misce stultitiam consiliis brevem

Archive for the 'HRSFANS Administrative' Category

Anti-Harassment Policy


The board has officially adopted an anti-harassment policy, which can be found here (and under the “Legal and policy documents” page of our website).

If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact the board.


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Welcome new board members!

I would like to announce that we have invited three new board members to join the HRSFANS board!

Audrey Bennett is joining the board to fill our currently vacant seat. Ian Storey will be joining the board in November, when Kathy Zhang’s term ends. And Betsy Isaacson will be joining in January, to fill the seat when Charles Keckler’s term ends.

Among their other wonderful and illustrious qualities, Audrey and Betsy were HRSFA co-chairs and Ian was Vericon Conchair. We are very pleased to welcome such storied and excellent people to the board. Three cheers!


HRSFANS Reunion Schedule

Friday Alumni Central 4pm-10pm Ticknor Lounge; HRSFA History Scavenger Hunt begins

Gather one, gather all, into the Ticknor Lounge!  Sign in to the reunion, drift around, meet alumni you knew or never knew.  Tell stories of HRSFA-way-back-when or HRSFA-last-year.

This is a great time to begin the HRSFA History Scavenger Hunt.  Should you choose to play, you will be an aspiring historian all weekend.  You’re given a random list of years, and for each year, you must find a chunk of HRSFA history.  Remember, primary sources (that is, first-hand accounts) are the quest of any good historian!  At the end, prizes will be given according to some secret system devised by Tom and Rose, and stories will be placed (when possible) on the HRSFANS wiki.


Friday night hangout 10pm-? Quincy Qube

Rediscover the joys of a classic college experience: hanging out in a dorm together, as late as you want!  There could be games.  There could be snacks and trips to convenience stores.  There may be conversation in which we all discover the answer to the question of the meaning of life.  But there will probably not be homework.

 Nota Bene: The doors to Quincy require swipe-card access.  To get in, call Elisabeth (310)486-2085, or follow the instructions that will be posted next to the Quincy main entrance.


Saturday Alumni Central 8am-5:30pm Ticknor Lounge

Hint: Ticknor is unlocked at 8am. If you’re up early, great; if you’re /still/ hanging out in Quincy, perhaps you’d like a change of scene to Ticknor.


Saturday future-planning breakfast with the board 9-10:30am Ticknor Lounge 

If you can get here between 9am and 10:30am, start off with Breakfast with the Board, and have your say about sundry serious matters.  Possible topics include HRSFANS online networking, professional support for undergraduates, local events, and more.


Saturday Book Club 11:30am-1pm Ticknor Lounge

Two of our Vericon guests, Vernor Vinge and Lev Grossman, have written books that the online-meeting HRSFANS Book Club chose to read.  If you’ve read “Children of the Sky” by Vinge or “The Magicians” by Grossman, now’s your chance share your enthusiasm/frustration with the rest of us at a Book Club follow-up meeting.  And we can gossip about the authors, too.


Saturday dinner 6-9pm Kirkland Dining Hall

This is the Big Classy Event of the weekend.  If you like your Vericon Masquerade Ball costume enough, come wearing it!  Get a little space from the hectic activities of Vericon and the reunion, to sit down and relax for a few hours.  It’s a big plated dinner with delicious food, $40 (or lower prices if you ask for assistance), with a little bit of speeches and gratitiude.  It ends at 9pm, in time for the Vericon Masquerade Ball at 10 if you’re into that, and get the second half of Milk&Cookies.


Saturday night Noncons and hangout 12:00am onward Lowell SCR

A really comfortable space the undergrads usually don’t get to use, in which we will do ridiculous things known as Noncons!  These are fake elections, in which we make up the categories and the candidates as we go along.  Drinking is good if that helps you get silly. (Noncons won’t start until after the Vericon masque is over, so there’s no need to duck out early).


