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Frequently Asked Questions





Getting In Touch

  • Q: How do I submit a letter to the editor?
    • A: Harvard Magazine welcomes letters on its contents. Please send via e-mail to yourturn[at]harvard [dot] edu. You may also send your letter via U.S. mail to “Letters,” Harvard Magazine, 7 Ware St., Cambridge, MA 02138, or via fax to (617) 495-0324. Letters may be edited to fit the available space.
  • Q: How do I submit a Class Note?
    • A: Use our Class Notes webform or send your note to classnotes[at]harvard [dot] edu. You can also write to “The Classes,” Harvard Magazine, 7 Ware St., Cambridge, MA 02138. (Please note: We welcome wedding and birth announcements, but do not report engagements or pregnancies.)

      If you want your class note to appear only in the print edition and not on the website, please specify that in your submission. Announcements that appear on the website can be viewed only by registered users with post.harvard addresses.

      Print-edition deadlines are October 1 for the January-February issue, December 1 for March-April, February 1 for May-June, April 1 for July-August, June 1 for September-October, and August 1 for November-December.
  • Q: Who is eligible to submit a Class Note?
    • A: Harvard Magazine publishes news sent in by alumni of Harvard and Radcliffe Colleges and their class secretaries, and news from alumni of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. We also publish information from press releases about alumni sent to our office.
  • Q: How do I submit an obituary?
    • A: You can use our obituary webform or send an e-mail to obituaries[at]harvard [dot] edu. You can also use U.S. mail (“Obituaries,” Harvard Magazine, 7 Ware St., Cambridge MA 02138) or fax: (617) 495-0324. Please specify “print only” if you do not wish the obituary to appear on the magazine website.

      Obituaries in Harvard Magazine are free of charge and written by the obituaries editor, Deborah Smullyan ’72. The information you provide will be used as a basis for the obituary, but not reprinted verbatim. Please include contact information in case we need clarification or further information. Our obituaries customarily include the following: (1) date and place of death; (2) a brief summary of career; (3) interests, passions, hobbies, publications, honors, military service, or other distinctions the alum would have liked to see mentioned; (4) the names of surviving spouse or partner, if any (including maiden name); and of children, parents, siblings, and grandparents.

      The magazine prints obituaries principally for alumni/ae of Harvard and Radcliffe Colleges, and for alumni/ae of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences whose family or friends request a notice. Alumni of the professional schools alone (law, medicine, education, design, etc.) receive an edition of Harvard Magazine that does not include obituaries, so unless there is a specific reason for publishing an obituary for a professional school alum, families of those alumni will do better to submit obituaries to the alumni bulletins of the appropriate professional schools.
  • Q: How can I submit information about my new book to Harvard Magazine?
    • A: Please send information to books[at]harvardmag [dot] com. Review copies should be sent to the attention of Jean Martin, Harvard Magazine, 7 Ware St., Cambridge MA 02138. Please note the author’s Harvard affiliation and class year if possible.

      During an average two-month period, the magazine receive several dozen to several score books by alumni/ae and faculty members from throughout Harvard. From those, we select, typically, 8-12 titles, aiming for those that might be overlooked, that might have some particular Harvard content or angle, and that will, collectively, make an interesting mix of subjects, perspectives, etc. We then write up the columns or page that readers see. Thus we sort from what we have, try to serve readers, and prepare our coverage. The volume of material makes it impossible for us to guarantee coverage, and in fact we get to only a small minority of eligible titles. Those books we cannot cover that are written by graduates of the College or the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences are mentioned in our class notes; those by faculty or alumni/ae of other schools need to be submitted to those schools’ separate alumni publications.
  • Q: Can I write for Harvard Magazine?
    • A: Harvard Magazine is an alumni publication for the graduates, faculty, and staff of Harvard University. Its contents are about the extended Harvard community—research, teaching, and the lives of community members. Accordingly, story ideas not strongly related to Harvard are unlikely to be right for the magazine. In addition to a small staff of writers and editors, who produce a significant proportion of the contents, we hire freelance writers for most sections, and assign illustrations and photography for each issue.

