<p>My interviewer was a musician, and so we talked about my singing/arranging music for most of the interview. Toward the end, though, he did ask what made me choose to Harvard as the place where I would consider my musical career. I think you might not get a cut and dry, "Why Harvard?" but that you will be asked something like it, and that the way that the question is framed will depend on how the interview is going.</p>
<p>I would have a better answer than "duh, where else?!" ready for your interviewer, though. :)</p>
<p>my interviewer never asked "why harvard?" It was not a ? and answer time but rather a conversation through which she could get to know me as a person- my passions, family, etc. And she said that they don't give yes/no recommendations- they give a narrative-type report on how the interview went, what you talked about, what u were like personality-wise.</p>
<p>^^ Same for me as soserene. It was just a conversation over coffee. In fact, my interviewer lives in my city so we ended up griping about the bad snow plowing during the recent storms, the fact that a local good restaurant was closing, etc. And we found out my locker is only something like 10 away from the one she had when she went to my high school 25 years ago. Pretend you're at a party at a mutual friend's house (in this case, your mutual friend is Harvard) and just have a convo. Act like a normal human and you're 90% there.</p>
<p>"Are they going to ask me something like why in particular do I want to go to Harvard? I can't just tell them, "duh, where else?!"</p>
<p>Surely, you have a more expansive and thoughtful answer than that. Harvard isn't the right school for everyone, even for everyone who is very smart and high stat with strong ECs. There are many such people who for very thoughtful reasons would prefer going elsewhere and don't bother applying.</p>
<p>i had my interview a couple days ago, and the "why harvard" question never came up explicitly. come to think of it, none of my interviewers thusfar have asked me to give any super-specific reasons for applying. at most they've asked what criteria i had in mind when searching for colleges. i think the interview is more to see your human side that may not come across completely on paper (like your random interests, general demeanor, etc) and to make sure you're a good fit personality-wise for the school.
direct quote from the first 30 sec of my interview: "we want to make sure you're not a serial killer or anything...you're not, are you?" =)</p>