Council ensures that seniors go out in style

As seniors dig in for their last semester of thesis writing and job searching, the Senior Class Council is doing its best to make sure their last semester will be remembered as much for good times as for hard work.

The council kicked off the semester with a pub crawl, a night at the new club Playwright, and a Yale Cabaret event. Still in store is a trip to an ice-skating rink, a senior night at the Yale University Art Gallery, and a formal charity ball at the end of March, said senior class secretary Ravi Paidipaty ’02.

The council members will be planning about an event a week for the rest of the semester, Paidipaty said, and as the end of the year approaches they will probably organize two events for each week.

The festivities have drawn significant crowds away from their books for weekend and midweek fun and received praise from those who have attended, Paidipaty said.

“They’re usually a really good time,” John Phillips ’02 said. “You see a lot of people in the senior class who have moved off campus. I think they’re very well done, and they always notify people to tell them what’s going on every week.”

Next on the whirlwind senior schedule is a trip to an ice-skating rink in the next couple of weeks, followed by a senior night at the Yale University Art Gallery for any seniors who need the motivation of food and live music to make the trek to 1111 Chapel Street.

“It’s a good chance for seniors who have never been to the art gallery to see it before they leave,” Paidipaty said.

The evening, the first of its kind for a senior class, will be complete with a jazz band, hors d’oeuvres, and cocktails — an added benefit to organizing events where everyone is 21, Paidipaty said.

Paidipaty said the Jan. 16 event at Playwright, for which the council hired a DJ and rented out the back room, was a huge success, partially because many students had not yet been to the club, which is fairly new.

The “Cabaret Challenge” last Friday sold out the theater of 80 to 100 seats, Paidipaty said, with half-price tickets and a game show that involved audience participation.

The gala event of the semester will come after spring break when the council will host a charity ball, which will be the equivalent of the fall term Senior Masquerade Ball.

Senior class treasurer Liz Oosterhuis ’02 said the cost of the ball will be covered by senior class dues, so that all the money raised from ticket sales will go to a charity, most likely the Red Cross.

Oosterhuis will offer her services as a tennis instructor in a silent auction, which Paidipaty said will include items donated from local businesses. The auction proceeds will also be donated to the charity.

The culmination of the senior events will come on the long-awaited Class Day, when an illustrious public figure traditionally addresses the graduating class the day before commencement. The speakers are usually Yale graduates — last year, Hillary Rodham Clinton LAW ’73 spoke. The choice for the speaker is shrouded in secrecy, but Oosterhuis said the council has made up a preliminary list of people chosen in a survey of seniors, and has sent out an initial letter of invitation.

Until then, the council will continue planning and organizing events, a responsibility that is a real labor of love for the officers and chairs of the individual events.

“It’s a lot of work, but it’s pretty rewarding,” Paidipaty said. “Liz and I have a lot of pride in our class.”

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