Franklin College (Yale University)

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Benjamin Franklin College
Residential college at Yale University
Yale University
Benjamin Franklin College.png
Location90 Prospect St., New Haven, CT 06520
Coordinates41°18′52″N 72°55′31″W / 41.314423°N 72.925297°W / 41.314423; -72.925297Coordinates: 41°18′52″N 72°55′31″W / 41.314423°N 72.925297°W / 41.314423; -72.925297
Named forBenjamin Franklin
ColorsBlue, Red
Sister collegeSelwyn College, Cambridge
Keble College, Oxford
HeadCharles Bailyn
DeanJessie Royce Hill

Benjamin Franklin College[1] is a residential college for undergraduates of Yale College in New Haven, Connecticut. It opened to students for the 2017 academic year.


Benjamin Franklin, namesake of the college

In 2008, Yale University President Rick Levin announced that the college had the resources to educate more students and thus would expand its enrollment by opening two new residential colleges for a total of fourteen.[2] Architectural models were unveiled by Robert A.M. Stern Architects in May 2009, featuring "a sampling of Gothic styles from across Yale’s campus," notably inspired by the early 20th-century buildings of James Gamble Rogers.[3] Construction began in the fall of 2014,[4] with an official groundbreaking ceremony in April 2015.[5] In April 2016, the university announced that the colleges would be named after Pauli Murray and Benjamin Franklin.[6] Franklin was chosen at the behest of Charles B. Johnson, class of 1954, who had made the single largest gift in Yale's history. Johnson saw Franklin as a personal role model and was the chairman of Franklin Templeton Investments, a global investment firm named after Franklin. Johnson asked for its consideration but did not stipulate that Yale use the name.[7] The naming decision was met with an outcry by students and faculty.[8]

Benjamin Franklin College is the southern of the two new colleges,[9] referred to as "South College" in some earlier documents.[10] Upon their opening to students for the 2017 academic year, the two colleges increased Yale's undergraduate capacity by 15 percent from 5,400 to 6,200 seats.[11]

Charles Bailyn, A. Bartlett Giamatti Professor of Astronomy and Physics, is the first head of Benjamin Franklin College,[1] and Jessie Hill, the former dean of Silliman College, is its first dean.[12]


  1. ^ a b "Heads of the two new residential colleges are named". Yale University. July 6, 2016. Retrieved July 7, 2016.
  2. ^ Lewin, Tamar (June 8, 2008). "Yale to Expand Undergraduate Enrollment by 15 Percent". The New York Times. Archived from the original on April 28, 2016. Retrieved April 27, 2016.
  3. ^ "Stern unveils models of new colleges". Retrieved March 20, 2018.
  4. ^ "Work begins on new colleges, unofficially". Retrieved March 20, 2018.
  5. ^ "Construction of new residential colleges an 'affirmation of Yale's future'". YaleNews. April 17, 2015. Retrieved March 20, 2018.
  6. ^ Remnick, Noah (April 27, 2016). "Yale Defies Calls to Rename Calhoun College". The New York Times. Archived from the original on May 2, 2016. Retrieved April 27, 2016.
  7. ^ Stanley-Becker, Tom (April 27, 2016). "Yale keeps the Calhoun name despite racial concerns, but ditches the 'master' title". Washington Post. Retrieved April 27, 2016.
  8. ^ Shimer, David (April 27, 2016). "Pauli Murray LAW '65, Benjamin Franklin honored". Yale Daily News. Retrieved April 27, 2016.
  9. ^ Salovey, Peter (April 27, 2016). "Decisions on Residential College Names and "Master" Title". Yale University (Official Yale University Messages). Retrieved July 8, 2016.
  10. ^ "Architect's Renderings of the New Residential Colleges" (.pdf). Yale University. April 15, 2011. Retrieved July 8, 2016.
  11. ^ Anderson, Nick (December 21, 2016). "Yale set for biggest expansion in 40 years". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286.
  12. ^ "Deans for Murray and Franklin colleges announced". Yale News. Retrieved March 21, 2017.

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