The oldest university
in the United States
, Harvard was established in 1636 by vote of the Great and General Court of Massachusetts Bay Colony
, and was named for its first benefactor, John Harvard
, a young minister
who upon his death
in 1638, left his library and half his estate to the new institution. These days, there are about 1600 undergraduates per class and approximately 10,000 graduate students spread across the several campuses that house the main college and the various graduate schools.
The lingo is a little different there from at most colleges. Undergraduates live in 12 Houses (instead of dormitories), concentrate (instead of major), call teaching assistants teaching fellows, and have resident tutors (instead of resident advisors).
The undergraduate calendar does not start until late September, so the school is one of the last in the country to have first semester exams after Christmas, and the second semester ends in June.