Trumbulletin 3-5-20

March 5, 2020


Dean Chandhoke and I write to update Trumbull on CoVID-19. 

First, we’ve heard plenty of speculation about how Yale is going to handle issues surrounding this virus. I’m sure you have as well. 

Indeed, Tuesday evening during our mid-term study break, I talked with many of you about this and emphasized that current speculations are just speculations.  No decisions regarding changing business as usual at Yale have been made except:

  • Register your travel plans, wherever you plan to travel – internationally, domestically, even locally. Here’s the link.
  • Know where to find reliable information. Start by reading the Yale messages you receive (yes – all the way through). Check new COVID-19 website often; it is being updated regularly.
  • Follow the health guidelines on the website – washing hands, not touching your face. They may take some practice.
  • Keep in touch with your parents and guardians if you will be staying on campus or traveling somewhere other than home; they will want to hear from you.
  • And remember to get some rest and enjoy yourselves, wherever you will be. This is a great time to renew yourselves for the rest of the semester.  (We’re not telling you not to go home for break!) 
  • Do consider if other travel is necessary.  Do consider if it is risky.  Do realize that if you take risk on you are taking it on not just for yourself but for the Trumbull and Yale communities as well.  It’s O.K. and sometimes wise to cancel plans and I’m betting that some of your parents would agree with this.

This said, we can tell you that Yale is taking the situation very seriously.  Many groups at Yale are monitoring the situation closely and thinking ahead and planning for what may (or may not!)  happen.  This is prudent.  Many administrators and health personnel are being kept in the loop and you can be sure that all of them and especially those of us in the residential colleges are concerned with your welfare.

In that regard, do exercise caution.  Wash your hands often (especially after touching surfaces that others are likely to have touched), do get a flu shot if you have not already done so, don’t travel unnecessarily, pay attention to your own symptoms and keep away from others if you have symptoms of the cold or flu.  (This is always good advice.)  Think of your own health and think of the health of our community.

For those of you staying here over break or parts of break, watch your email.  We’ll be providing some meals planned ahead of time and there are likely to be some spur-of-the-moment, “come on over to the house for food and conversation” sessions too. 

If you are sneezing and coughing and staying in your room to care for yourself and to protect others let us know. Write to us, copy Deborah Bellmore and Debbie Rueb.  (I’ll have water, other drinks and some snacks and tissues “to go” that we or someone else in the office can deliver to you or to a location close to you.)  We’ll watch out for you if you get sick; you watch out for others.


I thank associate fellow Dan Cohn for hosting our mid-term study break with food from House of Naan this past Tuesday evening and for having the great idea to screen the incoming Super Tuesday primary results in our dining hall as we ate.  I thank Jerry Zhou for his usual good cheer and help with getting food set out and, afterwards, for helping with clean up (including my own trail of leaky coleslaw juice as I made my own way to the trash can).  I thank Jerry for quickly finding Dayle Chung and Dayle herself for coming to the dining hall quickly to show primary results (after Dan suggested screening them.)

I thank Misha Semenov for his continuing support of our Mellon Forum, Adam Sexton for always being there as well as Debbie Rueb, Karen Eisenman, Hannah Manz, and Mitchell Mares for their behind the scenes support of all our Mellon events.   I thank my Trumbull seniors for all their terrific presentations.  This past Monday we heard from Sarah Wie, Uzo Biosah, and PJ Tuckman

I thank Fred Polner for leading a group of our fellows and students on a trip to Woolsey Hall’s pipe organ and Diego Miro and Luca Scoppetta-Stern for presenting their art at our last Fellows’ meeting.

A little up-date on our Trumbull vandalism

I like being transparent.  I’d also like to avoid future vandalism in Trumbull.  In the service of those goals, here’s the final cost to clean and repair the rug in the Common Room and to replace the mat beneath it: $2,250.  Yikes!  The estimate to repair the tables was also high (and would have added considerably to that cost), but we took that particular task on ourselves (following You-Tube repair advice) and, for the most part, we succeeded. In that regard, I thank Ellen Habelow from dining who came to my aide as we worked on those tables.  She brought some personal supplies in from her own home for our use.  If you see something like this happening, please urge the people involved to stop and also let me know right away. 

Two Trumbull Teas and a trip to a Baseball Game

Following break, we have two teas and one MLB trip planned.

Tuesday,March 24:  Anne Perkins, “Yale Needs Women”.  You might want to get a copy of this book and read it over break.  It’s not heavy reading and it is very interesting.  I learned many things about the history of women at Yale by reading this myself.  I have my own copy.  I’ll loan it out to the first person who asks.  (There is a dinner after the tea; many people have signed up but let us know if you are interested.)

Thursday, April 2:  Dr. Alain Bertoni, Wake Forest University.  Disparities in health care with a special emphasis on diabetes.  This should be of interest to anyone interested in health care, public health issues, and income disparities in our country.  I’ll send more to details after the break.  (Dr. Bertoni is also a Trum-Alum and a Trum-Parent.)

Baseball Game:  We’re going to a major league baseball game (New York Yankees vs Toronto Blue Jays) as suggested to me by some of you.  I thank Deb Bellmore for making the arrangements.  It will be on Saturday, April 4.   Sign up in the Trumbull HOC office (room G103) by 4pm tomorrow, March 6.  The bus will leave Trumbull at 11am promptly.

Spring Break.
Travel safely and be careful health-wise as you travel.  Join us for Trum-events if you stay.  Enjoy yourselves, get some rest and spend time with family and friends.  Once you return, the rest of the semester always speeds by.