Photo by Ellie Park ’26

Earlier this month, the Yale Alumni Association and the Office of Development collaborated to help Yale College students give thanks during the second “Thank Your People” gathering. The event, which was part of a larger collaboration known as “For Bright College Years,” attracted more than 150 students — far surpassing last year’s inaugural gathering and the expected turnout.

Postcard designs
Postcards from the event. Photo: Chelsea Gladue

What did the standout event reveal? The wonderful, pay-it-forward passion of today's Yale students.

During the gathering at Rose Alumni House, students were treated to sweets and beverages while they sat together at tables writing postcards. The cards, which were available in a variety of designs, were provided by Yale, along with stamps to send them anywhere so students could thank whomever they wanted.

Despite windy, cold weather during a class weekday with midterms looming, students kept streaming in. And they stayed — in many cases writing more than one thank you card and in one case more than 15! Some recipients were right down the street; others were many time zones away. 

Students ar Thank Your People
Students wrote notes to thank their friends, family, professors, and other meaningful people. Photo: Chelsea Gladue

As the day progressed, the momentum built and attendance doubled from morning to afternoon. YAA staff restocked donuts and contributed additional postcards from the office's own reserve.

The success of this event will ensure more "For Bright College Years" gatherings to come. Past events have included a fall Grove Street Cemetery Tour, Holiday Cookie Decorating, and “Find Your Path,” where students learned what they can do at Yale and beyond to become more involved as Alumni.

Through the "For Bright College Years" program, students discover ways to give back to Yale and its student body and learn how to get involved with their class, local club, or shared interest groups as alumni.

The next event will be Cookie Decorating at Rose Alumni House on December 13th from 1pm – 5pm.