Online petition pushes to change George Washington University Colonials nickname

An online appeal is being made to change the nickname of a D.C. university founded nearly 200 years ago.

A petition was started in April to find an alternative to George Washington University's nickname, "Colonials."

"We, as students, faculty, and staff of the George Washington University, believe it is of great exigence that the University changes the official nickname for its affiliates," the petition description read online. "The use of "Colonials," no matter how innocent the intention, is received as extremely offensive by not only affiliates of the University, but the nation and world at large. The historically, negatively-charged figure of Colonials has too deep a connection to colonization and glorifies the act of systemic oppression."

The petition was started by Rachel Yakobashvili. The site lists names like the "Hippos" or the "Riverhorses" as alternative nickname recommendations. Over 200 had signed the online petition as of Friday.