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The History of Harvard's Commencement, Explained

McNulty and Owens Win Elections for '80 Marshals

By Richard P. Nagel

Seniors this week elected Thad L. McNulty '80 of Eliot House and Elizabeth Owens '80 of Lowell House as First Marshals of the Class of '80.

For the first time, seniors were permitted to vote for candidates of either sex. Voters received two ballots, one with eight male candidates and one with eight female candidates. On each ballot, the candidate with the most votes became a First Marhsl and the three runners-up became marshals.

The other Radcliffe marshals elected are, in order of votes won, Caryl E. Yanow '80 of Winthrop House, Leslie E. Greis '80 of South House, and Susan Kish '80 of Lowell Hose. The other Harvard marshals are Ruben J. Alvero '80 of South House, George A. Jackson '80 of Lowell House and Steven V. Winthrop '80 of South House.

Next week, seniors will elect House representatives to join the marshals on the class committee will use its $55,000 commencement budget to invite a Class Day speaker and organize meals and entertainment, Victor A. Koivumaki '69, associate for classes and reunions of the Associated Harvard Alumni, said yesterday. The marshals, elected for life, also direct the class's alumni activities.

McNulty, of Lake Mary, Fla., captains the track and cross-country teams and co-manages the Eliot House Grille. An Economics concentrator, McNulty said yesterday he plans to land a job in a Florida firm.

McNulty said the position of marshal involves a lot of work, but added, "I might be able to get an Independent Study out of it in the spring."

He said he might do "something crazy" to make Commencement memorable, adding he does not intend to raise funds for the College.

Owens, of Winetka, Ill., is associate editor of the Harvard Political Review, a member of the Signet Society. She played club soccer as a freshman. She concentrates in American History and Literature and has worked at Phillips Brooks House.

Owens said yesterday that although fundraising is "essential to the life of the University," she is more interested in "conceptual fundraising than in direct solicitation." But she added, "Over the next 25 to 50 years, I'll be writing a lot of letters."

McNulty and Owens said they wanted to become marshals because it sounded like a "fun" way to make and maintain friendships.

About half the class voted in last week's preliminary balloting, which narrowed the field of 73 candidates to 16, and again in the final election, Koivumaki said.

While about 60 per cent of the seniors in most Houses voted, Koivumaki said Dudley House brought the average down with a 10-per-cent turnout.

The new electoral system this year increased the number of votes cast on each ballot, Koivumaki said. He added that in the preliminary balloting, seniors cast 769 votes on the Radcliffe ballot and 805 on the Harvard ballot, compared with last year's figures of 250 and 600.

Populism

Six of the eight marshals live in Lowell or South House. Kish attributed the concentration of marshals in these Houses to "gung-ho spirit," particularly in South House.

Koivumaki said the recent rise of South House spirit reflects the University's efforts to improve House life at the Quad. He added that the new centralized dining room made it easier for House Committee members to get out the South House vote.

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