Following unconfirmed reports of explosives at four central buildings on the Harvard University campus, the school was forced to cancel Monday morning's exams. The bomb threat led to the evacuation of the Science Center, Thayer, Sever and Emerson Halls "out of an abundance of caution," Harvard said in a statement. While it's not clear what, exactly, prompted the evacuation, the not-coincidental timing of the threat gave some nervous students a reprieve:
Dean of Undergrad. Ed. Jay Harris to Annenberg: Final exams for this morning have been canceled.— The Harvard Crimson (@thecrimson) December 16, 2013
Following announcement, students erupt in applause.— The Harvard Crimson (@thecrimson) December 16, 2013
Scrapping an earlier plan to reschedule exams missed during the threat, The Harvard Crimson reported on Monday afternoon that students with missed exams could either let their work to date stand, or switch their grades for those classes to a pass/fail.
Cambridge Police and Harvard University police were investigating the threat on Monday morning, and the university promised to "update the media" as soon as more information becomes available. As you can see from the map at left, the four evacuated buildings are right on the central Harvard Yard, with the exception of the Science Center, one of the largest academic buildings at the school.
Following the evacuation, students spilled into Annenberg Hall, near the Science Center.
As of 11 a.m., officials hadn't found any explosives on campus. Multiple news outlets reported that Harvard gave an "all clear" announcement shortly after that. Those reports were later corrected, as an investigation into the threat is ongoing.