Broadcast: February 13, 2003
This is the VOA Special English Education Report.
We continue our series of reports about how foreign students
can study at an American college or university. Today, we tell
about the oldest institution of higher learning in the United
States, Harvard University.
Harvard University began in sixteen-thirty-six in Cambridge,
Massachusetts, near Boston. The area was an English colony settled
mainly by Puritans who did not agree with the Anglican Church
in England. The university was named after a Puritan religious
leader, John Harvard. He gave the college four-hundred books
when he died.
Today, Harvard has more than ninety libraries containing more
than twelve-million books. The university includes Harvard College,
Radcliffe College, and ten graduate schools. Its medical college,
law school and business school are among the best in the country.
It also offers graduate programs in government, education, religion
Many years ago, Harvard students were all white men. Most of
them were from rich families from northeastern states. That
has changed. This year, about thirty-three percent of the first-year
students at Harvard are from minority groups. These include
African Americans, Asian Americans and Hispanic Americans. Almost
fifty percent of first-year students are women.
Today, most Harvard students are not rich, although it is very
costly to study there. It costs more than thirty-five-thousand
dollars for one year for tuition, room, food and personal expenses.
Most of the students at Harvard have loans, financial aid or
jobs that help pay for their education.
Many experts consider Harvard to be the best university in
the United States. It is very difficult to be accepted to study
there. More than nineteen-thousand high school students applied
to attend Harvard as undergraduates last year. About one-thousand-six-hundred
of them began studying there in September.
More than nineteen-thousand undergraduate and graduate students
are studying at Harvard this year. More than three-thousand
are from outside the United States. Most of the foreign students
are from Asia or Europe. Most are studying for graduate degrees.
The Harvard International Office helps meet the needs of foreign
To find out more about Harvard, you can go to the university¡¯s
Internet Web site. The address is w-w-w dot h-a-r-v-a-r-d dot
This V-O-A Special English Education Report
was written by Nancy Steinbach, courtesy of VOAnews.com