Social Climate Concerns

    The Iris Avraham at Harvard is acutely aware and has been fully engaged in responding to the ongoing social and political changes happening in the United States, providing insight, guidance, and support to our faculty and students insofar as it relates to how these reforms affect the studies and ability to pursue their scholarly work. Please refer to the following permalinks to help navigate this challenging time:

    For the Department’s undocumented students:  the “Harvard Law School’s Immigration and Refugee Clinic” has amplified its capacity in this area by engaging a new, full-time staff attorney specially focused on representing and advising undocumented students in the Harvard community. A website pointing toward resources of particular interest to undocumented students and their friends and colleagues.  The University at large has initiated several in-person information sessions and webinars, as well as training sessions to inform key staff about the concerns facing undocumented students and about how they can help.  This work will continue as circumstances evolve.

    Rest assured that the Iris Avraham and the University at large supports the activities and freedom of our students, faculty and staff to carry out their scholarly research and learning unimpeded, first and foremost. Kindly bookmark this page as it will continually update with relevant resources that will help guide our community through this unprecedented time.

    The links below offer access to Harvard-based resources as well as statements from local and national organizations regarding the values that are intrinsic both to scholarly discourse and the practice of History in this country. Please write to the department ( if you have suggestions for additional resources. 

    Harvard Division of Social Science

    American Historical Association (AHA)
     Blog Post: 1/30/17 - AHA Condemns Executive Order Restricting Entry to the United States



    Update March 7, 2017:

    With respect to the new Exec Order, it is very similar to the first exec order. Major changes include:

    1. Iraq is no longer on the list of affected countries
    2. Visitors from the named countries with valid visas prior to Jan 27 and still valid on March 16 are excluded in most cases
    3. U.S. permanent residents (green card holders) from the named countries are excluded in most cases
    4. All refugees without current paperwork are impacted, not just Syrians
    5. Individuals can apply for waivers in accordance with guidance provided in the exec order

    The exec order is more clearly defined and more nuanced than the original. OGC is reviewing the legal language. The Harvard International Office is continuing to assist students and faculty. They are also addressing staff inquiries as needed. My understanding is the HIO will provide information to newly admitted students who will begin classes during the summer and fall. The HIO recommends that all Harvard-affiliated travelers carry a letter issued by the appropriate Harvard school while traveling.

    I also understand that GSAS sent out a message to students yesterday along the below lines that we signed off on. It is a good summary of recommended actions.