Nooks and Crannies
As I walk through Harvard Yard to travel in between classes, I sometimes think about the large expanse of grass that the location is notable for: How many Harvard students has it felt treading on it as a shortcut when the paved paths get too full? How many generations of grass have persisted through the Cambridge snows? What has it seen?
Harvard’s housing system is one enshrouded in tradition: Thousands of students lived in the Houses we now call home before we — or our parents — were even born. The University took preliminary steps to establish the housing system in 1930 with funding from Edward Harkness, who was actually a Yale alumnus, starting a tradition that would exist through the present day. Harvard currently has twelve upperclassmen Houses — nine near the Charles River and three in the Radcliffe Quadrangle, which used to be occupied by Radcliffe’s female students — with these Houses being microcosms of community on campus.
Harvard’s new Science and Engineering Complex is an expansive, beautifully constructed building. From the useful makerspaces to the new furniture and appliances, the building is a testament to the innovation and ingenuity that engineering can accomplish. Situated in Allston — a Boston neighborhood located a 20 or so minute walk from Harvard’s River Houses — the SEC represents a visual symbol of Harvard’s expansion into Allston, complete with the near-constant commute of Harvard shuttle buses. This project has been decades in the making, and Harvard has had a long, sometimes contentious, history of expanding its presence in Allston.
Harvard’s campus is teeming with picturesque courtyards and foliage, brick streets lined by lush shades of green that transform into different colors throughout the year. Perhaps the most famous greenspace on campus is the Yard. Originally a cow pasture, Harvard Yard was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1973. The greenspaces at Harvard are beautiful, making you wish you could save the memory for later.
Walking into Annenberg for the first time transports you. Enveloped by exquisite stained glass and with the eyes of Shakespeare and Dante piercing down at you, the grandeur often associated with Harvard becomes unmistakably palpable. Originally conceived as a way to honor the Harvard graduates who fought for the Union in the Civil War, Annenberg became the freshman dining hall in 1994, serving about 3,400 meals a day as of 2009.