The ivy walls of Harvard University

Just across the Charles River from Boston is Cambridge, America’s most famous student town.

Cambridge is sometimes called the birth­place of American intellectual life: It has the nation’s oldest university, Harvard University, founded in 1636. Cambridge remains a center of intellectual life, especially since it’s also home to MIT, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Harvard has an excellent reputation in many fields; MIT is a leader in science and technology. Students attending Harvard and MIT come from around the world; Harvard alone has students from 90 countries.

Since one-fourth of the people in Cam­bridge are students, it’s not surprising that Cambridge has many bookstores, shops, res­taurants, coffee houses, and clubs.

A common sight in Cambridge is Harvard oarsmen rowing on the Charles River. The Harvard rowing team spends all year prepar­ing for races in the spring, especially for the Harvard-Yale Regatta. Yale University is Har­vard’s big rival.


Rowing on the Charles River

Discussion Points

• Have you heard of Harvard University and MIT? If so, what else do you know about them? Would you want to go to either uni­versity? If so, which?

• Would you want to live in a town like Cambridge, with many students? Why or why not?


Student life around Harvard Square, Cambridge

Updated: 18th July 2015 — 3:13 pm