Cambridge, MA
Harvard University


129 Ratings

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Recent Reviews

Karen
What do you consider the worst thing about your school? Why?

There is considerable competition for grades. The beaurocracy is sometimes tedious when trying to get things done and the sch...

What do you consider the worst thing about your school? Why?

There is considerable competition for grades. The beaurocracy is sometimes tedious when trying to get things done and the school is slow to adapt to a change academic landscape.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Try to separate the school itself from the name. Ask yourself instead, do I want to live in a city or more suburban setting? Do I want more guidance or do I enjoy the freedom to seek out those things which interest me? Am I good at juggling activities along with a considerable amount of school work? Am I excited to take advantage of the many resources available at this school? Do I feel comortable seeking help when I don't understand material or require guidance of some sort? If you like a fast-paced, high powered academic environment and are self- motivated then Harvard is the place for you.

What kind of person should not attend this school?

If you are not self -motivated or have trouble organizing a fair amount of work and extracurricular activities, then Harvard will be a challenge.

Michele
What do you brag about most when you tell your friends about your school?

Meet my five suite-mates: Hilary, a die-hard ice hockey player from Minnesota; Gaga, our resident step dancer from Maryland w...

What do you brag about most when you tell your friends about your school?

Meet my five suite-mates: Hilary, a die-hard ice hockey player from Minnesota; Gaga, our resident step dancer from Maryland with a touch of medical research experience on the side; Anna, an American who has spent most of her life in Japan and wakes up before six to run more miles than I can count; Sofia, a Chinese-Canadian artist who speaks French fluently and can draw a flawless portrait of Johnny Depp; and Natalie, our southern belle from Memphis who constructed a giant turkey out of soup cans to benefit the homeless. You can't beat that.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Dearest Grasshopper, Take a deep breath and relax, for you have chosen well. These past few months at college have been some of the best of your life so far - but not for the reasons you anticipated. No, it is not the thousands of classes advertised in the course catalog you skimmed incessantly or the low student-to-faculty ratio you calculated. It is not the career path you have chosen or the calculus class you passed. Instead, it is the roommates you laugh with late into the night, your peers who are passionate, creative, and best of all, witty. It is the majestic, Harry Potter-esque dining hall to which you and your fellow freshmen flock for late-night study breaks. It is the a cappella concerts and guest lecturers, from Yo-Yo Ma to Al Gore, that pepper your calendar. It is the community you are immersed in - it is the home you have searched for. Step back from the websites, brochures, and statistics, open your eyes, and jump. The landing will be softer than you think. Yours gratefully,

What's the one thing you wish someone had told you about freshman year?

Though Harvard offers an incredible variety of classes and boasts exceptional faculty in many academic fields, it may not be as easy as it seems to dip your toes into a subject with which you have not had much experience. Often first-level or even introductory classes include over-qualified students who have taken a similar class previously, thus making the class more competitive and perhaps making you feel as though you need to "catch-up" in order to succeed in the class. Taking a course pass/fail is a good way to relieve this stress.

Hugh
What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

I would tell myself not to worry so much, that I can do the work, and that I belong at the university I attend. I would say, ...

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

I would tell myself not to worry so much, that I can do the work, and that I belong at the university I attend. I would say, "Be confident, work hard, and enjoy college, because it only lasts a short time, and you can NEVER go back." Furthermore, I would say to form and build relationships while at school, while maintaining the ones from home. Lastly, I would tell myself, "School is a place that you will learn about a variety of topics, but more so a place to learn about yourself. Have a good time, get your work done, and live it up!"

What's the most frustrating thing about your school?

The most frustrating thing is not being the best. In high school, it was much easier to distinguish myself from my peers and stand out academically. At my institution, everybody is a high-school standout, and it is almost impossible to be the best in a given area. You have to go extremely above and beyond in order to succeed in this institution, as just being good in a given field is considered moderate. You have to be great.

What kind of person should not attend this school?

A person that is not self-motivated, or would have a difficult time dealing with competition and a difficult courseload should not attend this school.

