The Hoya: April 5, 2024

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After GUSA Senate Vote, April Referendum to Probe Gender-Inclusive Housing

Aamir Jamil GUSA Desk Editor

The Georgetown University Student Association (GUSA) Senate approved a resolution, 23-4, to hold a referendum on whether students support establishing gender-inclusive housing at an April 2 special session.

The referendum, which will run April 11 through April 13, will ask students whether they support Georgetown “establishing comprehensive gender-inclusive housing,” including allowing students to live with roommates of different genders and having the university ask whether students would support LGBTQ+identifying roommates during first-year roommate selection. If the referendum passes — which would require a simple majority of students to vote in favor and at least 25% of the student body, or about 1,625 students, to vote — it would force Georgetown’s Board of Directors, which oversees the university’s operations, to vote on

the measure at its next meeting. GUSA President Jaden Cobb (CAS ’25) said he, Senate Speaker Megan Skinner (SFS ’24) and Senator Ethan Henshaw (CAS ’26) brought the referendum before the Senate because they felt the university was not moving fast enough to establish gender-inclusive housing. “Some of the things that they’ve been giving us have not been sufficient to get this policy done, so it’s time for us to fight for the 6,500 students that we represent and really be the voice of the student body,” Cobb said at the meeting. “Referendums are used to push the boundaries. It’s our strongest weapon as a government.” If the board of directors approves the policy, the Office of Residential Living will add a question to firstyears’ living preference questionnaire asking whether students would affirm LGBTQ+ roommates by Fall 2024 and would establish genderinclusive housing by Fall 2025, according to the resolution.

See GUSA, A7

Jews and Hindus reflect during a sacred time in their faiths. Joining university presidents from the University of Notre Dame and Wesleyan University, DeGioia is among an early group of academic administrators calling for a ceasefire. DeGioia said there must be further action in addition to the initial steps of securing safety and resources for Palestinians and releasing hostages.

“In the Middle East, it begins with access to humanitarian aid, the return of the hostages, and an immediate ceasefire in Gaza,” DeGioia wrote in the email. “And we must recognize that so much more will be required if we can support the choices of ‘life…reconciliation… justice…relationship…dialogue.’”

Calls for a ceasefire and the release of Israeli hostages have been part of global diplomatic discourse and action, with the United Nations Security Council passing a March 25 resolution calling for a pause in fighting throughout Ramadan coupled with the release of hostages. Akanksha Sinha (SFS ’23), a staff

Catherine Alaimo and Lauren Doherty

Senior News Editors

The chief of the Georgetown University Police Department (GUPD) will depart her position this week.

Katherine Perez started her role as GUPD’s first female chief of police in April 2023. A university spokesperson said Perez’s final day will be April 6, and she has accepted an outside offer of employment. Perez said she enjoyed her time at Georgetown as she cherished working closely with members of the campus community alongside a strong support system.

“I will miss my day to day interactions with students,

Daniel Greilsheimer

Senior Sports Editor

Georgetown University welcomed hundreds of guests for its University Ramadan Celebration and Iftar on April 2. Muslim Life hosted the event to commemorate the spiritual month of Ramadan, a time of religious reflection, interfaith community building and the renewal of commitments to works of justice, in the Leavey Ballroom. The program featured a presentation on the customs observed during Ramadan, as well as a dua — a

supplication to God — by Imam Yahya Hendi, the university’s Muslim chaplain, and prayers by several Georgetown community religious leaders. Iman Saymeh, a Muslim residential minister who opened the speaking program with her reflections on the holy month, said she hopes students leave the iftar with their minds open to new experiences. “Our friends who came tonight, you came for a reason,” Saymeh said at the event. “Yes, you got food. I hope you liked it, but you got to connect. And some of you

might have been somebody’s guest, but your heart brought you here. I ask you to diversify your experience when you’re here at Georgetown.” Ramadan, a time of heightened religious observance for Muslims, is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar and ends April 9. Many practicing Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset, a practice which serves to bring observers closer to God through spiritual discipline. University President John J. DeGioia (CAS ’79, GRD ’95) delivered a speech at the celebration and said See RAMADAN, A7

EVIE STEELE/THE HOYA Georgetown University undergraduates will vote April 11 to 13 on a resolution that would expand gender-inclusive housing. Published Fridays Send story ideas and tips to staff and faculty,” Perez wrote to The Hoya. “I have learned so much and appreciate all of the assistance I have received over the past 12 months.” Associate Vice President for Public Safety Jay Gruber, who served as GUPD chief from 2012 to Perez’s arrival last year, will serve as interim chief of GUPD as the university conducts its search to replace Perez, according to a university spokesperson. “A search for a new chief is underway; it will include a number of colleagues from across campus,” the university spokesperson wrote to The Hoya Gruber said he greatly values Perez’s leadership and devotion to her work. “We are grateful for Kathy’s DeGioia: Free Hostages, Ceasefire in Gaza GU’s First Female Police Chief Perez Will Depart University member at the Center for Social Justice and an organizer with Faculty and Staff for Justice in Palestine (FSJP), said though DeGioia’s call for a ceasefire has reassured them, they feel it should have come sooner. “I am happy to see President DeGioia join other University presidents as the first few to call for a ceasefire,” Sinha wrote to The Hoya “At the same time, I do grieve the fact that it has taken upwards of 40,000 deaths and nearly 100,000 injured to have this call for a ceasefire issued,” Sinha added. See GAZA, A7 GUHOYAS University President John J. DeGioia (CAS ’79, GRD ’95) announced his support for a ceasefire in Gaza and the return of hostages in the Middle East. He is among an early group of academic leaders calling for a suspension of hostilities. DANIEL GREILSHEIMER/THE HOYA At Muslim Life’s April 2 iftar, community members celebrated the holy month of Ramadan, with spiritual leaders from various faiths offering brief prayers and reflecting on their traditions. At Iftar, GU Students Celebrate Ramadan, Reflect on Faith dedication and contributions to the Georgetown community during her time here and we wish her success in her new role,” Gruber wrote to The Hoya “She was an excellent supportive colleague here at Georgetown and she will no doubt be successful in her new endeavor.” Perez’s career in law enforcement has spanned over 40 years. Before joining the Georgetown community, Perez worked at the Hartford, Conn., Police Department for over 20 years, ultimately assuming the rank of captain, before becoming the first chief of police of the City of District Heights Police See GUPD, A7 Jack Willis and Catherine Alaimo Executive Editor, Senior News Editor CW: This article discusses violence and death in Israel and Gaza. Please refer to the end of the article for onand off-campus resources. G eorgetown University President John J. DeGioia (CAS ’79, GRD ’95) commemorated various religious holidays with a call for access to humanitarian aid in the Middle East, the return of hostages and an immediate ceasefire in Gaza in an April 1 email to the Georgetown community. DeGioia said his call for a humanitarian response comes especially as Christians, Muslims,
GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY Georgetown University Police Department (GUPD) chief Katherine Perez, who joined the university last April, will leave April 6 to take on a new role outside Georgetown. IAD to DJT To the chagrin of Democrats, Republican legislators have proposed renaming Dulles Airport after the former president. A8 NEWS Diversity Fund Student representatives and Georgetown University have collaborated to allot $30,000 to campus cultural organizations. A9 Address RAs’ Concerns The Editorial Board urges Georgetown to facilitate trainings and dialogue for resident assistants and supervisors. A2 OPINION Bus Thoughts Nia Simeonova (King’s College London) reflects on public transport in the U.S. and at home in Europe. A3 ‘Love Lies Bleeding’ Kristen Stewart stars in a gritty, complex and beautifully shot queer thriller with a tonally out-of-place ending. B6 GUIDE Earned, Never Given Head Coach Darnell Haney reflects on one of the most successful seasons in recent Georgetown women’s basketball history. A12 SPORTS Grande’s Sun Shines Ariana Grande’s “Eternal Sunshine” is intimate, ethereal and layered, mixing melancholic reflections with airy vocals. B7 Lax Won’t Relax Georgetown’s women’s lacrosse team crushed Xavier 16-5 April 3 through dominant offense and stifling defense. A11
Georgetown University • Washington, D.C. FRIDAY, APRIL 5, 2024 THEHOYA.COM Vol. 105, No. 12, © 2024 Since 1920 FEATURES Legacy Admissions A4 GUIDE Spring


GU, Address RA Concerns

A coalition of Georgetown University resident assistants (RAs) requested to unionize March 22, submitting a letter to University President John J. DeGioia (CAS ’79, GRD ’95) that asked the university to voluntarily recognize it as a union.

Citing numerous concerns like difficult working relationships with community directors (CDs) — staff members who supervise RAs in each residence hall — and a lack of access to mental health resources, the Georgetown Resident Assistant Coalition (GRAC) serves as the group of RAs leading the unionization efforts and advocating for RAs’ needs. The majority of RAs support the unionization effort, with 85 of the 103 RAs signing GRAC’s petition to unionize and an additional 390 students signing a letter of support for GRAC as of April 4.

The university declined to recognize GRAC as a union March 27, which means the RAs will move to an April 16 election, which the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) will oversee, to determine whether RAs will receive union representation. Should the majority of RAs vote in favor of unionization during this election, GRAC will become a formally recognized union. The university said it will respect the results of the election.

The Editorial Board urges Georgetown University to proactively address GRAC’s concerns regardless of whether GRAC unionizes. Firstly, the university must ensure RAs have access to adequate resources, especially during emergencies. Training sessions for RAs focused on crises and mental health resources should be held continuously throughout the year. Furthermore, since CDs are closely acquainted with the job of being an RA, they should be prepared to support RAs as they manage crises as opposed to simply sending them blanket resources available to all students.

In addition, the university must create anonymous reporting forms that go directly to the Office of Residential Living as well as an employee designated by the Office of Residential Living to receive grievances from an RA and relay them to CDs to ensure CDs receive and respond to feedback from RAs. RAs start their employment in August of each year, and from the get-go, they receive insufficient training on mental and physical health resources. This year RAs completed 10 consecutive days of training, according to an August 2023 RA training schedule that The Hoya obtained.

During this lengthy training, RAs attended only one 30-minute presentation about the Georgetown University Police Department (GUPD) and Georgetown Emergency Response Medical Service (GERMS) and one 45-minute-long program to teach RAs about Georgetown’s Counseling and Psychiatric Services (CAPS).

To have a comprehensive understanding of the resources available to support their residents and themselves, RAs need more than two short blanket sessions on GUPD, GERMS and CAPS. The university should offer multiple sessions during August training and afterward to help RAs become aware of the tools available for their residents and

themselves. When crises occur, it is paramount that RAs are extremely familiar with Georgetown’s support systems and services.

It is equally important that the university ensures that a third party — separate from the RA and CD — follows up with RAs who have provided feedback.

RAs have shared stories of major communication issues with their CDs and punitive disciplinary decisions based on minor issues, according to GRAC organizer and RA Sam Lovell (CAS ’25). What complicates this further is that, currently, there are no clear and effective ways for RAs to provide feedback about their CDs.

If RAs want to give feedback to their CDs, they must fill out a semesterly evaluation form.

A university spokesperson said CDs support their RA staffers in multiple ways.

“Community Directors supervise the student Resident Assistant team and lead all community development and student formation initiatives,” the university spokesperson wrote. “They also provide mediation services to students, developmental guidance to students, and feedback to departmental leadership.”

Unfortunately, the current reality is that some RAs feel let down by their relationships with their CDs.

Lovell, who has been an RA since 2022, said when RAs attempt to provide feedback in semesterly evaluations of their CDs, this feedback often falls on deaf ears. Although Lovell said he has had no issues with his CD, he said that as a member of GRAC’s organizing committee, he has recognized that other RAs have felt unable to give CDs effective feedback.

“I’m not aware of any process where the feedback is being used to establish an expectation that behavior changes,” Lovell told The Hoya. “The impression that I think many RAs have is that the CDs see the evaluations and it’s up to them to take what they think is valid and improve upon it.”

Devan Varma (CAS ’26) said his CD, who regularly canceled staff meetings, left his job and provided his RAs with no resources for their residents.

“For me, personally, the situations I’ve dealt with, I’ve been fortunate enough that it’s been stuff I can handle,” Varma told The Hoya. “But I know for other RAs that they have not felt recognized when they’ve had those situations come about.”

The Editorial Board calls on the university to meaningfully address GRAC’s concerns, ensuring that RAs receive appropriate training on mental health and can more smoothly provide actionable feedback to CDs.

When Georgetown supports its RAs, it embodies the university value of “cura personalis,” caring for the whole person. Giving RAs better working conditions and stronger training means they are better equipped to support students — enriching every student’s working and living environment.

The Hoya’s Editorial Board is composed of six students and is chaired by the Opinion editors. Editorials reflect only the beliefs of a majority of the board and are not representative of The Hoya or any individual member of the board.


September 22, 1987

The Editorial Board calls on the university to meaningfully address GRAC’s concerns, ensuring that RAs receive appropriate training on mental health and can more smoothly provide actionable feedback to CDs.”

On March 22, 2024, the Georgetown Resident Assistant Coalition (GRAC) formally requested to be recognized as a union by the university. The GRAC is led by a group of Georgetown University resident assistants (RAs) who are advocating for the protection of RAs as they continue to endure financial, communication and emotional challenges. In light of Georgetown refusing to voluntarily recognize this union, GRAC is asking students for support as they prepare for an April 16 election that will determine whether or not they will receive union representation. The Hoya conducted a poll to gauge student support for the GRAC’s unionization. Out of the 74

CARTOON by Aria Zhu
The Editorial Board “GU, Address RA Concerns” IN THIS WEEK’S ISSUE “
respondents, 58.1% said they supported the RA unionization effort, while 41.9% said they did not support these efforts. Dear Editor: In the September 18 issue of The HOYA, the editorial addressed the issue of whether or not GU women suffer from sexual bias, while the HOYA simultaneously practiced bias against GU women. The very publication addressing this important issue obviously does not promote female equality, as demonstrated by the “Campus Opinion” column appearing under Mr. Donesa’s editorial statement. The opinions of seven men— to the exclusion of any women— were presented in the column, and, of course, all seven unanimously answered that there was not a male bias on campus. How can The HOYA conduct a survey on male bias without questioning any females? Does the staff truly believe that this is a representative sample? Are women’s views on this matter considered irrelevant by those who claim to be “unbiased” —namely, the main staff of The HOYA? Mr. Chris Donesa, the Managing Editor of The HOYA, wrote that the only cause of further discrimination against women will be because “Georgetown’s female population has yet to fully seize the issue.” Well, I am one concerned GU woman who strongly disagrees with Mr. Donesa’s naive statement. Can women be scolded for not “seizing” the male party in charge of the Campus Opinion column and demanding that he include women? I think that the problem in this instance is the bias on the part of The HOYA staff responsible for allowing such a blatant display of sexism. And I am sure that Mr. Donesa and others will discover that the bias is often perpetuated by those in charge rather than through the failure of GU women to assert their equality. Christine Martin (CAS ’88) EDITORIAL LETTER TO THE EDITOR AND VIEWPOINT POLICIES The Hoya welcomes letters and viewpoints from our readers and will print as many as possible. To be eligible for publication, letters should specifically address a recent campus issue or Hoya story. Letters should not exceed 300 words. Viewpoints are always welcome from all members of the Georgetown community on any topic, but priority will be given to relevant campus issues. Viewpoint submissions should be between 600-700 words. The Hoya retains all rights to all published submissions. Send all submissions to: The Hoya reserves the right to reject letters or viewpoints and edit for length, style, clarity and accuracy. The Hoya further reserves the right to write headlines and select illustrations to accompany letters and viewpoints. CORRECTIONS & CLARIFICATIONS If you have a comment or question about the fairness or accuracy of a story, contact Executive Editor Evie Steele or Executive Editor Jack Willis at NEWS TIPS News Editors Catherine Alaimo and Lauren Doherty: Email Guide Editors Jasmine Criqui and William McCall: Email guide@ Sports Editors Daniel Greilsheimer and Oliver Ni: Email sports@ GENERAL INFORMATION The Hoya is published once a week during the academic year with the exception of holiday and exam periods. Address all correspondence to: The Hoya Georgetown University Box 571065 Washington, D.C. 20057-1065 The writing, articles, pictures, layout and format are the responsibility of The Hoya and do not necessarily represent the views of the administration, faculty or students of Georgetown University. Signed columns and cartoons represent the opinions of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the editorial position of The Hoya Unsigned essays that appear on the left side of the editorial page are the opinion of the majority of the editorial board. Georgetown University subscribes to the principle of responsible freedom of expression for student editors. The Hoya does not discriminate on the basis of age, gender, sexual orientation, race, disability, color, national or ethnic origin. © 1920-2024. The Hoya, Georgetown University weekly. No part of this publication may be used without the permission of The Hoya Board of Editors. All rights reserved. The Hoya is available free of charge, one copy per reader, at distribution sites on and around the Georgetown University campus. Email: Online at Circulation: 3,000 Since its first issue in 1920, The Hoya has served to inform Georgetown’s campus dialogue. The following article is a glimpse into The Hoya’s rich history, allowing readers to appreciate the evolution of college journalism. Letter to the Editor: The HOYA is Biased Founded January 14, 1920 Catherine Alaimo, News Editor Lauren Doherty, News Editor Georgia Russello, Features Editor Hayley Young, Features Editor Lindsay Eiseman, Opinion Editor Lori Jang, Opinion Editor Jasmine Criqui, Guide Editor William McCall, Guide Editor Daniel Greilsheimer, Sports Editor Oliver Ni, Sports Editor Pallavi Bommareddy, Science Editor Audrey Twyford, Science Editor Rohini Kudva, Design Editor Heather Wang, Design Editor Caroline Brown, Copy Chief Evan Ecklund, Copy Chief Emily Blackstone, Social Media Editor Toni Marz, Social Media Editor Alan Chen, Blog Editor Emily Han, Multimedia Editor Sofia Nathoo, Multimedia Editor Evie Steele, Executive Editor Jack Willis, Executive Editor Caroline Rareshide, Managing Editor Board of Directors Caitlin McLean, Chair Ranee Brady, Anya Karumanchi, Ce Mi Lee, Madeline Lee, Henry Liu, James Pocchia Michelle Vassilev, Editor in Chief Maren Fagan Madison Fox-Moore Kate Hwang Paulina Inglima Aamir Jamil Caleigh Keating Luna Elkhoury Erin Saunders Jaxon Farmer Shreya Kaushik Claiborne Martell Peter Sloniewsky Iris Wu Bethe Bogrette Amber Cherry Shreya Dudeja Alexis Kim Ben Bliss Colin Liau Christian Baldari Alexa Hill Sahana Arumani Allie Stevens Camille Vandeveer Isabel Liu Claire Min Julia Butler Luby Chiu Patrick Clapsaddle Madeline Grabow Aspen Nguyen William Yu Melanie Elliott Victoria Freeman Alexis Lien Academics Desk Editor Student Life Desk Editor Graduate Desk Editor City Desk Editor GUSA Desk Editor Events Editor Deputy Features Editor Deputy Features Editor Deputy Opinion Editor Deputy Opinion Editor Deputy Opinion Editor Deputy Opinion Editor Deputy Opinion Editor Deputy Guide Editor Deputy Guide Editor Deputy Guide Editor Deputy Guide Editor Deputy Sports Editor Deputy Sports Editor Deputy Sports Editor Deputy Science Editor Deputy Science Editor Deputy Science Editor Deputy Science Editor Deputy Science Editor Deputy Design Editor Deputy Copy Editor Deputy Copy Editor Deputy Copy Editor Deputy Copy Editor Deputy Social Media Editor Deputy Social Media Editor Deputy Multimedia Editor Deputy Multimedia Editor Deputy Multimedia Editor Riley Vakkas, Director of Business Operations Sophia Williams, Technology Director Max Kurjakovic, General Manager

Unveil NYC’s Magnetism


t sucks! If I tripped and fell in that city, no one would care!”

