Tanya Rivero Warren is an anchor for CBS News, weekdays 12-5 p.m. ET, on CBS News Streaming, hosting a live newscast focused on national and international news of the day. Prior to CBS, she hosted a show on WSJ Live and was an anchor/correspondent for ABC News.

Tanya was a professional dancer with the New York City Ballet before coming to Yale. At the university, she majored in literature and theater studies, and after graduation, she acted in New York for a few years and originated the title role in Sam Shepard's play Eyes for Consuela (1997, Manhattan Theater Club). Tanya has her MS in journalism from the Columbia University School of Journalism. She lives in Manhattan with her husband and two kids.

Most recently, she took some time to answer our questions, reflecting on her fondness of the JE courtyard and trying to fit in as many classes and extracurriculars as possible during her time on campus.

Why Yale?
Since I danced professionally before attending Yale, I was looking for a university that had great academics, yes, but also a vibrant arts community. In addition, I was looking for an interesting, diverse, and stimulating student body. I remember I had to choose between Princeton and Yale, and after a visit to each school, the outcome was crystal clear. Yale was the perfect fit for me.


What is the most enduring memory of your time at Yale?
I have so many! But am particularly fond of fall and spring afternoons hanging out on the Old Campus lawn or in the JE courtyard. Also, maybe it sounds crazy, but I actually miss studying in the Study session, which were equal parts productive and social!


If you could relive your time at Yale, what would you do differently?
Oh boy, there are so many classes I missed! I would have taken Jonathan Spence's class on Modern China – I still kick myself about that one – and more psychology classes. I would also have taken an art class. (I recently learned undergrads get the same faculty the grad students get from the Yale School of Art.) Sadly, I just couldn't fit all the classes I wanted to take into the four years we are given at Yale. Also, I might have changed my major to political science.

What would you do exactly the same? 
I was a dilettante in terms of extracurriculars, and I wouldn't have changed a thing there. I wrote for the Yale Daily News, danced with Yale Dancers, acted in many theater productions, edited for the Yale Vernacular (a lit mag), and was a member of Club Latino, the Elizabethan Club, and Book and Snake. I also taught ballet classes in the Payne Whitney gymnasium. I also spent lots of time meeting my fabulous classmates and solidifying friendships that I still value to this day.

What is your favorite place in New Haven, past or present? 
The Yale campus.

What is your favorite spot on campus?
I will always feel at home and at peace in the Jonathan Edwards courtyard. Plus, the single suite I had there senior year was pretty sweet: a one-bedroom with a fireplace, mahogany paneling and leaded-glass windows. I wouldn't have a place nearly that nice for many years after graduation!

Who is another Yalie who inspires you? Why?
Again, there are so many. Writer Andrew Solomon ’85 is an alum I did not know at Yale but who I've become close to since, because our sons are in the same class. He's a great humanist, and his books and articles offer much comfort and insight. Wendy Weiser 92 is a kick-ass lawyer at the Brennan Center for Justice fighting the good fight against gerrymandering.

What have you gained from your alumni engagement with Yale?
The same thing I loved about Yalies when I was in college is the same thing I love about the alums now: They are passionate, interesting, smart, open-minded, curious, and always up for vigorous conversation.

How did your time at Yale shape the person you are today?
It allowed me to seriously explore everything I was even vaguely interested in, to help me narrow down the field.

What is your hope for the future of the Yale alumni community?
I hope the Yale alumni community can continue to grow ever more connected on local levels, in communities everywhere around the globe. We are a diverse, open-minded, curious populace that seeks to improve the world. Let us join our superpowers for the collective good! Also, it would be fun just to get together and socialize more. :)

What advice would you give to current students? 
Follow your passions! Be focused, yes, but not rigid. Remember, life has stages, so be prepared to pivot if necessary. What you want now, might not be want you want in 10 or 15 years. And that's OK – we are complicated, multi-layered beings, us Yalies. As Walt Whitman wrote, “I am large, I contain multitudes.” Let those words guide you and comfort you, when you navigate all life has to offer.
 


How would you answer? Share your responses with the YAA and they might be featured in an upcoming edition of "Getting to Know You." 

And be sure to check out all the Q&As in the series by visiting our Getting to Know You page.

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