We’re grateful for Harvard’s caution when it comes to public health, but student life concerns — now spread across the globe — require the same rigorous consideration.
While many student organizations have organized donation matching efforts (open to all!) for bail funds and anti-racist nonprofits and campaigns, the University as a whole has only sent hollow messages.
Harvard must use its institutional heft against these changes, which threaten the safety of many students at Harvard as well as on other campuses. This is not a fringe issue.
In its rejection of CARES aid, Harvard got and gave nothing — neither vital support for vulnerable students nor a strong political statement about what aid should look like or how an institution should act in times of crisis.
The only responsible way for us as young people to conduct ourselves during this crisis is to strongly limit our social interactions: to avoid going to restaurants, large gatherings, and to connect with friends and loved ones online rather than in person.
As we feel an existential humility in the face of this pandemic, Harvard's choice to close its doors gives us deep reason for worry as students and global citizens.