free speed-networking hour. Exchange career tips and build your professional network in a range of industries.

Learn more and register ( →

Take a Moment to Meditate
Tune in to a Guided Meditation session and tune out the tension. Join GWSPH’s Lifestyle, Sport, and Physical Activity Program every evening from 8-8:30pm ET and on Fridays from 12-12:45pm ET.

Find the Zoom links →

50 Actions for 50 Years of Earth Day
GW’s Office of Sustainability has compiled 50 things you can do to care for yourself, your community, and our planet. Join the movement and share how you’re celebrating Earth Day every day.

Follow and share #50actionsfor50yearsGW →

Chalk-In is a GW tradition where students create chalk art before finals. This semester Chalk-In goes virtual. On Tuesday, April 28, check out Student Life on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook (@studentlifeatgw) to see what students create across the world. Share your own art by tagging @studentlifeatgw, and using #ChalkInstagram for a chance to be featured on the Instagram story!

Facebook page →

Student-Alumni GWebinar: Unlock Career Success: Knowing the Unwritten Rules Changes Everything"
Find out the keys to career success during a GWebinar on April 29 with alumna Christine Brown-Quinn, GWSB MBA ’92. She’ll share tips from her book, “Unlock Your Career Success: Knowing the Unwritten Rules Changes Everything” and offer interactive advice with participants. 


Virtual Guided Meditation
Guided Meditation every night from 8pm-8:30pm, and on Fridays from 12pm - 12:45pm with GWSPH’s LSPA program. (NOTE: Ends May 8 for this specific class.)

Join on Zoom →

Elliott Experts Weigh In
Join faculty and alumni experts from the Elliott School of International Affairs for a series of events to examine Europe's response to the pandemic, challenges to the transatlantic relationship, the global economy in the age of coronavirus, and lessons of Black Monday for today's U.S. stock market crisis.

View events →

Alumni Career Change Fellowship with Mission Collaborative
The GW Office of Alumni Relations has partnered with Mission Collaborative to offer the Alumni Career Change Fellowship, a 30-day online program to help alumni plan the search for a fulfilling career.

Learn more →

Delight in Discovery: Global Collections of Lloyd Cotsen
Led by GW Museum’s curator of education Lori Kartchner, this virtual exhibition tour features textiles made by cultures around the globe - from an Incan recording device to royal belt from the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Watch a video tour →

GWSPH/SMPA Podcast Series on COVID-19
GWSPH and SMPA have partnered together to launch a special COVID-19 series of GWSPH's podcast, "Healthy You." Each week, GWSPH experts will provide their insights and advice on various topics as it relates to COVID-19.

Listen or subscribe →

GW offers alumni opportunities to continue to learn and grow, including a virtual book club, online library resources, and an archive of professional development webinars.

Lifelong learning resources for alumni →

GW is postponing, canceling, or virtualizing all alumni and donor events through mid-May. We are communicating individually about each event with those who have already registered. To check the status of a specific event, please visit

May 17: #GWCommencement

Join us for a virtual celebration this Sunday to congratulate the Class of 2020 featuring speeches from GW student and administrative leaders and videos and photo messages from 2020 graduates. Ceremonies for individual schools and other divisions begin today and will continue throughout Sunday. Use #GWCommencement to follow the action and share your own words of wisdom and applause for this extraordinary class.

Join the celebration →

May 27: What Next? Your Five-Year Career Plan

With so much uncertainty in the world, we all need better plans for navigating the road ahead. Alumna and journalist Elana Lyn Gross, CCAS BA ’11, will show you how to create an actionable five-year plan for your career growth.

RSVP for the GWebinar →

Join a Virtual Book Club

The GW Virtual Book Club is a popular way to connect, have fun, and learn a thing or two. The next reading period starts on May 28, where you can choose one of three books to discuss with alumni from around the world.

Choose your own adventure →

This Fall: BYOBB to Virtual Colonials Weekend

“Bring Your Own Buff & Blue” to Colonials Weekend! This year, we are celebrating our community of alumni, families, students, and friends completely online. Join your fellow alumni for unique digital experiences, virtual reunion activities, and find new ways to engage with GW from home. We’re busy moving all the fun online, so stay tuned!

Learn more about Colonials Weekend 2020  →

June 3 GWebinar: “Growing Your Leadership for a More Fulfilling International Career”

Leading experts in international affairs share their tips for building a career as a leader internationally. Join GW parent Douglas Keh, who has 27 years of experience with the United Nations, and David Miller, who has worked internationally for more than two decades in agriculture and program management, for a conversation.

RSVP now →

June 4: Task Force on Naming Town Hall

The GW Board of Trustees has convened a Task Force on Naming to explore GW’s history of namings and develop the principles and processes to guide how buildings and other public spaces are named or renamed. Attend our Task Force on Naming Town Hall and share your ideas and feedback on process and outcomes.

Register and/or submit feedback →

June 10: Alumni Virtual Networking Hour

Connect with fellow GW alumni the world over for an hour of online speed-networking. Share your experiences, exchange career tips, and build your professional network from the comfort of your home.

