Harvard students, to put it mildly, love to party. And yet increasingly, it has become ever harder to do so, on a campus with limited social spaces run by an administration which has increasingly restricted the presence of alcohol and attempted to deter students from associating with groups that do. It is little short of a wonder that it’s hard out here for us to find a way to safely enjoy ourselves on a Saturday night among friends, in an attempt to relieve the stresses of the past week.
If this sorry (and dry) state of affairs weren’t enough, Adams House has enacted a temporary policy banning alcohol from its two newest social spaces, the “Molotov” and the “K-Space” for this term. The House claimed that cleanliness issues and a lack of understanding of House expectations with the use of rooms led to the alcohol ban. And, to no one’s surprise, these social spaces have seen a noticeable decline in users this term, while Adams attempts to find a better policy regarding the use of these spaces.
Adams House administration must repeal this ban as soon as possible. Social spaces are scarce on campus, and in the wake of the College’s attempt to center student life away from social organizations into the Houses, it appears they have shot themselves in the foot with this drastic policy. If Harvard wants its students to enjoy themselves safely on campus, they must give us more control over what we can do in the Houses we live in.
In regards to the circumstances that led to the ban, there are many solutions that can be implemented if cleanliness is an issue. Certain Houses (like Adams’ eternal enemy, Pforzheimer House) have deposit requirements to ensure their social spaces aren’t entirely destroyed by the end of a particularly crazy night. In addition, Houses could opt to simply ban students who disregard their policy and lay waste to common spaces. Adams House should not punish the whole student body for the sins of a few students. The House administration ought to consult with the other Houses that have open party spaces frequented by undergraduates; this is a problem that has been already been solved.
We hope administrators in Adams House implement an alcohol policy soon—one that is realistic in allowing students to enjoy themselves, and that can renew the life in the House’s common spaces. Concerns about cleanliness can easily be waved away with a few well-implemented policies, and it can contribute to an atmosphere more respectful of the House spaces. After all, we’re not trying to bring Molotov cocktails into Adams—but we’d sure like to enjoy cocktails in the Molotov.
This staff editorial solely represents the majority view of The Crimson Editorial Board. It is the product of discussions at regular Editorial Board meetings. In order to ensure the impartiality of our journalism, Crimson editors who choose to opine and vote at these meetings are not involved in the reporting of articles on similar topics.
The Moose, The Witch, and the WardrobeDunster’s aesthetic beauty and new features, however, belie its fundamentally disappointing use of space. Pool tables and seminar rooms come at the price of in-suite common space for students.
A Step in the Right DirectionWe applaud the Houses for taking an important step toward bringing students back to on-campus spaces for parties and social events while also fostering greater House community.
Administrators Use Renovated Dunster to Pitch House Renewal
Adams House Institutes Temporary Alcohol Ban in House Party Spaces