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From Wine Makers to Lawyers: `70 Employment Stats

By Jennifer . Lee

There aren't too many Venezuelan beekeeper/subsistence farmers in the Class of 1970. There aren't too many nudist framers who homeschooled their children, astrologists who legally changed their names or lawn mowers in Maui either.

But there is one of each.

These are some of the quirkier and more obscure occupations which Harvard and Radcliffe graduates have pursued since leaving the University a quarter-century ago.

There are also not one, but two cabinet makers, three farmers, an aspiring wine baron and a Buddhist teacher. And then there is the individual who quit his job and walked across America for 14 months.

On the other extreme, according to The Crimson's statistical analysis of the 25th Anniversary Report of the Class of '70, there is an abundance of lawyers, doctors, business people and professors. Nearly two-thirds of respondents and half of Radcliffe's respondents pursued one or a combination of four main fields: law, medicine, business and academics.

One graduate mastered the two most popular fields and became both a lawyer and a physician.


For Harvard, 88.5 percent of respondents pursued one of the 10 most popular fields or occupations. The top ranked occupational field was law. More than a fifth of the graduates are either practicing attorneys, general counsels, judges or law professors. And there is even an aspiring attorney: a graduate who is now studying law at the University of California at Berkeley.

Medicine and business each attracted just under a fifth of the class, making them the second and third most popular career fields. Harvard graduates pursuing medicine range from pediatricians to researchers at the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. In business, consulting was the largest subfield, with subspecialties ranging from environmental to computer consulting. There was also a large number of entrepreneurs.

Though academia was a more distant fourth-ranked field for men (12.6 percent), it ranked first for women (16.1 percent). While academic careers were the most popular among Radcliffe respondents, proportionally fewer Radcliffe than Harvard graduates were fully tenured professor. (A substantial portion are either adjunct or assistant professors.)

Women's occupations were slightly less concentrated among the top 10 fields. Only 75.8 percent of Radcliffe graduates pursued one of the 10 most popular fields. Medicine (11.2 percent) was third, and business (8.5 percent) was fourth.

And while most alums received graduate degrees in law, medicine or academics, one Radcliffe graduate attended McDonald's Hamburger University and graduated with honors.

Beyond the four top fields, the occupational pursuits of the Radcliffe and Harvard classes diverged significantly. Neither non-profit/community activism nor homemaking were any-where near the top 10 fields for Harvard graduates, though they were respectively ranked fifth and sixth for Radcliffe.

In the entertainment world, Harvard and Radcliffe Class of 1970 graduates are few, but their contributions are significant. There is an Emmy award-winning actress, a producer/manager of multiple Tony award-winning Broadway shows including "The Secret Garden," the producer of the films "Lean on Me" and "Colors," an actress from the popular Fox network television show "Beverly Hills 90210" and the musical orchestrator for the Walt Disney animated films "Beauty and the Beast," "Aladdin" and the soon-to-be-released "Pocahontas."

Harvard graduates entered the art world from all different directions. There are a number of art professors and historians, curators, restorers, as well as full-time artists in a variety of media--pottery, oil painting and sculpture.

There are a handful of journalists working at newspapers all across the country, including The New Orleans Times-Picayune, The San Francisco Chronicle, The New York Times, New York Newsday and The Washington Post. Among them is even a Pulitzer Prize winner.

Writing/journalism, government/civil service, research, entertainment, real estate and architecture rounded out the top 10 fields for Harvard graduates. For Radcliffe, writing/journalism, psychology, teaching and entertainment completed the list.

The 25th Anniversary Report had a response rate of 76.5 percent for Harvard and 75.1 percent for Radcliffe alumni.

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