Yale University

For other uses of the name "Yale," see Yale (disambiguation).

Yale University, one of eight Ivy League universities, traces its beginnings to "An Act for Liberty to Erect a Collegiate School" passed by the General Court of the Colony of Connecticut and dated October 9, 1701, which was furthered by a meeting in Branford, Connecticut by a group of ten Congregationalist ministers who pooled their books to form the school's first library. The school itself opened in Old Saybrook, Connecticut, but moved to New Haven, Connecticut in 1716, where it remains to this day. The Yale campus is in downtown New Haven, and the university is one of the city's largest employers, which sometimes leads to tension between students and local residents.

The college's original name was the Collegiate School; it was renamed Yale after an early benefactor, Elihu Yale. In the early 20th century, Yale merged with the Sheffield Scientific School.

Table of contents
1 Schools and libraries
2 Heads of Collegiate School, Yale College, and Yale University
3 Residential colleges
4 Benefactors
5 Famous alumni
6 Fictional alumni
7 Bombs
8 External link

Schools and libraries

In addition to a respected undergraduate college, Yale is noted for its law school, medical school, and school of music. The Divinity School was founded in the early 19th century by Congregationalists who felt that the Harvard University divinity school had become too liberal.

Yale's library system is among the largest in North America. The main library, Sterling Memorial Library, contains about 4 million volumes. The Beinecke Rare Book Library is housed in a marble building designed by Gordon Bunshaft, of the firm of Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill. Its courtyard sculptures are by Isamu Noguchi.

Other resources include the Peabody Museum of Natural History and a museum of British art.

Yale's sports teams are called the Bulldogs. They participate in the NCAA's Division I (I-AA in football).

Heads of Collegiate School, Yale College, and Yale University

Rectors of Yale College   (birth-death)  (years as rector)
1  Rev. Abraham Pierson    (1641-1707)   (1701-1707) Collegiate School
2  Rev. Samuel Andrew      (   -    )    (1707-1719) (pro tempore)
3  Rev. Timothy Cutler     (   -    )    (1719-1726) 1718/9: renamed Yale College
4  Rev. Elisha William     (1694-1755)   (1726-1739)
5  Rev. Thomas Clap        (1703-1767)   (1740-1745)

Presidents of Yale College (birth-death) (years as president)
1  Rev. Thomas Clap        (1703-1767)   (1745-1766)
2  Rev. Naphtali Daggett   (1727-1780)   (1766-1777) (pro tempore)
3  Rev. Ezra Stiles        (1727-1795)   (1778-1795)
4  Timothy Dwight IV       (1752-1817)   (1795-1817)
5  Jeremiah Day            (1773-1867)   (1817-1846)
6  Theodore Dwight Woolsey (1801-1899)   (1846-1871)
7  Noah Porter III         (1811-1892)   (1871-1886)
8  Timothy Dwight V        (1828-1916)   (1886-1899) 1887: renamed Yale University
9  Arthur Twining Hadley   (1856-1930)   (1899-1921)
10 James Rowland Angell    (1869-1949)   (1921-1937)
11 Charles Seymour         (1885-1963)   (1937-1951)
12 Alfred Whitney Griswold (1906-1963)   (1951-1963)
13 Kingman Brewster, Jr   (1919-1988)   (1963-1977)
14 Hanna Holborn Gray      (1930-    )   (1977-1977) (acting)
15 A. Bartlett Giamatti    (1938-1989)   (1977-1986)
16 Benno C. Schmidt, Jr   (    -    )   (1986-1992)
17 Howard R. Lamar         (    -    )   (1992-1993)
18 Richard C. Levin        (    -    )   (1993-    )

Residential colleges

Yale has a system of twelve residential colleges, instituted in 1930. The system is loosely modelled after the system found in British universities. However, students are accepted by the university as a whole, and assigned to residential colleges at random. These colleges are social rather than academic units, unlike the colleges at
Oxford and Cambridge:
  1. Pierson - named for Yale's first rector, Abraham Pierson
  2. Davenport - named for Rev. John Davenport
  3. Jonathan Edwards - named for theologian Jonathan Edwards (usually called "J.E.")
  4. Branford - named for Branford, Connecticut
  5. Saybrook - named for Old Saybrook, Connecticut
  6. Trumbull - named for Jonathan Trumbull, governor of Connecticut
  7. Berkeley - named for Rev. George Berkeley (1685-1753)
  8. Calhoun - named for John C. Calhoun
  9. Silliman - named for Benjamin Silliman
  10. Timothy Dwight - named for the two Yale presidents of that name, Timothy Dwight IV and Timothy Dwight V (usually called "T.D.")
  11. Ezra Stiles - named for Rev. Ezra Stiles
  12. Morse - named for Samuel Morse


Yale has had many financial supporters, but some stand out by the magnitude of their contributions. Among those who have made large donations commemorated at the university are:

Famous alumni

Fictional alumni


Yale's campus has been bombed three times. On
May 1, 1970, an explosive device was detonated in the Ingalls Rink during events related to the trial of Black Panther Bobby Seale. On June 24, 1993, computer science professor David Gelernter was injured in his office on Hillhouse Avenue by a bomb sent by the Unabomber. On May 21, 2003, an explosive device went off at Yale University's Sterling Law School, damaging two classrooms.

External link