August Newsletter of the Harvard Extension Student Association
View this email in your browser

HESA is here to serve the student community

Whether you are a new member of the Harvard Extension community, enrolled this summer, or eagerly awaiting fall registration, the Harvard Extension Student Association is here to advocate for what is important to you, and to connect you with available events, organizations, resources, and opportunities.

Please let us know how you think we can improve your experience at Harvard Extension, or if you have any questions or ideas for student advancement and participation.

You are invited to join us for the debut of HESA’s pilot speaker series. Professional leaders will share their thoughts on current world-changing trends and the upcoming future of their specialty fields. With insights unlike any other, you’ll learn how to best position yourself for success.



A conversation with Phil Zimmermann on cybersecurity and privacy issues facing individuals and governments.

Learn more about the current and future state of cryptography and privacy on the web. Mr. Zimmermann is the creator of PGP encryption technology, one of the most widely used email encryption software in the world. He is also known for his work in VoIP encryption protocols, notably ZRTP and Zfone. Zimmermann is co-founder and former Chief Scientist of the global encrypted communications firm, Silent Circle.

Join us on Saturday, August 19th, 2-3pm EST, Seating is limited!
Register for Free



Ever wondered about the history behind one of New York’s most famous parks? Bryant Park is the nation’s largest public park that is privately managed and financially self-supported. Join us on a privately guided tour specifically tailored for Harvard affiliates and learn more about the park’s design philosophy as well as the unique private/public partnership between Bryant Park Corporation and the City of New York. Following the tour, stick around for complimentary refreshments and a chance to meet your fellow Harvard students & alums!

Join us on Thursday, August 24th, 7-9pm EST
TICKETS $10 Register Here


Do you live outside the Cambridge area? Get to know your fellow scholars at the HESA Global Social. The email you provide will be visible to others so that you can keep in touch!

This event will take place on the online platform Zoom.* To receive the link, Register for Free


Are you under 21 and interested in connecting with others your age? How can HESA help you? Email our Under 21 Ambassador Braxton Moral:


Want to get involved with HESA? Do you have experience with social media, events, or connecting people? We have opportunities available for your participation, wherever you are in the world.  Email


Borrow Direct enables Harvard University students, faculty, and staff with library borrowing privileges and active e-mail accounts to borrow books directly from the libraries of Brown, University of Chicago, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Duke, Johns Hopkins, MIT, University of Pennsylvania, Princeton, and Yale. Stanford University will be joining the summer of 2017. The library bears the cost of the service and there is no charge to patrons. Get more information here.

In this section we’ll cover resources available to students through the University. Send us your own useful tips for us to share!


Meet Georgi Gold
Recent ALB graduate, and newly admitted candidate in John’s Hopkins MLA program as a liberal arts major.

1. What made you choose Harvard Extension?

The first online program I tried in 2004 at another school was disappointing, but then several years later I was perusing the web and found several schools that offered online degrees.  When I discovered HES, my mind was made up. I wanted to be a Harvard student! I wanted it at eighteen years old and I wanted it even more at fifty-seven years old.

2. How long did it take to complete the degree you sought?

I sought an ALB degree and it took nine years to complete. (I had to drop a course five times due to caring for a terminally ill family member). Once I was free of that obligation, I attended summer school, fall and spring semesters and J-term for the last 3 years. This is the first time I have had a free summer in years. Yes, I am very bored and miss being a student!

3. What is your favorite Extension experience?

My favorite time at HES was attending mandatory weekends in Cambridge. I think that the weekend experiences offer the opportunity to explore the incredible Harvard experience that cannot be conveyed online. I arrived for those weekends full of hope and a bad case of the nerves. I would leave with several new friends, a favorite professor, and definitely certain of my goal to graduate.

4. Were you a distance student primarily? How did you form friendships with other students you may have only met online?

I was a distance student 100% of the time, except for J-term. The friendships that I made online were/are very special. The mandatory weekends only served to cement some great friendships that I have made. There is a lot to be said for the experiences we share with others. Hence, reunions. Need I say more?

5. Did you have any professors that really stood out? Why?

I was struck at how my professors worked with me to succeed and to flourish. The opportunity to have dinner or coffee with my profs was beyond my expectations. Perhaps I was a bit naive, but experiences like sharing a meal and friendship made a huge difference in the quality of my work and the desire to excel. Imagine, the look on a friend’s face when you mention you are having dinner with your Harvard professor…priceless. But, the profs are in fact generous with their time, knowledge, encouragement, and unwavering support for students who are truly engaged in their studies.

6. If you had any struggles, how did you overcome them?

I was not exempt from scholastic struggles. If I was going to fail as an ALB candidate, it was going to be Math E-3 that was the keeper of the gate. Lots of blood, sweat and tears, and all the support in the world from my wonderful professor and his very supportive TA’s couldn’t put Georgi together again. Harvard Accessibility and Student Services suggested that I be evaluated and I was diagnosed with a cognitive and conceptual deficiency that affects my math skills. Once we had a diagnosis, HES worked with me to achieve my my math requirement.

And, that is how I finally made it through Math E-3 with a B-, and lots and lots of hard work. There is a saying “you have got to know it cold” and that is my advice for Math E-3.

7. What do you recommend every Harvard Extension student do to make the most of their experience?

All of my experiences at HES were valuable and served a purpose. Sometimes it is a simple as checking an assignment with a fellow student. Other times, your classmate is wiping your tears (Math E-3) and making you whole again. There is laughter and tears. There is victory and defeat. I feel that we cannot have one without the other.

Most of all, the most meaningful experience for me was attending weekend courses and being a real Harvard student in Cambridge. It seems that when the best and the brightest are gathered together as a whole, we really shine. Cambridge has its own ambiance that embraces every visitor. I was no exception. I love the food, the bars, the bookstores, where it is expected that one may be studying a text and there is no glaring or rushing, just a smile and an offer to refill your coffee cup. A special place for those who wish to savor academia at its very best.

Copyright © 2017 Harvard Extension Students Association All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
Harvard Extension Students Association
51 Brattle Street
Cambridge MA 02138

Leave a Reply