Register now →

June 11: Learn a New Recipe, SoCal Style

GW’s Orange County Alumni Network invites you to join Chef Lauren Egdahl for a virtual cooking demonstration. Learn to prepare a three-course Baja-style meal of ceviche, tacos with homemade salsa, and avocado mousse. Recipes, including a vegetarian option, will be shared beforehand.

RSVP now →

June 12: Draw with the Corcoran: Light & Shadow

Carol Tudor Beach returns to the Corcoran School of the Arts & Design’s Instagram with a live lesson at 12pm ET on light and shadow. Bring pencils, paper, and a small object like an apple, orange, or shell to draw.

Watch the livestream →

Join #GWInSolidarity

The Office for Diversity, Equity, and Community Engagement and the Collaborative for Inclusive Excellence are hosting a series of programs for members of the GW community to process, work on healing, learn from one another, and move toward action.

Get involved →

Join #GWInSolidarity

The Office for Diversity, Equity, and Community Engagement and the Collaborative for Inclusive Excellence are hosting a series of programs for members of the GW community to process, work on healing, learn from one another, and move toward action.

Get involved →

June 25: Alumni in Politics & Government Virtual Networking Hour

Connect with GW alumni working in politics and government from around the world. Share your experiences, exchange career tips, and build your professional network.

Register →

Photos That Will Last a Lifetime
Sonali Shukla, a Class of 2020 Milken Institute School of Public Health graduate student, was having a hard time taking photos in her regalia in front of the Lincoln Memorial. A local photographer saw her struggling and offered to take her photo and send it to her afterwards. The email she shared wasn’t working, so the photographer turned to Twitter in a search for Sonali, and 1,600 retweets later, Sonali got her photo. Class of 2020, we’ll see you next year on the National Mall!

View the Twitter thread →

A Moment of Honor: Light a Virtual Candle 
The GW community is invited to honor the memory of someone you have lost or recognize the courage of someone who has cared by lighting a virtual candle. The GW School of Medicine and Health Sciences, The GW Medical Faculty Associates, and GW Hospital created this special dedication for reflection by our GW community.

Light a candle →

A Warm Welcome to Munson Hall
Staff and student workers from Campaign GW — a subdivision of Facilities, Planning, Construction, and Management — and the Office of Sustainability decorated Munson Hall with inspirational posters and bulletin boards to greet the clinicians opting to stay there during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Read more →

SMHS Alumna and Team Doctor for the Redskins and Nationals Supports Those on the Front Lines
Robin West, MD ’97, RESD ’02, lead physician for the Nationals and the Redskins, is supporting healthcare workers with workouts and advice on nutrition and stress management.

Read more →

GW alumnus Chris Perrin on how to stay fit while social distancing

Read The Washington Post →

GW alumnus Chris Kiple discusses how his company is responding as Coronavirus pandemic fuels demand for ventilators

Watch in NBS News story →

A Graduation Stage of His Own

After 17 years of dedication and hard work, Darnell Lee earned an Ed.D. from GW’s Graduate School of Education and Human Development in March. He wasn’t able to walk across the Commencement stage like he had dreamed, but his family and friends gave him a celebration he won’t forget.

Watch the moving video →

Photos to Last a Lifetime

Sonali Shukla, GWSPH MPH ’20, was in her regalia on the National Mall as thousands of GW grads have done before her. As she struggled to take photos in front of the Lincoln Memorial, a local photographer offered to help. But when he tried to send his professional photos to Shukla, the message bounced, so he turned to Twitter. After more than 1,600 retweets, Shukla got the photos, a memento of a GW tradition, and a reminder of the kindness of strangers.

See the photos →

Alumna Supports Restaurants and Battles Food Insecurity

Erin McGeoy, GWSB BBA ’18, attended GW on a water polo scholarship, and yet even with financial aid, scholarships, and a job she struggled to pay for her basic needs. McGeoy decided to apply her academic work in marketing and sustainability to the challenge of hunger. With support from GW’s New Venture Competition, she launched Last Call for Food, an organization that connects college students with affordable meals and works to reduce food waste. Today, Last Call is partnering with local restaurants to provide meals for vulnerable communities affected by COVID-19.

Learn how you can get involved →

Strike a Pose: Prom in a Pandemic

When high schools shut down this spring, many seniors missed out on traditions, like their prom photos. So Susan Sterner, associate professor of new media photojournalism and assistant director for academic affairs at the Corcoran School of the Arts & Design, and her husband, Tyrone Turner, gave students in the Washington, D.C., area the chance to look their best and say, “We made it.”

Check out some of the portraits →

White Coats for Black Lives

Last week, the GW medical community, including GW SMHS, GW Hospital, and The GW Medical Faculty Associates, observed a 10-minute moment of silence in remembrance of George Floyd and marched for justice.

See the photos →

When Your Dream School Is GW

Maddie Chupka had her heart set on going to the George Washington University to study political science in the nation’s capital, but she was still waiting on financials as the deadline to commit approached. Last month, she found out she would be receiving enough grant and scholarship money to join GW’s Class of 2024.

“It was a relief to finally find out I would be able to go to my dream school,” says Chupka. “It was worth the wait.”

Welcome Maddie to our GW family →