Yale, founded in 1701 as the "Collegiate School", is the
third-oldest institution of higher education in the United States. In
1718 the school was renamed “Yale College” in gratitude to the Welsh
merchant Elihu Yale, who had donated the proceeds from the sale of nine
bales of goods together with 417 books and a portrait of King George I.
Yale College is the undergraduate college of Yale University, and has the
distinctive feature of residential college system, modeled after the
universities of Oxford and Cambridge (or Hogwarts :-) ). Linus was
fortunate enough to study at this prestigious school as a member of
Getting there ...
We had a late night red-eye flight on 5/16 (Thursday) to EWR. The early
morning drive from New Jersey to New Haven (via George Washington Bridge in New
York) was smooth without too much traffic all the way.
5/17 (Friday) ...
- New Haven
After early check-in (before noon) and a short break at the
hotel, we walked to meet Linus and Miriam, and had a lunch at a ramen place in New
Haven. Then Linus took us for a quick tour in the Davenport
college (common rooms, laundry, library, etc.) where he called home for the
past 4 years. We were back to
his dorm room and started
to worry about how we could pack
and store his stuffs in the next few days...
- Yale Symphony Orchestra Commencement Concert, Battell Chapel
The annual Commencement Concert by Yale Symphony Orchestra (YSO) features
graduating members in a variety of concerti and orchestral work.
Linus got a chance to conduct
Tchaikovsky's violin concerto with his friends at YSO (solo by Albert
Cao). Music remains as a hobby and passion for Linus, and YSO
provided him tremendous opportunities to nurture him in many ways in the last
4 years (e.g., Russian tour and many good friends including his girl friend
5/18 (Saturday) ...
- Photo sessions around the campus
We all dressed up to have some
"formal" graduation and family photos in the early morning
before people started to show up on campus.
We also moved in to Davenport College today.
As part of the Yale Commencement, the rooms in residential colleges were open for
graduating families (from 5/18 to 5/21) as a convenient way (also cheaper too)
to stay on campus, which provided a unique experience we will all miss after we
leave the beautiful campus.
We passed by the Cross campus for the President's
Reception in the afternoon, but decided not to stay (too crowded) and came back to Davenport to
- We were invited to a nice dinner at G-Zen with Miriam's family and
friends. G-Zen is an organic,
vegan, sustainable restaurant designed to meet the discriminating tastes of
both vegetarians and non-vegetarians alike.
5/19 (Sunday) ...
- Baccalaureate Ceremony, Woolsey Hall
Since Yale's first century,
students and faculty members have gathered before Commencement for
Baccalaureate ceremonies. The name of the ceremony comes from one of
the earliest terms applied to the university degree of bachelor, and Yale
students receiving the degree continue to assemble for this event in the
university's fourth century.
- Yale College Class Day
One of the highlights for the
Commencement weekend for Yale College was this Class Day event. It
includes the awarding of academic, artistic, and athletic prizes; the
celebration of undergraduates; speeches given by students; and an address by
a notable speaker (this year by Chimamanda Adichie, an acclaimed author whose novels and
lectures have vaulted her to the forefront of world literature, a position
from which she speaks eloquently about race, gender, and other social
issues). One tradition for the Class Day is that graduating seniors
wear academic gowns with their own
choice (or decoration) of headgears.
- We were invited to Miriam's home to join their family and friends party.
It's nice to meet and chat with other graduates and their families and to
learn about their future plans.
5/20 (Monday) ...
The first Commencement of the Collegiate School was held
on Sept 16, 1702. On Sept 10, 1718, at the first public ceremony of
Commencement, the institute was named Yale College in honor of its first
benefactor, Elihu Yale. The ceremonies were held in Battell Chapel, and
then Woolsey Hall, and then moved to the present location on Old Campus in
1950 when the size of graduating classes increased.
procession is under the direction of members of the faculty and
administration served as marshals. Degree candidates in Yale College
assemble in their residential colleges and march to the Cross Campus where
they join the candidates for graduate and professional degrees. The
parties will proceed to the New Haven Green and then enter the Old Campus
through Phelps Archway.
Although the ceremony was brief and symbolic, it
was nonetheless the culmination of the weekend long events when their
degrees were formally conferred.
- Davenport College
We were back to our own residential college after
the Commencement to have the diploma ceremony where the Head of College
presented the diploma to each graduating senior.
More packing was still on going in the afternoon and it seemed an endless
task. When we finally finished packing and were ready to head out for
dinner, I snapped our last selfie on
Luckily, Miriam's home is local and nearby that we can
temporarily store Linus' stuffs (5 boxes, 2 luggage, 1 microwave and 1
fridge...) at her home for the summer before Linus moves to Boston.
5/21 Going Home ...
It is one of the big steps for kids to leave home for college, especially for
those who go across country to live independently. For Linus, these 4
years at Yale were definitely his life changing experiences and marked many
important events and milestones for him. As a parent, it was really
difficult to image how the time could fly by so fast that it seemed just
yesterday when we took Linus to college 4
years ago. But look at the bright side, we were going to
Maui tomorrow as part of the graduation
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