Yesterday's News

From the pages of the Harvard Alumni Bulletin and Harvard Magazine

 1923

The committee examining Harvard’s admissions process discourages giving preferential treatment to alumni children because “unearned exemptions and favors are apt to be demoralizing to their recipients.”

 1928

The first reading period at Harvard College has proven successful in bolstering student achievement. The Bulletin cites an increase in honor and satisfactory grades and a corresponding decrease in unsatisfactory marks as proof that upperclassmen have the “capacity and interest to work independently.”

 1948

The University announces that tuition for the College will rise to $525 in the fall, the first increase in 20 years, and the Faculty of Arts and Sciences decides to eliminate the taking of attendance in upperclass courses.

 1953

A Senate Judiciary Committee subcommittee holds two days of hearings in Boston to investigate Communist influences in education; three Harvard students and a junior faculty member are summoned to testify.

 1968

Following the assassination of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., the Association of African and Afro-American Students calls on the University to establish an endowed chair for a black professor, hire more black junior faculty members, create courses relevant to black students at Harvard, and admit blacks in proportion to their percentage of the nation’s population as a whole.

 1988

Harvard undergraduates triumph over students from Columbia and Dartmouth in a dining-hall survey designed to gauge “cultural literacy.” Initiated by the editors of the conservative Dartmouth Review and administered at the College by the like-minded Harvard Salient, the survey features questions from various disciplines, including: “Who wrote The Prince?” “What is another name for the aurora borealis?” and “What is the capital of West Germany?” The Harvard respondents average 70 percent correct answers.

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