I meet Scott Poulson-Bryant in Kirkland dining hall as he’s finishing up lunch with a couple of students. He lingers for a few seconds, offering his final words to the conversation before directing his attention to me.
Israelis are not the only students at Harvard who have to factor in mandatory service to their education and career plans. Fifteen Minutes also spoke to students from South Korea—who typically take time off in the middle of college in order to complete their mandatory two years—and from Singapore about their transitions between service and scholarship.
Huge chunk of your life gone before you know it
Empirical and Mathematical Reasoning required
The closer you are to being done, the more you play with your phone in class
Causes mass hysteria
Won’t be relevant in two months
Throughout the month of March, seniors across campus will breathe sighs of relief as they press “save” for the last time on their theses. As these students finish up the final touches on their papers, FM takes a moment to look back at the theses of some notable alumni and their choice of research topics. Not surprisingly, many of these now-famous former seniors wrote about topics that give us a glimpse of who they became. So, read on to learn more about the stars.
What’s on the mind of every freshman as soon as she sets foot back on campus in late January, you ask? Housing Day. That looming morning, far-off-yet-so-close-it-gives-you-night-terrors, when the Housing Gods decide if you’ll be taking a shuttle to get to class for the next three years. As if all the blocking and linking group drama weren’t enough, there’s a new medium to constantly remind us of our upcoming woes: previews for housing day videos.
The strength of Harvard’s alumni network today rests on the relationships formed between students while they’re undergraduates. As freshmen, students often take their first steps into the Yard with little concrete advice on how to navigate the academic and social scene on campus. That’s where upperclassmen “mentors”—friends, siblings, role models in organizations—come in to help spell out the “dos and don’ts” of Harvard. These mentors—both current Harvard students and recent alumni—have helped shape the course of their younger peers’ college experiences, leaving a mark on Harvard that goes beyond their own four years in Cambridge. FM set out to investigate one strand of these upperclassmen-freshmen mentor relationships, beginning with current freshman Priscilla K. Russo ’17 and following the network through to Ryan A. Peterson ’08.
“I was always thinking, ‘Is there something inexpensive and not too crazy that we can do to make the Yard friendlier for a public school kid from Ohio?’” says Michael R. Van Valkenburgh, Graduate School of Design professor. The consensus answer was to purchase a number of bright Luxembourg chairs and place them throughout the Yard.
While trips to the quad are often categorized as “too far to travel,” Harvard students shuttle to The Game at Yale every other year. FM imagines what some of the conversations on these buses might look like.
The mother of Trayvon Martin, the Florida teenager whose killing by a neighborhood-watch volunteer last year sparked a national outcry over racial profiling, self-defense laws, and gun violence, urged Harvard Law School students to use their educations to reform the legal system during a talk Monday.
FM set out to find the students on campus with the best taste in music. The chain started with Henry Kennelly, a freshman in Greenough, who then named his “best music friend” (BMF), who named their BMF, and so on. Listen in!