A group of U.S. mayors enjoyed a soiree with administrators and students last night at the Fogg Museum, taking a breather during a five-day conference at the Kennedy School.
More than 150 campus guests mingled with the leaders of cities with more than 100,000 residents, enjoying the amenities of caterers and a two-flute, one-cello trio.
The Mayors met President Derek C. Bok, a handful of professors and administrators, and several dozen students.
The Institute of Politics sponsored the conference to combine "the practical world of politics with the sphere of academia," said organizer David I. Laibson '88.
The reception provided "a relaxing evening of conversation after a long day of lectures" for the mayors, Laibson added.
Kennedy School students received invitations to the reception by lottery, and several undergraduates attended as escorts to the mayors.
Laibson said students had "gained a valuable perspective into their roles as mayors and their hopes for the future" during conversations at the reception.
Yesterday's first day of the conference included lectures and opportunities for the mayors to meet one another.
Most of the mayors have held previous city political position, but many felt the sessions, jointly sposored by the U.S. Conference of Mayors, would help them govern better.
One--fifth of the 25 attendees traveled all the way from California, while others came from nearby towns Lynn and New Bedford.
Though the accents varied, the atmosphere was friendly as mayors pumped hands and exchanged information.
Most student guests searched out mayors from near their hometowns, while the officials conversed about such topics as classes and South Africa.