Adams named Calhoun master

Sociology professor and Deputy Provost Julia Adams will be the next Calhoun College Master, University President Peter Salovey announced Thursday.

Adams will succeed Jonathan Holloway GRD ’95, who will step down at the end of the academic year. At an announcement in the Calhoun dining hall Thursday evening, Salovey, Holloway and Yale College Dean Mary Miller praised Adams’ skills as a scholar, instructor and administrator. Adams said she is excited to become more integrated into student life, adding that the position will be intellectually challenging but still “a lot of fun.”

“I have to say, uncharacteristically, I’m a little bit tongue-tied,” Adams told a crowd of Calhoun students yesterday. “I’ve been at Yale 10 years and by far this is my most exciting day.”

Adams came to Yale in 2004 after beginning her career as a professor at the University of Michigan. Adams previously chaired the University’s sociology department and won the Gaddis Smith International Book Prize for her work, “The Familial State: Ruling Families and Merchant Capitalism in Early Modern Europe.”

Holloway, a history professor and chair of the African American Studies department, has held the position of Calhoun master since 2005. He is a specialist in post-emancipation United States history and received the William Clyde DeVane Award for Distinguished Scholarship and Teaching in Yale College in 2009. He announced in September that he would step down at the year’s end.

Salovey began the announcement of Adams’ new appointment by acknowledging Holloway’s legacy, calling him “one of the great masters in Yale College history.”

Salovey added that Adams is extremely qualified for the position, highlighting her extensive work on faculty diversity.

“Over the last 10 years, [Adams] has established herself as one of the great Yale citizens,” Salovey said. “She understands the workings of Yale University from many, many different perspectives.”

Students interviewed expressed excitement about a new master — but added that they are also sad to see Holloway leave, they said.

Noam Shapiro ’15 said he hopes Adams will carry on Holloway’s legacy in the college.

“I hope that Master Adams will continue the engagement Master Holloway had with the Calhoun community as a mentor and as a friend,” he said.

Seven of 13 students interviewed said they appreciate Holloway’s accessibility and friendliness.

Katie Colford ’16 called Holloway extremely approachable, adding that he has a “commanding presence without being overpowering.”

As master, he fostered a sense of family within the college, Sofia Nicholson ’14 said.

Andres Ornelas Vargas ’17 said that though it is sad to see Holloway leave — especially after the death of former Calhoun Dean Leslie Woodard earlier in the year — Holloway’s departure does not impact freshmen the same way it does upperclassmen.

Adriana Rodriguez ’16 recalled her interactions with Holloway as very formal. The role of the master, she said, is to bring discipline to the college, while the dean should be more accessible.

The relationship between the Calhoun community and the new master will form organically, Ruier Ma ’17 said.

Shapiro said that since the new master loves culture and New York City, he hopes that she will bring more art to the college and organize student trips to the city.

“She seems very nice. Very open, willing to talk whenever you need her,” Ryan Mc Rae ’17 said.

Calhoun, which was founded in 1933, has had 13 masters and 11 deans.

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