Your independent source for Harvard news since 1898

Your independent source for Harvard news since 1898

Finding Harlem


Vera Ingrid Grant, director of Harvard’s Ethelbert Cooper Gallery of African & African-American Art, notes that the name “Harlem” evokes many different visions. Some people recall the landmarks central to the Harlem Renaissance, like the Apollo Theater and the Lenox Lounge.

Arctic Meltdown Turns Up the Heat


At the Harvard Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS), researchers have found that rising temperatures and thawing permafrost in the northern region of the Alaskan tundra are leading to increased emissions of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere—as much as a 70 percent increase in such emissions since 1975. CO2 traps heat, acting like a blanket that keeps the earth warm, an effect particularly noticeable at night and in the winter.

Studying a Gut Reaction


While pricey, so-called detox juice drinks are becoming increasingly popular, friendly microbes are continuously detoxifying our bodies for free. More than a trillion bacteria live in the human gut and chemically alter the molecules people ingest. Nitzan Koppel, Ph.D.

The Origins of Egg Shape


THE COMMON MURRE, a slender, northern-dwelling bird that resembles a miniature penguin, nests on cliffs and frigid island coasts. Its marble-patterned eggs are highly asymmetrical, almost conical, a structure that, according to a popular theory of egg shape, might have evolved as an adaptation to the bird’s rocky nesting terrain: conical eggs spin in a tight circle, making them less likely to roll off a cliff and shatter.

Title IX at 45


When Radcliffe College students once got ready to play basketball or field hockey, they put on uniforms of knee-length skirts or shorts, with tights underneath. Even these images seem revolutionary compared to the photos on display at the Schlesinger Library’s exhibition “Playing Fair? Title IX at 45.” In the journal article “Pantaloons, Bloomers, and Shorts,” women wear long-sleeved dresses with either loose pants or bloomers underneath.

An Art Installation in Allston


At the intersection of North Harvard Street and Western Avenue lies “the Grove,” a triangle of green space that will host a new public art installation this fall. The Grove is “a major intersection” and an “entry point from Cambridge into Allston,” so Harvard hopes art will help it utilize the space and engage with the Allston community, explains Graduate School of Design (GSD) spokesman Travis Dagenais.

Harvard President Drew Faust to Step Down in 2018


Drew Gilpin Faust, who assumed office as Harvard’s twenty-eighth president on July 1, 2007, announced today that she would conclude her service at the end of the next academic year, June 30, 2018. Her planned retirement is a logical transition:

Tracy K. Smith ’94 Named U.S. Poet Laureate


TRACY K. SMITH ’94 has been named the new U.S. Poet Laureate by the Library of Congress, succeeding Juan Felipe Herrera. While the role doesn’t carry many specific official duties, it has traditionally involved raising awareness of, and increasing access to, poetry. 

Harvard Aims to Reinvent Business-Engineering Education


The most interesting new collaboration at Harvard—between the schools of business (HBS) and engineering and applied sciences (SEAS)—took a significant step forward today when their deans unveiled a joint master’s degree aimed at equipping students with the engineering, management, and design skills to drive innovation in new or established technology companies. The two-year, full-time program will begin to enroll students in August 2018.

These Bots Were Made for Walking


Harvard researchers have designed robots to address various medical applications, from helping hearts pump blood to fighting cancer. Now, they’re adding a new accomplishment to their list: improving mobility. Two research teams have tackled this challenge by designing a special type of robot called an exosuit: a soft, flexible robotic device that people can wear like another layer of clothing.