Frequently Asked Questions

How will I know if I'm eligible for election to PBK?

For the Junior 24 and Senior 48 elections, students will be notified of their eligibility for election to Alpha Iota by letter sent to their campus or local address. Letters for the Senior 48 election are sent in early October; letters for the Junior 24 election are sent in late February.  Only those students who receive official letters of eligibility can be considered for election.  

For the Senior Final elections, which are held in May, all students in the top 10% by GPA within each academic division will automatically be considered.  Students will ...

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Whom should I ask to write letters of recommendation?

The most useful letters come from those instructors who know you and your academic work well. In general, the election committees prefer letters from members of the faculty, but letters from teaching fellows or course assistants are also acceptable. Seniors who are writing theses are strongly advised to have their faculty adviser write on their behalf. The election committees generally find letters from faculty within one's department or committee of concentration most useful, but will also accept letters from faculty outside of a student's concentration.

I am considering accepting Advanced Standing. Will this affect my eligibility for PBK?

It depends.  If you are a third-year student with Advanced Standing, and you intend to graduate that year (i.e. after only three years in the College), you will be considered a senior and thus are ineligible for the Junior 24, although you will be considered in the Senior 48 (see below).  If you are advanced standing but you intend to graduate after four years (either by renouncing advanced standing or pursuing an AB/AM degree), then you will still be considered a junior for the purposes of the PBK elections.  If you are a third-year advanced standing student who applies for... Read more about I am considering accepting Advanced Standing. Will this affect my eligibility for PBK?

I expect to graduate off cycle. For which Senior elections am I eligible?

You are eligible for the Senior 48, but you may only be a candidate in this election once; so if invited, you should consider whether you will be a Senior again next year and might then be in a better position. For the final Senior election you will be eligible in the spring after you graduate, so make sure Harvard knows your contact information.