The George Washington University said it would drop a name it has used for nearly a century.

The George Washington University has announced its intention to remove the ‘Colonials’ moniker attached to its sports teams amid concerns from the school’s board of trustees that it does not meet its standards for inclusion.

The nickname has been associated with the collegiate institution since 1926, but this Wednesday it said that it had started the process to move away from the name in 2019 after determining that “it can no longer serve its purpose as a unifying name.”

The decision follows moves by the NFL team formerly known as the Washington Redskins changing their name to the Commanders, while the MLB team Cleveland Guardians also dropped their previous name of ‘Indians’ in recent times.

The university added that «FIt found that the Colonials moniker does not adequately align with GW’s values ​​and can no longer serve its purpose as a name that unifies the community.” and also said that when the name was chosen almost a century ago, the decision was not made with due “reflective consideration of the entire university.”

The George Washington University statement also addressed people who don’t see a problem with the name, saying they understand it can be seen as a reminder of those in the United States who now fought for independence.

However, they also admit that to their detractors, “Colonials means colonizers who stole land and resources from indigenous groups, killed or exiled native peoples, and introduced slavery to the colonies..”

They said there is evidence that George Washington himself opposed the term and that it only became popular in the 19th and 20th centuries.

“The board recognizes the importance of changing the name of the university, and we made this decision only after a thoughtful and deliberate process that followed the name change framework and the recommendation of the special committee that considered the different perspectives of our students, faculty , staff, alumni, and athletic community. a university representative said in a statement.

“A nickname should unify our community, bring people together and serve as a source of pride. We look forward to the next steps in an inclusive process to identify a nickname that meets this aspiration..”

A new nickname will be revealed before the 2023-24 academic year.

“As GW embarks on its third century, this is a great opportunity for the university to evolve and create a moniker that the GW community can rally around.” they added.

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