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On What's Invisible At Harvard: A Conversation

This was to me partly very spot-on (there's definitely an "upper class" and it can be awkward) but definitely felt exaggerated in places. Yes, Eliot formal (seriously, who calls their formal Fete?) is well-known for being ridiculous, but that's one out of 12 houses, which means one out of 24 house formals per year, and let me tell you that it in no way resembles the other 23. And Eliot is (I believe) the only house that has Dues. The other ones just charge like 15 bucks for a formal ticket, and do go through the box office so people can get financial aid benefits.
Also, whether or not it's with genuinely good intentions, Harvard works very hard at maintaining the best financial aid program in the country. And enough of the student body is on financial aid that I found it embarrassing to admit that I was paying full tuition. In my circles (yes, I had circles, very supportive, valuable communities) it was by no means the norm.

Posted on July 21, 2011 at 5:48 pm 1