Made of Mettle

53 year-old Dwight Dickerson was accepted to Yale College in part for his “exceptional background.” So why don’t most students know about it?

A young Dwight Dickerson plays the trumpet. Courtesy Dwight Dickerson Many Yale undergraduates are surprised to encounter Dwight Dickerson in their Spanish seminars and Political Psychology lectures. His usual uniform is collegiate enough – black Velcro sneakers, blue jeans, a black pinstriped button-down left untucked and a grey Yale Bulldogs sweatshirt – but his bald head and the white hairs salting his pepper black mustache suggest he is a fair bit older than your average undergraduate. Dwight sees them staring, and sometimes even whispering about. . . Read more
Haley Cohen
Interior Design

Coming of age in a modern family.

The first figure to greet anyone entering my father’s second-floor apartment was the Martini Lady. Printed on poster board, she stood with her hip jutted, strong-jawed and slouchy in a red strapless cocktail dress.  Her hair was cut short and her raised hand exposed an unshaved armpit. I never knew if these spiky black tufts emphasized Martini’s dykiness or exposed her to be not a lady, but a delicate man. Despite her vamping, Martini was a welcome sight. Whenever I went outside with my father, I wanted. . . Read more
Kate Lund
That’s Our Motto

New Haven’s catch-all catch phrase.

It’s the stuff of legends: “what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.” This slogan invokes a city of unadulterated debauchery where strippers are outnumbered only by slot machines and mistakes don’t count. This promise of impunity has successfully seduced countless middle-aged men into squandering their savings and shattering their marriages in the city of sin. Yet as some know all too well, not everything stays in Vegas. Its only after waking up with a spouse, a lawsuit, and/or Chlamydia that we realize the sobering truth:. . . Read more
Robert Jeffery
The Last Lobsterman

Is it the end of the line for Rich Gambarella’s lobster business?

A lobsterman's-eye-view. Sara Mich Rich Gambardella sets up shop at the corner of Chapel and Mill Streets, half a block past a drawbridge that separates a small Fair Haven inlet from the larger Long Island Sound. Stacked lobster traps sit at the end of the driveway near a small dock. Across the inlet is a giant pile of mulch, covered by a black tarp and held down by tires. At least twice a week for the past twenty years, Rich has watched the sun rise. . . Read more
Sara Mich
Public Option

Reading between the lines at New Haven’s Public Library.

At Yale, we do not simply house books, we worship them. Sterling Memorial Library, according to its architect James Gable Rogers, is a “Cathedral of Learning” and Beinecke bears resemblance to a marble-walled shrine. Our library system is the fourth largest in the country, holding upward of 12 million volumes. Right off of the Green, closer to Old Campus than Sterling itself, is the New Haven Public Library. Though it is often overlooked by University students, this city library has its own devotees. The Public. . . Read more
Julia Fisher
Demanding Supplies

Taking art classes at Yale can be an expensive endeavor. Should Yale help its art students out?

Choices abound. Or do they? The starving artist survives on canned beans and spends his or her pinched pennies on canned paint instead. The image is familiar, clichéd. Yale’s undergraduate Art students are by no means starving, but they face far higher expenses than our other majors do. Liberal arts universities such as Yale pride themselves on their ability to offer students nearly absolute freedom in crafting their academic careers. But for Art students at Yale, this freedom comes with a price tag – literally.. . . Read more
Madeleine Haddon
Final Draft

The fight to write the blue book.

“Say what? SAYBROOK! Say what? SAYBROOK!” Residential college cheers are regularly heard at intramural sports games, but this time, the setting isn’t Yale’s playing fields—it is a small classroom in Scheffield-Sterling-Srathcona hall. After hours of preparation, the time has come – not to demonstrate athletic superiority, but to pick classes. This is the residential college seminar draft, the culmination of a long process of evaluation, negotiation, and strategy. Most students know the Residential College Seminar Program for its nontraditional courses; recent offerings have included Christian. . . Read more
Helen Knight
Hitting a High Note

How one New Haven organization uses music to build community.

Tina Lee Hadari skips to the corner of the classroom with startling spunk for a woman in her third trimester. A young girl sitting in the middle of the room pulls a bow across the strings of a cello that is almost her size. “Am I warmer?” Hadari asks, crinkling her face into a smile as she peeks behind a piano for the teddy bear her student has hidden. Hadari is the founder of Music Haven, an not-for-profit organization for budding string players who live. . . Read more
Marissa Grunes