For those of you who don’t know me my name’s Rob Ledniczky and I am a new face among your already well known bloggers! I’m really excited to start posting and letting you all know what I get up to during my time both on and off campus: this first post will mainly be an introduction, a bit of background about me, why I applied to Harvard, and how I’m finding it so far, and then from here I’ll delve into more recent updates as the term progresses.
So as my bio states I’m a freshman from the UK living in Wigglesworth. I applied to Harvard from the UK as I was drawn by the seemingly infinite opportunities offered by studying a program of Liberal Arts. In the UK, we are forced to specialise down to four subjects in our junior year, and then pick just one to continue with at university (what we call college). I found it hard enough to even pick four to continue with, wanting to carry on studying so many other subjects. In this way the American college system and Harvard in particular really seemed to fit me like a glove. Although I know that I want to concentrate in history, I’ll still been able to pursue my other passions in government, french, and statistics as I continue my studies, something I wouldn’t have been able to do in the UK.
Another big attraction to making the move over the pond was how much of an emphasis Harvard places on extra-curricular activities. It was the things I did outside of class in high school which I have the fondest memories of, and during the admissions phase Harvard seemed really interesting in hearing what I was passionate about, a feeling I did not receive from UK universities who appeared concerned only with academics. A big part of my life on campus is rowing on the Men’s Varsity Crew team, continuing a sport that I’ve been doing for 5 years now. Although not recruited the Harvard rowing program has been incredible, helping to turn me into I hope a half decent rower! One of my main highlights of last term was rowing in the Head of the Charles regatta at the end of October, an event which sees approximately 200,000 people flood the banks of Boston’s principle waterway over the course of the weekend.
As well as this, before the start of this term we jetted out to Florida for some winter sun as the Charles was frozen over, and spent a fantastic 10 days training out in the clear blue skies of the sunshine state – a vast improvement over what was a characteristically grey Christmas in England. Since being back we’ve had a pretty gruelling month of indoor training on the rowing machines and in the tanks (if you aren’t a rower/haven’t seen The Social Network, think of a boat set in concrete with two ‘tanks’ of water either side, all in a big hut). But with the slightly warmer weather we’ve had, and the 2ft of snow from storm Nemo almost all cleared, the river was once again flowing last week and we got back out for the first time on Tuesday 26th, my birthday, which was an unexpected but very welcomed gift!
Another big highlight of my time at Harvard also came at the start of this term (this blog won’t be a detailed description of Harvard rowing, I promise!), with the 60th session of Harvard’s Model United Nations taking place. I myself attended the conference as a delegate two years ago in 2011, and had one of the best experiences of my high school career; I was eager then to sign up to help run the conference when I was admitted. It was such a surreal but equally stimulating and exciting experience to be on the other side of the dais, and my love for model UN has been well and truly reaffirmed.
- Well I hope this has given you an insight into why I now find myself state-side and also some of the highs of my time so far. Look forward to stories about upcoming housing day, the excitement of race season (only 5 weeks to go!) and maybe a bit about classes.