Vinay
Describe your favorite campus traditions.

History. Everyone knows the name "Harvard," and, to speak candidly, it is equated with excellence. I'm not sure that is alway...

Describe your favorite campus traditions.

History. Everyone knows the name "Harvard," and, to speak candidly, it is equated with excellence. I'm not sure that is always accurate, but that is the perception.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Well, my friend, you made it. All that effort has actually paid off--congratulations to you! I know (I was you, after all) that you're imagining college--what will happen, how the people will act, the classes--and getting ready for that experience. Trust me when I say you should throw your plans out the window. If college has taught me one thing, this past year, it has been that life is far too fluid for a high school senior to plan what his next year will be. Everything you assume will be one less thing you are prepared to deal with when things do not go the way you planned. So, what to do? Well, if I may humbly offer some advice--don't expect anything. Be like a child, as the Taoists say. Let life show you the doors before you plan on which ones you will be opening; just get out there and see what happens! If I were you, I would never have expected to be where I am now--and, as me, I could not hope for a better place to be.

What's unique about your campus?

The people are what make Harvard. Sure, its a nice name on an undergrad degree, and there are famous professors--but really, many schools have brilliant teachers and famous names (albeit not as famous). At Harvard, however, is the opportunity to be surrounded by people who are all just as smart or smarter than oneself, yet also as nice as anyone else in the world.

Alexandra
Describe the students at your school.

They are smart, diverse, ambitious, driven, caring, and capable.

Describe the students at your school.

They are smart, diverse, ambitious, driven, caring, and capable.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

I know you think of college as the opportunity that will free you from petty adolescence and cookie-cutter education. You think of it as your ticket to new worlds. True, you will discover many things. You will rely upon yourself to the point that you will tire of the responsibility. You will learn things you always wanted to know, and things you didn?t even know you didn?t know. You will learn so much that you will feel overwhelmed, and the hardest part will not be studying for an Italian midterm. The hardest part will be realizing that so many decisions are up to you and you alone. College will have its ups and downs. Early on, establish a new family of true friends. Trust yourself; it?s easier to make friends in college. Sometimes you will feel like an adult. Sometimes you will feel like a baby. This is OK. Call home when you need to, but make your own decisions. Take a deep breath and embrace college life as one opportunity after another. Take yourself seriously out of respect for yourself, but don?t take yourself too seriously because you?ll miss the world going by.

What's unique about your campus?

The best thing about my school is the student body. Each person adds so much to the campus because of his or her background and experiences. Each person has a different outlook on life and is willing to share it with others. This makes for interesting mealtime discussions, as well as stimulating roommate discussions. It makes everyone at Harvard more in tune with the world around them and the possibilities out there.

Paige
What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Dear naive, anxious high school Paige, In college, there is so much pressure to know exactly what field you want to purs...

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Dear naive, anxious high school Paige, In college, there is so much pressure to know exactly what field you want to pursue after graduation. Many of your peers have wanted to be a lawyer or a doctor since they can remember. RELAX. It's normal to not know what you want to do for the rest of your life when you are only 18- enjoy the ride. Take classes you truly find enjoyable and are passionate about, and the career ideas will soon follow. Additionally, take advantage of the great area around Harvard, explore the incredible city that is Boston. you may only live in Boston for the four years you are in college, so seize every opportunity you get to go to a Red Sox game, visit the New England Aquarium, and chow down on some linguine in the North End. Boston has a lot to offer, as do the incredible classes and faculty at Harvard, so just enjoy the ride. Your wise, older self, Paige

What do you brag about most when you tell your friends about your school?

I mainly brag about all of the cool friends I have, the interesting classes I am able to take, and the great faculty.

Xin
What's the one thing you wish someone had told you about freshman year?

Exactly how difficult the classes were and how much work and dedication is involved to achieve a high grade.

What's the one thing you wish someone had told you about freshman year?

