Hopper head Julia Adams unveiled the Grace Hopper College coat of arms in a residential college-wide email Thursday.
The coat of arms — which will become official on July 1 — features a blue shield overlaid with a white pattern of circles and rectangles, a gold dolphin and black scalloping. The crest symbolizes many of Grace Murray Hopper’s GRD ’34 accomplishments, from her days at Yale and in the United States Navy to her contributions to computer science and mathematics to her personal and professional leadership, according to Adams.
“Grace Murray Hopper’s accomplishments and qualities of character offer rich opportunities for visualization, and for representing the College’s transformation,” Adams wrote.
According to Adams, the blue of the shield reflects the colors of Yale and the U.S Navy, where Hopper rose to the rank of Rear Admiral. The pattern of white circles and vertical rectangles represents Hopper’s pioneering contributions to computer science, while the scalloped bar at the top of the coat of arms evokes waves or a horizon line, linking “the College’s visual history to the patterns and colors of a new time.”
She added that the dolphin, which was thought of in the early days of heraldry as the “sovereign” and “guiding light of the sea” represents Hopper’s personal and professional record of leadership.
“The coat of arms is gorgeously symbolic, with ample room for personal interpretation and collective discussion, and it’s going to look fantastic on those graduation certificates and at the inauguration of Grace Hopper College this coming September 5th,” Adams wrote.
Three Yale alumni worked to create the coat of arms, according to Adams. John Gambell ART ’81 led the project in his role as University Printer, the title of the person responsible for Yale’s visual identity. Gambell also designed shields for Pauli Murray and Benjamin Franklin Colleges, as well as the current Yale School of Engineering and Applied Sciences shield.
Gampbell worked with Stephen Scher ’56 GRD ’66, an art historian with an extensive knowledge of heraldry who received the Yale Medal — the highest honor presented by the Association of Yale Alumni — in 2015. Calhoun alumnus Jonathan Corum ’95 produced the final artwork based on Gambell and Scher’s preliminary sketch. Corum, a science graphics editor at the New York Times, also designed the 12 metal residential college shields that decorate the west exterior wall of the Apple Store on Broadway.
“I feel sure that you agree that it’s been well worth the wait,” Adams said of the new coat of arms.