Advice for Wee-lis

It’s a clumsy portmanteau for wee Elis, also known as young Yalies/baby bulldogs.
In honor of Yale’s dreamboat new mascot, a real baby bulldog, the tiny tiny
Handsome Dan XVIII.


His little rumpled face breaks my heart. :’)

Some points of advice for other young Yalies, the result of four years of Yale experience, both good and bad:

  • Don’t wear a lanyard. Lanyards are silly. Only freshmen wear lanyards.  Your future self will look back on yourself and think your past self was silly. Or so I’ve heard. I never wore a lanyard.
  • Get very good at stealing food.  Particularly if you are vegan (me). Bring tupperware.
  • All roads lead to Toads, but if you never end up there, that’s fine too. (Toads being the local club).
  • Explore extracurricular or academic passions to find a friend group with similar interests.
  • Try something new. (Try ballroom dance).
  • Participate in at least one scientific study (because they’re weird and cool).
  • Campus politics are big and you will get dragged in.  Embrace the diversity of your student body, be active and supportive if you’re interested.
  • Don’t forget to appreciate how beautiful the campus is. Trust me, you’ll forget that you live in a Gothic village pretty quickly.
  • You freshman counselor/froco may be helpful or annoying. Be ready to have to talk to someone about how Yale is coming along. It took me a while to adapt and I didn’t like the nosy froco business.
  • Prepare to deal with a lot of privileged/rich/white students. They can be scary and very very exasperating.
  • Similarly, prepare to be misunderstood by people coming at something from a different background.
  • Prepare to be called a special snowflake for no valid reason.
  • Be kind and considerate to your dining hall workers and other staff, not only because they can ruin your life, but also because they deserve respect.
  • Skip all university-organized class/group dinner events possible. Some people like them. I’m not a fan and I wasn’t even one of the people who got food poisoning freshman year.
  • Everyone at Yale/a majority of people have some for of anxiety/depression at some point while they’re there. Don’t be afraid to talk to people or seek help from Yale Health (home of very mixed experiences).
  • If you could use some kind of special set up, ASK. I got a doctor’s note and now I have my pet cat sleeping on my bed next to me as a support animal. It’s excellent.
  • Get enough sleep.
  • If you need somewhere private to cry try Grove Street Cemetery.
  • Master the Orbis library request system. We have so many books but they will find them and deliver them to the desk for you in only a day or two. It’s magic.
  • Go to the talks and student performances. I’ve seen so many amazing student performances and most (all the ones I’ve seen) have been free.
  • Sign up for the apple-picking trips.
  • Don’t wear a lanyard.


Maybe I’ll write a second edition when I graduate *gasp* next semester.

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