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The Crimson Guide To Harvard Acronyms


When a French soldier stationed in Egypt discovered a slab of rock over 150 years ago, he hardly suspected that his discovery would help break the mystery of ancient hieroglyphs. Although Harvard's esoteric acronyms such as WOE and GSTFU are not impossible to comprehend, a rundown of the University's secret code, a la the Rosetta Stone, can be as useful to newcomers as a map Cambridge.

Newly-indoctrinated, oft-harried freshmen will always be subject to the advances of the entrepreneurs of HSA--Harvard Student Agencies. The Fuller Brushmen of Cambridge expend much energy trying to foist upon undergraduates class rings, their linen service and for those so inclined, bartending classes.

Down the other end of the line, seniors preparing for re-entry into the real world might prefer to remain in orbit if no change occurs soon in the dismal job market--as reported by the Office of Career Services and Off-Campus Learning (OCSOCL).

Students in the midst of their four-year interment are keeping their eyes on CHUL, the Committee on Houses and Undergraduate Life, which will spend the entire year trying to effectively combat overcrowding. If the committee fails, perhaps UHS, the University Health Services, will offer undergraduates a pill to ease claustrophobia.

Also active on campus are students in several radical groups, including SDS (Students for a Democratic Society), PL (Progressive Labor) and NAM (New American Movement). After demonstrations in the past, members of these groups have faced possible disciplinary action when charges were filed against them with the Committee on Rights and Responsibilities (CRR). Members of these organizations are planning this Fall to protest any attempts to restore Harvard's chapter of the Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC).

Members of ERG and CUE also profess interest in Harvard's undergraduate education. The Educational Resources Group is an obscure body of students who are elected in each House and in the Yard and who choose the student participants for the Committee on Undergraduate Education.

This committee, although not a legislative body, customarily develops or considers proposals which touch somehow on the broad area of undergraduate education. Last year, CUE proposed revisions of the school calendar as part of its comprehensive study of the freshman year.

Undergraduates interested in the University's Affirmative Action program have come to expect rejections by the Department of Health, Education and Welfare (HEW) of Harvard's ever-changing proposals. Ironically, a group of women who work in the University organized last year to form "Women Employed at Harvard," whose acronym (WEH) contains the letters which haunt Massachusetts Hall.

Another acronym joined the committee beat last Spring when the Commission of Inquiry (COI) investigated and eventually rejected charges of unethical hiring practices in the Economics Department.

Pressure from groups including (H-R Afro), the Harvard-Radcliffe Association of African and Afro-American Students, led to the establishment a year ago of the ACSR, or Advisory Committee on Shareholder Responsibility. The group, which includes an undergraduate contingent called the Student ACSR, recommends to a corporation subcommittee how Harvard should vote its proxies on shareholder resolutions.

Pressure tactics did not succeed in last Spring's strike against the GSAS (Graduate School of Arts and Sciences). Members of the Graduate Student and Teaching Fellows Union (GSTFU) boycotted classes to protest the school's policy on scholarships but failed to obtain their demands.

This summer, organizers from the United Farm Workers Union rallied some support for the UFW's latest boycotts--of Gallo wine and lettuce picked by Teamster's.

Such boycotts never make their way into the lofty discussions held by the FAS--the Faculty of Arts and Sciences--in its monthly University Hall meeting. Equally unconcerned are the scholars studying international economic development in the Center for International Affairs (CFIA) think-tank, which is located on Divinity Ave.

But at the GSE, the Graduate School of Education, the CLE, or Center for Law and Education, acts as counsel all over the United States for poor people participating in education-law cases. Unfortunately, legal services for the poor rates low priority on the federal budget, and the future of CLE's grant from the Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO) remains uncertain.

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