Kirkland House

By Sophia Salamanca and Sami E. Turner
Welcome to Kirkland House! Yes, you’ve seen it in The Social Network, but Kirkland’s worth should not be limited to just Mark Zuckerberg’s legacy. This tiny, yet mighty, house, affectionately called “Kirk,” is seated in River West and awaits you with many unique traditions as well as an extremely tight-knit community that is hard to beat. After becoming a boar, the possibilities are endless: Want to meditate, brew some beer, or check out the comfy (as in really, really comfy) grille couches? Why not try it all!
By Arezoo Ghazagh

By Santiago A. Saldivar

Quirks and Perks:

“A group of really talented, incredibly driven, funny, quirky people” was the way that HoCo Co-Chair Aurora M. Avallone ’24 chose to describe the Kirkland community. The greatest part of this house is the people who make it, and with Kirk’s smaller size, you are bound to find your people. Never having to worry about finding someone you know to sit with in the dhall? Please, who wouldn’t want that.

The tutors of Kirkland also help foster community. Olivia J. Eckstein ‘24 described it best, saying, “[My tutor] was so active in my life, a lot of the tutors here are like that and I think that’s something really rare that I don’t really hear about from other houses.” No matter who you are, there is always someone for you to connect with in Kirkland.

Kirkland’s traditions are unlike any other. The house continues to implement new events into their agenda while keeping old traditions strong, offering much for the Kirkland community, as well as the greater Harvard community, to enjoy. You’ll never get bored if you’re in Kirkland, it’s quite impossible with all that there is going on, all thanks to Kirk’s lovely HoCo chairs.

One new tradition that Kirkland has started this year is their Build-a-Boar Bash. The name says it all. Who wouldn’t want to raise a tiny boar from a shell of fluff to a fully stuffed animal to represent their house pride? Avallone adds that just like these boars, Kirkland House is also “warm and cuddly and welcoming” as “we want people to be happy and have a good time.” Other new additions include Kirk’s mac and cheese bar as well as their Brew Club. That’s right, Kirkland is now the only house that makes their own alcohol from scratch. If that’s not a major flex, I don’t really know what is.

The older traditions of Kirkland are still standing strong, such as House Secret Santa which is a week-long gift-giving celebration. Kirkland residents are able to choose from varying levels of intensity for this event, from simply getting gifted a coffee run to being part of a live action Bachelor/karaoke event in the dhall, or even strip tease in the boar costume. Yes, a strip tease in the boar costume. Kirkland definitely makes sure to appeal to all in this event, and it is something that you will definitely not want to miss.

All About Housing:

If you’re in Kirkland, you are bound to get to know your fellow Kirklanders very, very well — inside and outside of your dorm. Sophomores can be expected to be housed in a double with a common room and a bedroom, but a lucky few might also get overflow four-person suites in DeWolfe, which boast A/C systems and apartment-style kitchens. Juniors can also expect to share rooms, but alas, as a senior, you can finally have your long-awaited single. But in Kirkland, let’s be real, you’re going to want to continue to live with your fellow Kirklanders. That’s why you might also opt towards living in one of the two 10-man suites that Kirkland has to offer, which have the added plus of being perfect for hosting parties.

And, if you need alone time as well, Kirkland understands. Kirkland is here for you. Residents have exclusive access to the historic Hicks House, Kirkland’s house library. Hicks House, the second oldest house in all of Cambridge, will allow you to fulfill your dreams of dark academia romanticization. Eckstein reveals that Hicks “was used as a strategy house during the Revolutionary War. So there’s a bunch of really cool, old archived books and a bunch of stuff. There's some cool artifacts in there.” Kirkland also has its new additions of a meditation room and movie screening room, which became a part of the house post-pandemic.

Your Questions, Answered:

Still curious? Kirkland’s HoCo chairs have you covered with more answers to your pressing questions.

If you could describe Kirkland as a day of the week, which day would you choose?

AMA: I’m thinking Thursday. I think Thursday can be one of the best days

OJE: Thursday is lowkey becoming the new Friday in a way.

AMA: Thursdays are so underrated. Like I feel Kirk gets very underrated on Harvard’s campus. I think we have made ourselves post-Covid into one of the very fun, desirable, active houses. You can do whatever you want with your Thursday. Thursday can be a steady grind day. Thursday can be a going-out day. Thursday can be a Stein day. Thursdays are a great day in Kirkland House.

What is one thing that you want freshmen to know about your House?

AMA: I would say, you won the jackpot, the community is just unparalleled. And we have other people from other houses who come to our Kirkland steins and they’re like, my house doesn’t have a mac and cheese bar or doesn’t do a Build-a-Boar event, how can I join this community? And we’re welcoming to anybody. If you’re not placed in Kirk, come by, come to Kirk.

OJE: I am so incredibly happy and joyful that I’ve gotten Kirk and I couldn't have asked honestly for any other house. Would implore the new freshman that we will be getting to look on the bright side. Look at what an amazing community that you’ve joined and that you’ll have now, and the support that you’ll have for many people who just wanna lift you up.

What would you say that Kirkland’s toxic trait is?

AMA: We’re very “We Are Kirkland” and it’s not in your face, but we are very proud to be Kirklanders and maybe you can call that toxic. I call that just being proud of where you come from and being really excited about life. But some people can be like, oh, that’s over positive. You’re not looking at all the stressful, negative things, but why do that when you’re in Kirkland house?

You don’t know what you’re missing out on. Come on in, Kirk’s waiting for you!

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