Leandro Leviste ’15 said he believes that as long as someone in the world knows the answer to a question, there’s no reason anyone else shouldn’t be able to get it.
Leviste once asked what would happen if all the useful information about Yale were put in one place, and then created YaleWiki — a website that compiles information about the University — the next semester. As he runs for YCC secretary, Leviste, a FCC representative for Timothy Dwight College and one of the first freshmen to be elected to YCC as a college representative, plans to focus on centralizing information through event newsletters, a summer directory and an information handbook for freshmen.
“There’s such a huge information gap at all levels no matter what field, whether it’s about ways to conduct corporate business practices or finding study guides in classes here at Yale,” Leviste said. “No one will have to ask a question that’s already been asked.”
Leviste has served on the YCC academics and dining committees, working to reform Credit/D/Fail policies and keep dining halls open during breaks.
Leviste said he does not want opportunities to meet new people to end at Camp Yale. He wondered who else would be in his hometown Manila, Philippines this summer, and answered the question by compiling a database of 180 students from 73 countries willing to connect with other Yalies through the International Students Organization. Also the creator of Freshman Lunch, a program that randomly pairs freshmen interested in meeting new people for lunch, Leviste envisions extending the system to the rest of Yale.
“Part of YCC that is incredibly exciting to me is the start-up mentality,” Leviste said. “These initiatives require nothing from the Yale administration, but are relatively small things that can have a huge impact on students’ lives.”
Leviste also plans to create a weekly events newsletter to keep people informed. As an example, Leviste created a 12-page sample newsletter for this upcoming week, manually gathering information about 57 events.
Casey Watts ’12, co-founder of YaleWiki, said Leviste has an unusual ability to work in teams, motivate others and incorporate feedback when working on projects.
Lincoln Mitchell ’15, an FCC member and Leviste’s campaign manager, said that when Freshman Lunch was announced, people from other years immediately asked why they did not have a similar option.
“He’s very soft-spoken and quiet, but when he opens his mouth, everyone else stops and listens because when he speaks, it’s always something worth hearing,” Mitchell said. “He doesn’t care about being YCC secretary because of the title — he really just has a burning desire to help people.”
Leviste has also been involved with the Yale International Relations Association and the Yale Political Union, and he writes a regular column for a Filipino newspaper.