As Deadlines Approach, Seniors Print Their Theses
When Laura E. Donohue ’85 found out that the paper supplier Crane and Company was discontinuing the type of paper used by many students to print their theses, she knew she had to make a phone call.
“I actually called Crane’s and got as [much] as I possibly could out of their warehouse,” said Donohue, owner of Bob Slate Stationer, a business on Brattle Street that sells thesis paper and binders. Bob Slate has already gone through 20 or 30 reams, as well 100 packs of the discontinued Crane paper. A ream contains 500 sheets of paper, and a pack, 100. Only a week into March, there’s just one ream left.
As honors thesis deadlines come and go throughout March, businesses around Harvard Square are preparing for the inevitable spike in paper, binder, and printing requests that come as students complete the final stage of the taxing process.
Gnomon Copy, a printing and copying business on Mass. Ave., has in the past few weeks alone had about 60 student requests for thesis printing or binding, owner Michael Skikne estimated, a figure he said is consistent with years past. Skikne said he expects that number to increase in the next week as spring break and thesis deadlines approach.
According to Donohue, Bob Slate has had about 100 students come in to buy acid-free paper or custom-made binders thus far.
Students have several options for where to print or bind their theses, from stores in the Square to the printing rooms in the Houses. Jeanne A. Follansbee, director of studies for the history and literature department, said her department does not make any official recommendations for where students choose to print their theses.
On Feb. 28, history and literature concentrator Erin M. Fahy ’13 went with a friend to Gnomon Copy to print her thesis the night before it was due.
Skikne said printing a thesis at Gnomon can cost anywhere from $10 to $100, depending on the type of paper used and whether or not it is printed in color. Fahy said hers cost about $23, and she said she was satisfied with the service.
Fahy said she chose to have professionals print her thesis rather than opt for the House printing room “more for the peace of mind to have someone else [print] it.”
Daniel M. Claridge ’13, an inactive Crimson video editor and an English concentrator, opted to print his creative writing thesis, a 90-page screenplay, in Lowell House on acid-free paper purchased from Bob Slate. Unlike many thesis writers, he did not have to purchase a binder because the English department provided one for him, he said.
While many deadlines are still looming, those who have already pressed print said they are ready to enjoy post-thesis life.
“It’s really nice to be done, and I’m glad hist. and lit. had an early due date,” Fahy said.
—Staff writer Madeline R. Conway can be reached at email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @MadelineRConway.