By Patricja Okuniewska
As this spring semester comes to an end, with only a few stress-filled weeks of cramming -and crying- left, it’s worth stopping and reflecting on all the craziness that ensued at Georgetown this year. As our time is spent worrying about exams and assignments, it’s hard to process all that happens on this campus– and trust me, there’s a lot. The students aren’t the only ones moving at a rapid pace. News comes and goes quickly, but some of it has left a lasting impact on how Georgetown will continue to function. Some was good, some was bad, and some was plain ugly. This list is one that I compiled of some noteworthy happenings of 2015-2016 that all of us should revisit.
Do you love Nike? Well, we all know Georgetown does, in case you missed pretty much all the student athletes donning gear from this brand all year round. But, not all of Georgetown is a fan of this clothing empire. This year was a big one in terms of addressing concerns for sweatshop labor that goes into producing the products Nike makes for the athletes at Georgetown. Athletes and Advocates for Workers’ Rights was created as a way to bring together students on campus– athletes and non-athletes alike– to raise awareness around the issues of sweatshop labor. And surely enough, there were positive developments on account of this group and the Georgetown Licensing and Oversight Committee. President DeGioia sent a letter to Nike asking Nike to follow Georgetown’s code of conduct, which has ethical practices and standards for its clothing producers. This is a great example of just how powerful student activism can be. Just Georgetown things, am I right?
If there’s anything else that’s been getting a lot of attention on campuses throughout the country, including Georgetown, it’s sexual assault. While The Hunting Ground brought the matter to the attention of the general population that women and men on college campuses are being sexually assaulted, it has always been an issue and Georgetown has been taking increasing steps to address it. The Sexual Assault Survey was released earlier in the year in order to determine how the school should address sexual assault policy and the campus climate. However, only 27% of students took the survey, which is quite low compared to the 50 % turnout that was expected. Do better, Georgetown. However, in terms of taking concrete steps, CAPS will offer free semester-long services for sexual assault survivors, which became effective on April 4. And while there’s still a lot more to do in terms of how this issue is handled on college campuses, even the smaller steps count.
Now I’m not claiming to know much (or anything at all) about sports, but from the conversations I’ve overheard among Georgetown’s devoted fans, this year’s basketball season was not great. Yup, that’s all I know.
Because of Georgetown’s lack of a metro stop, we students are often stuck working around the GUTS bus schedule if we want to get off campus (not that that happens more than once or twice a year). And when the school changed the GUTS bus routes and locations, I’m sure I wasn’t the only one that was less than pleased that I had to walk down a giant hill, beyond the outskirts of Leo’s to find them. It seemed to me that the school pretty much failed to properly notify the student body of this change, resulting in a handful of unintentional latenesses. And still, the lines can get ridiculously long so if you have yet to wander over to the McDonough Bus Turnaround–beware.
There’s nothing more terrifying to be seen than a campus full of college students without any Wi-Fi (except for when The Corp unexpectedly shut down that one day)– and on a school day nonetheless. Frighteningly enough, Georgetown had to experience this for HOURS as the campus’s Wi-Fi was down. This left students with a few prime-time hours that would have been spent online with some laptop-free time. And after having experienced that, I hope it never happens again. I mean, what were we supposed to do with those few hours? Read a book? Go outside? Preposterous.
A considerable amount of faith in Georgetown vanished this semester when I found out that Hot Chick and Chicken Madness were legitimate candidates for the next GUSA President and Vice President. While the entrance of the ticket was all in good fun, the fact that such a politically active school almost nominated two sandwiches to student government was pretty ugly.
As we all know, there are very few dull moments at Georgetown—some are good, some are good, and some straight up ugly. Even so, they’re all worth remembering as they will be the ones that define our experiences as Hoyas. I wish all your summers to be as eventful as this school year.