High-flying times are at an end for annexed juniors in McClellan as it appears Jonathan Edwards college is joining the War on Drugs. Around 8 p.m. Friday evening, JE Master Penelope Laurans sent an email urging JE students living in McClellan to put down the pipe and seek professional help if need be.

Laurans and JE Dean Jody Spooner ’91 wrote to students that “marijuana is being smoked in the JE portion of McClellan – a lot of it and on a continuing basis.” The email — which was prompted by students who anonymously complained to Laurans and Spooner that the smell of marijuana was affecting their ability “to study, sleep, and breathe comfortably” — warned that perpetrators will be punished if they are caught smoking.

In their effort to crack down on marijuana use in the building, Laurans and Spooner have notified the Yale police to “keep a close watch on McClellan.” All JE students in McClellan are also required to attend a mandatory meeting at Laurans’ house on Monday, Oct. 28.

The text of Laurans’ email, addressed to the JE mascot ‘Spiders’, is below:


It has come to our attention that marijuana is being smoked in the JE portion of McClellan – a lot of it and on a continuing basis. This behavior is affecting many JE students adversely and must stop immediately.

There are two problems:

First: smoking marijuana is illegal in the state of Connecticut and violates Yale’s Undergraduate Regulations. Plain and simple. When you agreed to come to Yale, you made a contract with the University to abide by its rules. When you break that contract, and you are caught, you will be punished. It doesn’t matter whether or not you think the rules make sense. You are required to obey them and you will be punished if you do not.

Second: Smoking harms our community. You share a living space with other Spiders and adjacent to students from Calhoun. We have received complaints about the overwhelming smell of marijuana in McClellan’s public spaces and seeping into individual rooms. The people affected have come forward reluctantly and apologetically, and only after this activity has disrupted their efforts to study, sleep, and breathe comfortably. It angers both the dean and me that students have had to tolerate this. They do not know where exactly the fumes are coming from. They simply know they are strong and constant.

For these reasons, the dean and I today are reporting this problem to the Yale police. They will keep a close watch on McClellan and its surroundings from this moment forward to ensure that everyone can live well in our community.

In addition, the dean and I will be asking all JE students living in McClellan to attend a required gathering in the Master’s house on Monday, October 28 at 8 PM. We take great pride in our community, and wish to ensure that everyone in McClellan, and all JE, can live safely in environments that allow them to thrive.

Please if you are among those in McClellan who smoke, get hold of yourselves, and get help if you need it. Support is always available if you cannot break a habit – neither Dean Spooner nor I are making any moral judgment, and we are always available to help you. But as a member of our residential community who is accountable to others, stop this immediately. Otherwise the consequences are not going to be happy.

As ever,

Master Laurans and Dean Spooner

Editor’s note: A prior version of this post has been revised to remove sourcing from students done anonymously due to the News’ desire to refrain from publishing unattributed quotes.