Events at the IOP

  1. Election Day Lunch

    Tuesday November 3 - 12:00pm

    Join an informal lunchtime discussion Tuesday November 3rd at 12:00pm ET with IOP staff and student leadership on Election Day insights and updates from the field. We’ll share post-election resources for students and discuss our predictions for election night. Drop by to discuss anything on your mind!

    *AUDIENCE: This conversation is open to undergraduates with a valid Harvard College email address.



  2. Election Eve: Conversation with the IOP

    Monday November 2 - 5:00pm

    On the eve of U.S. Election Day, join the Institute of Politics Monday November 2nd at 5:00pm ET for a conversation with IOP Fellows Carol Giacomo, Tara Setmayer, Jorge L. Vasquez, Jr., and students, staff and affiliates from across Harvard College residential communities. We’ll be providing a space for community members to gain key insights from the field and unpack what to expect on election night and in the days to come.

    We’ll also feature highlights from the Harvard Youth Poll: Election 2020, last minute voter engagement opportunities with the Harvard Votes Challenge, and preview U.S. elections week programming and resources for students across the College. Drop by to discuss anything on your mind! The conversation will be moderated by IOP Director Mark Gearan ‘78 and include remarks from IOP Student President, Mari Jones '21, Harvard Public Opinion Project Student Chair, Justin Tseng '22 and Harvard Votes Challenge Co-chair, Amanda Powers '21. 

    *Audience: This conversation is open to Harvard College students and residential staff.

    RSVP here by 12:00pm ET on Monday, 11/2

  3. First Presidential Debate Watch Party and Live Analysis

    Tuesday September 29 - 8:45pm

    Planning to watch the first presidential debate? Want to hear what other students have to say about President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden’s debate performance? Come join our IOP virtual debate watch and live-analysis on Zoom! 

    The Institute of Politics at Harvard Kennedy School invites students from Harvard and fellow IOPs to convene for a virtual watch party as President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden take the stage in Cleveland for the first presidential debate. Students will have the opportunity to watch the debate and simultaneously share their reactions in real-time with one another in a facilitated conversation led by student pollsters from the Harvard Youth Poll. 

    RSVP to join the conversation (Harvard undergraduates)

    RSVP to join the conversation (other colleges and universities)

  4. Advancing a National Movement for Full Participation in Elections

    Friday September 25 - 3:00pm

    The Harvard undergraduate community is invited to join the Institute of Politics (IOP) at Harvard Kennedy School’s National Campaign Election 2020 series this Fall. 

    The IOP’s National Campaign brings together students and administrators from colleges and universities across the nation to engage with one another on issues of civic and political participation, and to develop best practices for increasing democratic engagement on campus. 

    This Fall, Harvard and the IOP are committed to providing a space for students and administrators to build a network of collaboration around our theme of Advancing a National Movement for Full Participation in Elections. We will convene our first session with a cohort of students who represent a diversity of political backgrounds and perspectives, as well those who are active on their campus and communities in civic engagement and voter readiness programs. 

    Register here. There is no cost to participate.  


    You can view the proposed agenda on Whova and overview of the September convenings below:     

    • Tuesday, September 22nd, 6:00pm ET: National Voter Registration Day

    Join the Institute of Politics’ JFK Jr. Forum for a special discussion to mark National Voter Registration Day.

    A 2-hour virtual program with national thought leaders and practitioners who are leading movements to achieve full participation in elections. Participants will have the opportunity to exchange best practices and discuss high-impact strategies to amplify their voter engagement efforts within their campus ecosystem. Register Here

    • Tuesday, September 29th, 9:00pm - 11:00pm ET: Presidential Debate Live-Analysis + Watch Party  

    A virtual gathering for National Campaign participants to simultaneously watch the first Presidential Debate and share their reactions and analysis in real time. The conversation will be facilitated by the student pollsters behind the Harvard Youth Poll. Additional details regarding registration will be shared next week.


    If you have any questions, please reach out to the Institute’s Events and Outreach Coordinator, Andrew Vincent

  5. HKS Open House

    Wednesday September 16 - 12:00pm

    Join us to meet and hear from IOP staff and fellows Alice Stewart and Jorge Vazquez Jr. about their plans for 2020 Fall study groups. In addition, learn about the JFK Jr. Forum, Special Events and Conferences, and other opportunites to get involved with the Institute of Politics.

    Register Here

  6. IOP Fall 2020 Fellows Meet & Greet

    Thursday September 10 - 5:00pm

    Join the IOP Fall 2020 Fellows on Thursday, September 10 at 5:00pm ET for a Meet & Greet where you can learn more about the Fellows, their work in politics and public service, and the study groups they will lead. The six Fellows’ professional experiences span elected office, politics, activism and journalism and their unique perspectives will enrich study group conversations, office hours, and special events throughout the fall semester.

    IOP Fall 2020 Fellows include Chasten Buttigieg, Brittany Packnett Cunningham, Carol Giacomo, Mayor Michael Nutter, Alice Stewart, and Jorge Vasquez Jr.​ Learn more about the Fall 2020 Fellows here.

    RSVP by 12:00 PM ET on Thursday, September 10

    This conversation is open to Harvard College undergraduates. Please RSVP with a valid Harvard College email address.

  7. IOP Community Conversation with Brittany Packnett Cunningham

    Wednesday July 8 - 7:00pm

    The recent events regarding George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, Ahmaud Arbery, among several other realities of injustice have reminded us all that history repeats itself. Such events that have occurred to Black people in this country are not new and many members of our community have been forced to deal with the scourge of racism that has plagued America for generations. 