      To understand the magazine’s mission and approach to serving its readers, the best guide is always the contents of recent issues, which are available on line at this website. Note that as a bimonthly publication, we work with very long lead times: for feature articles, six months before the cover date is a typical minimum lead time, and much longer is not unusual; shorter pieces (Right Now and Montage articles) typically proceed more quickly. But submissions aimed at inclusion in an issue dated a month later are always too late, as the magazine is already in advanced stages of production by then.

      If you have a proposal for an article, please submit a query by john_rosenberg[at]harvard [dot] edu (e-mail), or mail it to John Rosenberg, Editor, Harvard Magazine, 7 Ware St., Cambridge MA 02138. Telephone calls invariably require more detailed follow-up, so the editors strongly encourage beginning with a detailed written query.

      Such queries should explain the proposed subject and why it is of interest; outline the proposed treatment (who will be interviewed or what materials will be covered, at what likely length for the finished article, for what section if relevant, on what timeline, etc.); and, for writers not previously known to the editors, should be accompanied by samples of published work comparable in approach and scale to the idea being proposed. The magazine does not encourage simultaneous submissions elsewhere. The query mechanism is essential, because as a bimonthly magazine working much in advance of publication, we may already be working on the subject you wish to propose—so submitting a query is designed to protect you from the disappointment of submitting a finished article only to discover that it duplicates a piece already under way.

      The magazine’s contents are principally journalistic. Faculty opinion pieces, published in “Forum,” are exclusively assigned internally. Although the magazine occasionally uses personal essays or humor, such pieces are necessarily subject to evaluation of the executed piece and cannot be assigned on a guaranteed basis. Because of limited space and the constraints of readers’ interest, the magazine does not generally have room to publish personal recollections about an individual’s college experience, and does not seek remembrances about deceased individuals beyond those published in the obituary notices.

      The art director can review submissions of work by photographers and illustrators; direct portfolios jennifer_carling[at]harvard [dot] edu (by e-mail).
  • Q: How do I contact a member of the Harvard Magazine staff?
    • A: See a full list of magazine staff members, with e-mail addresses, here.
  • Q: How do I contact someone who was mentioned in Harvard Magazine?
    • A: The University closely protects the privacy of its students, and does not make their e-mail addresses available to those without a valid Harvard ID number. However, the public listings in the University directory do contain e-mail and phone number for many faculty members. If you can’t find the faculty member you’re looking for, a Web search of the person’s name along with the word “Harvard” often turns up his or her Harvard faculty webpage.

      If you are looking for a Harvard graduate, the Harvard Alumni Association website allows alumni to send messages to other alumni. And if all else fails, try getting in touch with the author of the article; see our staff list for contact information.


Back Issues


About Harvard Magazine

  • Q: How is Harvard Magazine funded?
    • A: Harvard Magazine raises two-thirds of its operating revenue from reader contributions and advertising; the remaining one-third is a subsidy from the University.
  • Q: How is the money spent?
    • A: The contributions from readers alone pay for the equivalent of all author and artist fees, and for editing, designing, and preparing the contents of each issue for publication. Revenues from all sources pay for writing, editing, designing, printing, and mailing a quarter-million magazines six times a year to readers worldwide.
  • Q: What is Harvard Magazine’s relationship with Harvard University?
    • A: The magazine was founded independently by alumni more than a century ago, and is published today by a separately incorporated nonprofit affiliate of Harvard University. We have excellent access to University news and news sources, but are written, edited, and produced—like any independent news medium—with readers’ interests foremost in mind. That is to say, the magazine is not published with the aim of promoting financial donations to the University, as development and other publications properly are.
  • Q: Why does Harvard Magazine need money if Harvard University is so wealthy?
    • A: Harvard Magazine’s current arrangement with the University to fund the magazine primarily from non-University sources maximizes editorial independence. This allows for publication of a high-quality periodical and minimizes financial claims on the University, which is always mindful of its core educational purpose as a research and teaching institution, and does and should apply its resources to the classroom, the lab, the libraries, etc.
  • Q: What is the “Friends of Harvard Magazine”?
    • A: The “Friends of Harvard Magazine” group was established to demonstrate the appreciation Harvard Magazine has for donors who make an especially generous contribution of $100 or more. Friends members receive invitations to special events; see photos from past events here.
  • Q: How can I make a donation?
    • A: Please contact Allison Kern allison_kern[at]harvard [dot] edu (by e-mail) or by phone at (617) 496-9780. We look forward to hearing from you!