Harvard Outreach Newsletter
118th Issue, June 2023
In this issue:
School Visits Programme - book now for the autumn term
Photos of some of the school presentations delivered by the Harvard Club of the UK during the 2022/23 academic year: (Photos subject to copyright)
We are now taking bookings for the Autumn Term to deliver our school presentation entitled ‘Study in the USA – Is it for you?’ The aim of the talk is to provide accurate information about the US higher education system – using Harvard as an example – so that students are fully aware of the opportunities available to them and can make informed choices. It covers the following topics:
- Differences between US and UK higher education
- How to research US colleges and find those that fit well with a student’s needs and abilities
- Financial aid – ‘need-blind’ admissions and need-based financial support
- Application process to US colleges: Common Application Form; student essays; standardised tests; school reports; alumni interviews
- Life on campus: academic study and extracurricular activities
- What opportunities does a top US college provide after graduation?
The presentation takes 40 minutes plus time for questions – a total length of 45-60 minutes. The content is most suitable for students in the following year groups:
Years 11 & 12 (England and Wales)
S4 & S5 (Scotland)
Years 12 & 13 (Northern Ireland)
Parents, teachers and university advisers are also welcome to attend.
To request a visit, send an email to school visits co-ordinator Stuart Gordon firstname.lastname@example.org giving the name and location of your school and roughly when you would like us to come. Presentations can be arranged at any time of the day or evening to suit your school. We welcome requests from both teachers and students, but if you are a student, the request must be made with the knowledge and approval of the appropriate member of staff (the Head of Sixth Form or the teacher in charge of university applications).
We look forward to seeing you, particularly if we have never been to your school or college before.
The presentation can also be delivered remotely if a personal visit is not possible.
Harvard Commencement Ceremony, 25 May 2023
“Pride, friendship, and exultation as Harvard celebrates Class of 2023” is the headline that introduces an article in the Harvard Gazette about Graduation Day, or “Commencement,” as it is known across the Atlantic. The first sentence of the article perfectly captures the fact that all students in the vast gathering have a unique story to tell about their journey to graduation:
As usual, it was a gloriously over-the-top American style event – a delightful mixture of razzmatazz, speeches, music, ceremony and good humour.
Students from Harvard College (the undergraduate school) and Harvard’s 12 graduate schools all attended the same huge outdoor bonanza. During the ceremony, students from each school in turn were asked to stand, and were awarded their degrees en masse by the President of Harvard University. The students from the graduate schools often bring items with them relevant to their specialism which they wave in the air when their school is announced, such as dollar bills (Business School), stethoscopes (Medical School), gavels (Law School), inflatable globes (Kennedy School of Government) and children’s books (Graduate School of Education).
Here are a selection of Commencement photos published in the Harvard Gazette.
Important information if you are applying to US colleges next year
This information is relevant for students in these year groups:
Year 12 (England & Wales) S5 (Scotland) Year 13 (N. Ireland)
If you are still researching which US colleges you want to apply to in the autumn, make sure you have identified your final shortlist by 1st August when the online application forms go live. You can apply to as many colleges as you like, but a shortlist of 5-8 colleges is typical.
Be sure to read the July and August editions of this newsletter.
The July issue will contain information on the main two application methods, the Common Application Form and the Coalition for College, together with tips and resources for students, teachers and recommenders.
The August issue will provide an introduction to the Student Essay that is part of the application process for US colleges, and show how it differs from the UCAS Personal Statement required when applying to UK universities. A full list of essay titles will be provided, together with guidelines about how to answer them.