    Given the enormity of this moment and its implication on our student community and their families, the Institute of Politics is creating a space for support, reflection, connection and healing. 

    On Wednesday, July 8th at 7pm ETBrittany Packnett Cunningham, IOP Director’s Leader and former Resident Fellow will join our student community to lead a conversation to discuss the current movement and ways we can each walk, act, write, or speak in the name of change. If you’d like to join the conversation, please RSVP HERE by Tuesday, July 7th at 11:59PM ET.

    The event is organized by the Institute of Politics’ Politics, Race and Ethnicity Program and in collaboration with the leadership of the Harvard Black Student Association, Association for Black Harvard Women, and Harvard Black Men's Forum.

    RSVP Link:

  8. Fast Forum with Annise Parker & Julian Cyr

    Thursday June 25 - 1:00pm

    In celebration of Pride Month, the Institute of Politics welcomes Mayor Annise Parker, CEO and President of the Victory Fund and Victory Institute, and Massachusetts State Senator Julian Cyr for a Fast Forum on Thursday, June 25th at 1pm ET. Together, they will discuss their efforts to support LGBTQ+ candidates and increase the LGBTQ+ representation in elected offices across the country.

    Prior to her role at the Victory Fund, Annise Parker served as Mayor of Houston from 2010 to 2016, one of only two women to have been elected mayor, and notably the first openly LGBTQ mayor of a major American city. Parker served as an IOP Resident Fellow following her tenure in Houston to lead a weekly study group focused on municipal leadership and running for office on the state and local levels.

    Julian Cyr serves in the Massachusetts Senate representing Cape Cod, Martha's Vineyard, and Nantucket. First elected to the State Senate on November 8, 2016, Cyr is the youngest senator in Massachusetts State House. Cyr has experience in public policy, health advocacy, and social justice and previously served on the Massachusetts Commission on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and Questioning (LGBTQ) Youth. In 2017, Cyr was selected for the Victory Fund's Bohnett Leaders Fellowship at Harvard Kennedy School's Senior Executives in State and Local Government.

    Click Here to RSVP

  9. IOP Living Room: Election 2020 with Robby Mook and Alice Stewart

    Tuesday June 23 - 12:00pm

    Join us on Tuesday, June 23 at 12 PM ET for a conversation with IOP former Fellows Robby Mook (2017 - 2018) and Alice Stewart (Fall 2019) to discuss presidential campaigns, the 2020 election, and the headlines of the day. This event is part of our new virtual series, the IOP Living Room, which welcomes back alumni, former fellows, and friends of the IOP for interactive and candid discussions on issues of the day and career paths. 

    Mook is currently President of the House Majority PAC, fellow at Harvard Kennedy School’s Defending Digital Democracy Project, and was the campaign manager for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign. Stewart is a CNN Political Commentator and veteran Republican communications advisor on numerous campaigns, and an Emmy Award-winning journalist.

    This conversation is open to undergraduates at Harvard College.

    Click Here to RSVP

  10. Fast Forum with Omar Jimenez

    Monday June 22 - 7:00pm

    Given the enormity of this moment and its impact on our community, the Institute of Politics is committed to creating space and programming for reflection, connection, action, and healing. The Institute has developed a series of events featuring elected leaders, activists and journalists to reflect on their own experience in civic life in this historic moment. On Monday, June 22nd at 7pm ET, CNN correspondent Omar Jimenez joins us to share his experience reporting on the George Floyd protests from Minneapolis and discuss his on-the-ground coverage during historic moments, including the trials for the officers charged in the death of Freddie Gray, the 2019 wildfires in California, and the death of NBA legend Kobe Bryant.

    Click Here to RSVP

  11. Fast Forum: Symone Sanders

    Monday June 1 - 7:00pm

    Our first Fast Forum of the summer will take place on Monday, June 1st at 7:00pm ET with IOP Resident Fellow S‘18 Symone Sanders. Sanders is a senior advisor to Joe Biden’s presidential campaign and author of No, You Shut Up: Speaking Truth to Power and Reclaiming America. In 2016, at the age of 25, Sanders became the youngest presidential press secretary on record while working on U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders then-presidential campaign. Sanders will reflect on her personal experiences on the campaign trail and discuss her work in fighting against oppression, injustice, and inequality. The conversation will be moderated by Mark D. Gearan ‘78, Director of the Institute of Politic with an introduction by Araoluwa Omotowa '22, Director of Diversity and Outreach, Institute of Politics Student Advisory Committee. 

    Click Here to RSVP

  12. HPU Summer Series Debate 1

    Wednesday May 27 - 8:00pm

    On Wednesday, the Harvard Political Union is kick-starting our "Summer Series" programming with the first Cambridge Debate of the season. We will be hosting as many debates as possible throughout the course of the summer. Likely, we will be trading off serious topics and lighter topics, too. 

    This week, we'll be taking on a very timely issue: Resolved: Due to Covid-19, nonviolent inmates should be released from US prisons. It's a divisive topic, but an important one. Former IOP President (and current HPU Exec member) Anna Duffy will be facing off against member Will Schrepferman. This is shaping up to be a great intellectual debate, so we hope to see you there.

    Zoom Link:

    As during the school year, the debate will take place on Wednesday (5/27) at 8pm ET. See you then!