Yale University to rename Calhoun College


Rebecca Rakowitz

Following student, faculty and staff protests as well as years of debate among university leadership, Yale University announced it will change the name of Calhoun College, an undergraduate residence college named for Yale alumnus, politician and slavery proponent John C. Calhoun.

In an announcement released on Saturday, the university building is set to be renamed for Grace Murray Hopper, a trailblazing computer scientist and naval officer who received both a Master’s degree and a Ph.D in mathematics from Yale in the early 1930s.

“Calhoun’s legacy as a white supremacist and a national leader who passionately promoted slavery as a ‘positive good’ fundamentally conflicts with Yale’s mission and values,” said Yale President Peter Salovey in a statement.

In April 2016, Salovey stated that the name of the building would not change as he wanted to confront rather than erase history. As such, Salovey said Calhoun will still remain a part of campus, with his statues and other references remaining.

“In making this change, we must be vigilant not to erase the past,” Salovey said. “We will not remove symbols of Calhoun from elsewhere on our campus, and we will develop a plan to memorialize the fact that Calhoun was a residential college name for 86 years.”

In recent years, student groups at The University of Alabama have worked to see the removal of names of white supremacists on University buildings. No such changes have been made.