Good thing Yale never engulfed Vassar because then I’d have to dislike (understatement) Vassar through association.
This past weekend, my two friends from Vassar kicked off their Spring Break with a Harvard visit! It was my first time hosting people sophomore year, but my itinerary hardly changed. As a freshman, I hosted a ton of prefrosh (prospective/accepted students) from random kids the Admissions Office introduced me to, all the way to close friends from science camp. In great efforts to sway them in the direction of Harvard, I showed them around campus, forced tourist pictures in front of the John Harvard Statue, and even broke out of the Harvard Bubble with a mini tour of Boston.
Showing people around my favorite places in Cambridge is easy (Science Center, Annenberg, Berryline, etc.) but trying to appear as the master of Boston proved to be more difficult and included interviewing friends from the area as well as a ton of Googling! One of my favorite Harvard characteristics is how campus life feels like a harmonious mesh of urban and suburban culture. It’s a shame that most students’ hectic schedules prevent us from taking advantage of Boston, but I definitely use every hosting opportunity to exploit the city’s pleasures!
First stop: the waterfront. When I think of Boston, I never think of water. Yet, I’m surrounded by the beautiful harbor and Charles River constantly. The harbor is ~500 feet from the T (subway stop) and always calm and peaceful. My friends and I lucked out because the sky was gorgeous although it was still SO cold (California girl speaking here).
From the harbor, it’s just a short walking distance from Faneuil Hall – a great place to people-watch, shop, eat and even see local street performers!
I like to end the tour with a big bang: Mike’s Pastries. This place is legen…wait for it…dary, LEGENDARY. They have the best cannolis I’ve ever eaten and their usual out-the-door line says enough. Even though I hype this place up so much in my head, it never disappoints!! The crispy and flaky texture of the shell which envelops a creamy, yet light ricotta cheese is unparalleled in this and any other dimension. Seriously.
For centuries, people have been repeating one word three times: location, location, location! I’ve finally figured out the reasons behind their redundancy – the need for tremendous emphasis! Harvard and its unique and generous opportunities are beyond both phenomenal and amazing; I could type about this forever, but since I still have a pset and a midterm hanging over my head, I’ll just illuminate that one of the more admirable characteristics of Harvard University is its location. Wedged in Cambridge among other top universities as well as successful companies, Harvard fosters a delightfully diverse environment students can thrive on.
My current environment is all the Housing Day hype! Tomorrow is Housing Day!! Basically,
freshmen are getting sorted into various upperclassmen houses and as upperclassmen, it’s our duty to make it known that our respective house is the best. We strive to conquer this endeavor by wearing our house mascots everywhere – and yes, this includes lecture – as well as releasing housing day videos!
Check out Mather’s official video for Housing Day 2012, a spin off of the hit sensation taking over Harvard campus by storm:
May all current and future freshmen win the Housing Day lottery with acceptance into Mather!