Ins and Outs: Yale 2024 Edition

Collage of pop culture moments, including Taylor Swift, Barbenheimer, Beyonce, and Spiderman

Over winter break, my social media feeds were absolutely inundated with people’s lists of what they consider “in” and what they consider “out” in 2024. These “in and out” lists ranged from aesthetic trends and types of media (like gorpcore or podcasts) to everyday habits and personal goals (like drinking enough water or taking up yoga).

Returning to Yale last week, I wondered what sorts of things would be on my “in and out” list at school. What did I want to bring into the new year? What did I want to leave behind? As such, this post is dedicated to what I think Yale students should incorporate into their 2024 and leave behind in 2023. What better place to share my unsolicited opinions than here!? This list is not exhaustive, and I’m sure it will foster rigorous debate, but here are just a few thoughts…

Graphic of blocks pointing in two different directions

I’ll start with my “outs!”

1) Being overstressed. All of us need to remind ourselves that it is okay to sit down and breathe every once in a while! It’s very easy to get caught on the hamster wheel at a school where the options to do fun and exciting things can at times be limitless. Amidst the friend hangouts, study sessions, concerts, backpacking trips, etc. — make sure the wheel isn’t spinning too fast and that your little hamster feet won’t buckle underneath you.

Sharpay Evans from High School Musical 2 lounging by the pool in a pink glam outfit
Me ignoring my assignments as a deliberate act of self-care.

2) Walking long distances — and let me explain. I know walking is great for you, but when it is 32 degrees outside and your seminar is on the other side of town, why have we all seemed to forget that the Yuttle (or Yale Shuttle) is an option? This handy bus service has lines all around campus and runs fairly often, so instead of slipping and sliding across sheets of ice on your way to Science Hill, hop on the Yuttle and leave the walking to shorter distances.

The Yale Shuttle picking students up.
My limousine awaits!

3) The Wordle. This suggestion might prove to be the most controversial. Let me start by saying that I myself am a devoted fan of the Wordle — the Mini Crossword as well! However, if there is one thing in class that gets in my way of active listening more than anything — it is the urge to play the Wordle. Once I remember I haven’t completed it that day, I just have to finish it right then and there. Depending on how hard the word that day is, I’ve also either missed a moment of discussion or swaths of time that I just can’t confess to.

Graphic of the Wordle with "Wordle" imposed on top of it.

Now for my “ins,” which are much more self-explanatory.

1) Hot chocolate year-round. December is over but New Haven’s coffee shops still have those packets around somewhere…

Oprah drinking a coffee and posing for the camera.
How it feels to have a hot cocoa in hand.

2) Dancing at the function. Yale has formals, balls, dinners, galore! — but we all seem a little too shy to really bust a move at these events. Instead of talking the whole time or slighting bobbing our heads to the music, I want to see someone do the worm. YOLO.

Still from Gerwig's film "Barbie" during glamorous dance scene to "Dance the Night Away" by Dua Lipa
Me and the gang at the function, hopefully with a hot chocolate nearby.

3) Wandering. Sauntering. Flaneuring! Yale students often want to effectively manage their time (understandably so), but why don’t we find the time to just doddle about? Maybe you will stumble upon Katalina’s Cupcakes in New Haven, or find yourself at the Good Life Center (a mental health space at Yale) while they are giving out free tea and snacks to students? Maybe you’ll even wander onto the Yuttle with a hot chocolate in hand!

A well-lit room in the cozy Good Life Center, with a comfy sitting area
A cozy nook in the Good Life Center.

What is on your “in and out” list for 2024?