News

Harvard launches database to help community connect across disciplines

September 20, 2019

Say you teach Slavic languages and literatures, write about literature and political power, and are a devotee of roots music and French New Wave films.

When you log into the new Harvard Link, an online app developed by the research arm of the Office of the Vice Provost for Advances in Learning (VPAL), it will create a personalized dashboard for you, secured by HarvardKey, that will recommend news stories about your academic or geopolitical interests; events like concerts, screenings or...

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Feeling of alienation could account for higher rates of mental illness among minority students

Feeling of alienation could account for higher rates of mental illness among minority students

September 19, 2019

If you don’t belong somewhere, that’s not where you’re going to look for help.

That sums up a key difficulty in addressing mental health issues among minority students on campus, according to experts who gathered at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

While college is a time of transition for all students, the challenge is tougher for students of color, particularly those from low-income families and those who are their families’ first to go to college, panelists said. These students are not only dealing with everyday stresses...

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‘Farming While Black’ author Leah Penniman leads the fight for food justice

September 19, 2019

“We always begin by thanking our ancestors,” said Leah Penniman, a Black Kreyol farmer and food justice activist, at the start of her Sept. 17 talk, “Farming While Black: African Diasporic Wisdom for Farming and Food Justice,” at Harvard Divinity School’s Center for the Study of World Religions.

Penniman called into the room the memory of her grandma’s grandma’s grandma, who, prior to being kidnapped from her home in West Africa, “made this really audacious and courageous decision to gather up the okra, the millet, the black rice, the molokhia, the sorghum and braid it into her hair.”...

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Harvard symposium honors William Julius Wilson’s five decades of work toward racial justice

Harvard symposium honors William Julius Wilson’s five decades of work toward racial justice

September 12, 2019

To follow the career of William Julius Wilson is to trace the evolution of the national conversation on race and class in America over the past half century.

That was the overarching theme of the first full day of a three-day symposium celebrating the career of the Lewis P. and Linda L. Geyser University Professor Emeritus at the Knafel Center on...

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Harvard first years participate in the 2019 annual Day of Service

Harvard first years participate in the 2019 annual Day of Service

August 30, 2019

Some cleaned playgrounds; others painted public schools. They made quilts, volunteered at shelters, and toiled at community farms.

More than 1,500 first-years rolled up their sleeves and went to work across Greater Boston on Thursday for the Class of 2023 Day of Service. The students were divided among 64 sites, including the Jackson Mann Community Center in Allston; Cradles to Crayons in Brighton; the Harvard Square Homeless Shelter; Mather Elementary School in Dorchester; Sociedad Latina in Roxbury Crossing; Pine Street Inn in Boston; Josiah Quincy School in Chinatown; and Eastie Farm...

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First phase of Roxbury housing development opens

August 15, 2019

Harvard President Larry Bacow joined Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh, Massachusetts State Rep. Chynah Tyler, Boston City Councilor Kim Janey, representatives of Nuestra Comunidad Development Corp., and others to celebrate the ribbon cutting for the first phase of Bartlett Station, a mixed-use development in the Roxbury neighborhood of Boston.

Harvard University contributed more than $600,000 in pre-development financing for the project. Through the Harvard Local Housing Collaborative, the University has...

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Harvard grad students launch journal about disability

Harvard grad students launch journal about disability

August 13, 2019

Miso Kwak and Nikita Andersson, who bonded over their desire to amplify the voices of students with disabilities, are co-chairs of the International Higher Education and Disabilities organization at the Graduate School of Education (GSE). Kwak, who is blind, pursued a master’s in Education Policy and Management, and Andersson, who is dyslexic, did a master’s in Technology, Innovation and Education. The Gazette spoke with Kwak in Cambridge and Andersson via Skype from London about the challenges that students with disabilities face, the need to...

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Harvard study suggests racial tension may stem from fear of exposure to infectious diseases

August 5, 2019

Social scientists have long worked to understand the roots of racial prejudice in the U.S., and for years, the story went like this: As different groups are exposed to others, their prejudice against those others increases.

Brian O’Shea wasn’t buying it.

A postdoctoral fellow working in the lab of Matt Nock, the Edgar Pierce Professor of Psychology, O’Shea is the lead author of a study that suggests fear of a different sort of exposure — exposure to infectious diseases — may boost racial tension. The study is described in a July 15...

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