From lobby to rooftop, the Elliott School resonated with conversation as more than 450 Elliott alumni, parents, and students celebrated GW Colonials Weekend 2017, held October 19 through 22.
Festivities began on Thursday, October 19 with this year’s GW Distinguished Alumni Achievement Awards dinner, held at the Ritz-Carlton. The Elliott School was proud to honor three recipients: His Excellency Dr. Anwar Gargash (CCAS BA ’81, MA ’84), Foreign Minister of the United Arab Emirates and an Elliott School parent; Michael Punke (BA ’86), author of The Revenant; and Dr. Davina Durgana (BA ’10), an award-winning international human rights statistician and recipient of the Recent Alumni Achievement Award. The Alumni Achievement Award is the highest form of recognition given annually by GW and the GW Alumni Association.
On Friday, October 20, alumni from around the world gathered to reconnect, reminisce, and enjoy the spectacular views of DC from the City View balcony. In his remarks, Elliott School Dean Reuben Brigety spoke briefly about the school’s latest news: three recently-launched institutes, a new hub for graduate student services, and the Leadership, Ethics and Practice initiative, begun in spring 2017. “I believe that there are already solutions to most of the world’s toughest problems,” he said. “What is needed is a cadre of skilled and ethical leaders to implement these solutions.”
Early Saturday morning, parents and students headed to 1957 E Street for a family reception hosted by Dean Brigety, sporting a gray Elliott School sweatshirt. Eager for a window into the daily lives of their students, parents had many questions following the dean’s remarks. Several parents were interested to hear how students remain engaged beyond the classroom. “Our students are actually overscheduled,” noted Dean Brigety. The Elliott School hosts more than 300 events annually, in addition to all the GW events, internships, and DC opportunities available to students. Yet, Dean Brigety remarked that he makes a point to schedule time with students each week. Each semester he also hosts “Jazz with Dean B” to engage students with policymakers, faculty, and alumni, including NBC News Correspondent Kasie Hunt (BA ’06), who spoke to students on October 18, prior to Colonials Weekend.