Interest in Attending Harvard Drops to All-Time Low

By Andreas Fanos on December 17, 2023

The past two years have been a time for coming out stronger and leaving the coronavirus pandemic and lockdowns behind us, however, it has also been met with the war between Russia and Ukraine, the equal conflict between Israel and Palestine, and now protests and the rise of antisemitism on some college campuses. Harvard has been a college met with criticism about the president’s comments.

According to an article from CNN¬†Business and other media outlets, the president of Harvard, Claudine Gay, has been in troubled territory over a response that believed in questioning whether the genocide of Jews would violate the school’s rules. Gay did apologize for the remarks. With everything happening in today’s society, someone can easily surmise why this would be met with backlash from many.

This could partially explain why Harvard’s early applications have fallen by 17%. Their acceptance rate has increased as about 692 students were chosen out of a pool of 7,921 applicants. To compare, early admission applicants spiked during the pandemic in 2020 with a number greater than 10,000. Some Ivy League schools such as Columbia and Yale saw an increase. Other colleges like Duke also have seen an increased interest with a record number of early applicants.

Photo credit to Pixabay /

It is not so cut and dry to equate the low number of early applicants at Harvard due to the fallout over their antisemitic remarks because other schools such as the University of Pennsylvania saw an increase despite the same handling and agenda over antisemitism.

Other schools have been on both sides of the Hamas attacks and Israel conflict. Harvard was under fire for not condemning the October 7 Hamas attacks and school officials were also met with backlash for their response to a signed letter from groups of students that put pressure on Israel for their handling of the ordeal.

According to reports, some students have chosen to not attend the elite college because of their handling of the whole situation. Other students almost backed out due to all the negative attention being wrought upon the college. The CNN article makes note that despite the president’s blunder, the Harvard board plans to keep Claudine Gay in place as the leader of the school.

Claims of antisemitism should be met with a level of seriousness. The increase in antisemitic remarks and violence against Jews over the years is troubling. It t has to be seen how this will affect Harvard going forward. Fellow colleges have to deal with a lot nowadays and be there for students in a time of need. It is essential more than ever to keep students together and have them enjoy their best years and not be ridiculed or scolded by remarks or violence.

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