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The Boston Globe

Metro

Kevin Cullen

Seamus Heaney: Walking on air against his better judgment

Like everybody else who grew up around Boston, I always thought Harvard had very high standards, until they let me in.

When people ask me what I studied during my Nieman Fellowship at Harvard, I usually reply, “The ceiling at the Plough & Stars.” But the truth is it was a once in a lifetime, enriching experience. I took constitutional law with the incomparable Larry Tribe. I took an extraordinary class about the Vichy regime taught by the extraordinary Patrice Higonnet. I got to watch a young Samantha Power, now the US Ambassador to the UN, get her bearings as a journalist-turned-academic. And the friendship of my Nieman classmates, American and foreign-born, is priceless.

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