Yale College Council President Danny Avraham ’15 will serve as the voice of Yale College on the committee formed to advise University President Peter Salovey on the selection of the next deans of Yale College and the Graduate School.
Avraham was selected by an overwhelming majority of the Yale College Council during a vote early Saturday evening. He will serve along with 12 faculty members — to be announced this week — and a representative of the graduate student body.
The vote to select Avraham followed more than an hour of contentious discussion over how the the YCC should select the student to serve on the committee. In a Tuesday email to Avraham, Salovey gave the YCC president discretion over how the student would be picked. Avraham, in turn, placed that responsibility on the council.
YCC Vice President Kyle Tramonte ’15 presented three options for picking the student: nomination and selection by the YCC, an application process vetted by the YCC or a campus-wide election.
During the Saturday meeting, attendees debated the merits of nomination and selection by the YCC versus a campus-wide election.
YCC members present voted 12 to 9 to support the former approach.
Several of the YCC members advocating that the body nominate and select the student argued that YCC members commanded a superior understanding of the role of the Yale College dean and the issues he or she will be responsible for handling.
“We have talked about every facet of the Yale community,” YCC Representative Ewurama Okai ’17 said. “The 24 of us probably cover the entire campus.”
Several of the non-members present at the meeting disagreed. Noting that the advisory committee will play a major role in shaping the future of Yale College, Scott Stern ’15, who is a staff columnist for the News, argued that the YCC needed to set a democratic precedent for the future.
Avraham did not speak until the end, when he characterized holding an unprofessional campus-wide election to appease a few vocal students and avoid criticism, as “reckless governance.” He added every person voting at the YCC meeting was elected to make decisions that represent the student body.
YCC members present at the meeting nominated Avraham and Tyler Blackmon ’16, who is not a YCC member, as candidates for the student member of the selection committee. Avraham won the roll-call vote.
The content of this blog post has been updated from earlier versions.