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Veterans' Housing and the Varsity Club



To the Editors of the CRIMSON:

You ought to be grateful for an explanation from the University on the new Varsity Club from unrestricted funds. We, who contributed to the A.V.C. housing report and later on the Committee to Save Veterans Housing, have never had an explanation--even an inadequate one--of its decision to tear down the 72 temporary Government units at the Business School this summer, and all other units by next summer.

The Corporation made this decision with the 12-page A.V.C. report in front of it which describes in detail the desperate need for such housing. From statements of 1278 of the 2375 married students now at Harvard: 1) 87 percent are veterans, 2) half have had from one to four children, 3) 400 who will not graduate till 1951 (and many not till 1952 or 1953), have tried to get, and still want housing of the type the University is tearing down, 4) 725 pay rents of $50-$125 a month (the Government units are $24 to $35 for three to four rooms), and 5) 300 spend over an hour a day commuting.

It seems to me that the University should have some moral obligation to continue the housing units--at least until the veterans' bulge subsides more than it has (2959 to 2375 in the past three years). It is almost entirely a result of the war that so many students are married and with families. The Federal, State, and City governments have cooperated with favorable legislation so that the projects are almost self-supporting (and would be with slight rent increases), and may legally stay-up until May 23, 1954.

At any rate, such housing units seem a lot more desirable than a new Varsity Club at this time. Name withheld by request,

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