Famous for its concrete composition and unusual traditions, Mather House towers over the Charles River and, according to its residents, over the rest of the upperclassmen Houses. Any freshman who gets Mather on Housing Day can expect a lot of House spirit and a great community for the next three years. The majority of Harvard students may be lonely virgins, but everyone knows that Matherites have “more singles, more sex.”
Mather is made up of two buildings, the Lowrise and the Tower, with the latter comprised mostly of senior housing. Sophomores usually live on the third or fourth floors of the Lowrise, in suites composed of four to six singles with a large common room on a separate floor and connecting bathrooms. Because the common rooms are so large, any of the rooms in the Lowrise can serve as party suites.
Mather’s House life is mostly centered around the dining hall, where Matherites tend to spend a great deal of time. Mather also has other common spaces, such as the library, the JCR, or the Big TV Room. One of the House’s signature events is Happy Hour, a biweekly gathering with food and booze, the equivalent to other Houses’ Steins. Everyone in Mather is close, from the students to the tutors and the Faculty Deans.
Mather House is unique because its House Committee has a Games Commissioner in charge of the Louie Cup, a sort of IM competition among Matherites (yes, it’s named after nearby liquor store Louie’s). And, of course, there’s Mather Lather, the annual foam party hosted in the dhall.
The House’s Faculty Deans, L. “Maha” Mahadevan and Amala Mahadevan, are new this year, which means they get to learn about community and traditions from Matherites themselves!
House Committee co-chairs Pablo A. Reimers ’19 and Sofia C. Kennedy ’19 sat down with us to give us the inside scoop on Mather:
What would you say to Mather’s detractors, who criticize its location and appearance?
PR: The thing about the distance is that, since you’re walking through the Square to get here, it doesn’t feel as far. It’s also nice because it means that all the people who spend time in Mather are Matherites.
SK: We’re also close to eight of the other Houses. So even though we’re farther away from the Yard, it’s a quick walk to any of the River Houses. I think we have one of the most beautiful dining halls; it’s comfy with a nice view of the river. We have to compensate for the ugliness, so the community is even closer.
PR: Looks aren’t everything.
What are some cool spots in Mather?
SK: We have a Tranquility Room; it’s a meditation room with a bunch of mats and places to sit; it’s kind of in a secluded part of Mather. We have a sunken courtyard, where we host Happy Hours when it’s warmer out and where we have our Spring Formal.
PR: There are some weird nooks—there are some random circles of couches which are underused, but where some people hang out. We’re also next to outdoor basketball and soccer courts.
Compare Mather to a Harvard Square eatery.
PR: The Kong.
SK: Absolutely. It’s jank but you love it.
Read our overviews of the other Houses here.