Yale Communities Create Bonds from Miles Away
While college organizations all around the nation faced challenges posed by the pandemic, student leaders have also found that the uncertainty has actually improved the way they approach community building.
When asked to reflect on their past quarter, women leaders at Stanford shared that there was unexpected growth in their communities as a result of creative approaches. Across the country at Yale, student leaders have similarly taken the initiative to build strong communities. Due to their completely remote environment, students like Miles Waits, a Yale senior and council president of one of Yale’s residential colleges, have had to put in an extra effort to re-create the bonds expected and cherished on campus. When asked about the Jonathan Edwards College community this fall, Waits shares an unexpected experience.
“It’s funny — probably because the sense of community is now much less obvious due to Covid- we’ve become a lot more active this past semester… People are missing out on so much that usually happens on campus. We really wanted to make sure Jonathan Edwards really felt like a home to [its members].”
To make up for the gaps left by remote learning, the Jonathan Edwards College council has hosted events geared toward residents on campus in addition to the majority of students that are off-campus, including an event on Glimpse. Glimpse is a virtual events platform where people can match for one-on-one, time-boxed video calls and hang out in small group calls of 3–6 members. Waits said that the students loved using the icebreaker questions feature and playing the mini-games on Glimpse.
“Using Glimpse was awesome! Conversation flowed naturally so it was a nice way to have a chill conversation and to give people who haven’t met an opportunity to do so,” Waits said.“Unlike Microsoft Teams or Zoom, [this platform] was the best to do an event like this.”
The Jonathan Edwards community alongside many other Yale students looks forward to wrapping up finals and to a more engaged community next semester, on Glimpse and hopefully soon in-person.
How has COVID impacted your group? If you’re a student group interested in using Glimpse to build your community, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’d be happy to help you!