“And isn’t that great? You could trip and fall and NO ONE WOULD CARE!”

Living with five international girls means constantly seeing the United States with fresh eyes. When I asked them to stop their work for a second to come sit around the couch with me last Tuesday, I needed their help. Their task was simple: Talk to me about New York City.

For my friend Chloe, New York was a disappointment, vastly different from the romanticized version that had been sold throughout her childhood in the package of Gossip Girl or Friends. The subway was incredibly stressful, people were unfriendly and rude and walking down the street was an exercise of continuous purse-clutching and people-dodging.

“That might all be true,” Lola replied, “but that doesn’t change the feeling I get every time I go to that city. Whenever I step foot in New York, I’m wowed like it’s the first time.”

Whereas Chloe approached New York with a pragmatic consciousness that made its rough edges more salient, Lola smoothed those out by recognizing New York in its deeper sense. When in the city, she thought not of the flawed city around her, but of the life and energy bursting through it — the mythic place where people magically reconstruct themselves, and where true happiness, fame and fortune lies not in the present, but in the million possibilities of the future.

I’ve started to think that in New York, everyone can be anyone. But that necessarily means a degree of neglect — of being ignored by all of those around us in our day-to-day lives — which, for some of my friends, is too high a price to pay.

Despite their differences in perception, my friends seemed to agree on one thing — after Georgetown, they wanted to be in New York, regardless of how they felt about it. This puzzled me. Many of these girls grew up in places which couldn’t be more different from New York

— the beaches of Mallorca, the mountains of Lebanon, the countryside of England — and some of them even recognized that this divergence in upbringing would probably prevent them from ever being happy in that city. And yet, it still pulls them in. Why?

Part of it, I think, is explained by the insatiable appetite for success that is both sought after and nurtured at Georgetown. After four years of straight A’s, working internships and applying to finance clubs with four-stage interview processes, the only logical next challenge is New York — a place where the possibility for accomplishment becomes once again endless, where the idea of excellence has potential to reach new heights. Georgetown pulls us, for better or worse, into a melting pot of workaholism and idolization of our own American dreams, often at the expense of our happiness and pleasure. I think the question is this: Can the energy and lore of the city make up for the hit our mental health and lifestyle could take from living in it? Can all the fun moments with our best friends on the Hilltop make up for the high academic pressure and grueling finals seasons? In other words, can we ignore all the dirt and grime that Chloe sees simply by thinking in the broader sense, like Lola?

I think it’s pretty encouraging that five girls harbor such strong sentiments for a city they have always watched from the outside, just like it is pretty encouraging that we are all still in the Georgetown rat race, having those tough and challenging moments but leaning on each other to get through them. There is something about Georgetown. And there must be something about living in New York, or else we wouldn’t spend our Tuesday night sitting around our couch discussing it.

Claudia Amendoeira is a junior in the School of Foreign Service. This is the third installment of her column “We Are Not in Kansas Anymore: Life in America Through the Eyes of an International Student.”


Remain Open to New Opportunities, Challenges

As I reflect upon my journey into the world of civic technology, I am amazed by how my curiosity led me to this completely unexpected field that leverages technology to assist the government in serving their citizens. When I started at Georgetown University, I was interested in studying political economy and psychology, envisioning a career in nonprofit management. My first-year self never would have imagined that I would become so interested in technology.

I urge all Georgetown students to remain open to unexpected areas of study and career paths. Taking advantage of all of the resources that Georgetown — and Washington, D.C. — has to offer is a great way to hone in on a passion. By sheer coincidence, my passion to pursue nonprofit management led me to intern with the Tech Talent Project, a nonprofit dedicated to increasing the government’s ability to recruit modern technical leaders to achieve critical economic, policy and human outcomes. During my time at the Tech Talent Project, I learned about nonprofit operations, outreach and partnerships. I was fascinated when I began to expand my horizons and discover the variety of career opportunitiesincivictechnologyinthe

government, nonprofits and research think tanks. I learned that making improvements in civic technology is an interdisciplinary undertaking that involves not only engineers, but a myriad of experts including designers, policy makers, researchers, lawyers and human resources professionals. All of a sudden, the idea of making an impact in technology no longer seemed distant or inaccessible, and the field turned into a passion that I was determined to pursue. As a sophomore determined to learn more about the functioning of technology in the government, I was ecstatic when I was selected for an internship in the U.S. Digital Service, a federal agency that aims to improve public service delivery through technology and design. In the U.S. Digital Service, I experienced firsthand how the combined efforts of engineers, designers, product managers and operations professionals work to create and deliver complex technological products aimed to maximize the social impact of policy initiatives across the government. Data management, communication, research and analysis are integral to the functioning of the agency. As an intern, I was able to hone my skills in impact analysis, project tracking and research — further opening my eyes to

the depth of available civic technology opportunities, even without pursuing a STEM major.

To further explore research in the government-technology field, I joined the Digital Benefits Network (DBN), a project within Georgetown’s Beeck Center for Social Impact + Innovation as a student analyst my junior year. The DBN team supports the government in delivering public benefits services and technology that are accessible, effective and equitable in order to ultimately increase economic opportunity.

I expanded my understanding of civic technology by gaining insights into the technology usage of public benefits programs at the state and federal levels. Through my experience, I gained an appreciation for the importance of research that helps government practitioners understand the state of technology in benefits delivery and learn about new and innovative approaches to improve services for residents.

My curiosity for the field of civic technology led me down a career path different than I had ever envisioned, and I am grateful to have had the opportunities to experience and contribute to three different areas of civic technology.

Being part of Georgetown’s

Support the Resident Assistant Union OLD WORLD, NEW WORLD

CONTENT WARNING: This article discusses suicide. Please refer to the end of the article for on- and offcampus resources.

For more than a hundred students on campus, anxiety will plague the next two weeks, but hope will illuminate them. Georgetown University’s resident assistants (RAs) are counting down the days until we vote April 16 to determine whether our organization, the Georgetown Resident Assistant Coalition (GRAC), will become a university-recognized union. After acquiring the signatures of much more than the minimum recommended 2/3 of potential members — 85 of Georgetown’s 103 RAs signed a petition to unionize — GRAC submitted a letter to Georgetown March 22. We completed this step in record time for an RA unionization movement. In the letter, we requested that the administration voluntarily recognize us as a union, partnering with the Office and Professional Employees International Union, which represents many higher-education employees, including RAs at other universities.

Since Georgetown denied this request, we will hold an election, our final step in acquiring the power needed to secure a just workplace.

My drive to be an organizer for GRAC originally arose from my fear of the loan collection letters that will begin lunging for me the day after I graduate in May.

For the past four years, outside of my RA work, I have alternated between working full-time and parttime to afford to attend Georgetown. I have worked in warehouses and restaurants while my peers go out with their friends, but I never batted an eye. After all, I am living out my dream of being a Hoya.

To this day, I feel blessed to be here. However, I have recently realized that my financial anxiety does not need to be this severe. Georgetown provides RAs with room and board — but many of us must waive a large portion

of our university-provided financial aid, as well as our federal work-study scholarship, to accept this offer. We settle for a slight net benefit.

In other words, my financial aid gets stripped from me because I have taken another job.

Being an RA cost me around $120,000 in guaranteed aid because RA’s compensation does not stack with preexisting financial aid. Many RAs have lost much more. This is $120,000 that could go to my post-graduate rent, my future family and my ability to pursue my love for environmental activism stress-free — but instead, it will go toward my student loans.

My name is Nico Reyes; I am one of the faces of GRAC and I refuse to be ignored.

In September 2022, RA Ally Sacamano (SFS ’25) witnessed her friend’s attempted suicide. The university instructs the responding supervisor, known at Georgetown as a community director on duty (CDOD), to treat suicide-related incidents as emergencies and provide the highest level of support. However, Ally said, the CDOD took two days to reach out to her in the aftermath. Ally said she received no communication regarding counseling, academic support or, most traumatically, help cleaning up the blood during that time. Ally said when the CD did reach out to her, they simply reminded her of the same mental health services that the university instructs RAs to offer their residents, which include Counseling and Psychiatric Services (CAPS) and Student Outreach and Support (SOS). Ally said the CD — a Georgetown employee whose job is to support their residents and RAs — never offered to help her coordinate counseling or provide academic support. Ally said she reported the events to Residential Living’s directors, yet Georgetown not only kept this CD on staff but moved them into higher-value housing.

At the start of the following semester, Ally endured the suicide

prevention presentation given to RAs every summer — and this time, it was the same CD that failed Ally who stood at the podium. Ally is one of the faces of GRAC, and she refuses to be ignored.

Sam Lovell (CAS ’25) has endured the challenges of unequal staffing ratios across communities. Izzy Wagener (SFS ’26) nearly lost her job when her CDs accused her of incorrectly responding to an incident on her floor — until they discovered that she was not on duty at the time. Jessica Solomon (MSB ’25) has witnessed our higherups’ indifference toward medical emergencies and intruders.

We, and the other 80 RAs who have already declared their commitment to unionization, know that with an organization prepared to collectively protest and bargain, these issues will become a priority. Gone will be the days of Georgetown meeting us with empty nods. Our stories will forge agreements, not apathy. We are the faces of GRAC, and we refuse to be ignored.

If Georgetown’s treatment of RAs outrages you, join our cause. If you believe every student is entitled to fair financial and emotional support, join our cause. If you believe that we are more than the people who make your silly door decorations, join our cause. You can join the 300+ people who have signed our petition and follow our Instagram account (grac_united) to make sure you are informed of our efforts.

We need your support. We need to be heard. We need a union.

Nico Reyes is a senior in the College of Arts and Sciences.

To access mental health resources, reach out to Counseling and Psychiatric Services at 202-687-6985, or for afterhours emergencies, call 202-444-7243 and ask to speak to the on-call clinician.

You can also reach out to Health Education Services at 202-687-8949. Both of these resources are confidential.

Tech & Society ecosystem, which brings students’ academic and career opportunities to the overlap of technology, ethics and society, has aided my exploration of the interdisciplinary intersection of technology and social impact. I embraced my curiosity for technology by pursuing computer science classes and learning how to code for the first time. I also found resources within Tech & Society to pursue my passion in civic technology — not just through the Beeck Center, but also through engaging speaker events featuring experts from the field. The key to discovering my passion for civic technology was overcoming the misconception that only STEM professionals could create an impact in the field. The world of government technology feels within my reach, and I now know how to use my diverse academic and professional skill set to create social impact. I encourage my peers to be open-minded to a winding academic road and explore careers in civic technology and beyond.

Anaya Mehta is a firstyear student in the College of Arts and Sciences. This is the second installment of her column “Just Thinking.”

Reconsider US Social Infrastructure

Spring break opened my eyes to how little I still know about life in the United States. As I booked plane tickets to visit Florida with my mom, I envisioned admiring the palm trees, sipping on margaritas at the beach and going for long walks all around Fort Lauderdale. Well, we did more than enough of the former two. But regarding the third aim — someone forgot to tell us rule No. 1 for living in the United States: You’re going to need a car. Being the clueless Europeans that we are, we thought using public transport to get around was a good idea. But all of our bus rides felt…off. A highlight was a young woman wearing every color under the sun. By far our worst experience was having two men follow us off the bus one night.

Needless to say, after that moment, my mom and I learned the unspoken rules: We appreciated the lush streets and fancy houses of Florida only by daylight and began to take Ubers everywhere. That got me thinking: What if you can’t afford a car? Can you still be a fully-participating member of American society?

The fact that many people on the bus seemed a bit distressed and disheveled couldn’t have been a coincidence. So long as disadvantaged people and their comfort are not a priority for cities, and only a car can allow one to fully participate in society, the gap between the members of that society is just bound to grow.

Back in Europe, there is wider societal support for public expenses and regulations aiming to correct socioeconomic inequalities in comparison to the United States. Apart from being more densely populated and more walkable, most European cities rely strongly on public transport. Not only is it usually quicker, but commuters are also encouraged to use public

transport to help the environment. Thus, the majority of Londoners commute to work by means other than driving. Just over 1 in 3 Parisians owned a car in 2019. In New York City, where car ownership is the lowest nationwide, 46% of people own a vehicle, with all other U.S. cities having significantly higher numbers.

From public transport to the EU Emissions Trading System (ETS), the European Union (EU) seems unafraid of ruffling polluters’ feathers. The ETS is a capbased system regulating carbon emissions by trading pollution permits. In other words, companies can pollute only to a certain level, above which they have to pay for extra permits. Another example of an environmental regulation impacting millions of Europeans directly is the plastic ban. That the EU should ban all plastic cutlery and straws from entering the markets of its 27 member states in one fell swoop is quite unheard of. Such regulations are hardly comprehensible here in the States.

That difference in attitudes prompts the question: Is having a safety net made of regulations and state intervention a better option than giving wings to the most ambitious, driven and innovative minds? The American philosopher John Rawls believes gifted individuals should be able to reap the rewards for their talent, but only under the condition that the people who have been dealt the hardest cards in society have their basic needs met. This argument for redistribution has been highly influential since the ’70s.

Still, if losing your job in the United States means you cannot pay your mortgage, which in turn puts you in imminent danger of becoming homeless, it raises the question if the regard — and safety net — for the most disadvantaged really

is there. What’s more, one has to ask themselves: Do I even want to excel in a winner-takes-all system where many of my fellow citizens are stuck at the bottom?

To me, that seems unsustainable. But let’s look at it this way: Yes, the United States may not, for example, have the most equitable or efficient healthcare system in the world, but it is the absolute leader in medical innovation. Such innovations later trickle down to other countries and often solve pressing issues on a global scale. Maybe the United States is just ready to pay the price of inaccessibility and inequality for the sake of remaining a place where the freedom to act is paramount. As you can probably tell, I am torn. I try not to let the fact that I may or may not be missing Europe cloud my judgment. But I am determined to understand the United States even better in the time I have left here. On our last day in Florida, my mom and I treated ourselves to a cruise along Fort Lauderdale, a.k.a. the “Venice of the United States”. We reveled in watching the incredible houses go by, each bigger, more elaborate or more distinctive than the previous — as if standing in a fleeting competition with each other. We were told that the houses belong to all kinds of successful and powerful people, from the owners of Taco Bell and Wendy’s to the founders of leading private equity firms. Somewhere in the whirlwind of marble gazebos, sunbeds, infinity pools and decorative alligators, I’m struck by a thought: Would they have made it in Europe?

Nia Simeonova is a student at King’s College London who’s studying on exchange at Georgetown this semester. This is the third installment of her column, “Old World, New World.”


Georgetown Admits 12% to Class of 2028 Amid Calls for End to Legacy Admissions

Students call for an end to legacy admissions following the Supreme Court ruling on affirmative action, while Georgetown admits 12% of applicants to the undergraduate Class of 2028.

Caroline Rareshide Managing Editor

When Ethan Henshaw (CAS ’26) heard the Supreme Court had ruled against affirmative action, he saw Georgetown as facing a different issue from many other elite national universities.

“I just remember being a student on the ground and seeing it,” Henshaw told The Hoya. “Certainly the problem at Georgetown is not that it’s too diverse, but that it’s not diverse at all.” Henshaw said the ruling on affirmative action would only exacerbate Georgetown’s lack of diversity and said he found the arguments of opponents of affirmative action frustrating.

“Watching all these people rally against affirmative action was just really infuriating,” Henshaw said. “Because, I mean, we’re at a school right now where there are more legacy students than there are Latino students, more legacy students than there are Black students. And we’re just fighting the wrong thing.”

Georgetown University accepted 12% of applicants for the undergraduate Class of 2028 — a one percentage point decrease from the Class of 2027 — according to a university spokesperson. A university spokesperson did not respond to The Hoya’s question regarding what percent of accepted students in the Class of 2028 are legacy students.

Following the ruling against affirmative action, Henshaw and other Georgetown students formed Hoyas Against Legacy Admissions, a campaign that aims to end the university’s practice of legacy admissions, preference given to applicants with a familial connection to alumni. Of Georgetown’s admitted Class of 2024, the most recent year with available data, 9% were legacy students. The campaign has met with university administrators, sought support from faculty and reached out to students to make the case against legacy preference, with hopes to impact the next admissions cycle.

