Editors’ Picks: Best of Inside Extension 2016

Of the over 40 articles we published in 2016, these are the stories that provided us with the most helpful tips for success, inspired us to reach our goals, and challenged us to think critically about today’s issues. Join us as we take a look back our favorite Inside Extension stories.

My Challenges and Triumphs on the Road to a Harvard Degree

Kristen Strezo

“Graduation. It’s one of those things you want so badly that you find a way to make it happen, despite whatever it is you have going on in your life."

— Kristen Strezo, graduate degree in Journalism, ’16

When we heard Kristen Strezo’s Commencement speech back in May, we were so touched by her story—taking a chance on her education, managing her time with a toddler and newborn on the way, and persevering through life’s challenges. For all of the Extension School students out there who are struggling to cross the finish line, we shared Strezo’s inspiring message.

Read Kristen's Commencement speech


Cut the Clutter: 17 Phrases to Omit from Your Writing Today

“Omitting needless words gives the reader a feeling of confidence in your ability to communicate your ideas.”

— Christina Thompson, Extension instructor and editor for the Harvard Review

The editors here at Inside Extension are pretty big grammar nerds (surprise, surprise). And Christina Thompson is our personal hero. In this article, Thompson shares a list of words to slash from your writing vocabulary to make you a clear and concise writer. This helpful guide will literally transform your writing.

Get writing tips from Christina Thompson


Exposing Bias: Race and Racism in America

Exposing Bias: Race and Racism in America

“If I can inspire deep critical thinking on some of these issues, if I can get people to think more like a social scientist or an anthropologist, then I think we all will see things differently. And change will follow."

— Dr. Michael Baran, Extension instructor and anthropologist

When we saw how frequently racial violence was featured in the news, we knew we had to gather Michael Baran and James Herron—instructors of the Race in Americas course—for a critical discussion about this issue that continues to bedevil America today. As anthropologists, Baran and Herron offered a new lens of viewing the concept of race. And they discussed how we can teach future generations about race.

Read the Q&A with Michael Baran and James Herron


Student Spotlight: Andrew Ference

Andrew Ference

“When I signed up for that first class, I knew in my gut it was a big moment.”

— Andrew Ference, graduate certificate in Corporate Sustainability and Innovation

When we sat down to interview Andrew Ference, we were quite struck with awe. On top of his career as an NHL player (a locally beloved former Boston Bruin), Ference dedicated time as a social advocate, graduate student, and sustainability start-up investor. Aside from his celebrity status, what we love most about Ference’s story is how it encapsulates the passion, rigor, and determination of all our Extension School students.

Read Andrew Ference's story


10 Soft Skills Every IT Professional Should Develop

“You have to regularly put yourself in the position of mild discomfort.”

— Ben Gaucherin, head of IT for Harvard University Campus Services

At Harvard Extension School, we are big advocates for the value of a liberal arts education. When we interviewed Ben Gaucherin for this article, we were delighted to hear him echo the need for critical thinking and communication skills, even in the IT industry. Although it is framed for technical professionals, this article offers great advice for any professional looking to develop a competitive edge in their career.

Learn the most in-demand skills for a successful IT career


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