HSA Moves Agencies Off Campus

Relocates to Church After Yard Renovatio

After spending more than 30 years in the basements of University buildings, six of Harvard Student Agencies' (HSA) ten branches, as well as the student-run company's administrative offices, have relocated to a new, above-ground building at 53A Church St.

The new space has less square footage than the Agencies' previous offices in the basement of Thayer Hall, but HSA officers aren't complaining.

"We have sunlight now," said Kerry A. Nelthropp '94, manager of HSA's student resources branch.

The Yard renovations initially prompted the agencies' move, but officers say they have no plans to return to Thayer when they are completed.

HSA, which has been located on campus almost continuously since its founding in 1957, plans to return to campus in three or four years, says President Martin E. Escobari '94. But he says the move signals a new attitude and a new professionalism for the organization.


"The move comes at a time of great change for HSA. For the last two years we have tried to define what it means to be student-run and what our role in the community ought to be," Escobari said. "We are really in an expansive mode."

"Thayer was a little bit of a dungeon," Eric S. Witt '95, manager of the campus store, added.

HSA affiliates--including the campus store, Let's Go travel agency, the catering operation, student resources, the linen and dry cleaning service and the union--have been based in the Church Street structure since last May, when the University cleared Thayer Hall for renovations.

The new building, a yellow brick house previously occupied by the Harvard affiliated non-profit corpo- ration Cultural Survival, is the property ofHarvard Real Estate, which has leased the buildingto HSA for a term of three-and-a-half years,according to Escobari.

The new space, which has natural light, centralheating and air conditioning, hardwood floors,individual offices, and other amenities, has wonkudos from occupants and visitors alike, acordingto HSA officers.

"They not only see the building is new, butthey see the attitude is new. Everybody likesworking here," said Regina N. Ford '95, vicepresident of HSA.

The main drawback of the building, itsoff-campus location, has not affected theagencies' business, Nelthropp said. "It might havehurt us initially, but we've had signs in front ofThayer with our new address."

"We've had lots of students coming by," shesaid. "I think the word is getting around.