The Men in Black star, who attended the Massachusetts university in the 1960s, returned to the institution and was presented with the award at a special ceremony.
The Oscar winner told the audience his time at Harvard shaped his career, saying, ""I believe my experience here was the best thing that happened to my creative life. For that, I will be grateful as long as I live.""
He also took part in a question-and-answer session with fellow Harvard alumni and actor John Lithgow, who worked with Jones on a number of college drama productions during their time at the college.
The event ended with the star fielding questions from the audience, and Jones was surprised to receive a marriage proposal from a woman in the crowd, according to The Harvard Crimson.
He accepted the offer, telling her, ""Yes. But you have to speak to my wife. She may have an opinion.""