Your independent source for Harvard news since 1898

Your independent source for Harvard news since 1898

A Decade of Faculty Diversity


Every year, Harvard tracks the diversity of its faculties in terms of race and gender, with the goal of increasing its numbers of female and minority faculty members. Since a decade ago, when more than two-thirds of tenured professors and nearly one-half of tenure-track professors were white men, the University has changed the composition of faculty substantially.

Harvard Sustainability by the Numbers


In celebration of Earth Day, on April 22, Harvard has released its annual sustainability report for 2016. Although the most notable achievement—a 30 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions since 2006—was described earlier in this magazine, the full report details progress on other fronts, such as human health, ecosystem management, and campus operations. Did you know that there has been a 24 percent reduction in campus water use since the 2006 fiscal year?

A Tribute to Harry Lewis


At a Wednesday event billed as “A Celebration of Computer Science at Harvard in Honor of Harry Lewis,” one of his former teaching fellows described how Lewis had “given us the license” to grade any programming assignment that “had an inline constant” with an “F” and hand it back. That might seem tough, but years later, having taken up a career on Wall Street, the import of that lesson—abstract when Lewis taught it—was powerfully driven home for Marty Chavez ’85.

Grad Student Union Revote?


Harvard may have to hold a new graduate-student union election if the final outcome of its November election does not result in a victory for the union, a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) report ruled this week, after months of deliberations on the election. According to the ruling, the University did not provide, prior to the election, a complete list of students who were eligible to vote; some eligible voters were omitted.

A Certain Slant of Light


Next fall, Houghton Library will publish a gift-book edition of some lesser-known lines by Emily Dickinson: her recipe for black cake, brief on the page but epic in scale. The librarians have twice undertaken making this dessert, which calls for, among other things, two pounds of butter, five of raisins, and 19 eggs. As documented on YouTube, this batter’s not hand-mixed so much as rowed through, or maybe shoveled, before filling a kitchen’s worth of pans and going into the oven for three hours.

Slow and Steady Wins the Pulitzer


David Fahrenthold’s reporting notes, digitized for online viewers, have become a symbol of resistance against the dishonesty and empty promises that defined the 2016 election cycle. In his sixteenth year as a reporter at The Washington Post, the recipient of the 2017 Pulitzer Prize in national reporting took on the herculean task of tracking down then-candidate Donald Trump’s philanthropic promises and business activities.

Joe Biden Will Be Class Day Speaker


Joseph R. Biden, the forty-seventh vice president of the United States, will address graduating Harvard College seniors in Tercentenary Theatre on Class Day, May 24. 

“I am honored to be invited to be a part of this special day at Harvard. Today’s generation of students is the most engaged, the most tolerant, and the best educated in the history of the United States of America. I am grateful for the opportunity to speak to this year’s graduating class about the great power they hold to shape our nation’s future,” Biden said in a statement.

Fahrenthold, Whitehead, and Desmond Win Pulitzer Prizes


For “persistent reporting that created a model for transparent journalism in political campaign coverage,” The Washington Post’s David Fahrenthold ’00 has been honored with a Pulitzer Prize in national reporting.

From the Archives: We Remember World War I


One hundred years ago this week, the United States entered the Great War that soon came to be known as World War I. Here, from the Harvard Magazine archives, are first-hand stories of that conflict, collected by Adam Goodheart ’92. Goodheart, now a best-selling author, historian, and journalist, realized shortly after graduating from the College that the Harvard men and women who served in that war were dwindling in number.

To the Frozen Four


After sneaking in one last practice at Bright-Landry Hockey Center Tuesday afternoon, the Harvard men’s hockey team boarded an evening flight, on their way to Chicago and the United Center and—for the first time in 23 years—the Frozen Four. On Thursday at 6 p.m. EST, the Crimson will take on Minnesota Duluth, a team it hasn’t faced in more than two decades and that won the national title in 2011. The game will be broadcast on ESPN2.