Georgetown Accepts 12% of Applicants

The university admitted 3,226 students out of 26,170 total applicants, according to an email Dean of Undergraduate Admissions Charles Deacon (CAS ’64, GRD ’69) sent to alumni interviewers which The Hoya obtained.

The McDonough School of Business (MSB) had the lowest acceptance rate, admitting 517 of 4,554 applicants for an acceptance rate of 11%, according to Deacon’s email. The College of Arts & Sciences (CAS) had the most applicants, admitting 1,870 of its 15,704 applicants, an acceptance rate of 12%. The Walsh School of Foreign Service (SFS) admitted 15% of its 3,917 applicants. The School of Health (SOH) admitted 12% of its 1,484 applicants. The School of Nursing (SON) admitted 15% of its 511 applicants.

Georgetown admitted 10% of early action applicants in December. Legacy status is not considered for early action applicants. Deacon said the university received excellent applicants from all parts of the United States

and around the world. “They indicate that they are particularly attracted to the national and international reputation of the University and its students,” Deacon wrote to The Hoya. “They also stress the University’s commitment to social justice and frequently speak about the attraction of the Jesuit ideals of cura personalis.” “As for legacy I can’t speak to that except to say that a working group has been convened to examine this issue so it is being addressed,” Deacon added. Demographics on students’ racial and ethnic identities will not be available to the university

“Especially with my background, as a Black, first-gen student, I believe everybody deserves a fair shot.”

until after students enroll. The mid-50% of SAT math scores of students admitted this year ranged from 730 to 790, while the mid-50% of SAT verbal scores ranged from 730 to 770, according to a university spokesperson. The mid-50% of ACT scores fell between 32 and 35. The average admitted student was in the top 6% of their class.

Georgetown admitted students from all 50 states, Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico, according to a university spokesperson. The university offered acceptances to international students from 94 countries of citizenship and 513 students with dual citizenship.

Talia Udelman, a high school senior from Phoenix, Ariz. who was admitted regular decision to the College, said she applied to Georgetown because of its location. “Since it’s in D.C., you have so many opportunities out and about,” Udelman told The Hoya. “You can go and try and get an internship on Capitol Hill. You can intern with some law firms as well.” Udelman, who is half Mexican Catholic and half Lithuanian Jewish, said she worried the Supreme Court ruling would negatively impact her application.

“I did feel kind of nervous about it initially, being of mixed race,” Udelman said. “It did feel like it would have some factor in which schools I got into.”

Udelman said she believes legacy admissions should be at least restricted, if not banned, in order to make admissions more fair.

“Even if legacy students are qualified to be a part of the incoming class, I just feel that they’re given kind of a step up above other applicants and it may not be fair in a lot of cases,” Udelman said. “Even if

they are qualified, they’re just starting from a higher playing field.”

Nina Park, a high school senior originally from South Korea but who lives in New Jersey and was admitted regular decision to the College, said that, as an Asian woman, many people expected the Supreme Court ruling to have a positive effect on her application.

“I don’t really know if that influenced me in any way, though,” Park told The Hoya. “I know it’s technically supposed to influence me. But given the results that I got this college regular decision cycle, I think there’s not much that has changed.”

The Case Against Legacy Admissions The Georgetown University College Democrats (GUCD) created the initial campaign against legacy admissions in August, releasing a petition that over 1,100 community members have signed as of April 4. Members soon created their own organization, Hoyas Against Legacy.

Darius Wagner (CAS ’27), a member of Hoyas Against Legacy, said he joined the campaign to ensure that overlooked communities have fair access to higher education and opportunities.

“Especially with my background, as a Black, first-gen student, I believe everybody deserves a fair shot,” Wagner told The Hoya. “And in the wake of the Supreme Court’s ruling against affirmative action, I know it’s necessary that we must take action.”

Before the Supreme Court ruling, in Fall 2022, only 7% of Georgetown undergraduates were Black, compared to 14% of 18-24 year olds in the United States who are Black. Additionally, 8% of undergraduates were Hispanic, compared to 24% of 18-24 year olds in the United States who are Hispanic.

Wagner said the lack of diversity on campus is apparent to him and other students.

“As a first-gen Black student, you feel it,” Wagner said. “It’s not something that’s hidden. You feel it.”

Asher Maxwell (CAS ’26), another member of Hoyas Against Legacy, said that, despite claiming it is committed to diversity, the university has not made much progress in recent years.

“If we’re talking about building a student body that looks like the country, Georgetown gets an F, and it’s not even close,” Maxwell told The Hoya “And that was before the affirmative action decision.”

A university spokesperson said the university pursues all available efforts to create and support a diverse student body.

“We have developed initiatives to recruit a student body comprised of people with abundantly diverse backgrounds, as well as programs to ensure they feel welcome at the university, such as the Georgetown Scholars Program, which supports first-generation and low-income college students in their time on the Hilltop,” a spokesperson wrote to The Hoya

The percentage of non-white students at Georgetown saw mar-

ginal increases from 2012 to 2021, when the most recent data was available, while the percentage of white students decreased from 60% in 2012 to 49% in 2021.

A report by the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce that President DeGioia included in a letter to community members after the Supreme Court ruling concluded that ending legacy admissions was the first and most impactful step to prevent a loss in schools’ diversity.

Universities like Johns Hopkins University and Amherst College have seen a rise in racial diversity after ending legacy admissions. Henshaw said, though the ban on legacy admissions at Johns Hopkins was paired with other steps, it showed the impact that accepting students based on legacy has on the student body’s racial diversity.

“If you get rid of those preferences, you’re opening up more spots — who knows how many spots — but you’re opening up more spots for students who, traditionally, were gonna get blocked out because those are being saved for students who can pay the full price,” Henshaw said. Maxwell said members of the campaign have met with university administrators since the affirmative action ruling and said he has seen no signs from university administrators that they are taking the threat to the school’s diversity seriously. “We were told that President DeGioia wanted to take time to consider the issue,” Maxwell said. “The other administrators defended the policy and said that there was no real avenue for that policy to end.”

Economic Diversity Concerns, Pivoting to a Legislative Route

Hoyas Against Legacy said Georgetown also has a lack of economic diversity. The New York Times’s College

Access Index ranked Georgetown 230th out of 283 selective universities in September in economic diversity, based on its number of enrolled Pell Grant recipients in 2021.

In 2017, more Georgetown students were from the top 1% of family incomes than the bottom 60%. Applicants from the top 1% are 10.8 times more likely to be accepted to Georgetown than an average-income student. Among students with equal test scores, those from the top 1% are 2.7 times more likely to be accepted.

Georgetown’s percentage of Pell Grant recipients increased from 10.4% in 2007 to almost 16% in 2015 but dropped to 9.1% in 2021.

Henshaw, who is a Pell Grant recipient, said he felt many students at his high school were qualified but could not get into top schools like Georgetown because they did not have connections or money.

“Almost everyone here is incredibly wealthy, having got some sort of preference because their parents could donate, their parents went to the school, their parents could pay the price, who their parents were, the high school they went to,” Henshaw said.

A university spokesperson said Georgetown carefully considers all applicants and makes its admissions process as personalized as possible.

“Georgetown University only admits students who will contribute to the academic rigor and thrive in our community,” the university spokesperson wrote.

Wagner said Georgetown’s relatively static number of Pell Grant recipients shows the university is failing to live up to its values of having equal access.

“It’s clear that we’re not striving to lead the pack on this issue and that we’re falling behind,” Wagner said. Deacon said the university is working to increase its Pell Grant population as well as its financial aid program.

Additionally, DeGioia said in

September the university would begin to weigh socioeconomic factors in admissions.

Maxwell said the university has not shown them a mechanism or new policy to implement such a commitment.

“They haven’t said that they’re adopting some sort of class conscious admissions in any real way, or that they’ll be giving some sort of boost to students from underrepresented socioeconomic backgrounds, students who aren’t coming from the top 20 or the top 1%,” Maxwell said.

After they felt that meetings with university administrators led to no change, members of Hoyas Against Legacy decided to pursue other ways to ban legacy admissions.

The campaign has met with 11 of the 13 members of the D.C. Council, nine of whom say they support a bill to end legacy admissions, according to Wagner. “Surprisingly, we’ve gotten more hope from the City Council than we have from our own admissions office,” Wagner said.

Members of Hoyas Against Legacy also spoke to the D.C. State Board of Education and said they have two thirds of the board’s support. They added that 70% of the District’s residents support ending legacy admissions.

“We’re very confident that legacy and donor admissions will be banned by this time next year,” Maxwell said. “And I say that with a lot of confidence.” Wagner said an institution like Georgetown that was founded on Jesuit principles should try to make as many fair opportunities for students as possible.

“I think we should look at the values that we pride ourselves on, or that we carry ourselves on, founded ourselves on as an institution, and really apply that to the work that we do,” Wagner said. “We should be making the admissions field a more level playing field. We should be looking for communities that are often overlooked,

GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY Georgetown University accepted 12% of applicants to the Class of 2028, a one perecent decrease from the Class of 2027.
@BLUEANDGRAY/INSTAGRAM Folllowing the ruling against affirmative action, Georgetown students formed the campaign Hoyas Against Legacy Admssion.

Georgetown Screens ‘Impossible Town’ Documentary in DC Film Festival

The Earth Commons, Georgetown University’s Institute for Environment and Sustainability, and the film and media studies program presented the 2023 documentary “Impossible Town,” a film about the human health effects of chemical pollutants. It was part of the 32nd D.C. Environmental Film Festival (DCEFF) March 25.

“Impossible Town” follows Dr. Ayne Amjad, a West Virginia physician, as she attempts to find evidence that corporate pollution has filled the rural town of Minden, W.Va. with cancerous chemicals called polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), driving up cancer rates.

Following the screening, filmmakers Scott Faris and Meg Griffiths, consulting producer Alia Mansoori and Earth Commons co-director Randall Amster joined Amjad to talk about the documentary. Faris, a West Virginia native, said that his desire to combat consistently negative portrayals of his home state in the media was the initial motivation for the film. “We were looking for interest-

ing stories to tell in West Virginia, because for so long we had wanted to tell a story that had something positive to say about the state,” Faris said at the event.

West Virginia’s oil and gas industries, along with its history of coal mining, have contributed to high pollution rates across the state. In Minden, residents spent decades seeking compensation from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) due to PCBs deposited in the water and soil from manufacturing processes associated with coal mining. Faris said that after a mutual friend connected him with Amjad, he reached out to inquire about documenting her attempt to find evidence of PCB contamination in Minden, win financial compensation for families of cancer patients and eventually relocate the town to a new, chemical-free area.

“It’s a testament to how gracious and generous she is that she said, ‘Well, why don’t you come on out? Bring your crew, bring your cameras and just tell me if there’s anything interesting going on here,’” Faris said. “We started in February of 2019 and just didn’t

stop filming for four years.”

The four years of filming culminated with a testing company uncovering only trace amounts of PCBs, not enough to justify compensation or relocation in the eyes of the EPA. According to the film, these findings do not rule out the possibility of past contamination in Minden, and residents will continue fighting for those who wish to relocate.

Margaret Badding, an attendee at the event who works in environmental law, said that she was pleased with how the film truthfully depicted the harsh realities of environmental justice work.

“We really appreciated that they were honest with the outcome and that it could be seen as a failure, but they shared null results anyway,” Badding said in an interview with The Hoya. “It’s honestly a very common outcome for environmental justice activism campaigns, unfortunately, and it’s nice to see it presented and given its due justice.”

Amster said the film presented a unique, personal perspective on environmental advocacy, which is often overlooked when gathering and analyzing information for any environmental justice work.

“It’s not always easy to remember that there are people with full stories, three dimensional stories, behind any data points that we look at,” Amster said at the event.

“How do you reconcile that sort of historical trauma with a present that looks very different?” Faris asked the group. Amjad said she hopes that her story serves as an inspiration for the younger generation and their role in pursuing environmental justice.

“If there’s another community out there that watches this, I hope

Reflecting on the documentary’s release, Faris said he remains tethered to the story by his strong relationships with Minden community members and hopes the film generates conversation about justice in the town.

New Health Justice Center Hosts First Public Event

Beatrice Wilson Science Writer

The Georgetown-Howard Center for Medical Humanities and Health Justice (MHHJ), a partnership between universities to foster learning, research and engagement at the intersection of humanities and healthcare, welcomed award-winning historian Marcia Chatelain and NPR journalist Gene Demby to campus to discuss generational health memories and the potential of stories to counter health injustices March 26. The talk, which was the center’s first public event since its inception in 2023, featured Chatelain, a professor of Africana studies at the University of Pennsylvania and former Georgetown professor of history and African American studies, and Demby, co-host of NPR’s “Code Switch,” a podcast about race and culture. The center’s executive directors, Lakshmi Krishnan and Dana Williams, focused the conversation around the center’s annual theme of lore, a term referring to the tradition of families and communities using stories to promote health and wellness. Krishnan said the theme of lore captures the connection between humanities and medicine, which is exactly what the new center explores. “What do the humanities have to say about medicine and why?” Krishnan asked the audience at the event. “The answers we found often took the form of a story: insights we had found as researchers in the archives, our family’s and our own experiences with healthcare, wisdom passed down by elders, readings of lit, hist, cult, narrative, threads that weave through medicine and health.”

Williams, a professor of African American literature and dean of Howard University’s graduate school, said stories can greatly influence people, she and wanted to create that influence in health lore through events like this.

“There are few things more powerful than stories — those we hear and those we know,” Williams wrote to The Hoya. “Stories govern our lives, the way we move in the world. So, we wanted people to think about stories that bend toward health justice.”

Chatelain said that growing up, powerful stories about a summer of extreme heat in her hometown of Chicago, during which many died without air conditioning, shaped her early views on health and reduced her community’s trust in government systems.

“The more vulnerable you were to relying on the state for something, the worse off you were going to be,” Chatelain said at the event. “These are health stories that change your relationship to a number of institutions, yet we don’t think of them as part of health history.”

Aditi Madhok, an attendee at the event, said she appreciated the speakers’ ability to address enormous issues like health injustice through storytelling. “So much of our world comes in bite-sized information now,” Madhok told The Hoya. “These longer conversations need to be had to fully unpack and understand these issues.” The speakers also considered how telling the full stories of health crises today can impact how people perceive them. For example, Demby discussed how menthol cigarette companies target advertisements toward Black communities, result-

Marcia Chatelain and Gene Demby discussed the power stories have in shaping community attitudes about health.

ing in higher usage among Black Americans. Demby said that while some people assume Black communities use menthol cigarettes purely by choice, deeper storytelling allows people to understand the historical and cultural background of this public health issue.

“You can’t just hit people with the facts,” Demby said. “If you’re trying to debunk a misconception, you actually have to tell a story.”

Chatelain said she used the power of storytelling in her book, “Franchise: The Golden Arches in Black America,” to weave together the parallel narratives of how McDonald’s restaurants grew the wealth of Black franchisees while also worsening the health of the Black communities they served.

“When we shift our lens of storytelling to move away from your individual choices leading to community-wide disaster, ask, how did this become the common sense think-

ing?” Chatelain said.

According to Demby, the deeper understanding made possible through stories is vital for people to understand a health history. Referencing his work uncovering stories on “Code Switch,” Demby said he has observed that many people hold preconceptions about Black people’s health before understanding the full story.

“Many think that Black people have bad health outcomes because they make bad decisions,” Demby said. “It’s never that simple.” Williams said she hopes this outreach event and others will engage attendees in deep reflection on the importance of the medical humanities in their day-to-day lives.

“When we imagined our speaker series, we hoped to encourage everyone who attends one of these events to leave the space with more awareness of how the humanities improve the quality of our lives in a practical way daily,” Williams wrote.

Innovation in Healthcare Challenge Awards Startups

On March 26, several student-founded health-related startups pitched their ideas during the inaugural Innovation in Health Care Challenge, created by the Georgetown University Entrepreneurship program within the McDonough School of Business.

Evaluated by a panel of expert judges, three Georgetown-founded startups won the first-place prize of $2,000, followed by three second-place winners earning $1,000 and three third-place winners receiving $500, with all of the awards going toward research, clinical trials and implementation of their health care ideas.

The judges evaluated the 24 entries based on the feasibility of their product, team strength and ability and how well their unique innovation incorporated Georgetown’s Jesuit values.

One of the challenge’s first prize winners, Smell Ya Later, was founded to help detect potential cases of Parkinson’s disease, a neurodegenerative disorder that decreases dopamine levels in the brain, causing an array of physical symptoms.

Andrew Tokarski (CAS ’24) a founder at Smell Ya Later, said

that although the most common symptoms of Parkinson’s disease are tremors, stiffness and impaired daily functioning, their company’s technology relies on another symptom that is less well known. “There’s one clinical sign that is often overlooked,” Tokarski said at the event. “People with Parkinson’s typically lose their sense of smell before any other symptoms present.” Tokarski said that their pitch for affordable, at-home smell tests would allow adults ages 50 to 75 to test themselves for Parkinson’s and other neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer’s disease. “With Parkinson’s disease, 70% of the affected brain region has already died by the time motor symptoms present and doctors make a diagnosis,” Tokarski said. “It’s extremely important that we catch Parkinson’s disease as early as possible.”

Barbara White, a Georgetown Entrepreneurship mentor for this year’s innovation challenge and founder of The Avoka Group, a Washington, D.C.-based consulting firm, said that clinician burnout and aging were popular themes among the startups, suggesting incoming market trends for the health care industry. “I think we’re going to see more

and more solutions around aging and longevity,” White told The Hoya. “There’s a lot of interesting solutions to a similar problem.”

MyMind, another challenge entrant, created an app to combat clinician burnout that streamlines telehealth services and appointments, guided meditation and small-group meetings.

Co-founder Nisha Gupta (MED ’25), said that the team hopes to work directly with hospitals and universities to provide physicians and trainees with MyMind’s services, preventing workplace burnout and promoting positive spaces for mental health in medicine.

