[ In the Press ]

Campus preps for party

Inauguration festivities include concert hosted by Dean Robert Blocker
October 8, 2013
Yale Daily News
By Matthew Lloyd-Thomas
Salovey_Peter_01In the midst of midterms, Yale is preparing for one of its biggest parties in recent memory.

University President Peter Salovey will be officially inaugurated this weekend, marking the completion of Yale’s first leadership transition in two decades. Although he has occupied his office in Woodbridge Hall since July 1, Salovey will not formally hold the presidency until he is instated by Yale Corporation senior fellow Margaret Marshall LAW ’76. The ceremony will come at the end of a week-long series of festivities including events such as open houses, concerts and Inaugural Balls, most of which are open to the entire Yale community and to residents of New Haven.

“President Salovey told the Inauguration Committee that he cared a great deal about making this event as inclusive as possible,” Special Assistant to the President Penelope Laurans said. “The Inauguration committee has tried hard to heed his wishes in its planning.”

The week’s activities began Monday, with Salovey visiting 27 academic departments and other staff offices. For the first half of this week, Salovey will make up to 10 appearances per day.

Daniel Harrison GRD ’86, a music professor and chair of the Inauguration Committee, said these visits, though low-profile, are among the most important events of the week because Salovey is interacting with both faculty and staff, many of whom are also residents of New Haven.

With 10,000 residents of New Haven and the surrounding area working at Yale, the University inevitably has an impact on the city, Deputy Chief Communications Officer Michael Morand ’87 DIV ’93 said. For Salovey, including the Elm City in the festivities was a fundamental concern, he said.

“[Salovey] and his wife are deeply involved with, and committed to, Yale’s hometown,” Morand said, adding that Salovey “was clear from the beginning of planning that he wanted Yale’s neighbors, his home community, involved in the celebration.”

Though there will be a celebration for faculty and staff on Tuesday and some invitation-only symposia with top Yale professors Friday afternoon, the more formal aspects of the inauguration will not commence until Friday evening. Woolsey Hall will play host to an invitation-only “Celebration Concert” hosted by Music School Dean Robert Blocker, who said the concert will “honor the new president and his wife with music that has meaning for them.”

On Saturday, the University will host a campus-wide open house, allowing Yale community members and New Haven residents to explore parts of the University, such as the residential colleges, that are typically restricted.