- REUTERS/Michelle McLoughlin
Yale University is making some big changes to its storied “secret societies,” the Yale Daily News reports.
This semester, according to the Yale student newspaper, there are seven new societies on campus, created to guarantee a spot for any students who may have been left out of the “tapping” process where senior societies select their new members from the current junior class.
This effort joins another senior society reform from earlier this year, as the Yale College Council created a process for uninterested students to opt out of the selection process.
“By removing their names from consideration by any societies, juniors not interested in societies could avoid the discomfort and stress associated with the process,” the Yale Daily News reports.
Yale’s senior societies are best known for the nine secretive “landed” societies that all have meeting houses on campus – including the elite “Big Three” of Skull and Bones, Scroll and Key, and Wolf’s Head. In the past few decades, dozens of more non-landed societies have sprung up, as well.
The seven new societies are different, as they’re designed to be inclusive and allow students to choose a group that most fits their interests. Students were sorted into the new societies based on preferences from a survey, according to the Yale Daily News, “including time commitment and emphasis on society traditions like ‘bios’ – long presentations about members’ personal histories – or debates.”
The plan seems to be working, according to one anonymous member of a new society.
“Everyone definitely wants to be there,” the student told the Yale Daily News. “And since there are bio-focused and non-bio-focused ones, everyone in mine specifically wants to be [at that one].”