Harvard: The View From Inside

Many students are also frustrated by the lack of Faculty diversity. Part of the problem is Harvard's tenuous tenure track--some assistant professors will spend less time at Harvard than you will.

Students themselves are an incredibly varied lot, especially for the Ivy League. This is not your father's Harvard--while prep school alums are common, they no longer run the show. Harvard undergrads come from every state and increasingly from abroad--the international student population is sizeable and growing.

But one thing virtually every Harvard student has in common is ambition. This is the Type A capital of the world--students are driven in their academics, their extracurriculars, even their social life. ("We have to go party now!")


Even the debauchery is ambitious--during Primal Scream, the night before final exams, hordes of undergraduate streakers run naked around the Yard, often in sub-zero weather. No joke.

But when you peel away the intensity, your fellow Harvard men and women are surprisingly normal. You're just as likely to bond with your peers this weekend over "Saved by the Bell" and Molly Ringwald, as philosophy or politics.

In a way, that's what your Harvard career will be all about--balancing Shakespearean sonnets and Sixteen Candles. Don't forget--Harvard is still college. You're here to have a good time, and you probably will.

But don't buy everything you hear in Byerly Hall.

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