The Ready-for-Primetime Facebook

The arrival of Harvard alum Ryan Pierce on The West Wing is nothing unusual; primetime is already crawling with Harvard graduates. Whether working in an army hospital in Korea or getting reprimanded for their short skirts, TV’s fictional Harvard alumni share a single common trait: they make one extremely telegenic facebook.

Name: Dr. John Becker (“Becker”; played by Ted Danson)School: Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS), Harvard Medical School (HMS)

Honors:  Graduated college summa cum laude

Most Inspirational: Left a cushy research position at HMS to open a medical practice for low-income Bronx residents.

Almost Like Dad: Danson’s real-life dad has a PhD from Harvard.

Name: Dr. Frasier Crane (“Cheers,” “Frasier”; Kelsey Grammer)School: FAS, HMS Activities:  Crew, squash“Minor”: Music


Year of Graduation: 1974 (undergrad), 1978 (HMS)

Memorable Quote: “You don’t understand!  You see, it’s not the same as Dad being wrong, or your being wrong.  I have a degree from Harvard!  Whenever I’m wrong . . . the world makes a little less sense.”

Name: Ally McBeal (“Ally McBeal”; Calista Flockhart)School: Harvard Law School (HLS)

Activities: Going out with Billy (Gil Bellows), the childhood love she followed to law school

Using Those Connections: After Ally leaves her law firm in the pilot episode, she’s hired by HLS classmate Richard Fish (Greg Germann). Her roommate, Renee (Lisa Nicole Carson), is also an HLS alum.

Name: Miranda Hobbes (“Sex and the City”; Cynthia Nixon)School: HLS

Year of Graduation: early 90s

Carrie concerning Miranda’s Classmate: “Amanda Vaughn. Went to Harvard Law with Miranda. Perfect G.P.A., doting husband, breasts higher than the Chrysler Building. Needless to say, she was at the top of our ‘Most Hated’ list.”

Name:  Andie McPhee (“Dawson’s Creek”; Meredith Monroe)School:  FAS Projected Year of Harvard Graduation:  2006 Capeside High Activities:  Chairwoman of the Honor Council; assistant director of “Barefoot in the Park”; Yearbook staff (The Capeside Tricorn) Capeside High Honors:  Class Valedictorian Quote:  Overheard on a junior year visit to “Cambridge College”:  “These students enjoy the distinction of attending America’s finest college. Founded in 1626 [sic], it was named after a British colonist who ended up donating his entire collection of books.  And the original faculty teaching here in the colonial wilderness could hardly have imagined that—that over the next three centuries it would become known throughout the world as a premiere center for teaching and research.”