“One out of five physicians experience depression during their training, and medical students face depression rates about 15% to 30% higher than the general population,” Gupta said at the event.

Like the Smell Ya Later team, third-place winner MedMate focused on the theme of aging and longevity, offering a “smart box” for medications powered by artificial intelligence that would help patients with heart disease and other chronic illnesses adhere to their medication doses and schedules.

Tamara Ibrahim (MED ’25), MedMate’s founder, identified five major factors for medication nonadher-

ence, including taking many medications at once and patient misunderstanding about the purpose and efficacy of their prescriptions.

“What sets MedMate apart is that it uses machine learning to provide adaptable, customized and interactive patient education and information on the disease and the medication’s purpose,” Ibrahim said at the event.

White commended Georgetown’s students for their unique plans to improve longevity and clinician wellness, citing a need for bright students to bring forward their ideas.

“We tend to think if no one has solved this problem it must be unsolvable, but it’s not,” White said. “That’s why we need these really smart people.”

For the future of sustainability and effective care in our health care system, White said that students should continue to foster innovations that push for progress and better care across our communities.

“This is something that touches all of us,” White said. “Even if you’re a really healthy person, you are going to be a consumer of our health care system, so the better it operates for everybody, the better off our communities and our society will be.”


The Antipyretic in Nature: Mangroves Capture Carbon, Combat Global Warming


For the first time on record, global warming has surpassed 1.5 degrees Celsius in one year, pushing Earth’s life to its adaptive limits. From raging wildfires to rising seas, what was once on the distant horizon has come unsettlingly close. Decarbonization, the process of either preventing greenhouse gas emissions or absorbing the excess, is urgently needed to combat the trend, as carbon dioxide is responsible for about two-thirds of all human-produced heating influence.

Unfortunately, decarbonization has become increasingly challenging as geopolitical conflicts raise energy prices and compromise nations’ green commitments. While approaches like carbon taxation and clean energy development face political controversy, affordability issues and other hurdles, carbon capture and storage (CCS) is emerging as a more attainable method of reducing atmospheric carbon before it has a chance to contribute to global warming. CCS, the sequestration of carbon on or below the ground, is most practical at sites of mass greenhouse gas emissions, like power plants and factories. It involves chemically extracting carbon dioxide at the point of emission, then transporting it in compressed form via road, ship or pipeline to geological formations for injection and permanent storage. These sites, which must be at least a kilometer below the surface of the earth, include saline aquifers, depleted oil and gas reservoirs and rock formations.

Another destination for captured carbon is reusing it in synthetic fuels, plastics and algae-based intermediates for organic products, such as fertilizers and animal feeds. With sufficient demand for these products, CCS could become a more viable technique for regions where land is not available or geologically suitable for storage.

The major roadblock to this type of carbon capture, however, is how resource-intensive it is. From transportation costs to concerns about the long-term effects of increased underground pressure, human-mediated carbon capture is innovative, but not ideal. Fortunately, nature has a few capturing mechanisms of its own that only need our support. One of the most promising is the mangrove tree. Mangroves are native to coastal tropical and subtropical re-

gions, especially the intermittently flooded intertidal zone. They are notably resilient against saltwater and low-oxygen environments, prevent soil erosion, shelter young marine animals and absorb the brunt of natural disasters at the shoreline, among many other ecosystem roles. Mangrove forests have the unique ability to store up to four times more carbon than other tropical forests, like the Amazon rainforest. They are known as blue carbon habitats, where slower microbial decomposition (and thus slower carbon release) increases their potency as carbon sinks relative to land-based sinks. Despite their many proven merits, over the past few decades, mangrove forests have suffered from higher rates of deforestation than rainforests. Thus, efforts to conserve, manage and restore them have emerged as a key focus for ecosystem-based adaptation, a strategy that relies on nature-based solutions for climate change. Nonprofits like the World Wildlife Fund have been undertaking mangrove protection and replanting efforts in equatorial and island nations like Colombia and Fiji. The rippling impacts are remarkable; in eastern India, for example, a government-subsidized workforce employing primarily rural women has been replanting mangroves that are estimated to capture 102 million tons of carbon per year.

Here in the United States, the government has slowly but surely caught on to CCS. In 2023, the Department of Energy allocated $45 million in funding to advance carbon capture technology and infrastructure. Concurrently, the White House Council on Environmental Quality established two new task forces for carbon capture in accordance with the Utilizing Significant Emissions with Innovative Technologies (USE IT) Act. Alongside man-made carbon storage facilities, the United States should adopt grassroots nature-based solutions, which reduce overhead infrastructure needs and may have symbiotic effects on the communities that implement them. Mangrove swamps are ubiquitous in the Everglades of South Florida, but face risks from saltwater intrusion and human activity, particularly drainage to make room for industrial development. Mobilizing the surrounding communities to help alleviate these threats, restoring freshwater flow to mangroves and advancing research into related plants that may sequester similar amounts of carbon has the potential to work wonders for America’s climate commitments.

they can learn what we probably did right, what we could have done better, maybe things that we could have approached differently,” Amjad said at the event. “I really hope young people get inspired by this and see that you can always do something. You might not always get what you want, but just keep trying and doing it because there is something that will come out of
@IMPOSSIBLETOWN/INSTAGRAM Georgetown University screened “Impossible Town,” a documentary that highlights environmental justice work in Minden, W.Va., as an installment in the D.C. Environmental Film Festival.
Lily Coulter Science Writer

After Ruling, Ranked-Choice Voting Initiative Comes Closer to DC Ballots

Song Lim Special to The


A ballot initiative that would introduce ranked-choice voting to Washington, D.C. is one step closer to appearing before the District’s voters after a D.C. Superior Court judge dismissed a lawsuit March 28 that attempted to block the initiative.

Ranked-choice voting is a system that allows voters to rank multiple candidates based on their preference. The D.C. ballot initiative, referred to as Initiative 83, would implement a rankedchoice voting system and allow more than 73,000 independent voters who vote in District primary elections to choose nominees for local and presidential elections.

Ranked-choice votes are tallied in rounds: If a candidate wins a majority of first-preference votes, they win outright. However, if no candidate wins, the candidate with the fewest first-preference votes is eliminated, and the process continues until a candidate secures a simple majority.

Will Severn (CAS ’27), a member of the Student Strategy Team with the Institute of Politics and Public Service, said ranked-choice voting could help reverse the trend of declining voter enthusiasm. “The two-party system does not seem to be working for a lot of people,” Severn told The Hoya. “They want a third, fourth or fifth option. With ranked-choice voting, you have the opportunity to vote for a second candidate and simultaneously elect a feasible candidate that will best represent your interests.”

Supporters of Initiative 83 argue that the ranked-choice voting system demonstrates benefits in increasing diversity and improving voting accessibility.

Brandon Wu (SFS ’24, GRD ’25), a former chair of Georgetown Uni-

versity College Democrats, said he supports the initiative due to the limitations of the standard ballot, emphasizing the importance of educating voters on changes if a new type of voting were implemented.

“People will generally choose to vote for the safest candidates, and in politics, many of the time the safest candidates are white men,” Wu told The Hoya. “Especially in majority white areas, they may not have seen representation from people of color or of diverse backgrounds because of the inclination to stick to what’s safe.”

Charles Wilson, chair of the D.C. Democratic Party, wrote in a 2021 statement that the Democratic Party’s initial choice to reject the initiative was not right for the District, citing that when voters are given the option to vote for two at large council members in city council elections, more than half of D.C. citizens only vote for one.

“While ranked choice voting may be suitable for some jurisdictions, The DC Democratic Party believes RCV is not right for the District,” Wilson wrote. “We should introduce measures aimed at strengthening voters’ trust and confidence in the system, not introducing convoluted processes that will further alienate voters and exacerbate the public’s distrust in our electoral process.” Georgetown University government professor John Griffin cautioned that ranked-choice voting may decrease voter turnout and exacerbate inequities among those with lower income and education levels due to information costs and the time investment required to participate in this system. “There is evidence that rankedchoice voting systems tend to disproportionately reduce turnout among less informed, lower-income citizens,” Griffin told The Hoya

“Georgetown students or people with higher levels of education attainment might be more likely to vote in an RCV format, but lower income, less educated citizens might be less likely to vote than they would under a standard ballot.”

Joe Massaua (SFS ’25), a current Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) commissioner, signed the Make All Votes Count petition to implement ranked-choice voting in D.C. and said that while he ultimately supports RCV, he realizes the potential limitations of the system.

“It’s a confusing voting system,” Massaua told The Hoya. “A lot of voters in general are older so they’ve been voting one way or another their entire lives, and it might be harder to change it.”

“The system we have right now is used throughout the majority of the country because it solidifies the hold of the two major parties,” Massaua added. “It would allow more third parties and candidates to make it through the primary process and potentially win elections.”

Simone Guité (CAS ’26), GUCD’s director of membership, said she is in favor of Initiative 83 and rejected the claim that it would weaken democracy.

“I think it strengthens democracy, if anything,” Guite said. “You get candidates that a large portion of the population is accepting of and not totally against. In that way, it reduces polarization.”

Wu said voter education should be of the utmost priority to guarantee representative results.

“Voter education is super important,” Wu added. “People are busy with their own lives and may not care about elections, which is fair and normal. As a result, it may not lead to the outcomes that should happen.”


Mark Milley, a distinguished fellow in residence and former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, warned of military politicization and global threats to national security in the Georgetown University Lecture Fund’s annual Michael Jurist Lecture on April 2.

Surveying various foreign challenges to the United States, Milley emphasized in particular conflicts in the Mideast, Asia and Europe, specifically naming China, Iran, North Korea and Russia as the four biggest threats facing the United States. Addressing domestic issues, Milley turned to the dangers of the military being used as a political entity and the potential for its mobilization ahead of upcoming elections.

Citing continued fighting between Israel and Hamas, Milley said the Middle East posed a challenge for the United States because of its potential to devolve into a larger conflict.

“Overseas, the Middle East is in turmoil, largely as a result of the war going on between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip,” Milley said at the event. “It’s a very significant challenge because U.S. interests are at stake. We, the United States, want to make sure that it doesn’t expand into something bigger and into regional war, and that it gets settled, ideally politically through some sort of negotiated settlement.”

After retiring at the end of his term as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, which is a council made up of every military branch’s highest leader, in 2023, Milley joined the School of Foreign Service as a Distinguished Fellow in Residence in February 2024. He said that the Russia-Ukraine War could similarly expand in scope and lead to a wider regional — or even continent-wide — conflict.

“The biggest war since World War

II is going on between Russia and Ukraine, and that involves very, very serious U.S. interests. That is one situation involving a potential adversary, Russia, that has exceptional military capabilities, and we want to make sure that one doesn’t expand into some more violent or more devastating conflict, which could easily expand into a regional conflict or continental-wide conflict, and that would be extraordinarily dangerous,” Milley said.

Despite the absence of a direct military conflict, Milley also warned of rising tensions with China, saying the country’s strong economy and military could lead to confrontation.

“The potential is there and China is the one place where the United States could find itself in a great power conflict in the coming years. And that is possible. It’s not imminent. It’s not inevitable, but it is possible,” Milley said.

“The probability is not zero and you’ve got a rising power in China that is an economic powerhouse, a manufacturing powerhouse. With all that money, they’re building a military, so they are a rising power economically and they are building a world-class military,” he added.

Milley said that the Russia-Ukraine War and the potential for future conflict with China are challenging the international consensus established after World War II.

“We’re in the 80th year of the rules, and that’s the so-called rulesbased international order. Those rules that exist have kept great power peace. Those rules are under intense stress. They’re actually fracturing in many ways,” Milley said.

Focusing on the future, Milley told the audience the next two decades will be crucial, though challenging, in avoiding conflict and improving the relationship between the United States and China.

“We don’t understand the Chinese; they don’t understand us. It’s funda-

mental differences, both in culture, in history, in interests. So it’s going to be really hard to do that but it’s going to be really necessary because a great power war between the United States and China would be devastating. It would be unbelievable,” Milley said.

Discussing military intervention in elections, Milley said he feels military officers must avoid politics and instead remain steadfast to their constitutional duties. He said he failed to follow his own advice in 2020, when he walked with then-President Donald Trump to a photo-op in Washington, D.C. — a move he said he regrets — amid protests against police brutality.

“We as military officers have to know and be apolitical, nonpolitical. We have to be nonpartisan,” Milley said. “Now there are cases and mistakes that are made or things happen. In my case, for example, walking across from the White House to St. John’s Church in the summer of ’20 in the events around Lafayette Square, that was a mistake on my part where it was a very highly charged political event and I defi-

nitely shouldn’t have been there.”

“My advice would be remember your oath. That is your North Star. Don’t ever forget it,” Milley added.

“Never turn your back on the Constitution and do not turn your guns on the American people.”

identities will have the opportunity

participate in

workshops, speaker events and networking initiatives to learn about gender and women’s perspectives in business.

Kosoys, who are the parents to an undergraduate in the MSB, said they believe it is essential to uplift women in the field of business through this program.

“We think it is important that women have access to unique and targeted resources as they strive to reach their full potential and ultimately shape the organizations they are affiliated with and the business world as a whole,” the Kosoys said in the announcement.

Patricia Grant, senior associate dean of the MSB undergraduate program, said the program strives to change current gender dynamics in professional settings and the classroom. “We’re excited to launch the Kosoy Women in Business program to help students gain tangible skills and build confidence in their leadership, so that they can navigate any space where there’s an imbalance in gender representation in the classroom, in the workplace, and beyond,” Grant wrote to The Hoya

Women account for 41% of the recent incoming MSB undergraduate class and comprise most of the Georgetown undergraduate student population. The Kosoy program is part of a community-wide initiative within the MSB to increase the representation of women in the field and promote the future of women leaders.

Viha Vishwanathan (MSB ’24), executive director of Innovo Consulting, an undergraduate consulting orga-

Brian Kosoy currently serves as the managing principal and chief executive officer for the Sterling Organization, a private equity real estate firm in West Palm Beach, Fla. Andrea Kosoy, a former lawyer, is a philanthropist involved in the MakeA-Wish Foundation of Southern Florida; U.S. Hunger, an organization that acts against national food insecurity; and GLAM4GOOD, a nonprofit organization that repurposes unused clothing and self-care products to alleviate resource insecurity in the U.S. Both donate to the USC Shoah Foundation, a foundation that gives back to the Jewish community persecuted during the Holocaust.

nization focused on social entrepreneurship, said the program will help create a strong support system for women members.

“This program demonstrates the MSB’s strong commitment to helping students thrive during their time at Georgetown and beyond,” Vishwanathan wrote to The Hoya. “This program will allow undergraduate women to form a tight-knit community of ambitious, talented students, encouraging them to build their technical and soft skills.”

Women hold fewer positions than men in business industries like finance and consulting. White men currently make up the majority of C-suite positions at major financial institutions.

Ginny Randall, assistant director for the Undergraduate McDonough Career Programs, told The Hoya that the program hopes to partner with women-focused organizations like the Women’s Center, the Georgetown Women’s Alliance and the Advancing Women’s Empowerment & Service Fellowship, a fellowship that aims to challenge historical gender disparities.

“The Kosoy Women in Business program is offered through the McDonough Career Center with specific focus on skills development for the workplace,” Randall wrote to The Hoya. “We plan to continue the incredible work of other initiatives across Georgetown around these important conversations.”

Alexandra Faus Gil (MSB ’26), the

professional development co-chair of McDonough Women, a club dedicated to connecting and empowering the MSB’s female students, said the program will uniquely equip women for professional avenues in business, a field in which they face adversity since they are heavily outnumbered by men.

“Initiating a program like the Kosoy Women in Business Program is crucial for Georgetown’s women business students as it provides tailored support and resources to address the unique challenges they may face in the corporate world,” Faus Gil wrote to The Hoya. “The reality is that most women in the MSB go into male-dominated industries, and this program will play an important role in preparing them to navigate and thrive in these environments.”

A large-scale lack of representation affects women’s mental health and disheartens their professional progress, and many firms are taking action to increase their number of female employees through DEI initiatives. Randall said that the Kosoy Program seeks to establish a space for women to find support and advice as they prepare to enter the business field.

“In business settings where women are often the minority, it can be helpful to connect with other students navigating the same challenges, even if their experiences may feel unique,” Randall wrote.

GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY The Kosoy Women in Business Program will provide professional development opportunities and personalized mentorship.
GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY Anthony Fauci, the former director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, joined the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law on April 3 as a Distinguished Senior Scholar. IN FOCUS Fauci Joins National, Global Health Law Institute PAGE SIX Your news — from every corner of The Hoya “We as military officers have to know and be apolitical, nonpolitical.” MARK MILLEY DISTINGUISHED FELLOW IN RESIDENCE AND FORMER CHAIRMAN OF THE JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF Olga Rocio Rivas Special to The Hoya The Georgetown University McDonough School of Business (MSB) announced the new Kosoy Women in Business Program to advance discourse relating to women in the workplace. The contributions of Brian and Andrea Kosoy funded the program’s creation, which will provide tailored programming in mentorship and professional
Retired Joint Chiefs Chairman Milley Warns of Foreign, Domestic
New McDonough Kosoy Women in Business Program Provides Mentorship
development for a
cohort of members throughout the upcoming semester. The inaugural group of upperclassmen of all gender
Check out this week’s video, “Humans of Georgetown,” in which Alexis Lien interviews Chloe Holman (CAS ’24) about her dance journey. All podcasts are available to stream on Spotify, Soundcloud and Videos are available on YouTube and GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY DANCE COMPANY

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Senators Julian Jimenez (CAS ’24), John DiPierri (SFS ’25), George LeMieux (CAS ’25) and George Currie (CAS ’26) voted against the referendum. Henshawsaidmanytransgender and gender nonconforming students currently do not feel comfortable in living situations because they feel pressured to share their identities.

“Right now, if you come into Georgetown, especially as a freshman and you’re gender nonconforming, or you’re transgender, you have this choice where you can either out yourself to every roommate that you talk to, which is something that you may not feel comfortable doing, or you can risk going random and living with someone who’s not supportive or affirming of you,” Henshaw said at the meeting.

