The Scoop

Virtually Equal?

The switch to remote learning brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic has challenged all members of the University’s large and diverse student body. But the burden of finishing the school year away from Harvard’s campus weighs more heavily on certain students than others — and often those from first-generation or low-income (FGLI) backgrounds, from rural homes, and from time zones across the globe shoulder a disproportionate load. While the possibility of a fall semester conducted entirely or partially online looms, students must weigh the continuation of their education against the frustrations and fears that accompany college during quarantine.

A Harvard Square Without Harvard

With some estimates predicting that 40 percent of local businesses will not reopen after the pandemic ends and that another 25 percent will fail within the year, Harvard students may return to a neighborhood that looks radically different from the one they left in mid-March.

Fighting Lost Time

Research delays, funding cancellations, and the burden of remote teaching — piled on top of caretaking, financial insecurities, and social-distancing — have put Harvard's graduate students in a precarious position during the pandemic. With the University's response seeming, at times, to equivocate, thousands of students' immediate and long term futures hang in the balance.

Dear Diary, I’m Living Through a Pandemic

History Department lecturer Zachary B. Nowak and a group of undergraduates have set out to ensure that when future historians study COVID-19's impact on Harvard College, the archives will abound with student voices.

A Surplus with Few Buyers

After students vacated campus, the farmers and vendors that supported HUDS are left with "surpluses" of food that may prove detrimental to their businesses: "'It would be devastating for us.'"

At Home With CovEd

Evelyn Wong ’21 created CovEd in the days after Harvard College students were asked to leave campus, while she was packing her belongings and preparing to return home. As she saw spreadsheets circulating to provide college students with emergency housing and storage, her thoughts turned to younger students hit by school shutdowns around the nation.

HMS Student Response Team

The leadership of the HMS COVID-19 Student Response Team — Michael Kochis, Derek Soled, Parsa Erfani, Benjamin Levy, Kruti Vora, Grace Baldwin, Shivangi Goel, David Velasquez, Kirstin Woody Scott, Danika Barry, Nishant Uppal, and Nicholos Joseph — meet on Zoom.

Waiting To Be Called Upon

As COVID-19 has spread across the country, many hospitals have struggled to keep up with an influx of new patients. In hopes of alleviating the pressure on the medical system, many state governors have called on medical school deans to allow their fourth-year students to graduate early so that they can begin their residencies immediately. Though Harvard Medical School now offers this option, bureaucratic barriers have prevented many eligible students from answering the call. As a result, Torres isn’t the only student to feel as if they have been left in limbo, neither able to continue their medical education online nor start their residency programs until the summer.

Maintaining Morale in the Remote Classroom

Alongside technical difficulties and time zone differences, virtual education has brought a new set of challenges for professors and students: How do you foster a social-academic community when you can’t see anyone face-to-face?

The Ones Who Stayed

Of the more than 6,000 students that typically reside on Harvard’s campus, only a few hundred remain. Social spaces are locked, the chairs in the dining halls are gone, and hallways — normally resonant with the sounds of life from within dorm rooms — are silent.

The Hidden History of the Harvard Law School Library’s Treasure Room

Upon the completion of the Caspersen Room's construction in 1948, the director of the library said that the room was “not to be a stationary object, but a vital, active force working for the benefit of mankind.” While initially meant to serve as a memorial to the Law School students who fought and died in the World Wars, a walk around the room today reveals Harvard’s connections to long histories of racism and injustice.

Casperson Room

The Casperson Room is located in the Harvard Law School Library.

This Taiwanese Video Game Stirred an International Controversy. Now It Sits on the Shelves of the Harvard-Yenching Library.

Last month, the Harvard-Yenching Library added a controversial video game to its collection. “Our work is to support our faculty members, students, and visiting scholars,” explains Xia-he Ma, a librarian. “If the patron wants materials to do research or teaching, we usually will support them.” Others didn't share his opinion.

Applying to Harvard, One Conference at a Time

In typical years, the conference seeks to export “the Western liberal arts education style at Harvard” to China through its eclectic speaker series and seminars. Though the program prides itself on its range, seminar leaders must ensure that their curriculums do not clash with the stances of the Chinese government on controversial issues. And while the presidents reject the idea that admission to HSYLC improves one’s odds of admission to Harvard, some applicants believe the brief affiliation with its undergraduates will bring them closer to their goal.

72 Students in the Studio

“Painting’s Doubt” is unlike any other introductory painting course taught at Harvard. While most studio classes are capped at anywhere from 12 to 20 students, Painting’s Doubt has room for 72.

Tommy's value

Tommy's Value is a convenience store located at 47 Mt. Auburn Street.

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