Cho, Libresco and Pagliarella: For a frugal Fling

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Photo by Charles Watkins.

Dear Yale College Council candidates,

As the Class of 2015 is about to find out at Bulldog Days, we are privileged with an incredibly lively campus, with literally hundreds of extracurricular organizations that contribute to a uniquely vibrant social scene. The YCC has been very effective in bringing student concerns and reforms to the Yale administration, making progress on crucial issues such as student mental health and helpful fixes like Summer Storage. However, there are some roles the Council does not need to fill.

While we enjoy the many social events the YCC plans every year, Yale’s social scene is lively and active with or without them. During this time of recession when so many people are struggling economically, both within our community and (perhaps more visibly) immediately outside our gates, spending a great deal of money for one or two more major social events for our campus seems to us to be an unnecessary luxury.

Thus, we would like to make a request to the candidates. Take 50 percent of the YCC’s social budget, currently spent on Spring Fling and a couple other community events, and donate it to an appropriate charitable cause instead. Thanks to the YCC’s new transparency reforms, we know that a whopping $175,000 has been set aside specifically for this year’s Spring Fling. There is no reason we couldn’t be creative enough to have a great musical event at the end of the year with a more frugal $87,500.

Countless charities that are working locally and globally to save and improve lives every day are being forced to slash essential services as the struggling economy continues to force budget cuts. Close to home, New Haven overflow shelters for the homeless struggle for funding every year. On the state level, the Connecticut Food Bank works donation-to-donation to fight hunger; donating half of Spring Fling’s budget would make us their largest annual donor. For those thinking globally, CharityWater can sponsor a well project for $5,000 that provides clean water to a community of 250 people for 20 years. There’s no need to make the decision right now; vet a few charities for quality, and put the choice out to the student body for a vote.

We can choose to maintain the spending status quo on events, or run these same events with far fewer dollars and far more creativity, saving and bettering lives in the process. The decision is yours, but if you make the right one, you’ve got our appreciation — and our vote.

This letter has been co-signed by 101 others, whose names are listed in the online version of this column at yaledailynews.com.

Connie Cho is a sophomore in Silliman College. Leah Libresco is a senior in Jonathan Edwards College and a staff columnist for the News. Christopher Pagliarella is a junior in Berkeley College.

Signees:

Bijan Aboutorabi TC ‘13

Akbar Ahmed DC ‘14

Patricia Alejandro SM ‘12

Katie Aragon TD ‘14

Annie Atura CC ‘11

Julie Aust ES ‘14

Minhal Baig TC ‘12

Nate Balk SM ‘14

Jess Belding DC ‘13

Lauren Berk SM ‘12

Nick Bleisch TC ‘13

Aiyana Bobrownicki BR’13

Patricio Brito ES ‘14

Kara Brower BK ‘13

Juliette Calvarin TD ‘13

Ben Chaidell PC ‘11

Chris Chen BR ‘11

Gina Chen PC ‘11

Chris Clarke TD ‘13

Maria Correa PC ‘13

Daniel Cruse MC ‘13

Ellen Degnan SM ‘12

Sabire Ipek Demir BK ‘14

Alyssa Denning SM ‘13

Nathanael Deraney BK ‘13

Fatymatou Dia SM ‘13

Max Eden MC ‘11

Philip Engelke MC ‘13

Frieda Fein PC ‘14

Eitan Fischer JE ‘13

Jun Luke Foster DC ‘14

Kevin Gallagher PC ‘11

Dan Gordon ES ‘14

Ben Gossels BR ‘11

Harry Graver DC ‘14

Raffi Greenberg MC ‘12

Fryda Guedes PC ‘14

Timmia Hearn Feldman MC ‘12

Rick Herron PC ‘13

Wendy Hou DC ‘12

Alex Isper CC ’14

Max Jacobson SY ‘13

Sana Jaffer CC ‘13

Matt Joseph PC ’12

Elias Kleinbock JE ‘14

Radhika Koul TD ‘14

Sarah Larsson BR ‘12

Dom Lawton BK ‘12

Roy Lee ES ‘13

Yanni Legmpelos JE ‘13

Yang Li BK ‘12

Frances Liu DC ‘13

Caroline Mann ES ‘13

Stephen Marsh SY ‘13

Mason Marshall BR ‘11

Tao Mason SY ‘13

Andrew Mayersohn PC ‘11

Kate McDermott CC ‘11

Stewart McDonald TC ‘14

A.T. McWilliams MC ‘12

Dana Miller BK ‘12

Alyssa Mitson-Salazar JE ‘12

Logan Mohs BK ‘11

Jessica Moore SM ‘13

Dylan Morris BK ‘11

Omar Mumallah PC ‘12

Olga Musayev MC ‘12

Shahla Naimi TC ‘12

Anna North SM ’13

Jessica Oppenheimer CC ‘14

Mari Oye TD ‘11

Jaymin Patel TD ‘12

Andrew Pearlmutter SM ’11

Jason Perlman BK ‘11

Ryan Pollock CC ‘13

Devin Race MC ’13

Daksha Rajagopalan DC ‘12

Josh Revesz CC ’13

Elizabeth Roberts JE ‘12

Jake Romanow SM ‘14

Stasha Rosen SM ‘11

Sophia Sanchez DC ‘13

Emily Sandford MC ‘14

Leah Sarna PC ‘14

Ben Schenkel ES ‘12

Yedidya Schwartz BR ‘11

Yishai Schwartz BR ‘13

Max Silva JE ‘11

Ellen Song JE ‘13

Jacy Tackett BK ‘13

Madelaine Taft-Ferguson DC ‘13

Shailin Thomas TD ‘13

Sera Tolgay BR ‘14

Rebecca Trupin JE ‘11

Selin Unlounen BR ‘14

Kanglei Wang BR ‘11

Alice Wang PC ‘12

Ben Wilson CC ‘14

Sarah Winsberg JE ‘11

Ayanna Woods SM ‘14

Sandy Zhu BR ‘12

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