J Gertin (CAS ’26), a student who plans to vote in favor of the referendum, said the vote represented progress on a key issue for students who identify as LGBTQ+. “I think it’s a great step forward, especially for people like me who are nonbinary and genderqueer who need to be able to get good and equitable housing on this campus,” Gertin told The Hoya Henshaw said other Jesuit institutions, including Gonzaga University and Loyola Marymount University, have adopted genderinclusive housing policies, citing research that GU Pride and GU

Queer People of Color (QPOC), organizations on campus that support and provide safe spaces for LGBTQ+ students, compiled. Fordham University, another Jesuit institution, also adopted genderinclusive housing in 2020.

At the special session, Jimenez raised concerns he said he heard from other universities about students being matched with transgender and gender non-conforming roommates without their knowledge.

“There were some women who complained that the university had them living in an apartment or a space with someone who was biologically male, but they were not informed of that by the university,” Jimenez said at the meeting.

Senator Olivia Mason (CAS ’26) responded by saying that implementing gender-inclusive housing would not force students into uncomfortable living situations.

“The goal with this referendum is to make sure that all students feel comfortable in their living space, and that includes cisgender and transgender students,” Mason said at the meeting. “That doesn’t mean that cisgender students are going to be forced to live with transgender students if that’s not something they’re comfortable with.”

Liam Moynihan (SFS ’25), who serves as GU Pride’s director of advocacy, said the referendum would ensure the Georgetown campus is more inclusive. “As a genderqueer student, Georgetown’s housing has truly

failed me, but, over the past months, I have been inspired by friends, faculty, staff, and administrators to imagine a Georgetown where genderqueer inclusivity — in our housing, curriculum, community, and beyond — is the norm,” Moynihan wrote to The Hoya. “I believe that this referendum offers us a chance to unify our campus in pursuit of this shared future.”

Senator Sam Lovell (CAS ’25), who works as a resident assistant (RA), said the change to gender-inclusive housing would make more students feel welcome at Georgetown.

“As a freshman RA, I think there’s a population at Georgetown that would take advantage of this and would find it to be promoting a more inclusive environment on our campus,” Lovell said.

The last GUSA referendum occurred in November 2021, when students overwhelmingly voted in favor of abolishing the GUSA Senate and Executive. However, the referendum fell short of the mandated 25% student turnout.

The referendum on gender-inclusive housing will occur simultaneously with GUSA Senate elections from April 11 to 13, which Cobb said would promote turnout and make elections more accessible to students.

“Having it all in one election is so much more accessible, and also, for getting people out to vote, we see our highest turnouts when there are social issue referendums,” Cobb said. “I think that’s just, overall, good for the general consensus of GUSA.”

GUPD Chief Perez Will Depart


After One Year GUSA Schedules Gender-Inclusive Student Housing Referendum

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Department in Maryland. Perez’s tenure at Georgetown has included several student protests. At one Feb. 27 protest, marchers compared GUPD officers to the Israel Defense Forces and the Ku Klux Klan, a white supremacist terrorist organization, and accused officers of violently shoving a student protester. Perez said the GUPD did not receive any reports about the alleged altercation.

Georgetown University Student Association (GUSA) Senate Speaker Megan Skinner (SFS ’24), has collaborated closely with Chief Perez as a member of GUPD’s Student Safety Advisory Board (SSAB), a student group that aims to foster student collaboration and feedback with GUPD. Skinner said Perez is a lively and passionate community leader. “She has brought a vibrant and creative approach to GUPD during her time here,” Skinner told The Hoya. “Chief Perez loves working with Georgetown students and deeply cares about making Georgetown a better place.”

Upon joining Georgetown’s faculty, Perez said she vowed to continue GUPD’s mission to promote inclusivity on campus.

“I want them to know that the work that has been done thus far to be inclusive, transparent and present in the quest to keep the Georgetown campus safe and secure will continue and that we will work, together, to continue to be better through every interaction we have with each other,” Perez said in an April 2023 press release, addressing students.

Christian Hahm (MSB ’24) said that the GUPD under Perez’s leadership strengthened students’ sense of safety on campus. He referenced an instance in which his neighbors, a group of four women in the Alumni Square apartments, texted him and his roommates about a man loitering outside their apartment who was making them feel unsafe. Hahm said GUPD swiftly and thoroughly addressed the students’ concern. “We contacted GUPD, both of us, and then they came within five minutes and sorted everything out, made sure the hallways were clear and then locked the door,” Hahm told The Hoya. “Then they also continued to monitor the area consistently for the next few weeks.” Perez’s team has also dealt with unexpected incidents. In March, GUPD officers found a

be leaders in law enforcement and security.”

Perez said she wishes to leave behind a positive legacy of her year at Georgetown.

“I hope my time here at Georgetown will be remembered fondly,” Perez wrote.

DeGioia Calls for Ceasefire in Gaza, Humani tarian Aid, Return of Hostages

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The Israeli military response to the Oct. 7 Hamas terrorist attacks has killed nearly 33,000 Palestinians and resulted in widespread food shortages and limited access to humanitarian aid in the Gaza Strip. Ava Uditsky (CAS ’25) said she supports both humanitarian assistance in Gaza and an immediate hostage release, which she feels is a moral imperative because of the imminent threats facing those held by Hamas.

“It’s heartbreaking to watch the parents of people our age — hostages like Hersh Goldberg-Polin or Noa Argamani — pleading for their children to come home but uncertain that they’re even still alive,” Uditsky wrote to The Hoya Hamas took captive over 250 hostages on Oct. 7, and over 100 have since been returned to Israel while nearly 130 remain in captivity. Thirty-three are confirmed to have died, while the status of many remains unknown.

Uditsky said DeGioia’s call for the release of hostages simply reflects the proper humanitarian response to the crisis rather than a commendable call to action.

“There is a clear right, human answer to this situation, which is

that the hostages must be released immediately,” Uditsky wrote. “It’s not a bold or courageous or surprising statement for Pres. DeGioia to make — it’s the bare minimum.”

“This is not to say that the deaths in Gaza aren’t devastating and innocent civilians there don’t deserve safety and protection but these two things can be true at the same time,” she added.

Mark Lance, an organizer with FSJP and a professor of philosophy at Georgetown, said the university must stop its investments in companies that produce weapons for the Israeli military to truly follow through in their call for peace.

“Just as the US cannot coherently call for ceasefire and simultaneously supply weapons to violate it, Georgetown must not call for justice and invest in corporations that are complicit in its opposite,” Lance wrote to The Hoya. “We must divest now and call for systematic sanctions on Israel.”

Pro-Palestine activists on campus have previously called for Georgetown to curb its investments in companies with financial ties to the Israeli military, including Amazon and Alphabet, Inc., which is Google’s parent company.

Sinha said they hope that the university takes a more proactive stance against hosting members

of the Israeli military on campus.

“It is a shame that in the last two months, we have seen 4 members of the Israeli military, some who had just come from Gaza, welcomed on to our Main Campus and our Law Campus,” Sinha wrote. “I hope such events are strongly discouraged in the future.”

Over the past six weeks, four soldiers from the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) have spoken in two separate events at Georgetown’s main campus and at the Georgetown University Law Center, both of which sparked protests. DeGioia’s email included quotes from the writings of Catholic religious leaders — including Pope Francis and Fr. Arturo Sosa, S.J. — about the dire state of Gaza, where millions are on the brink of famine. DeGioia said he recognizes the personal impact of the Israel-Hamas war on members of the university community.

“For a Georgetown community built on a belief in the mutually reinforcing encounter across faiths, this is a season of hope, of possibilities,” DeGioia wrote. “And it is a moment in which so many in our world are suffering — suffering that is felt deeply, here, in our Georgetown community.”

Muslim Life Welcomes Hundreds For Ramadan Celebration, Iftar

RAMADAN, from A1

he is impressed by Muslim students’ commitment to their faith during this holy, yet challenging time.

“This is a sacred time,” DeGioia said at the event. “All of you have made commitments to upholding the tenets of your faith, to living that faith here in the context of this community. This is also a very challenging time — suffering of people across our world, the suffering of the people of Gaza, immense pain so many families and children are experiencing.”

DeGioia called for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza and a return of hostages April 1 in an email to the Georgetown community. The program also included brief prayers from Rev. Gregory A. Schenden, S.J., the director of Campus Ministry; Rev. Ebony Grisom, the director for Protestant Life; Rev. Dr. Shazetta ThompsonHill, the program director for Residential Ministry; and student representatives from Dharmic Life and Jewish Life. Isra Satiar (SOH ’26), a presenter at the celebration, said she particularly appreciates the diverse nature of Muslim Life’s open iftars.

“Some of our best iftars have been those in which we strengthen the Muslim community’s bond with the rest of the community, as being unified with all those around us — no matter how different or similar — is one of the strongest components of Islam,” Satiar told The Hoya

Modeled after Fast-A-Thon, an event held in past years which invited non-Muslims to fast alongside Muslims for the day, this year’s official celebration brought together students of a diverse range of faiths. At the iftar, participants broke the day’s fast with dates and water at sunset. The call to prayer followed before the roughly 450 attendees received dinner.

John Schwendinger (SFS ’26), who attended the iftar, is fasting for the entire month of Ramadan even though he is not a part of the Muslim tradition.

Schwendinger said he most values the self-discipline required to fast and appreciates how welcoming Muslim Life has been.

“I’m fasting for the month of Ramadan because, regardless of personal religious belief, fasting is an exercise in self-control that anyone can benefit from,” Schwendinger wrote to The Hoya. “It is especially enriching to fast with others, and the Georgetown Muslim community has been very welcoming.”

Meriam Ahmad (SFS ’26), a Muslim Life fellow, said Ramadan serves as her spiritual check-up — a month to self-reflect and cut back on bad habits. “Ramadan is a time for me to step back and critically assess the trajectory of my life,” Ahmad wrote to The Hoya. “Ramadan requires us to abstain from eating and drinking, but it also strongly encourages us to critically examine ourselves. I try to regularly ask

myself: am I getting closer to being the person I hope to be?”

“I do my best to complain less, gossip less, shop less, spend less time on social media, and generally minimize my negative behaviors,” she added.

Ahmad and the other Muslim Life fellows have helped to organize daily iftars on Mondays through Thursdays, as well as additional special iftars on other days. The celebration concluded with remarks from Hendi, who became the first full-time Muslim chaplain at an American university when Georgetown hired him in 1999.

Hendi said the spirit of Ramadan, a time of both discomfort and calm, induces a close bond among members of the Muslim faith.

“We leave the comfortable for the uncomfortable, so that we may become comfortable,” Hendi said at the event. “We challenge ourselves to become better, to liberate ourselves from the bondage of fear and worry, to bring ourselves closer to one another as a community.”

Saymeh said Ramadan provides a chance for Muslims to cleanse their heart and allow care and compassion to blossom.

“One of the benefits of Ramdan and fasting is the softening of the heart,” Saymeh said at the event.

“If we want to get to a deeper level of spirituality and compassion and love and care and giving, it does start with the heart, so really, this is the month of the heart.”

BERKLEY CENTER FOR RELIGION, PEACE AND WORLD AFFAIRS The call of Georgetown President John DeGioia (CAS ’79, GRD ’95) for a ceasefire and the return of hostages was rooted in the messages of Catholic leaders like Pope Francis. AAMIR JAMIL/THE HOYA
FRIDAY, APRIL 5, 2024 | THEHOYA.COM NEWS THE HOYA | A7 dead body near the campus’s southern boundary, south of Village A. The deceased was unaffiliated with Georgetown, and Metropolitan Police Department Officers later determined that the individual found had committed suicide. Perez is
commitment to uplifting women’s voices. “Her office is filled with quotes and phrases about the strength of women leaders, and she has frequently offered me advice about being a woman in leadership positions,” Skinner said. “Chief Perez is an inspiration for women that aspire to
The GUSA Senate approved a resolution to hold a referendum on whether students support establishing gender-inclusive housing, which will require 25% student turnout.
also a leader among women in law enforcement, having served as the president of the National Association of Women Law Enforcement Executives (NAWLEE), an organization committed to providing career support for women in the field through conferences and mentorship opportunities, from 2010 to 2011. Skinner said she admires Chief Perez’s

From Dulles to Donald: Republicans Propose Airport Renaming

If legislators pass a bill recently introduced in the House of Representatives, students and tourists flying into the nation’s capital may soon find themselves landing at the Donald J. Trump International Airport.

Introduced by Rep. Guy Reschenthaler (R-Pa.), the bill is simple in its mission: rename the existing Dulles International Airport (IAD) in Loudoun County, Va., after former President Trump. Though the bill is unlikely to pass in a Democratic-held Senate, should it be approved Trump would join a lengthy list of former presidents with namesake airports, including Bill Clinton (SFS ’68), John F. Kennedy and George Bush. Brandon Wu (SFS ’24, GRD ’25), an avid aviation enthusiast, said the name attached to an airport — for example, Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi, India — often works to tie historical figures to cities in public perception.

“As an aviation fan, I think naming an airport after someone generally becomes synonymous with speaking to the important connection of that person to the city,” Wu wrote to The Hoya Rep. Jennifer Wexton (D-Va.), who represents an area encompassing Dulles, said the potential renaming distracts from legislative priorities with greater social impact.

“This is just another in a long list of instances where extreme House Republicans have shown how unseri-

ous and delusional they are,” Wexton wrote to The Hoya. “Let’s get to work on the real issues the American people sent us here for, not renaming an airport after someone who sought to undermine our democracy.”

In a highly polarized Congress, however, Wexton stands in contrast to some of her Republican colleagues who passionately support Trump. In particular, six cosponsors – Rep. Chuck Fleischmann (R-Tenn.), Rep. Troy Nehls (R-Texas), Rep. Michael Waltz (R-Fla.), Rep. Andy Ogles (R-Tenn.) and Rep. Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.) – joined Reschenthaler to promote the bill. Reschenthaler, chief deputy whip of the House Republicans, said he feels the new name would invoke feelings of patriotism among travelers.

“As millions of domestic and international travelers fly through the airport, there is no better symbol of freedom, prosperity, and strength than hearing ‘Welcome to Trump International Airport’ as they land on American soil,” Reschenthaler wrote in a press release.

Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-Va.), whose district borders the airport, said the Trump namesake would serve better purposes if used in a different type of government building. “Donald Trump is facing 91 felony charges. If Republicans want to name something after him, I’d suggest they find a federal prison,” Connolly wrote in a press release. After Trump instituted a temporary travel ban in 2017 on citizens of

Bowser Puts Forth New Plan as Truancy Rates Rise in the District

Paulina Inglima City Desk Editor Mayor Muriel Bowser proposed her plan for curbing truancy rates in Washington, D.C. after city lawmakers announced a wave of incoming legislation surrounding school attendance April 3.

The proposed bills come amid the release of the District’s annual attendance report for 2022-23, which reveals 37% of students are chronically truant, meaning they have 10 or more unexcused absences during the school year. The proposed bills limit the need for parent prosecution in favor of connecting families with resources and streamlining reporting efforts.

Leila Peterson, executive director of School Talk, Inc., a nonprofit dedicated to advocating for restorative justice-centered reform in D.C. schools, said much of the work around curbing truancy in the District calls for rebuilding connections with students that were lost during the pandemic.

“I think it’s trying to both focus on reconnecting and creating community and relationships because a lot of communities and relationships and everything really got ruptured during COVID,” Peterson told The Hoya Bowser’s UPLIFT Amendment Act, as well as the Students Amendment Act put forth March 28 by Councilmember Zachary Parker, would require that the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) initially refer all cases of truancy to the Department of Human Services (DHS) for a public health-centered approach. Currently, cases of children under 13 are directed toward the Child and Family Services Agency (CFSA), which investigates parents for neglect in cases of truancy, and children over 14 are directed toward the Office of the Attorney General for referral to youth diversion programs.

Similarly, Councilmember Charles Allen’s Chronic Absenteeism and Truancy Reduction Act would require that schools hold intervention meetings with students after they accrue five unexcused absences before referring them to CFSA.

Kait Delaney (CAS ’26), an education, inquiry and justice minor who volunteers with preschool and middle school students in the Southeast quadrant, said intervention efforts should be prioritized before prosecuting parents.

“We need to be understanding and forgiving of the fact that not every student has the capabilities to be getting all their absences excused and our students are people and they have lives,” Delaney said. “Things happen, life happens and I feel like we need to find a middle ground between regulating it to make sure students aren’t missing out on too much school while still being forgiving.”

DHS’s diversion program, Alternatives to the Court Experience (ACE), provides community support and services rather than prosecution to teens.

seven Muslim-majority countries, protesters — including Connolly — took to Dulles to organize. Wu said that while he does not feel the Trump legacy merits renaming the airport, he feels Washingtonians should be aware that the history of Dulles’s current namesake is similarly problematic.

“Contextually though, I do think it’s important to recognize the namesake of Dulles—John Foster Dulles—and his harmful legacy abroad,” Wu wrote. “Dulles was part of the ‘Washington Consensus’ that decided that the US could best determine other nations’ interests abroad in the fight against communism, namely his support for the coup against Prime Minister Mossadegh in Iran and his instigation of a CIA coup in Guatemala.”

On several occasions, Dulles, who served as secretary of state in the Eisenhower administration, supported American intervention in foreign governments — including in Iran, Guatemala and Indonesia — under the premise of containing Soviet influence.

Regardless of whether legislators change the Dulles name, Wu said he holds treasured memories from the unique architectural facets of IAD.

“Riding the mobile lounges at Dulles is definitely nostalgic — on one of my first ever flights I remember going to China, we transited through

GU Delegation to Attend Catholic Synod in Rome

Bowser has said that moving cases from the CFS to the DHS is essential to solving issues that prevent students from getting to school such as access to food, transportation and housing.

“This is about working together as a community to put meaningful interventions in place that better support young people and their families,” Bowser said in a press release.