Exactly how difficult the classes were and how much work and dedication is involved to achieve a high grade.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

I would definitely have taken an easier courseload freshman fall and not participated in as many extracurriculars. At a school like Harvard especially, the courses can be extremely demanding and time consuming, and they require much more work and thought than even the most difficult advanced placement courses in high school do. I definitely would not underestimate the difficulty of classes, and would have dedicated much more time to getting this skillset hammered down. Once coursework management has been handled it is ok to proceed with plunging in the world of extracurriculars, employment, etc...

What's unique about your campus?

The research and funding opportunities, extremely challenging classes, and the networking opportunities available.

Benjamin
What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

I would suggest reflecting upon your high school experience as a whole. Ask yourself what aspects of high school you enjoyed ...

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

I would suggest reflecting upon your high school experience as a whole. Ask yourself what aspects of high school you enjoyed the most and why you enjoyed them. Also reflect upon different extracurricular, academic, and social experiences you had in high school and evaluate what interested you or what you felt were rewarding experiences. Part of going to college is realizing who you are and the self-identity that you want to create for yourself. You start with a fresh, clean slate. In college, you get to choose what academic area to focus on, what activities to pursue, and what kind of people you want to be friends with. Also, recognize that this is true for everyone entering college. It is a shared experience, the excitement, nervousness, and experimentation of developing your "new life". Consequently, this environment helps your ideas and ambitions flourish as you and your classmates support each other. In brief, entering college is a unique opportunity to discover and define yourself, where your personal goals can become a reality. Having thought about what kind of life you want to lead in college, you will enter college with more confidence and excitement to begin your new experience.

What do you consider the worst thing about your school? Why?

With so many research, extracurricular, and club activites available, some students feel like they are not achieving enough or doing enough. Almost all students are involved in at least one activity, but many want to do more. However, homework and studies demand a large time commitment, so it is very difficult to squeeze in everything you want to do in your time-restrained schedule. Although students recognize that their time is being well spent in studies, there is a bitter-sweet feeling about not being able to do other things that may seem equally rewarding.

What's unique about your campus?

The motivation at this school and the learning environment are incredible. Students are enthusiastic about academics and subject material. In addition, the classrooom environment is attentive, respectful, and focused on understanding the new material introduced or participating in topic discussions and debates. No one feels out of place trying to be a good student. In fact, being the best student you can be is encouraged and applauded. There are no limits to academic ambition.

Cindy
Describe the students at your school.

Harvard students are generally intellectual, diligent, goal-driven individuals who are not afraid to go up to professors to a...

Describe the students at your school.

Harvard students are generally intellectual, diligent, goal-driven individuals who are not afraid to go up to professors to ask questions or to just chat.

What kind of person should attend this school?

Someone who has good work ethics, time management skills, and confidence.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Learn time management skills while you are in high school. College life, unlike high school life, has a very loose structure, in the sense that you no longer have the same set schedule as you did in high school where you go to school at a certain hour and return home at a certain hour. Classes in college are often spread out over the course of the day, so you end up with blocks of spare time in between classes. If you cannot manage those blocks of time wisely, you will inevitably end up wasting the majority of your day. It?s important to learn to use every minute of your time as effectively as possible.

Marguerite
Describe the students at your school.

My classmates tend to be extremely bright, engaged, analytical, and hard-working, and they have an incredibly wide variety of...

Describe the students at your school.

My classmates tend to be extremely bright, engaged, analytical, and hard-working, and they have an incredibly wide variety of experiences and interests.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

It's important to understand that there is a big world out there outside of your high school and even outside the college you will attend. There will be things that feel incredibly important -- some days it will feel like everything is crashing down around you, and other days will feel like you're on top of the world -- but always keep in mind that life goes on after high school and after college. Work hard (and for goodness sake, try to do all the reading!), but take care of yourself and your friends, because those things will be the most important.

What do you consider the worst thing about your school? Why?

Especially during sophomore year, students often feel isolated and overworked -- they call it the "sophomore slump" -- and it's tragic to see people suffer but think that they're alone (and therefore not seek help).

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  • Enrollment
  • 10,534
  • Tuition & Fees
  • $42,292
  • Acceptance rate
  • 6%

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