Put a Little OWAW Into Your J-Term


Amidst the end-of-semester whirlwind of finals and papers, there remains a light at the end of the tunnel: J-Term. Use these four weeks carefully; it will be the only time during the academic year in which an excess of sleep, food, television, and sunlight won't prompt automatic guilt. But in case you feel like abdicating your beach chair and sunscreen a little earlier this year, we've got a round up of some of the programs that Optional Winter Activities Week can offer you from Jan. 16-23.

Hack Harvard

Hack Harvard is an incubator for web applications that improve campus life, like many CS50 final projects. Participants will work on their projects from home during winter break and then at campus during OWAW. The project will provide workspace, funding, HBS mentors, and training on advanced topics like scalability and marketing. Once the apps launch, the Undergraduate Council will help to publicize them on campus.

Enrollment Limit: Around 10

How to apply: RSVP is available here.

Deadline: Dec. 11

Harvard Wellness Project

This project presents itself as an opportunity to raise awareness about the consequences of all of the unhealthy behavior associated with college. The issue of how to live a healthy life at Harvard will be addressed in a five-day conference during OWAW. In addition to holding discussion groups and workshops, the developers of the project hope to be joined by experts from across the larger Harvard community.

Enrollment Limit: 30

How to apply: Fill out a short application here.

Deadline: Dec. 8

Spoken Word Workshop

If your solitary musings beg to be further explored, this project offers participants the opportunity to spend a week writing, discussing, and rewriting their own spoken word pieces, culminating in an optional—but highly encouraged—performance at the end of the week. Other highlights will include a guest performance and an expedition to the Cantab Lounge's weekly poetry night. Bonus: The Harvard Calendar notes that snacks will "of course" be provided.

Enrollment Limit: 20

How to apply: RSVP to spokenwordextravaganza@gmail.com.

Deadline: Dec. 22

Watercolor Workshop

Doodled absent-mindedly all over your pset? Well, it's happened to the best of us. Continue to express your artistic tendencies in this workshop, which will explore watercolor as a medium of expression. Participants will work primarily from still-life set-ups, with accompanying individual and group discussions and critiques.

Enrollment Limit: 15

How to apply: Dec. 8-9, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. at the Office for the Arts (74 Mt. Auburn Street)

Throat-Singing Workshop

This project challenges you to come sing two notes—but at the same time. Throat-singing, or overtone singing, is a musical form popular in Central Asia. Practitioners are able to manipulate their voice to emphasize a whistle-like overtone above the fundamental note, effectively singing at two pitches simultaneously. The Harvard OWAW calendar adds that no prior experience or singing talent is necessary, except an "inability to be embarrassed by ridiculous sounds."

Enrollment Limit: 15

How to apply: RSVP to kbseah@fas.harvard.edu. Spots are first come, first serve.

First-Year Leadership Initiative

For all of the freshmen out there, you can spend OWAW developing your leadership skills. In the morning, participants will reflect upon their own leadership. In the afternoon, students will be able to choose two of the following workshops: conflict resolution, public speaking, teamwork, making presentations, and goal-setting. These freshmen will also enjoy a reception with Dean of Freshmen Thomas A. Dingman '67 and learn from the experiences of distinguished keynote speakers.

Enrollment Limit: 50

How to apply: A link to RSVP will be put up on the FDO's website.

Deadline: Dec. 10

Story and the means of "Telling It" with Roland B. Tec '88

Join a two-day workshop with writer, director, producer, and composer Roland Tec '88, who will guide students in exploring the various modes of communication necessary for effective storytelling. Participants will each bring a story they would like to relate on screen or on stage, and they will be directed to explore the story through four distinct communicative tools: pure dialogue, interior monologue, descriptive prose, and silent screenplay. Tec will also discuss the practical issues of producing theater and film projects, based on his decades of experience as an independent filmmaker and theater artist.

Enrollment Limit: 20

How to apply: RSVP to lee16@fas.harvard.edu

Deadline: Dec. 20

Photo by Keren E. Rohe/The Harvard Crimson.

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