Faith Specter (SFS ’26), a tutor for D.C. Schools Project who teaches English to immigrant children from Venezuela, said the lives of her students are often highly unpredictable due to the erratic movements of temporary housing, which leads to other commitments and needs taking priority over school.

“When you’re in that situation, school is not going to be your primary focus, because, you know, I don’t know if I’m going to be evicted tomorrow. I don’t know what I’m going to eat, and it’s not going to be the primary focus of my attention all the time,”

Spector told The Hoya Parker’s legislation would expand the current set of excusable absences to include threats of violence, serious illness of a family member, housing displacement and court proceedings.

Lenah Hong (SFS ’26), a tutor with the D.C. Schools Project who teaches English to Spanish speakers in a D.C. elementary school, said many of the parents whose children frequently miss sessions do not have the resources to provide transportation home from the programming, resulting in them not going at all.

“Other times, it could be related to transportation issues. For example, maybe they don’t have a parent who is available to pick them up at that time because they’re working, or if they have siblings who pick them up, they’re in school at that time so they can’t pick them up,”

Hong told The Hoya Another hurdle preventing students from attending school is personal safety, as the District’s juvenile crime rates are the highest since the 1990s.

Clare Tourtelotte (CAS ’27), an after-school tutor with the Georgetown Center for Social Justice, said that student attendance is often erratic because of factors like long commutes to the school, caring for siblings and a lack of safety at school. “Some girls don’t get along and they don’t totally always feel safe at their school,” Tourtelotte told The Hoya Peterson said that holding students accountable should be done by relationship building rather than punishment.

“Accountability doesn’t come from punishment. Accountability comes from relationships,” Peterson said. “If we feel like we’re part of a community that has expectations of us, we feel like we trust because, the biggest thing for trust is, ‘Do people care about me, understand me and know my needs?,’ then that is what actually gives us true accountability.”

A group of Georgetown University students and faculty will travel to Rome, Italy in October 2024 to attend a global meeting of members and clergy in the Catholic Church.

Applications are currently open to join a delegation composed of five students led by faculty members Annie Selak and Vanessa Corcoran, both of whom are professors with expertise in theology. The group will join 13 other groups from Catholic universities in the United States from Oct. 12 to 19, where they will engage in dialogue and observe proceedings at the synod, a global Catholic conference that draws attendees from around the world.

Selak, who also directs the Georgetown University Women’s Center, said that planning the trip has been a passion project for her to connect students with larger conversations about Catholicism.

“I’ve been working with other universities for several months to dream and engage about how current college students can engage with the synod and the global church,” Selak wrote to The Hoya “As an ecclesiologist and theologian, I’ve never seen an event like this in my lifetime.”

According to Selak, the goal of the trip is to enable students to

act as witnesses to themes of the synod such as dialogue, encounter and listening.

“This delegation engages the synod. We are not advocating for specific changes, but rather, being present as synod delegates listen to the global church,” Selak wrote. McKenna Brannan (CAS ’26), the spiritual co-chair of Catholic Women at Georgetown, said that she hopes to join the trip as part of a university-sponsored effort to bridge dialogue and diversity.

“The opportunity to attend a synod, for a person of any age, profession, gender, status, etc is the experience of a lifetime. So, to have the opportunity as a 20-year-old college student is truly remarkable,” Brannan wrote to The Hoya

“I think it embodies the Jesuit identity of Georgetown and speaks to the value that Georgetown places on its young Catholics. It shows that Georgetown really embraces the diversity necessary to cultivate a thriving Church,” she added.

Kim Daniels, director of the Georgetown Initiative on Catholic Social Thought and Public Life, frequently attends synod meetings in Rome as an advisor to synod members. She said she hopes student attendees will be able to resonate with the diversity of the conference.

“Student attendees might keep an eye out for how those gathered in Rome reflect the global and

diverse character of the Catholic Church, and how lay leaders, especially women and young people, are stepping forward to help build ‘an outward-facing Church that is healthy from the inside,’” Daniels wrote to The Hoya Brannan said that attending World Youth Day, a global meeting of young Catholics, helped foster a desire to engage in religious dialogue abroad — an experience she hopes to pursue once again in Rome.

“I attended World Youth Day last summer in Lisbon, Portugal and was so inspired by theenthusiasm of the Catholic young people there and the scope of the Catholic church in general,” Brannan wrote. “That was the first experience I had with the global church and, in applying, I hope to find a similar experience at the Synod.”

“I think Catholic youth have a lot to contribute to the Synod but they also have much to learn from the bishops, priests, theologians and other Church leaders. The potential for education and personal growth combined with youth input particularly excite me,” she added.

According to Daniels, the purpose of attending the synod is not necessarily to solve problems facing the church but rather to promote conversations and build connections.

“This global gathering is not focused on particular issues so

much as on helping an approach take root that involves listening to all, deepening our connection, and strengthening our mission to love God and our neighbors,” Daniels wrote.

Selak said that the trip will connect Georgetown students not only with Catholic social teaching, but a diverse cohort of undergraduate students across the country.

“The synod on synodality is a once in a lifetime experience, and we want to have Georgetown students gather with other students from across the country to engage in this momentous experience,” Selak wrote.

Daniels said the synod trip reflects a trend toward inclusion in the church, something she feels could benefit from the perspectives offered by Georgetown students.

“Georgetown students traveling to Rome for the Synod reflects so much about where Pope Francis has been leading the Church over the past 11 years,” Daniels wrote. “He offers a dynamic, hopeful vision that reminds Catholics that the Church is not called to be a fortress, but a ‘home with open doors’ for everybody.”

“Young people from the United States’ oldest Catholic and Jesuit university have so much to bring to that conversation, and so much to learn from others gathered from around the world for our shared mission,” she added.

“Being entrepreneurial doesn’t have to mean being a tech bro creating an app and living in Silicon Valley. If you are interested in fashion, or finance, or health care — or really anything else — you might want to learn how entrepreneurship can help you pursue that interest,” Reid wrote to The Hoya Unwin said that when running a creative-leaning business such as Veronica Beard, a strong balance between creative vision and business acumen is vital to the business’s success.

well with investors.

“You can have a great idea and lousy management and fail. So it’s about the people, it’s about assessing the people and it’s about not just doing economic due diligence, but it’s being comfortable that you’re with the kind of people that can responsibly, thoughtfully lead a business,” Howard said at the event.

been extraordinary, and very different to private equity.” Ava McDonald (CAS ’24), president of GRLA, said the discussion provided a valuable opportunity for students to learn about potential careers that involve fash-

aspect of every career field and industry, including fashion.

“For me, the excitement is to bring, to be able to execute a creative vision. And I do think we need to have the creative and the execution,” Unwin said at the event. “In order to have a great business, you really have to have a strong partnership between the two, and it can be challenging. Because not all creatives, especially, frankly, if they are founders, want to have that kind of input. And there are certain things that you just have to do in business.” Howard — who has been an investor in Veronica Beard since 2013 — said that as an investor, the most essential factor for business growth and investment is the presence of leadership who possesses management skills to grow the business and can work

“The first and most important thing as an investor, maybe the only thing as an investor, is who you get into business with and making sure that they’re the kind of people who can grow with you, who have vision and who are thoughtful about their business,” he added.

Referencing Veronica Beard’s partnership with Howard and other investors, Unwin said the right investing partnership can be beneficial for both sides and enable the growth of a company. “We, along the way, have been very fortunate to have four incredible advisors and mentors. We don’t ever think of John and our partners as investors — we do, but it’s more than just an investor. And we have learned so much. It’s enabled us to take major shortcuts along the way,” Unwin said. “The wealth of knowledge that was gained through this partnership has

try something, to see if I liked it,” Unwin said. “My advice is that it’s really important to take those internships, to sometimes explore the road less traveled. I think if you have an interest, it’s worth pursuing,” she added.

Dulles and seeing all the planes on the tarmac likely helped inspire my interest in aviation to this day!” Wu wrote.
JACK WILLIS/THE HOYA Republican legislators in the House of Representatives filed a bill to officially rename Dulles International Airport in Loudoun County, Va., after former President Donald Trump. Caleigh Keating Events Desk Editor The president of a contemporary luxury fashion brand and a private equity investment managing partner emphasized important business strategies and shared career advice in a conversation at Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business (MSB) on April 3. The student organizations Georgetown Entrepreneurship Club and Georgetown Retail and Luxury Association (GRLA) co-sponsored the event, which featured Stephanie Unwin, president of Veronica Beard, a contemporary luxury fashion brand known for their blazers, as well as John D. Howard, founder and a co-managing partner of Irving Place Capital — formerly Bear Stearns Merchant Banking. The event was part of the Stanton Distinguished Leadership Series, which aims to connect Georgetown students with business executives and leaders. Jeff Reid, professor of the practice of entrepreneurship, founding director of the Georgetown Entrepreneurship Initiative and the moderator of the conversation, said entrepreneurship is a key
Fashion, Private Equity Executives Talk Investment
ion and entrepreneurship. “GRLA is thrilled to be collaborating with the McDonough School of Business Stanton Distinguished Leaders Series and Georgetown Entrepreneurship on this event,” McDonald wrote to The Hoya. “We hope that Georgetown students are able to learn about the intersection of fashion and entrepreneurship and possible career opportunities they can have in this space.” Unwin advised students on how to set themselves up for success in their early careers, saying that learning through on-the-job experience and pursuing their interests are of paramount importance. “I’ve been very, very strategic along the way. I’ve always done
they felt right, for sure,
pick up
things because
but also because I wanted to

(No) Pressure Creatives Hold Their Second Musical ‘Autumn Leaves’

Marisa Bist

Special to The Hoya

(No) Pressure Creatives, an original Asian American musical production group at Georgetown University, brought its second production, “Autumn Leaves,” to the stage in Gaston Hall on April 4 and 5.

The musical tells the story of a couple that immigrates from New Delhi, India, to Seattle, Washington, to live out their dream of owning a jazz bar. After the couples’ passing, their two children grapple with understanding their parents’ legacy and learning how to continue it in their own way.

After the success of their musical “(No) Pressure” last year, (No) Pressure Creatives was formed to create a space on campus for Asian Americans interested in the arts and to combat their underrepresentation in traditional media and the performing arts world. “Autumn Leaves” features an all-original script co-written by Sherri Wu (SFS ’26) and Wyatt Nako (CAS ’26), the director and vocal director of the production, and a cast and crew of around 65 students.

Executive producer Lucas Lin (SFS ’24) said musical expression can be an integral part of the Asian American experience growing up and (No) Pressure Creatives allows students to further pursue these interests in college.

“I think that it’s a really ubiquitous experience that at a young age we’re really encouraged to take up music and have it as a hobby, but almost a lot of Asian Americans drop it through high school or college,” Lin told The Hoya. “So (No) Pressure Creatives promoting Asian Americans in creative spaces is pushing them to have or continue these creative outlets in theater or musical theater ways.”

Full disclosure: Lucas Lin was a news writer for The Hoya from 2020-2022.

Associate producer Minato Shinoda (MSB ’26) said she and other Asian American students at Georgetown have extensive backgrounds in performing arts and music, which are creative

interests they can pursue at (No) Pressure apart from their academics.

“Basically everyone in the production is not a theater major or a dance major or a music major or anything like that; we’ve kind of grown up hearing not to do that. So, we wanted a space for us to continue these interests in college as well,”

Shinoda told The Hoya Beyond serving as a space to exercise passion and creativity through the performing arts, students say (No) Pressure Creatives and the Autumn Leaves production serve as important sources of community and friendship for Asian American students on campus.

Wu, who was also involved in the group’s production last year, said theater was a great way for her to find community at Georgetown.

“As cheesy as it sounds, it genuinely was the first time I felt like I actually had a place on this campus because I struggled to find people who had similar backgrounds as I did,” Wu told The Hoya. “At the very basis of it, it’s just a place for people with similar experiences, who feel like they don’t have a place on campus, to get together and it’s a really great way to make friends. Long-lasting friendships are really born out of this project.”

The story of “Autumn Leaves” encapsulates the childhood parental struggles of many Asian American students, according to Wu, who said the broader goal of (No) Pressure Creatives is to bring light to the lived experiences of Asian Americans on stage.

“Jokingly, among the cast, we say it’s about generational trauma. We kind of inserted a lot of our parents’ experiences and our experiences with our parents into the musical,” Wu said.

Wonnie Kim (SOH ’25), who played the mother, Ella, in the musical, said the story focuses on the tension between children satisfying their immigrant parents’ desires for them and living out their own ambitions.

“I think the musical will have people thinking a lot about where they stand in their story,

if they’re immigrants or not,”

Kim told The Hoya. “I think everyone relates to that discrepancy between parents and children, wanting to stay connected with your family but also wanting to forge your own path.”

Though this is only their second year putting on a production, (No) Pressure Creatives has plans to expand and continue producing shows in the coming years. Currently, (No) Pressure Creatives operates under Georgetown University’s Asian American Student Association (AASA) with the support of other affinity groups such as Georgetown’s South Asian Society (SAS).

Lin said the group is trying to become fully institutionalized as a club under the Performing Arts Advisory Committee (PAAC), similar to other theater groups such as the Mask & Bauble Dramatic Society, Nomadic Theatre and Black Theatre Ensemble.

According to Shinoda, maintaining the group’s original mission of portraying the underrepresented narratives of the Asian community is paramount moving forward.

“Asian American stories are definitely not a monolith. It’s not like everyone has the same experiences, so I really want to try exploring the different experiences that people have, portraying those stories every year,” Shinoda said.

Lin said the group is trying to become fully institutionalized as a club under the Performing Arts Advisory Committee (PAAC), similar to other theater groups such as the Mask & Bauble Dramatic Society, Nomadic Theatre and Black Theatre Ensemble.

According to Shinoda, maintaining the group’s original mission of portraying the underrepresented narratives of the Asian community is paramount moving forward.

“Asian American stories are definitely not a monolith. It’s not like everyone has the same experiences, so I really want to try exploring the different experiences that people have, portraying those stories every year,” Shinoda said.

GUSA Launches $30,000 Diversity Fund To Support Cultural Organizations

Erin Saunders Deputy Features Editor

The Georgetown University Student Association (GUSA) announced the creation of a new $30,000 diversity fund to support cultural organizations on campus in an Instagram post on Tuesday.

According to GUSA President Jaden Cobb (CAS ’25), the fund will financially support club events such as Rangila, Georgetown’s South Asian Philanthropic Performing Arts Showcase and the Visions of Excellence Ball, the Black Student Association’s celebratory event. Cultural clubs will be able to apply for funding starting in August, with the GUSA Senate forming working groups in the next few months to plan how to allocate the money and prepare clubs to apply. Cobb said the fund’s establishment comes as a result of discussions between GUSA and various student cultural organizations on campus.

“One thing that we heard was that there was a need for an increase in funding for cultural organizations because of the significance they hold in creating and cultivating a supportive society here at Georgetown, specifically for marginalized communities,” Cobb told The Hoya GUSA partnered with the Finance and Appropriations Committee (FinApp) to establish a $15,000 fund as part of the 2025 budget passed in March, with the university matching GUSA’s contribution with another $15,000.

A university spokesperson said Georgetown is committed to improving cultural organizations on campus. “This effort is an example of Georgetown University’s shared commitment to an increase in

the quality and quantity of student-hosted programming celebrating diversity and inclusivity on campus,” the spokesperson wrote to The Hoya. “It will enhance the student experience and help foster a truly inclusive campus environment for all Georgetown students.” Cobb said GUSA will allocate the funds to organizations on a case-by-case basis, and that cultural organizations will apply for money through a process GUSA is currently refining. “We don’t try to define a cultural organization, but ideally, it’d be for clubs that have relatively big populations — Black Student Association, Asian American Student Association and South Asian Society — things of that nature that have three, four or five hundred kids,” Cobb said. “We’re going to have conversations with cultural organizations so they can have an input on how we allocate the funds.”

Cobb said the process of allocating funds to organizations is an ongoing effort. “We are still in the development stage of figuring out what’s the best way to allocate the money now that we do have the money,” Cobb said. “That’s one of the things that we’re going to work on over the summer so that we can launch it in August.”

Rachel Tao (CAS ’25) and Akshadha Lagisetti (SFS ’25), presidents of the Asian American Student Association (AASA), a student group that hosts events that support the Georgetown Asian American community, said they believe that the fund will have a positive impact on their organization.

“Having specific carved-out funds for these types of large, significant cultural events will be incredibly helpful for AASA

Yifu Ke Special to The Hoya

A Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. biographer spoke about how his book, “King: A Life,” provides a livelier account of King’s lived experiences and personality at an April 3 event in Riggs Library.

The Berkley Center for Religion, Peace and World Affairs, an academic research center focused on the interdisciplinary study of research, teaching and dialogue, hosted the event as a part of its Faith and Culture Series, which invites authors to discuss how culture and faith interact in their writing and work. Jonathan Eig, who has also written biographies on Jackie Robinson and Muhammad Ali, was joined by Faith and Culture Series founder and Berkley Center senior fellow Paul Elie. Elie began the dialogue by noting the special day of this occasion: a day before the 56th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s assassination.

Eig described what King’s last night was like, specifically speaking about King’s last speech, which he said was less prepared than commonly presumed and almost never even delivered.

“People were gathered at Mason Temple, waiting for King to come speak and it was a terrible night, thunderstorm, lightning, and King decided to stay in bed and sent

Ralph Abernathy to speak in his place,” Eig said at the event.

“When Abernathy got there and saw how many people were crowded there, he called the Lorraine Motel and said, ‘I’m not the one they want to hear, you got to get out of bed.’ So he was literally in his pajamas and got dressed and went over there, and, without any planning, gave an unusual sermon which proved to be the last speech of his life,” Eig added.

Eig said at the time of his assassination, two-thirds of Americans did not support King, who arrived in Memphis against the wishes of his advisors to support peacefully resolving a strike.

“He was in Memphis against the advice of most of his friends and advisors. For the last few years he’d been really falling in popularity and the esteem and the respect of most Americans,” Eig said.

Eig said the speech exemplified King’s commitment to non-violence and staying true to his beliefs.

