Class of 2023, congratulations! You have all worked hard your whole lives to be the people that you are, and we are so excited to get to know you as our classmates and friends.
Every one of you is here for a reason, and you are all talented and exceptional in your own ways. Coming to Harvard — or to any university — is an enormous change no matter where you come from. You may be nervous. As you get your first taste of life on campus and the transition to college really begins, don’t be alarmed by those nerves. They’re natural. At the same time, be proud of what you’ve achieved and the opportunity you’ve earned. As you meet your future classmates and marvel at the similarities and differences of your experiences, remember: You are diverse, you are talented, and you belong here.
As you decide whether or not Harvard is the place for you to spend your next four years, this Visitas weekend affords you the opportunity to reach out to students and see the human side of our school, as well as meet your fellow admitted peers in the Class of 2023. Don’t waste it. We want to talk to you. We want to answer questions. You may have worries and fears about Harvard, or about college in general. Some may fade with time. Others may not.
Our campus, like many others, finds itself steeped in the difficult question of how to build a community of scholarship and personal growth that embodies our community values of justice and openness. And we are deeply conscious that, because of the reputation and public position of this institution, the way in which we engage in these questions echoes beyond our gates. If you want to create lasting and institutional change, there is no better place to make your voice heard.
As students, we do not have all the answers to these questions, but we do have each other. Our community is built on a collaborative spirit, one that may not always agree but prides itself on the collective pursuit of knowledge. The questions are tough and the stakes are high, but as a student body we face the challenge with pride.
As undergraduates, we have the desire to seek to change the systems we do not support; we have the obligation to call out injustice wherever we see it; and we are fortunate to have the opportunity to live and work in a community of brilliant fellow-students. Choosing to join the Class of 2023 is a choice to take up that challenge on your terms and in your voice.
Enjoy these last few weeks of high school — they are precious and fleeting. But look ahead knowing that the four years waiting for you here can be magical. There will be moments of joy and laughter, and there will be moments of sorrow and tears.
The inscription above Dexter Gate reads, “Depart to serve better thy country and thy kind.” That imperative begins not just when you depart from this campus, but when you arrive on it. It extends not just to the world outside, but to Harvard itself and to the people you will come to know and love over the next four years.
Welcome to the fight.
This staff editorial solely represents the majority view of The Crimson Editorial Board. It is the product of discussions at regular Editorial Board meetings. In order to ensure the impartiality of our journalism, Crimson editors who choose to opine and vote at these meetings are not involved in the reporting of articles on similar topics.