A record crowd of 63 students, a third of them women, attended the first joint meeting Wednesday of the Harvard Gay Students (HGSA) and Radcliffe Lesbians Associations (RLA).
Benjamin H. Schatz '81, president of the HGSA, said yesterday the joint meetings will increase the group's respectability, making it easier for prospective members to attend meetings.
"There are hundreds of people in the closet at Harvard, terrified of being completely isolated by their friends," Schatz said, adding, "The group exists to fulfill people's need for a community, their need to get together at least a couple hours a week to relax and talk."
HGSA will sponsor gay tables in all the Houses and organize one or two Institute of Politics Forums on gay-lesbian political issues, Schatz said. He added he hopes to schedule activities like swimming and roller skating for the two organizations.
Gaye P. William '83, president of RLA, said yesterday the meeting was a "harmonious operation," adding "it's important for gay men and women who share common problems to come together and see how they can make life better for gays on campus."