Sunday Alumni Central 8am-3pm Ticknor Lounge

Ticknor opens at 8 again; after 3pm, cleanup and such happens.


Sunday family activity 10am Ticknor Lounge 

Kids are always welcome in Alumni Central, but we will have some special story, craft and snack time Sunday morning with Team Martin.  Of course, grown-ups are always welcome even without kids!


Sunday noon: HRSFANS History Scavenger Hunt concludes

Present your Scavenger Hunt stories to Tom and Rose!  I have no idea what they intend to do, but I’m sure it will be amusing.


Invade Vericon Sunday-only

It is worth advertising three events at Vericon that are great for alumni to attend even if you don’t go to the rest of the weekend:

1) The Mystery Science Theater 3000 (Dungeons and Dragons: Wrath of the Dragon God) is going up at 10:00 AM.  Some talented undergrads have undergone great suffering, watching a terrible movie over an over again until the best jokes come out of them.  Expect to laugh all the way through this showing.

2) The Vericon Charity Auction (theme: Doctors Without [Spatiotemporal] Borders) will be holding  1:00 PM. We have the personal guarantee of the ConChair (himself a comedian of some note) that this new Vericon event will be highly entertaining.

3) The Sassafras group, which has several HRSFA alumni in it, is giving a concert at 2:30-3:30 PM.  They are well worth hearing: as Vericon puts it, “Mixing medieval harmonics with modern energy, the sound of Sassafrass is unlike anything you’ve heard and stunning close harmonies with lyrics and themes inspired by folklore, fantasy, and ancient myth.”

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Save the Date: The Second Quadrennial Big HRSFA Reunion!

We are excited to announce that you should Save The Date for: THE SECOND QUADRENNIAL BIG HRSFA REUNION! This will be held on March 15-18, 2012, coincident with the HRSFA undergraduate SF convention, Vericon XII. Our “blue-ribbon” committee of “people who like to volunteer for things”* is busily working out the details of lodging, food, events and costs.

The reunion in 2008 was a blast — attending were scores of HRSFA alums spanning 20 years, sharing many activities such as going to Vericon VIII, partying, playing games, and generally re-uning. We guarantee that, like the prior reunion, this one will be Made Of Win.**

If you like, keep an eye on the HRSFANS Blog, now available on RSS and Twitter, for updates as they arrive. The Big Sign-Up Announcement will be sent over hrsfans-announce, so please sign up there if you haven’t yet.

Misce stultitiam consiliis brevem,
HRSFANS Reunion Committee

* If you, too, are a person who likes to volunteer for things, let us know and we will get you involved in helping to plan the reunion. We are always interested in feedback about what you might like to see happen at the reunion. Contact Jason Brodsky (jaybrod at gmail) if you are interested.

** By FDA rules the reunion must be at least 90% Win to qualify for this certification.

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Guest Posting on

By the way, if you’d ever like to post something here, but you don’t want to get your own posting account, email your post to me and I’ll put it up.

If you’d like to post often enough that this sounds like a hassle, email Emily and she’ll set you up with an account of your own.

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Calciate the Vote!

[The following email was sent on November 4th. The webmaster apologizes for forgetting to post it to the blog until just now. You have one week left to vote.]

The HRSFAns constitution calls for an election “The Election Chair
shall announce a date and time for counting ballots in November, and
shall distribute ballots to all dues-paying members of HRSFA, no fewer
than four weeks before the election.”

Well I am announcing an election with ballots due by Friday December
3, 29 days from now.

Send your ballots to

Remember your candidates are:

– Thomas Lotze ‘01

– Elisabeth Cohen ‘06

– Emily Morgan ‘07

It’s a turning point election for HRSFAns really, and I fear we are in
for a campaign season of mud-slinging, extremist base-mobilizing, and
last minute bribery. At least I’m hoping so.

