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The Harvard Experience


arvard takes pride in providing a liberal arts education which rests on the conviction that each graduate should be broadly educated as well as trained in a particular academic specialty. Each year students choose from over 3,500 courses and over 40 undergraduate majors that range from Literature, History and the Sciences, to Sanskrit and Indian Studies, Folklore and Mythology, Engineering and Computer Science. Students receive an education that teaches them to think critically, analytically and creatively, thus preparing them for life-long learning. Undergraduates are taught by leaders in their fields – Nobel Prize winners, noted authors, scientists and researchers – who have chosen Harvard in large part for the opportunity to teach our extraordinary students.

Beyond the superb education of classrooms, libraries, and laboratories, the College recognizes that a complete liberal arts education prepares individuals for the personal, civic and professional challenges they will face after graduation. To this end, we have worked hard to bring to Cambridge a mix of students whose individual talents and energy create a stimulating collegiate environment. As a group, our students seem almost indescribably diverse, but they are all bright, energetic and extremely ambitious. Our 6,600 undergraduates – from a multitude of different cultural, ethnic, political, religious and socio-economic backgrounds – live in a setting which encourages the expression of their diverse backgrounds, perspectives, talents, and interests.

Our concept of diversity has gradually expanded, and today African American, Asian American, Latino and Native American students together make up over one third of each entering class. The increase in number of minority students on campus has been accompanied by the development of a dazzling variety of student organizations, many tied to the diverse ethnic and cultural communities. A sample of student organizations currently active at Harvard College are the Asian American Association, the Black Students Association, Latina Unidas, Native Americans at   Harvard, La Raza, Taiwanese Cultural Society, Caribbean Club, Korean Students Association, and the South Asian Association. Inevitably, of course, those student organizations have broadened the perspectives of students from other backgrounds and with other interests. Harvard with other interests. Harvard students learn as much from each other as from any formal instruction.

In addition to the significant presence made by the various student organizations, the Harvard Foundation for Intercultural and Race Relations and the Office of Race Relations and Minority Affairs work to promote an open atmosphere in which all groups celebrate the individual richness of their distinct cultures within the larger community. The Foundation works with student organizations to sponsor cultural programs, campus-wide panels and discussion groups. It also promotes on-going lecture series with prominent minority figures from the cultural, educational, and political arenas.

A liberal arts education should be challenging, satisfying and fun. It should prepare you to take the best advantage of further educational and professional opportunities, and to make the broadest kinds of contributions to society. For you, the rewards of a first-class education at Harvard will continue long after you leave Cambridge.

For more information, please contact: Harvard College, Office of Admission, Byerly Hall, 86 Brattle St., Cambridge, MA, 02138; phone: (617) 495-155; web:; Email:

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