Mather House

By Michelle Liu
When Alicia Keys sang “concrete jungles where dreams are made of”, she was very clearly thinking of Mather. This house comes with a practical concrete exterior, guaranteed singles, and every amenity you could dream of. Wake up in the solitude and privacy of your own room, look out your window at the beautiful Charles River, and walk a few minutes to the Yard just in time for class.
By Annette Kim and Hayeon "Rachel" Ok

By Michelle Liu

All About Housing

You can’t say Mather without talking about its singles. “I think ultimately the best part of Mather is you have single rooms. You still live in a suite on the low rise or you have your own single room,” HoCo chair Ailie S. Johnson ’24 said. Residents living in the tower have their own singles while low-rise residents live in suites that accommodate four to five people.

“It's nice because you have your own room, but you're still living with all of your friends,” Johnson noted. That’s not all: for all the hotties with stomach problems, bathrooms are either ensuite or right next to your single for rooms in the tower.

Come for the singles, stay for the vibes. Mather’s dining hall is the social hub for its residents to enjoy the natural lighting while conversing with their friends. “Our dining hall feels very much like home,” Johnson said. “We have comfortable chairs and everyone sits with each other. So those two things mixed together creates a home-like atmosphere.” Mather also boasts a strong party presence through its large Junior Common Room, which comes with a ping pong table and many, many couches.

Quirks and Perks

No matter where your interests lie, Mather has you covered. Not only is Mather equipped with basic amenities like a gym, library, and junior common room, but it also has a bunch of other quirks and perks that you don’t want to miss! Mather has an extensive list of extra spaces that set it apart from the other houses. For one, prepare to get your hands dirty because Mather has its own pottery room in the basement. There are weekly classes where you can ease your mind from your stressful classes and have fun learning how to create your own clay masterpiece. But, if you’d rather reshape your mind than reshape a piece of clay, Mather also has a tranquility room where you can meditate and take yoga classes, equipped with more blankets, pillows, mats than you can count. Those who are more musically inclined will also find that Mather caters to their needs: it’s equipped with four music practice rooms where you can play your instrument to your heart’s content or sing your soul out.

When you get tired of taking advantage of all the fun activities that Mather has to offer, have no fear because you’ll be able to feast on the amazing snacks and drinks that are offered at Mather’s Happy Hours (other houses call them steins) and brain breaks! But wait… there’s more! Every so often, Mather hosts Doggy Happy Hours where you get to enjoy the company of the house’s resident dogs — Yogi, Kira, Donkey, and Cori. And speaking of animals, Mather has not ONE but TWO cool mascots: gorillas and lions (Clearly, we weren’t lying when we said concrete jungles are where dreams are made of)!

If fluffy, adorable, and loyal are not what you look for in friends, fear not because Mather holds many social events for humans throughout the year as well — Mather Lather, Mather Prom, and Fall Fest. Mather is known to be a very ~lively~ dorm so you can look forward to meeting new people even at gatherings in the courtyard. And in case you were wondering what Matherites jam out to at their many socials and parties, if you’re a Swiftie (or any person with refined taste), the Matherites we chatted with share their love for Taylor Swift.

Your Questions, Answered

We sat down with Mather’s HoCo chair for all the insider details about Harvard’s ~quirkiest~ house:

What is your favorite memory in Mather?

ASJ: I think one of my favorite memories was during Fall Fest and we brought out our Fire pit and everyone was making S’mores and everyone was just happy and there was Taylor Swift playing in the background. And it was just good vibes.

Any words you want to say about Mather to the future freshmen?

ASJ: Well, I would say that even though the architecture isn't the prettiest, it has the best community and you don't have to live in a double room ever again. I feel like that alone is really nice. You have your own space, but you also have a community to go to. So you can kind of have both.

If you had to describe Mather as one HUDS dish, what dish would you describe Mather as?

ASJ: I would describe it personally as the—this is going to be so weird—but the jalapeno mac and cheese, because it's just the best. It's seasoned, it’s great, and Mather’s just great. And so I would compare Mather to that because I love both of them with all my heart.

Do you have a favorite thing that they do for brain breaks here?

ASJ: My favorite thing is going down to the d-hall at like 9 or 10 p.m. to get a bagel and chocolate milk. It just hits the spot really late—it's just chocolate milk in general, you know?

What Taylor Swift song do you think Mather matches best?

ASJ: You could always go for “You Belong with Me.”

What Hogwarts house do you think Mather is?

ASJ: I think Mather’s Hufflepuff, but not in a bad way, like in a good way. [...] It's not like the stereotypical Harvard house with the same infrastructure design, but it has its quirks. It's made of concrete, you know. But once you get to know it, it's really nice to be here. And I have zero complaints about being here, and I actually prefer it over a lot of other houses and how they feel when you walk inside of them.

Any other things that you would want to mention about the house?

ASJ: People here are very fun. Everyone loves Mather! It's a super nice place to be and the people, as I've said, are just really nice. Everyone, like tutors and faculty deans, are always there for you! It makes living here feel like a home instead of as if you're living away from home.

Read more about the other Houses here!

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