Ari Ruben '08
Thesis Title: “Testing Suffrage: Literacy and the Right to Vote in New York State, 1915-1975” Awarded the Hoopes Prize
Concentrating in History was one of my best decisions at Harvard College. The History Department provided me with an extraordinarily fulfilling academic experience, starting with sophomore tutorial. History 97 improved my writing more than any class I have ever taken. I also had opportunities to take numerous faculty-led small seminars, where I learned from the world’s leading historians in uniquely dynamic and intimate settings. Through these seminars, I developed working relationships with receptive faculty members, who mentored me throughout my undergraduate career. When I wrote my senior research thesis, these faculty members, along with the senior tutorial leaders, supported me immeasurably every step of the way, enabling me to win a Hoopes Prize.
In addition to being an intellectually enriching experience, my History education has paid significant dividends since graduation. After college, I directed fundraising for former Democratic National Committee Chairman Steve Grossman’s successful campaign for Massachusetts State Treasurer, and I am now a 2L at Harvard Law School. My History classes empowered me to write, to research, and to think critically, providing an arsenal of skills that I have utilized in these postgraduate endeavors.