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Harvard University

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Harvard University is a full private university in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and a member of the Ivy League. Harvard College, its undergraduate division, was founded in 1636; Harvard is the oldest post-secondary school in the United States. On March 13, 1639 it was named after John Harvard, a Puritan who left Emmanuel College[?] Cambridge, England for America to escape persecution. In 1780, Harvard became a chartered university.

Harvard is one of the United States' most selective universities, with an acceptance rate of around 10%. Its undergraduate and graduate schools are uniformly competitive.

A faculty of about 1200 professors serves about 7,000 undergraduate and 13,000 graduate students.

Graduate schools include the Graduate School of Arts[?], Business School, Medical School[?], Law School, the JFK School of Government[?], Harvard Divinity School and the Graduate School of Design[?].

The school color is a shade of blood-red referred to as crimson, which is also the name of the Harvard sports teams and the daily newspaper (The Harvard Crimson[?]).

Prominent student organizations at Harvard include the aforementioned Crimson and the Harvard Lampoon[?].

The main campus is located at Harvard Square in central Cambridge, approximately two miles from the MIT campus. Many of the dormitories, known as Houses, line the northern banks of the Charles River. The Medical School, the Business School, the university stadium and other athletic facilities are located across the Charles River in Boston.

While the Harvard football team was one of the best in the beginning days of the sport, in more recent times Harvard fields top teams in ice hockey, crew, and squash.

Harvard University takes many of its students from private American preparatory schools such as Milton Academy[?] and Sidwell Friends[?]. Harvard has traditionally had close ties to Boston Latin School[?], the oldest public school in the United States, founded in 1635. Early incoming Harvard classes were predominantly from Latin; even today over a dozen students each year matriculate to Harvard from this inner-city public school.

Among the famous graduates and former students are: U.S. presidents John Adams, John Quincy Adams, Rutherford Hayes, Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy, and George W. Bush; poets Ralph Waldo Emerson, Wallace Stevens, Robert Frost , T. S. Eliot, e. e. cummings, John Ashbery, Frank O'Hara[?], Robert Bly[?], Richard Wilbur and Adrienne Rich; fiction writers John Dos Passos, Norman Mailer, William Gaddis, John Updike, Harold Brodkey[?], and Alison Lurie[?]; philosophers William James, Charles Sanders Peirce, Josiah Royce[?], George Santayana, John Rawls, Robert Nozick, and Saul Kripke; scholars George Parkman[?], George Santayana, Bernard Berenson[?], W. E. B. DuBois, and Paul de Man[?]; jurists Oliver Wendell Holmes, Felix Frankfurter[?] and Harry Blackmun[?]; architect Philip Johnson; religious figures such as William Ellery Channing[?], Theodore Parker[?], and Jared Sparks[?]; scientists Benjamin Peirce[?], Edwin Land, Julian Schwinger[?], E. J. Corey[?], and Dudley Herschbach; economists Kenneth J. Arrow[?], Robert M. Solow[?], and Robert Merton; composers Elliott Carter, John Adams, and John Harbison[?]; public advocate Ralph Nader; business executives David Rockefeller[?], John Loeb[?], Bill Gates; actors Jack Lemmon, Tommy Lee Jones, and Mira Sorvino[?]; and politicians such as Edward Everett[?], Leverett Saltonstall[?], Edward M. Kennedy, Elizabeth H. Dole[?], and William H. Frist.

The President of the university is Lawrence Summers, former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury under Bill Clinton, who came to the position in 2001. There has been considerable controversy over the handling of the Afro-American studies[?] program (as of 2003 the Department of African and African-American Studies), resulting in the departure of Cornel West[?] for Princeton University.

Harvard was for several years the home of satirist (and mathematics instructor) Tom Lehrer, who mentioned it in the Elements Song: "These are the only ones of which the news has come to Harvard...."

See also: List of colleges and universities

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