Campus & Community

This month in Harvard history

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March 5, 1954 — The Faculty of Arts and Sciences approves the Special Standing Program recently proposed by the Educational Policy Committee. The program allows specially qualified high-school students who have completed 11th grade to enter as freshmen, specially qualified freshmen to enter as advanced-standing sophomores, and honors candidates to have one or two required courses waived in favor of more advanced work.

March 17-19, 1954 — Huge crowds flock to hear former Illinois Governor Adlai Stevenson (a 1952 U.S. presidential candidate) deliver his three 1954 Godkin Lectures on “A Troubled World.” In Memorial Hall, an overflow audience of 1,400 jams Sanders Theatre and the Great Hall (now Annenberg), while an additional group fills the New (Lowell) Lecture Hall, with loudspeakers relaying the talk beyond Sanders. Broadcasting the event are local radio stations WHRB and WGBH, and Amherst College station WAMF.

“His lectures, running to some 25,000 words, were largely an exposition of the historical forces that have produced the problems which the world faces, together with a plea for approaching these problems with intelligence, patience, and Christian humility.” (Quotation: “Harvard Alumni Bulletin,” April 3, 1954)

Stevenson also answers questions from the floor.

March 25, 1956 — The 90-minute CBS television program “Omnibus” spotlights Harvard.

March 7, 1958 — Groundbreaking for Quincy House takes place.

March 24, 1961 — Black Muslim Malcolm X speaks in Sanders Theatre as guest of the Law School Forum. (He visits Harvard twice again, in March and December 1964.)

March 26, 1963 — Under the baton of Erich Leinsdorf, the Boston Symphony Orchestra gives the final performance of its six-concert Cambridge Series in Sanders Theatre. The program features Prokofieff’s Symphony-Concerto for Cello and Orchestra (Samuel Mayes, cello) and Schubert’s Ninth Symphony, D. 944. Since 1881 (when the BSO was founded), the series had presented more than 500 concerts.

March 1, 1964 — Education Assistant Professor Theodore R. Sizer, AM ’57, PhD ’61, becomes Dean of the Graduate School of Education.

March 18, 1964 — Before an overflow crowd of 2,000 in the Leverett House Dining Room, black activist Malcolm X debates Government Lecturer Martin L. Kilson Jr. and Government Associate Professor James Q. Wilson on the nation’s current racial situation. It is the second of Malcolm’s three Harvard visits.

From the Harvard Historical Calendar, a database compiled by Marvin Hightower