“Nevertheless he kept doubling down on his beliefs, on his Christian radicalism that he had to speak up for the poor, that he had to speak up for the disenfranchised, that he had to attack northern racism, that he had to speak for the Vietnam War, because his brothers in Vietnam were the same as his brothers in America,” Eig said.

Eig said he chose to call the book “King: the Life” because he

wanted to emphasize that King was at the core of his work.

“I want to write a book with King at the center, a much more intimate portrait. I want to write a book that would make people cry when they read to the end,” Eig said.

Eig also said another goal of his book was to paint a fuller picture of King’s wife, Coretta Scott King. According to Eig, pivotal moments in MLK’s journey were at times defined by Mrs. King’s insight and ideas.

“He was always a little bit afraid of his father and had a hard time standing up to him. Our greatest protest leader was averse to conflicts when it came to personal relations. But Coretta has no problem standing up to Daddy King,” Eig said.

Eig also discussed the meeting of Ali, the subject of Eig’s previous biography, and King in Louisville, Ky., during a press conference. He said the meeting was unique because, despite their dissimilar political and ideological stances, the two got along well.

“Ali is the only one I ever saw who got King to laugh in public,” Eig said. “As the recorder was trying to provoke and divide black leaders and said, ‘You’ve criticized Dr. King for seeking integration, you’ve said integration is a waste of time. What did you two discuss today?’Ali just started like, ‘Oh we had a great talk, we are like Khrushchev and Kennedy. We are the best of friends.’”

and many other cultural organizations,” Tao and Lagisetti wrote to The Hoya . “AASA can relax a little bit more, stress a little bit less about funding these events that are so significant to our community. The diversity fund will really promote our creativity and ability to plan more impactful ways to serve our community.” According to Tao and Legisetti, AASA’s funding board ran out of money this spring, which prevented them from hosting some of their planned events.

“Unfortunately, AASA actually had to cancel one of our end-ofyear celebrations because we did not have the budget for it that we had expected to get from our funding board,” Tao and Lagisetti wrote. “We also experienced a long delay in funding our other capstone celebration, our night market, which gave us a lot of uncertainty for a while.”

Cobb said the goal of the fund is to ensure that cultural organizations can host events without financial worry.

“We want to make sure that we’re more adequately able to help these students with these organizations because these events are not only for students to have fun, but also to build a contributing environment for the student body,” Cobb said.

Cobb said the diversity fund is not just an accomplishment for GUSA, but an accomplishment for the Georgetown community as a whole.

“This is going to be huge for cultural organizations because it is something we have been trying to work on for a long time,” Cobb said. “I am very happy that we’ve been able to finally get funding for cultural organizations, as they do hold a big significance to the support, the safety and the sense of belonging here at Georgetown.”

dents joined hundreds of protestors on the steps of the Supreme Court March on 26 as the court heard oral arguments for a case that seeks to limit access to a drug that helps administer athome abortions. The case that prompted the rally was the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) v. Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine, a case that originated in a Texas circuit court attempting to limit access to mifepristone, an FDA-approved pill used for abortions. The case marks the first time the Supreme Court has ruled on a matter concerning abortion since they ruled in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization (2022) to overturn Roe v. Wade (1973), ending a half-century of legally protected access to abortion at the national level. Steven Hansen (MSB ’26), a board member for Georgetown’s chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), which seeks to protect individuals’ civil liberties, attended the rally in support of the ACLU’s commitment to the pro-choice movement. Hansen said that when he arrived at the rally, people had already gathered outside the building. “People were coming in, wearing matching shirts, literally getting off by the busload in front of the Supreme Court,” Hansen told The Hoya. “When I got there, there were also a lot of speakers giving talks, and they had a whole podium set up. And there were different doctors, politicians and advocacy workers trying to rally everybody together.”

The Capitol Police arrested 13 people ahead of the rally for illegally blocking roads and a walkway.

The Women’s March, a feminist organization that advocates for reproductive rights and one of the rally organizers, along with the Center for Popular Democracy Action, a nonprofit that promotes democracy and equity, confirmed that their members were among those arrested.

Elizabeth Oliver (CAS ’26), the president of Georgetown Right to Life (RTL), also attended the rally, though in support of the anti-abortion cause, which advocated for the justices to limit access to mifepristone. Oliver said she spoke to people on both sides of the issue, including women in their 60s and 70s, who Oliver said reminded her of her grandmother.

“With those conversations with older people, I was trying to help them realize what the political climate is today and not 50 years ago,” Oliver told The Hoya

Since Dobbs v. Jackson, many states have enacted legislation restricting reproductive rights, and the mifepristone case looks at a Texas circuit court’s ruling to limit access to the drug, which is used for about two-thirds of abortions in the United States. The national ACLU is currently collecting signatures for a petition in support of continued access to medication abortions, and Hansen said that the Georgetown ACLU plans to continue promoting such petitions. “We’re very conscious about the ACLU petitions that are being sent out. We put them on our website, we put them in our newsletters that we send out to our club members and we’re trying to support that way,” Hansen said. Oliver said that moving forward, RTL will focus on tabling to foster community outreach as well as showing support for legislation that restricts abortion.

“We often go down to the Supreme Court or Congress or participate at different rallies in order to voice the fact that we want change to build a world where abortion is unthinkable,” Oliver said. Since Dobbs v. Jackson, many states have increased abortion restrictions, including 28 states that limit abortions based on a fetus’ gestational age. Ahead of the 2024 presidential election, President Joe Biden has promised to expand reproductive rights if reelected. Conversely, former President Donald Trump stated he supports a national 16-week abortion ban. A spokesperson for the Women’s March said activism among the pro-choice movement is increasingly important as the 2024 election grows closer. “With the 2024 election approaching, and the GOP’s attack on women’s bodily autonomy growing disturbingly stronger every day — it’s crucial to shine a national spotlight on access to Mifepristone and for Americans to understand what is at stake for women not only in this court case, but at the polls in November,” the spokesperson wrote to The Hoya Hansen said attending the rally reminded him that it is important for Georgetown students to be politically active and engage in dialogue with those who have opposing viewpoints regarding the topic of abortion.

“I think getting our feet wet now is the best opportunity to expose ourselves and form our own opinions,” Hansen said.

“I think attending rallies like this where you can hear both sides of the argument, even if you may already have a preconceived notion of what you think is right, is really important just to continue to hear both sides of all the arguments and just to educate yourself,” he added.

Biographer Jonathan Eig Introduces His New MLK Book ‘King: A Life’ in Riggs
Toscano Hoya Staff Writer Georgetown University stu-
Georgetown Students Rally For, Against Abortion Pill at Steps of SCOTUS Nora
COURTESY OF STEVEN HANSEN Students joined hundreds of protestors March 26 during a hearing about abortion medication.


Hoyas Continue Dominant Stretch, Sweep Villanova in Balanced Effort

After the University of Maryland handed the Hoyas their first home loss March 26, the Georgetown University baseball team bounced back in their first Big East matchup of the season, sweeping Villanova in a three-game series. The Hoyas (19-8, 3-0 Big East) faced off against the Wildcats (7-18, 0-3 Big East) at Capital One Park between March 28 and 30. Having swept their opponents in their last four three-game series, the Hoyas continued the trend, winning 8-4, 6-1 and 6-1.

The first matchup on Thursday, March 28 saw the Hoyas defeat the Wildcats in a display of both pitching and hitting prowess.

The game began in favor of the Wildcats, as the team pulled ahead 2-0 in the top of the first inning. However, the Hoyas led 4-2 by the end of the inning behind a grand slam by graduate outfielder Kavi Caster, his fourth home run of the season.

A Villanova two-run homer tied the game in the fifth inning, but Georgetown did not let the Wildcats get comfortable.

The Hoyas scored 2 runs in the bottom of the fifth to lead by 2 runs. Graduate utility player Marco Castillo’s RBI single in the seventh and senior first baseman Christian Ficca’s second RBI double of the game in the eighth further padded the Hoyas’ lead.

On the pitching side, Head Coach Edwin Thompson praised graduate right-handed pitcher Cody Jensen and sophomore righthanded pitcher Andrew Citron for their dominant performances.

“I thought today was all about Cody Jensen and Andrew Citron on the mound,” Thompson told Georgetown Athletics. “They gave us five innings of really good baseball.”

Jensen and Citron allowed only

one hit each across two and three innings pitched, respectively. Jensen earned his second win this season, and Citron, who earned his first collegiate career win just two weeks ago against the University of Albany, recorded his first save this season.

Notable hitting performances by Ficca and Castillo powered the Hoyas throughout the game. Ficca currently holds the fourth-highest batting average in the Big East at .396 and is tied for third in the home run category with 7. His 2 RBIs, 2 doubles and 2 walks, in addition to Castillo’s RBI and double, led the Hoyas to an 8-4 victory.

Game two against the Wildcats on Friday, March 29 was another success, with the Hoya pitching staff again shining. Junior lefthander Andrew Williams and graduate right-handed pitcher Jordan Yoder gave up a combined 4 hits across 9 innings.

Georgetown’s offense gave Williams an early 3-0 lead in the bottom of the first, behind a 2 RBI double by graduate outfielder Derek Smith.

In the bottom of the fourth inning, Georgetown gave themselves a more comfortable lead. A Castillo single brought home Caster, before senior outfielder Jake Hyde singled Castillo home.

The momentum continued into the sixth when Castillo again scored Caster with another single, giving Georgetown their sixth and final run of the game.

Villanova scored just one run in the eighth inning, as the Hoyas cruised to a comfortable 6-1 win, cementing Georgetown’s victory in the series.

Georgetown’s hitting was led by upperclassman talent, a season trend thus far. In addition to Castillo’s 2 RBIs, Caster hit 2 triples on 2-4 hitting, and graduate third baseman Joe Hollerbach and junior catcher Owen Carapellotti each scored 1 run.

In the final game of the series on Saturday, March 30, senior left-handed pitcher Everett

Catlett threw an excellent 6 and 2/3 innings to pick up his fourth win of the season. He struck out 8 Wildcats and gave up no runs.

This season, Catlett has racked up 45 strikeouts, the most in the Big East, and he was named to his third consecutive Big East weekly honor roll.

To close the game, graduate right-handed pitcher Nick Davis earned his sixth save — and the team’s 15th overall — of the season. Further, Georgetown pitchers picked off their 12th player at first, a program record.

On the other end, Georgetown’s offense was strong. Home runs by Caster and Hyde had the Hoyas up 2-0 going into the fourth.

In the fifth, first-year middle infielder Blake Schaaf hit the Hoyas’ third home run of the game and the first of his career. Crucial singles from Ficca, Caster and Castillo scored 3 additional runs for the Hoyas over the seventh and eighth innings. Hollerbach was also a key player, finishing 3-for-3.

The Wildcats, for the second day in a row, only managed one run, resulting in another 6-1 Georgetown win to complete the sweep. Thompson said he was happy to start Big East play on such a high note.

“To get the sweep the way we did to start conference play was awesome,” Thompson told Georgetown Athletics. “We are looking forward to playing more good baseball.”

The Hoyas’ showing this weekend demonstrated the depth of their roster both on offense and defense, with major contributions coming from first-years and graduate students alike.

Hoya fans should hold high expectations for Georgetown baseball this season — the team has now won 6 series in a row, including 5 series sweeps. They will look to continue their success against Big East foe Seton Hall (16-12) from April 5 to 7 at home.


few quality looks in hopes of shrinking the deficit, but Georgetown’s defense held strong. Junior goalkeeper Leah Warehime picked up 4 saves in the period, including a particularly impressive stop against a Musketeer fast break, while graduate defender Maggie O’Brien was key in shutting

down passing lanes.

A goal by senior midfielder Tatum Geist with four minutes left in the first quarter opened the scoring floodgates. Xavier responded quickly with a goal on an inside cut, but Georgetown returned the favor via a quick transition goal by firstyear attacker Anne McGovern and a free position shot by sophomore attacker Gracie Driggs.

While the two teams exchanged goals once more behind Musketeer star attacker Lola Mancuso and Driggs, the Hoyas had a formidable 7-2 lead at the period’s close.

Although both teams continued to find offensive chances in the second quarter, the scoring slowed down considerably. Georgetown defended well in transition and on free position chances but failed to capitalize on two free position opportunities and two man-up situations of their own.

Just before the end of the first half, the Hoyas finally broke through with two goals. Geist converted a closerange shot on a possession started by a McGovern groundball pickup, while Driggs earned her 6th career hat trick off a heads-up Starr ground ball and assist, putting Georgetown up 9-2. Georgetown’s excellent ball movement and transition play helped fuel a 29-8 shot disparity between the two teams in the first half, and the Hoya offense wasted no time coming out of halftime.

Geist picked up her third goal with a high shot, Starr and Driggs converted consecutive free position chances and senior attacker Lauren Lisauskas capitalized on a beautiful transition

passing sequence to widen the gap to 13-2 with 8:45 left in the quarter.

Xavier struggled to find any breathing room, earning yet another green card and turning the ball over in the attacking third. The Musketeers finally found a break following a Hoya yellow card, but despite the man-up advantage, they conceded yet another goal to graduate defender Johanna Kingsfield.

With the lead insurmountable at this point, Xavier managed to claw back with another goal to close the quarter. Georgetown used the fourth quarter as an opportunity to rotate in its second unit, keeping even in scoring with goals from Gebhardt and Kingsfield.

The Hoyas simply dominated the Musketeers on offensive opportunities, leading 43 to 13 in shots and 23 to 12 in shots on goal. Georgetown also played a cleaner game as a whole, conceding 3 fewer free position opportunities than Xavier, while also largely staying out of man-down situations. Driggs continued her strong form as Georgetown’s leading goalscorer, converting a team-best 4-of-5 shots for 30 total goals on the season, while Starr also had 4 points on 3 goals and 1 assist. O’Brien was particularly impactful on defense with 6 draw controls and 1 caused turnover, while Driggs added 2 draw controls and 2 caused turnovers of her own.

The Hoyas will next travel to Indianapolis to face the Butler Bulldogs (2-9, 1-2 Big East) on April 6 looking to maintain their winning form.

Following a tight loss to conference juggernaut University of Denver (8-3, 2-0 Big East), the Georgetown University women’s lacrosse team rebounded with a loud win over Xavier University on April 3. The 16-5 victory over the Musketeers (3-8, 0-2 Big East) marked the Hoyas’ (4-9, 2-1 Big East) second win in three games. After an eightgame cold spell in nonconference play, Georgetown is building positive momentum as it aims to secure a topfour seed in the Big East. “I was really pleased with how we showed up for this midweek game,” Head Coach Ricky Fried told Georgetown Athletics. “We were able to give everyone an opportunity to compete.” Junior midfielder Maley Starr scored the first goal just 35 seconds into the matchup after recovering an errant pass in transition play, slotting the ball just above the goalkeeper. Georgetown continued to dominate possession in the early going, going up 3-0 behind goals by junior attacker Emma Gebhardt and Starr with 10:57 left in the quarter. Xavier managed to find a
Georgetown Continues Improved Form in 16-5 Win Against Xavier
with the rest of the team after scoring a goal.
Oliver Ni Senior Sports Editor GUHOYAS Graduate defender Johanna Kingsfield celebrates
Maddie Taylor Special to The Hoya

Road Hoyas Defeat Friars To Start Big East Play


Coming out of the break, Georgetown and Providence each scored 2 goals, as the Hoyas maintained a dominant 13-7 lead by the end of the third.

An early Georgetown goal in the fourth quarter by senior defenseman Wallace Halpert extended the lead up to 7. Providence, making a final effort to chip away at their deficit, scored 3 straight goals to make the score 14-10 with just 4:31 remaining in the fourth quarter.

However, the Friars, unable to further capitalize on their run, went scoreless for the remainder of the game. Georgetown’s graduate attacker Graham Bundy Jr. put the cap on the game, scoring its final goal with 2:15 remaining to secure the 15-10 win. Bundy Jr.’s goal capped off a hat trick in the game. Alongside an assist, his 4-point performance put him at 203 points in his career, making him just the fourth Hoya in program history to reach the 200-point mark. Graduate midfielder Alex Vardaro led the way for Georgetown, netting 4 goals, all of

which he scored during the pivotal second-quarter run. Carroll and sophomore midfielder Patrick Crogan both added 2 goals, while Haley notched 3 assists, a team-high for the game.

Georgetown’s first-year goalie Anderson Moore saved 6 Providence shots on goal, all of which came in the third quarter. Providence midfielder Michael Chabra and attacker Richie Joseph each scored 4 goals, and defenseman Gregg Dennison made some big plays, causing 1 turnover and winning 3 ground balls. Goalie James Corasaniti saved 12 Georgetown shots as well.

Beginning the Big East season with a victory, Georgetown’s winning streak is not only a testament to their stellar offensive firepower but also to a remarkably solid defensive identity. Including the win against the Friars, the Hoyas have held their last 7 opponents to 10 goals or fewer. The Hoyas will look to continue their dynastic stronghold on the Big East in a matchup at home against the Marquette Golden Eagles (4-6, 0-1 Big East) on April 6 at noon.


Spirit Aiming for Special Season Amid Change

NWSL, from A12

Neither team looked particularly dangerous through the first 15 minutes of the second half.

The Spirit picked it back up eventually, though, generating chance after chance, but were not quite able to find the go-ahead goal.

Just when it seemed certain that the Spirit would have to settle for a point, center back Tara McKeown floated a cross into the box, which forward Ashley Hatch laid off for Bethune. Bethune then juggled her way past 3 defenders to slot the ball right down the middle to give the Spirit the 2-1 lead at the death; her first professional goal would be the game-winner.

González emphasized the contributions from rookies Hershfelt and Bethune in a post-game presser.

“They are ready to compete. I’m so happy for them because we believe in the young talent. This is why we drafted those players, we are helping them to develop as soon as possible. They are improving a lot so quickly,” González said. “For the future, the Washington Spirit has amazing talent.”

