Harvard University is located on the traditional and ancestral land of the Massachusett, the original inhabitants of what is now known as Boston and Cambridge. We pay respect to the people of the Massachusett Tribe, past and present, and honor the land itself which remains sacred to the Massachusett People.
Harvard University is the first institution of higher education in the United States. It was founded in 1636 by the Massachusetts Bay Colony under the name Newtowne College. Two years later, it was renamed after the College's first benefactor, the young minister John Harvard, who died at the age of 30 and left his library (400 books) and half of his estate to the institution.
Now, "Harvard College" refers to the undergraduate school, while "Harvard University" includes the college plus Harvard's graduate schools, research departments, institutes, and centers. The University's primary academic buildings are located in Cambridge and in the Longwood and Allston areas of Boston, Massachusetts.
Students in the Harvard College class of 2027 hail from more than 100 countries and all 50 states, including the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. A joint commencement ceremony for both graduate and undergraduate students is held in May in Harvard Yard.