As treasurer of the Yale College Council, Eugene Yi ’15 aims to make the Council a more active and representative voice for the student body.
Given the upcoming transition among University and New Haven leadership — in the fall, Yale will see a new president and admissions dean and New Haven will acquire for a new mayor — Yi thinks the YCC has a unique opportunity to “try and build a new relationship” with the newly appointed administrators. Yi believes that building these relationships will also involve improving the dialogue between the YCC and the student body so the YCC can better represent student interests. Currently, he added, student opinion is gauged mostly through online efforts such as surveys — an overused and impersonal strategy.
“Obviously it’s really easy to send out surveys, but we get tired of doing them,” he said. “I think they can be done in a better way. We can work with UOC and maybe other student leaders on campus towards a better solution.”
Yi said he intends to ensure that student input is considered before administrators finalize new policies, including the new grading policy and perceived alcohol crackdown, because “most of us are against changing the grades and alcohol policy coming down like a hammer.”
As treasurer, Yi also hopes to change the YCC’s budget allocation and make it more transparent. This year, the funds allocated for the 10K initiative were reabsorbed into the YCC budget instead of used for a proposed project, he said, adding that the money should have been better managed. He also plans to introduce smaller measures, including the option to change Yale ID photos, the establishment of a new pay-as-you-go on-campus meal plan, and the installation of Wifi in the Yale University Art Gallery.
As a YCC member this year, Yi spent time working on a referendum system to facilitate student feedback that was approved Sunday.
YCC member Mohammad Salhut ’14 said that although the YCC itself has been “disappointing this year,” Yi has stood out from other YCC members because he “is the type of guy who will include everybody’s opinion.”
Yi previously served as investment head of the Yale Student Investment Group and started an investment firm called Refraction Capital LLC with a group of undergraduates.