Harvard College Library News: News from around the libraries

Freshman Open House: Come for the Food and Prizes, Stay for the Library Tours

Freshman Open House

Lamont Library's Ginsberg Reading Room offers students
a variety of study spaces, and features large windows and dozens of comfortable chairs.

August 18, 2009 – Let’s face it: all Harvard students wind up in the library sooner or later. The catch is that here, there are over 70 to choose from. 

The Freshman Open House will be held August 31 from 2 to 5 p.m. at Lamont Library – perhaps the best place on campus to pull an all-nighter, with round-the-clock hours and a café that’s open until 3 a.m. – and offers a quick introduction to Lamont and the handful of other libraries the Class of 2013 is most likely to need freshman year.

There will be tours, food, information about library resources, and informational tables set up by other campus organizations including the Bureau of Study Council, which offers tutoring services to undergraduates. 

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“Learning about the libraries early is a tremendous help,” said Jennie D’Amico, '10. “If you’re coming to Harvard, you’re coming here to learn, and the libraries are a big part of that. It’s good to get your feet wet with an event like the Open House and get a feel for how to use the libraries and what sort of help you can get here. You don’t want to be a senior embarking on a thesis and say ‘Oh, how do I do research?’ It’s probably a good idea before you undertake your first research paper to at least have an idea of how to look for books, how to get books, and how to get help finding what you need to find.”

Tours of the other libraries—Cabot, Widener, Houghton, Harvard-Yenching, Loeb Music, Fine Arts, and Tozzer – will be offered later in the term.

Last but not least those who attend the open house can enter a raffle to win a grand prize of a Klean Kanteen water bottle, two tickets to the Museum of Science, two tickets to the New England Aquarium, two AMC Theatres movie passes, two Brattle Cinema passes, an MBTA Charlie Card, a Professor Pathfinder map and snack foods. Six runner-up prizes, which include stainless steel Lamont coffee mugs and board games, will also be given out. Students can up their odds of winning by touring other libraries. Each extra tour entitles students to an additional raffle entry. Prizes will be distributed at a time to be determined later.