Fun Facts About Harvard

December 5, 2022
By AdmissionSight

Fun Facts About Harvard

Harvard University at a glance

What is this place called, Harvard University? John Harvard, a minister in the Puritan denomination, was the institution’s first benefactor, and the college that would later become Harvard University was named after him. It is one of the world’s most prestigious educational establishments and one of the oldest institutions of higher learning in the United States. Because of its rich culture and history, there are several fun facts about Harvard that some people do not know about.

Not many academic institutions in the world can compete with Harvard regarding their research output, teaching quality, or academic influence. Compared to the other prestigious schools in the Ivy League, Harvard emerges as the top choice. Before the United States of America even existed, Harvard University was established in 1636, making it the oldest university in these states.

Harvard University Stats

The year 1636 marked the beginning of Harvard University. The statistics of Harvard University match the excellence of this university. It is located in an urban area, has a total undergraduate enrollment of 7,153 students (for fall 2021), and its campus spans a total area of 5,076 acres. It follows an academic calendar that is divided into semesters.

A building inside the Harvard campus where legacy admission is still being practiced

Harvard University has produced more billionaires than any other school, with 188 billionaires having graduated from Harvard at the most recent count. This level of success can be attributed, in part, to the remarkable support made available to the school. With an endowment currently valued at approximately $41.9 billion, Harvard University is consistently ranked as one of the wealthiest colleges in the world.

Harvard University Facts

Creation of the University

Some of the fun facts about Harvard revolve around the creation of the university. In 1636, Massachusetts was home to the founding of what would later become Harvard University. In addition, it was one of the first colleges to be established in the United States and is still considered one of the Ivy League’s four founding institutions.

When it first opened its doors, Harvard was known as “New College,” and it functioned under the direction of the General Court of Massachusetts. The passing of time led to an evolution and a shift in strategy at Harvard. It eventually shifted its emphasis and now provides education in various subject areas, including the liberal arts, social sciences, and natural sciences.

A record of eminently successful individuals

One of the most well-known facts about Harvard is that there are a lot of important people in history who graduate here. There have been 161 Nobel Laureates, 23 heads of state, and 132 Pulitzer Prize winners who graduated from Harvard University.

This is a record number of honors and awards for any university. Since John Adams became the second President of the United States in 1797, Harvard has had a long history of turning out graduates of the highest caliber. By the end of the first decade of the 21st century, Harvard University had been responsible for the education of eight different presidents of the United States.

That is, which included:

  • Barack Obama
  • Rutherford Hayes
  • George W. Bush
  • John F. Kennedy
  • Franklin Roosevelt
  • Theodore Roosevelt
  • John Quincy Adams
  • John Adams

The superstition associated with Johnson Gate

Another fun fact about Harvard is the Johnson Gate. On campus, the Johnson Gate is one of the few entrances that is rarely left unlocked. Many people firmly believe that the only times you should go through the Johnson Gate at Harvard are the first time you enter the university and the second time you leave it. This fact is considered an old and deeply held tradition at Harvard. It is extremely unlucky to do anything in the middle, especially when breaking a tradition that has been practiced for a long time. When you visit Harvard University, be sure to ask someone about this history so that we can add it to our list of the most interesting fun facts about Harvard University.

It is strictly prohibited to film any commercials here.

Do you remember seeing the movie “The Social Network”? Despite what some movie sets may have led you to believe, that movie was not shot on location at Harvard University. Despite what some movie sets may have led you to believe, that movie was not filmed at Harvard University.

Three students walking in the school campus.

Commercial filming has been banned on the grounds of Harvard University because the university believes it poses a significant distraction to its students. This no-filming rule was implemented in 1970 and continues to be enforced today with the student body in mind.

It is an empire in itself.

The total real estate owned by Harvard is 5,457 acres, equivalent to more than 4000 football fields. What makes one of the fun facts about Harvard unique is that it wasn’t always this big in the past. In the summer of 1638, the first Harvard University classes were held in a single-frame house and a college yard. The university’s primary campus only occupies about 4% of the institution’s total land.

It has 92 kilometers of shelves full of books.

Given the size of the property, there must be at least a couple of libraries, right? The Harvard University Libraries are among the most renowned university libraries in the world, and their collection is the oldest in the United States. There are 79 libraries, but the Widener Memorial Library is the most significant one. It is also the largest. It spans ten levels and has 92 kilometers of shelving, making it home to approximately 3.5 million works published in more than 100 languages. Because of the need for expansion, they were forced to construct four floors underground because there was nowhere else to go.

At Harvard University, athletics is very popular.

In contrast to the widespread belief held by many people, Harvard University is quite accommodating toward athletic pursuits. At Harvard University, students were able to participate in a variety of sports, including football. Students planned and executed the event, despite it being outlawed not once but twice due to its dangerous and violent nature. As a result of the increased participation of former students and faculty members in the game, Harvard University can now claim football as one of its legacies.

The Harvard University athletic program is known by its team name, the Harvard Crimson. 1865 was the year that competition first began for the Harvard baseball team. It has been a part of all four College World Series tournaments. In 2014, the Harvard men’s basketball team competed and won the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament. Their opponent that year was Cincinnati.

a male basketball player dribbling a ball

In 2006, the fencing team from Harvard University was victorious in both the men’s and women’s combined divisions of the NCAA Team Championship. The Harvard women’s soccer team has been crowned Ivy League champions a record 13 times since the sport was officially recognized as a sport at Harvard. The men’s soccer team at Harvard won four national championships.

Other sports offered at Harvard University include golf, ice hockey, rowing, swimming, rugby, volleyball, and wrestling. In the world of sailing, the sailing team at Harvard University was ranked 11th in the nation in 2013.

Harvard Stadium

One of the many not-known fun facts about Harvard is its unique stadium. A football stadium shaped like a U that belongs to Harvard University can be found directly across the river in the Allston neighborhood of Boston. It was built in 1903, making it the nation’s oldest stadium, and its design draws inspiration from ancient Greek and Roman architecture.

It has a capacity of over 30,000 people. It has evolved into a multi-use arena, hosting events such as ice hockey, rugby, and lacrosse in addition to Harvard’s track and field competitions. Only three other stadiums in the country have received the same level of national recognition as Harvard Stadium.

John Harvard Statue

What makes this one of the most peculiar fun facts about Harvard is that despite being named John Harvard Statue, it is known to have three lies attached to it. Even though it is widely known as the “Statue of Three Lies,” the statue of John Harvard on the Harvard University campus is quite possibly the most recognizable landmark in the area. To begin, John Harvard was technically the main benefactor of the college.

He donated funds to begin the University, which ensured that the school would carry his name; the statue labels him as a founder. This allowed the college to carry John Harvard’s name. In addition, it states that the college was established in 1638, even though it first opened its doors in 1636. Last but not least, the sculpture does not depict John Harvard; rather, it portrays a student named Sherman Hoar.

Now that you have an idea about Harvard University, your college admissions into that university should be next in your mind. To ensure that you get into Harvard, you can get help with AdmissionSight. With ten years of experience with college admission experts, Admissionsight can help you get into Harvard University. You can talk to our experts today to get an initial consultation.


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