Reminder: Only the votes of dues paying members shall count for this
election. In this case, “dues paying” just means:
1) Fill out our survey:

This is the required portion of renewing your membership! It only
takes five to ten minutes, but it’s very valuable, as it lets us know
how you feel about what HRSFANS is and could be doing.

2) Pay ~~OPTIONAL~~ membership dues.
Suggested dues are:
$23 standard dues (for the Illuminati)
$11 for recent graduates (in the last two years), or other who need a
reduced rate (for Bilbo)
$42 for those who can afford it (for Douglas Adams)

Remember, if no one votes, then we have to have a 4 hour election
meeting at the winter party.

Tony Vila
Michael VonKorff
Election Co-Chairs

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HRSFANS Elections

“In the month of November of the third year of service of the standing Executive Committee, the Board shall conduct a general election for the three officers of the next Executive Committee.”

HRSFANS has been around for three years now. We’ve had a reunion, raised an endowment, started SIGs, created ways for HRSFA to connect online and locally, held a Winter Party, started an internship program, and more. HRSFANS is something that’s going to continue, and grow. The next step is to hold elections for the next Executive Committee: HRSFANS’ President, Secretary, and Treasurer.

“The sitting President shall actively encourage all members of HRSFANS interested in serving on the Board to submit statements of Candidacy to the Board.”

I hereby encourage all of you who are interested in serving on the Board to submit statements of Candidacy. The Executive Committee of HRSFANS is a central part of deciding HRSFANS’ future and doing what needs to be done to get there. It’s a great way to be a big part of shaping what that future looks like. Specific duties of the President, Secretary, and Treasurer can be found in our bylaws and constitution.

While you only need to submit your statement to the Board to get on the ballot, I encourage you to submit it to

“Any dues-paying member of HRSFANS who wishes to stand for this November election shall declare their Candidacy no later than September 30 of that year.”

In order to be on the ballot, you must declare your candidacy by September 30th. Note that “dues-paying member” translates to “those who’ve filled out the annual survey”. We’ll have our new one up in a couple of weeks, so all candidates will need to make sure to complete that as well. This is also the criterion for voting membership. Also, please note that due to HRSFANS’ being a SIG of the Harvard Alumni Association, our constitution specifies that only members of the Harvard community (alumni, their spouses/partners, students, faculty, staff, parents, and visiting fellows) may run for these positions or vote in this election.

“Following this date, the Board shall designate an Election Chair, not from among the declared Executive Committee Candidates, and this Election Chair will henceforth preside over the election. The Election Chair shall announce a date and time for counting ballots in November, and shall distribute ballots to all dues-paying members of HRSFA, no fewer than four weeks before the election. In each election the candidate with the most votes shall be selected. In the case of ties, the Board, excluding any of its members who are Candidates, shall cast a tiebreaking vote.”

Elections will be held in November. Good luck.

Misce stultitiam consiliis brevem,
Thomas Lotze
President, HRSFANS


HRSFANS Board Appointment

Congratulations to John Abbe ’88 on his appointment to the HRSFANS board!

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Announcing the HRSFANS motto

HRSFANS has decided on an official motto: “Misce stultitiam consiliis brevem”

(“Mingle a little folly with your wisdom” from Horace’s Odes)

Thank you to everyone who participated in selecting the motto, and particularly to Alexa F. and Kartik V. for suggesting the winning motto!

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Introducing the shiny new HRSFANS blog!

HRSFANS is starting a blog! This blog was jointly inspired by the HRSFANS Index to the Awesome on the Internet and Boing Boing. The idea is to post links and short discussions of things that we like, with the goal of sharing these things both within HRSFANS and with the fan community at large.

You can read the blog right here, or follow our RSS feed.

We’re looking for people to contribute to the blog! If you’re interested, you can find out more about it on the HRSFANS wiki.

We’d also love suggestions for additions to our Blogroll. If you have a blog you’d like us to link to (whether your own blog or just one that you think our readers would enjoy), please let us know.

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