Monday, October 26, 2009

Faculty of Arts and Sciences Reports Unexpected Surplus

Faculty of Arts and Sciences Reports Unexpected Surplus
Published On 10/26/2009 2:30:51 AM
Crimson Staff Writers

In a move that brought clarity to why administrators have tamed fiscal messages after months of stressing the Faculty of Arts and Sciences’ impending financial deficit, FAS Dean Michael D. Smith delivered the news Friday that the school had posted a $58.6 million surplus in its unrestricted funds for the fiscal year that closed in June 2009.

The figure, released on Friday in Smith’s Dean’s Annual Report, was balanced by a consistent emphasis that most of the gains were “the result of one-time events,” and that, as expected, much remains to be done to close a remaining $110 million deficit.

Still, Smith noted that FAS received about $33 million in unrestricted gifts from two anonymous donors this past year, while also making a strategic withdrawal of $20 million in cash from its endowment to help offset the increased costs of the middle-income financial aid initiative.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

University Pays $500 Million To Cut Losses

University Pays $500 Million To Cut Losses

Published On 10/19/2009 12:03:13 AM

Crimson Staff Writer

Harvard’s decision to use derivative investments to lock in low interest rates on the school’s mounting debt cost the University $500 million this past year and will cost it at least $425 million more over the next few decades, according to the University’s annual financial report released Friday.

Harvard entered into interest rate swap agreements—which are used to hedge against rising interest rates—in 2004, when it seemed that interest rates had reached favorable lows and that locking in those rates would help the University finance its mammoth, long-term expansion into Allston. But the agreements backfired this past year when the global financial crisis pushed interest rates to unprecedented lows, thereby decimating the value of the swaps.

Harvard, looking to safeguard its cash supply from the increasing threat of losses associated with the swaps, decided to post $500 million in collateral this past year to terminate agreements on $1.1 billion of its debt. In addition, the University will pay another $425 million over the next 30 to 40 years for new “offsetting” interest rate swaps, which will essentially negate the effect of the original swaps on $764 million of its debt.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Harvard Buys Updike Archive - What budget cuts?

Harvard buys Updike archive
Collection includes late writer’s reviews, letters, manuscripts

John Updike, as a senior at Harvard, in 1954. John Updike, as a senior at Harvard, in 1954.
By Tracy Jan Globe Staff / October 7, 2009

Harvard University has acquired the manuscripts, correspondences, and other papers of John Updike, a celebrated member of the Class of 1954 who kept a Harvard library card and frequently visited the campus to research the contemporary culture that enlivened his acclaimed fiction.

The university will announce today that Houghton Library, Harvard’s primary repository for rare books and manuscripts, will house the John Updike Archive, making the library the center for studies on the life and work of the two-time Pulitzer Prize winner and prolific novelist, poet, and critic. College officials would not disclose how much Harvard paid to acquire the papers of Updike, who died in January at 76.

“John Updike is a terribly important American, given his cultural and literary achievement,’’ said William Pritchard, an English professor at Amherst College who chronicled the writer’s life and work in “Updike: America’s Man of Letters.’’ “It’s an extraordinary thing that his university is where his papers have landed.’’

Lined up, the entire archive stretches 380 linear feet. It spans 1,500 books, including Updike’s collection of his own work, published in foreign languages and English, as well as books Updike reviewed - with his pencil marks underlining the text, making notes in the margins, or bracketing a particularly well-turned phrase.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Public Meeting 10/7

How Can We Fight Layoffs in this Recession?
A Discussion with Socialist Alternative and members of the No-Layoffs Campaign at Harvard

Co-sponsored by the Student Labor Action Movement (SLAM) at Harvard

Free and Open to the public

Wednesday, October 7
Philips Brooks House, Parlor Room
Harvard Yard

Millions have been laid off since this recession began over a year ago, including many of our co-workers and friends here at Harvard. Even with the media talking about signs of recovery in the U.S. economy, layoffs continue around the country and internationally, including here at Harvard. Working people who have escaped layoffs are under more and more pressure to produce in under-staffed workplaces while wondering if they'll be the next to lose their jobs.

How can workers and youth fight against layoffs that impoverish whole communities? Layoffs need to be fought locally but also on a regional, national and international basis. Outsourcing, both domestic and foreign, continues to devastate as global corporations race to find the lowest wages.

The discussion continues on strategies and tactics to fight layoffs and reinstate workers at Harvard as well as how to link fights against layoffs in individual workplaces to a more generalized fight for jobs, extended unemployment benefits, stopping layoffs, etc.

Attend this meeting and help further the discussion of strategy and tactics in fighting layoffs and also learn more about on-going actions, including at Harvard, the Oct. 1st rally in Boston and beyond.

For More Information: 774-454-9060