In a post-game press conference reflecting on how it felt to score her first professional

goal, Hershfelt highlighted Audi Field’s atmosphere. “It felt insane, the energy at Audi,” Hershfelt said. “I mean, you have games in college in the tournament and stuff where you have your school come out and everything like that, but that was


something different. I had never experienced anything like that.”

The Spirit returned to Audi

Field March 31

Hoyas Honor Tasha Butts, Kay Yow in Pink Out


Georgetown’s starters sit on the bench waiting for the start of the Big East championship game. The Hoyas’ strong season finished with their first-ever conference final appearance and entry into the inaugural edition of the Women’s Basketball Invitational Tournament.

WBB, from A12

forward Brianna Scott provided a sparkplug presence. Graduate guard Alex Cowan was the metronome, graduate forward Mya Bembry was the glue player and sophomore guard Victoria Rivera was the deep threat. Everyone had a role to play.

From there, the Hoyas rallied around a collective focus on defense. There was no secret formula aside from the fundamentals: knowing their assignments, watching the perimeter and dominating the paint. Occasionally the team would call a full-court press or switch to a 1-2-2 zone, but otherwise, it was the same old trick.

And it worked: Georgetown had the No. 9 scoring defense in the nation, and Ransom earned Big East Co-Defensive Player of the Year honors for leading the unit. The Hoyas managed to cool off strong teams in the postseason to secure tough wins, even when the offense was inconsistent. In the

process, the Hoyas developed their own brand of tough basketball.

Optimism is high on the Hilltop. Haney and his staff have had a full season to build the desired infrastructure, and the Georgetown community has also come to embrace this culture.

“From the pep band to our cheerleaders, to the Georgetown community, our students, to the DMV community, they’ve been very, very supportive and we appreciate them tremendously,” Haney said. “They were the sixth man in some games, especially in McDonough.”

Outside Dawgs Only

Two posters line the back of Haney’s office: one of five-time WNBA champion forward Rebekkah Brunson (CAS ’04) and one of all-time Hoya leading scorer and WNBA all-star guard Sugar Rodgers (COL ’13, GRD ’21).

Along with players on the current team, they are emblematic of what Haney wants to see from his recruits. “You gotta be humble, you


gotta be hungry, you gotta be smart,” Haney said.

Haney has a tough task of replacing the three graduates and four seniors on the current squad. Losing the leadership presence of Bennett, a two-time Big East Sportsmanship Award winner, will be tough, along with other key contributors. “The short-term goal is to be in the NCAA tournament, so we gotta bring pieces in here in order to do that,” Haney said.

Georgetown got a major break with Ransom returning for her final year of eligibility and will look to be active in recruiting high school commits and transfers. So far, the Hoyas have one signee in guard/forward Jayden McBride, a top-100 recruit with the versatility and scoring talent to make an immediate impact. They are also in conversations to add more commits for next year.

Furthermore, Haney is working the transfer portal, aiming to add to the team’s high-end talent and veter-

an presence. Beyond a transfer that “might break the internet,” Haney hopes the new additions will help stabilize the team’s offensive production.

“We gotta shoot a better percentage from the perimeter, we gotta shoot a better percentage from three,” Haney said. “With your young people, you gotta make sure that they’re better than they were and that means that they’re gonna put everything they have into the summer.”

“But recruiting? We gotta get better players.”

To call Haney’s first season a success would be an understatement.

In creating history, the Georgetown program sees the sky as its limit. All that remains for the Hoyas is the continual process of building up the talent and environment necessary to realize their grandest dreams.

“When we wake up in the morning and we come in these offices and we go and recruit, we’re going to recruit so that we can be a national power, not just a Big East power.”

Light at End of Tunnel for GU, Sights Set on Future

MBB, from A12 against cellar dweller DePaul (329, 0-20 Big East). The Hoyas ran several tough opponents close — including St. John’s (20-13, 11-9 Big East), Xavier (16-18, 9-11 Big East) and Providence

stemmed from defensive inconsistencies. Despite Cooley’s strong track record at Providence, Georgetown ranked No. 318 in the nation in scoring defense, oftentimes struggling to stay disciplined on coverage assignments. Scoring efficiency was also a major question mark. Cold streaks depleted an already-thin group of capable scorers, and the team played without much confidence toward the end of the season, putting extra pressure on Epps to anchor the offense.

tled into the collegiate level. For Cooley, this offseason marks a crucial opportunity to retool the roster and field a more competitive roster. Beyond the team’s graduating athlete, redshirt first-year guard Rowan Brumbaugh announced that he has entered the transfer portal, leaving the Hoyas with a tiny returning

the free throw line, a quiet end to a disappointing year.

Much of the Hoyas’ troubles

Still, there were some glimpses of hope across the roster. Epps showed the ability to be a high-volume shooting threat, while junior guard Dontrez Styles flashed his 3-point range and rebounding abilities. Firstyear forward Drew Fielder also took impressive strides as he set-

livan, French international forward Ouleymata
and the rest of
star midfielder Andi Sul
the Spirit’s veteran core, the NWSL should be on high alert. The Washington Spirit are back —
they could
shaping up to
special season.
HAAN JUN (RYAN) LEE/THE HOYA Midfielder Croix Bethune, who the Spirit drafted out of Georgia, scores the game winner after juggling her way past three defenders for a 2-1 lead.
(21-14, 10-10 Big East) — but failed to compete against the upper echelon of the conference, losing by more than 20 points to NCAA Tournament heavyweights UConn (35-3, 18-2 Big East), Creighton (25-10, 14-6 Big East) and Marquette (27-10, 14-6 Big East). And in the first round of the Big East men’s basketball tournament, Georgetown bowed out to Providence in an 18-point loss, in which the Hoyas shot just 4-19 from
core next year. Georgetown’s reconstructed roster will begin with its recruiting class, ranked in the top 20 by recruiting site 247Sports. Center Thomas Sorber is the crown jewel of the recruiting class, providing much-needed physicality in the paint for a Hoya team that has not yet found an answer at the five. Guard Kayvaun Mulready adds yet another versatile option to the lineup, supplying toughness on both ends of the court. D.C. recruit forward Caleb Williams represents a skilled wing, and redshirt firstyear forward Drew McKenna also figures to be an impactful presence in the Georgetown program. The Hoyas will also likely be an active player in the transfer portal. Harvard guard Malik Mack, St. Joseph’s center Christ Essandoko and Oklahoma forward John Hugley IV, among others, are linked to the program. Given Georgetown’s investment in name, image and likeness rights through Hoyas Rising, the team is hedging its bets on transfers to provide an immediate spark for the program’s rebuild. When Georgetown first hired Cooley, the coach preached patience to the Georgetown faithful, emphasizing that rebuilds do not happen overnight. In the upcoming season, Cooley will need to prove that the program is taking steps in the right direction.
and secured a 2-1 win over Utah Royals FC and will next see action against the Houston Dash April 12. As the rookies continue to integrate with Rod-
MEN’S LACROSSE GUHOYAS Senior attacker Aidan Carroll has played at an especially high level this season, adding 3 points to his resume against Providence.
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Georgetown University women’s lacrosse team rebounded with a loud win over Xavier University on April 3.

See A10


Hoyas Defeat

Friars on the Road to Start

Big East Play

marked the beginning of the Hoyas’ Big East play, improving Georgetown’s record to 7-2 on the season and 1-0 in conference play. The game began with a backand-forth opening, as both teams matched each other playfor-play. The score remained in a 2-2 deadlock, with Patrick Crogan and Aidan Carroll scoring for Georgetown, until only 3:35 remained on the clock in the first quarter. Soon after, Providence scored 2 goals merely 15 seconds apart to take a 4-2 lead to the end of the quarter.

The Friars capitalized on this early offensive run by scoring another goal in the opening frame of the second quarter, extending their lead to 5-2.

Fortunately for Georgetown, the Hoyas’ offense surged in the second quarter, as the team strung together 9 unanswered goals coming from graduate midfielder Alexander Vardaro, senior attacker TJ Haley, senior midfielder Chase Llewellyn, senior attacker Aidan Carroll and graduate attacker Graham Bundy Jr. The Hoyas took advantage of the Friars’ lapses in focus, initiating a strong defensive effort of their own to limit the Friars’ scoring opportunities. At the half, Georgetown led 11-5.



We stayed the course and stayed true to who we were, and we did it the Georgetown way.”

Women’s Basketball Head Coach Darnell Haney

Senior left-handed pitcher Everett Catlett has 45 strikeouts on the season, the most in the Big East. 45


Spirit’s Dramatic Home Opener Signals New Era

Faith Specter Sports Staff Writer

After a heartbreaking end to the 2023 National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) season and an offseason filled with changes, the Washington Spirit have shown plenty of reasons to be optimistic for the season ahead. The offseason saw 10 players depart the club, most notably forward Ashley Sanchez, who was traded to the North Carolina Courage, and defender Sam Staab, who was traded to the Chicago Red Stars. Despite shocking both players and fans, these trades enabled the Spirit to acquire four first-round draft picks, which the team used to draft Georgia midfielder Croix Bethune, Penn State defender Kate Wiesner and Clemson teammates midfielder Hal Hershfelt and defender Makenna Morris.


Oliver Ni Senior Sports Editor

The offseason has been anything but relaxing for Georgetown University women’s basketball Head Coach Darnell Haney.

In just the past few days, Haney has hosted recruits on campus, helped with photoshoots and handled media responsibilities. Two weeks from now, McDonough Arena will come alive again with the thuds, squeaks and swishes of team practices before summer training rolls around.

Until then, Haney is taking everything in stride. “I’m good, I’m good,” Haney told The Hoya. “I move, I wear a couple of different hats, but it’s been really good, man. I’m excited about the future of the program.”

Earned, Never Given The head coach’s office is still relatively empty — Haney has just moved in after being designated the official leader of the program March 11, replacing the late Tasha Butts. A signed basketball sits in a display case just behind his desk, the record 8-1 inscribed across its surface in honor of the torrid stretch that powered the Hoyas’ deep postseason run.

Well before Georgetown’s (23-12, 9-9 Big East) first-ever Big East Tournament final appearance and dance in the inaugural Women’s Basketball Invitational Tournament

(WBIT), Haney saw the makings of a team determined to prove itself.

“Seeing our young women walk, talk and act like winners and champions, when they walked on the floor or walked into a huddle after a time out, I knew they know they can play and they know that Georgetown’s back,” Haney said. The Hoyas won 9 of their first 10 games in nonconference action, the program’s best start to a season in the Big East era. However, after a 12-2 run through the first half of the season, Georgetown began to struggle with a 2-5 stretch in conference play.

Still, the team managed to scrape together another 2-3 run before launching their hot streak toward the end of the season. “That’s what this is about every season,” Haney said. “You’re gonna have some adverse times and you have to be ready to overcome those.”

Georgetown rebounded in major fashion, picking up three consecutive wins to close out the season before beating 11th-seeded Xavier (1-27, 0-18 Big East), third-seeded St. John’s (18-15, 11-7 Big East) and second-seeded Creighton (26-6, 15-3 Big East) to reach the Big East Tournament final, where they ultimately lost to Final Four team UConn (33-5, 18-0 Big East).

The performance was enough to earn Georgetown a six-seed in the WBIT, marking the team’s first postseason action since 2019. The Hoyas held off a late surge

More reinforcements will come in the summer in the form of Colombian midfielder Leicy Santos, who will sign for the Spirit from Atlético Madrid. Santos starred for Colombia in last summer’s FIFA Women’s World Cup and will join at the conclusion of the Spanish Liga F season, the Spirit announced April 2. Joining Santos in a summer move from Spain is a prestigious coaching hire. After firing former head coach Mark Parsons at the end of last season, the Spirit announced current FC Barcelona Femení manager Jonatan Giráldez as the new head coach Jan. 9. Despite his youth — Giráldez is only 32, younger than some of his new Spirit players — the Spaniard has seen success, leading Barcelona Femení to a Spanish domestic treble in the 2021-22 season and a continental treble in the 202223 season. Giráldez will join the club in the summer after finishing the

season with Barça; until then, his assistant coach Adrián González is serving as interim head coach. The Spirit started the 2024 season March 17, with a 1-0 defeat away to Seattle Reign FC. After conceding a penalty in the opening minute of the match, the Spirit struggled mightily to generate offense, ending with only 2 shots, and only 1 on goal, for the entire match. A controversial red card decision saw goalkeeper Aubrey Kingsbury sent off during second-half stoppage time, forcing the Spirit to play with 10 for the remainder of the match. The Spirit successfully appealed the red card, however, and Kingsbury did not have to serve a suspension.

For their home opener March 23, the Spirit faced off against expansion side Bay FC in front of 11,734 fans, a club record for a home opener. The Spirit began the match attacking aggressively, trying to put

by second-seeded Washington (16-15, 6-12 Pac-12) behind senior guard Kelsey Ransom’s 28-point effort to move past the first round.

Although Georgetown eventually fell to a sharpshooting Tulsa (2510, 13-5 AAC) in the second round, the team had far surpassed earlier projections that placed the Hoyas second-to-last in the conference.

“We stayed the course and stayed true to who we were, and we did it the Georgetown way and we were able to overcome adversity,” Haney said.

Georgetown is a Brand “Chick-fil-A sells chicken, Starbucks sells coffee, Georgetown plays defense.” After first appearing in a press

conference in February, the phrase took off like wildfire. Players, fans and Haney himself came to embrace the phrase, one of the many “Haneyisms” that emerged throughout the season — a testament to how the program has bought into a collective vision. “I think the number one thing you have to do is you have to have an identity and you gotta go with that identity,” Haney said. “You gotta figure out who your players are as people, right? And then make sure that you’re pounding that identity every day.”

The pieces were already there: Ransom led the team on-court, graduate forward Graceann Bennett anchored the squad and junior

the previous week’s poor offensive performance behind them. Two early corners and chances generated in transition showed the Spirit weren’t messing around. However, the defense looked a bit shaky, playing a few errant passes leading to turnovers that gave Bay FC multiple chances early on. Despite the early signs of danger from the Spirit, Bay FC took the lead in the 11th minute through former Spirit midfielder Dorian Bailey, who was traded this offseason. Forward Asisat Oshoala’s pass found Bailey unmarked, and her right-footed shot easily found the back of the net. After a quick video review check for offside, the goal stood, and the Spirit again found themselves having to fight from behind early on in a game.

Forward Trinity Rodman, the United States women’s national soccer team standout, was heavily involved early on after missing

the Spirit’s first game due to a red card suspension that carried over from the Spirit’s final game of 2023. Despite this being her first game with Hershfelt, Bethune and star defender Casey Krueger, Rodman looked right at home, creating multiple chances and looking threatening offensively as per usual.

The Spirit’s deficit wouldn’t last long: in the 23rd minute, Rodman’s short pass through two defenders found Hershfelt, who unleashed a rocket to net her first professional goal and level the game. Washington gained confidence after its first goal of the season and looked aggressive through the remainder of the first half. Rodman and Bethune continued linking up nicely in transition, a seamlessly natural chemistry that bodes well for the future. However, the Spirit had yet to find the breakthrough leading into the second half.


Daniel Greilsheimer, Oliver Ni, Caroline Brown and Evan Ecklund

Senior Sports Editors and Copy Chiefs

Head Coach Ed Cooley’s first year on the Hilltop marked another season of underperformance for the Georgetown men’s basketball team (9-23, 2-18 Big East). However, the Hoyas should take a step forward next year, with a top-20 recruiting class and an offseason to further adjust to the Cooley system, potentially providing a light at the end of the tunnel.

The season began on a bright note with a 94-57 trouncing of Le Moyne (15-17, 9-7 Northeast Conference) at home. The energy was palpable, as the much-heralded Cooley era officially began with a win.

However, the Hoyas returned to last year’s habit of poor late-game execution — a trend that continued throughout this season — in a gutting 68-67 loss to Holy Cross (10-23, 6-12 Patriot League). This loss represented Georgetown’s worst defeat in program history, according to the Pomeroy College Basketball Ratings. The Hoyas then suffered a loss to Rutgers (15-17, 7-13 Big Ten),

before unleashing a four-game winning streak against Mount St. Mary’s (13-19, 9-11 Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference), American (16-16, 10-8 Patriot League), Jackson State (15-17, 11-7 SWAC) and Merrimack (21-12, 13-3 MAC).

The run was powered by sophomore guard Jayden Epps’ scoring prowess. He was a highlight for the Hoyas, averaging 18.5 points — good for third in the Big East — and 4.2 assists per game. What followed was perhaps Georgetown’s most heartbreaking loss of the year to Texas Christian University (21-13, 9-9 Big 12). The 84-83 loss came on a buzzer-beating 3-pointer in which the Horned Frogs’ forward Emmanuel Miller had his foot out of bounds. In arguably the Hoyas’ most complete performance of the season, the team fell just short due to a botched call. Georgetown next fell to rival Syracuse (20-12, 11-9 ACC) at home before reeling off wins against Coppin State (2-27, 1-13 MEAC) and Notre Dame (13-20, 7-13 ACC) to close out their nonconference schedule. The 20-game Big East schedule was a disappointment for the Hoyas. They managed only two wins, matching last season’s Big East victory count, both

HAAN JUN (RYAN) LEE/THE HOYA Forward Trinity Rodman celebrates with midfielder Hal Hershfelt after the Spirit’s first goal in the 23rd minute. Rodman slid a short pass past two defenders to Hershfelt, who was drafted in the first round of the 2024 NWSL Draft out of Clemson, who buried her first professional goal.
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Head Coach Darnell Haney talks to Georgetown’s starters in a huddle at the Big East tournament. The Hoyas eventually reached their first-ever Big East championship.
Hoyas to Retool Squad After Lackluster Year Georgetown to Build on Historic Season GUHOYAS
Staff Writer The No. 9 Georgetown University men’s lacrosse team extended their dominant winning streak to 7 games with a 15-10 road victory against the Providence Friars March 30. The win at
0-1 Big East)
Providence (4-6,
See MBB, A11 No. 11 Georgetown (7-2) vs. Marquette Friday, 12 p.m. Cooper Field
See NWSL, A11 See WBB, A11
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