Beat, bleary-eyed and boozed, some 84 satisfied--but exhausted--government concentrators celebrated the completion of their these at a party hosted by the government department at its undegraduate office on 53 Church Street.
These were accepted by the government department from 3 to 5 pm with the party extending well into dinner time.
"It's a real economical party," said John J. Tepedino '95, who wrote a thesis comparing the governments of Britain and United States based on a Scandinavian model of governments interacting with social interest groups. "They give alcohol to people who haven't slept in a week and thus have a very low tolerance."
Nonetheless, thesis writers said they were pleased with both the party and the fruit of their efforts.
"I feel wacky, bordering on kooky," said John R. Connolly '95, who seemed to be enjoying the party.
"I'm really impressed by the effort of the government department," said Erica A. Eppinger '95, whose thesis was entitled "Toward a New Conception of Political Motherhood: Two Mothers' Movements in Chile. "It's nice to be able to come here and share beer with those who understand the stress you went through."
Though been was by far the most popular refreshment, it was not the only offering supplied by the government department. senior honors con- centrators were also treated to cake,champagne, chips, pretzels, music and the movie"With Honors," a 1994 film whose main character isalso a Harvard government thesis writer.
"We're very proud of all the students who areturning in a thesis," said Jane Gray, thecoordinator of the undergraduate governmentprogram. "We know they've worked hard on thisproject and deserve hearty congratulations."
Yet despite the festive atmosphere, for somethe completion of what has perhaps been theirgreatest undertaking was a bitter-sweet moment.
"I'd have to say that I'm more unhappy thanhappy," said Daniel Dusek '95. "You work on [athesis] for so long, and then you miss it."
In attempting to convey their attachment to theproject, several thesis writers likened theirpapers to the development and delivery of anewborn baby.
"A thesis is like having a baby: nine months ofhell, then you're done and then you're glad youdid it," said Eryn E. Ament '95, whose thesis wason the courts' influence on education for deafstudents.
But Fred D. Scott '95 vehemently insisted thatit was he who originally conceived the infantmetaphor.
But apart from their recent emotional trauma,these government concentrators must now find newways to spend their few remaining months at theCollege.
"I'm going to go out every night and watchtelevision every day," said Jay Kim '95, whosethesis is titled "A Strong Political Education:The Influence of State Legislative Service onCongressional Performance."
Other, however are not so lucky. Though midtermextensions or exemptions are often common policy.Some thesis writers were forced to take midtermsalongside their underclass peers.
"My professor wouldn't excuse me," said Amy E.Neff '95. "He said the midterm was only an hour ofmy time, and it turned out to be only an hour ofmy time."
Perhaps on even darker note, a handful ofstudents who failed to produce their theses by 5p.m. faced the grim reality of a grade reduction .
"We're still expecting some," said Michael G.Hagen, the government department's head tutor,some twenty five minutes passed the deadline."We'll be waiting here for a while, but they'regoing to be penalized in terms of their grades.