From Colonials to Revolutionaries: George Washington University Unveils New Moniker for Its Athletic Teams

United States North America Higher Education News by Erudera News May 30, 2023

George Washington University (GW)

George Washington University has announced it has decided on a new nickname for its athletic teams, which are now called the Revolutionaries.

The new name replaces Colonials, a moniker the school used since 1926. This change comes after many leaders and students considered Colonials as a divisive name linked to violence toward Native Americans, reports.

In a statement posted on its website on May 24, the school said that after one year, it has finally decided on the Revolutionaries after receiving 8,000 moniker suggestions and 47,000 points of feedback. The university has clarified that it is only changing the moniker but not its mascot, which will remain, George, honoring the first president, George Washington, after whom it was chosen.

“This is an exciting day for the George Washington University Revolutionaries. I am very grateful for the active engagement of our community throughout the development of the new moniker. This process was truly driven by our students, faculty, staff and alumni, and the result is a moniker that broadly reflects our community—and our distinguished and distinguishable GW spirit,” President Mark S. Wrighton said.

The new name will be fully embraced in the upcoming academic year, specifically from 2023/24. School officials said that over the next weeks and months, they will develop a visual identity for the new moniker and start the process of implementing it on athletic uniforms.

Early this year, GW released a call, inviting its community of students, leaders, and other members, to propose names for the new GW moniker. Among the nearly 8,000 moniker proposals, the school decided to list the top ten names that reflected in the best way the spirit of the university.

After a series of assessments, the advisory committee arrived at a final list consisting of four finalists, which were:

  • The Revolutionaries
  • Blue Fog
  • Ambassadors
  • Sentinels

“To have 47,000 points of feedback from the GW community is a testament to the pride people have in this institution, and we are proud to offer them a new moniker that will propel us as we move ahead in our third century,” the Vice President for Communications and Marketing Ellen Moran, said.

The decision to stop using the Colonials was made last year on the grounds that such a name was no longer unifying the campus. Students voted to stop using the Colonials nickname in 2019 and submitted a petition to the university the following year.

Picture: George Washington University Twitter

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