Preserving and Extending the Yale Mission, for This and Future Generations
The Yale Corporation, or board of trustees, is the university’s principal governing body. As fiduciaries, the trustees ensure that Yale’s academic and administrative leadership are guided by sound policies and practices and equipped with adequate resources to further Yale’s mission. In this work, they balance the needs of today’s faculty, students, alumni, and staff with those of future generations, and promote the well-being and excellence of the university.
A commitment to protect what makes Yale unique and excellent
The Corporation is a uniquely engaged and small group that includes the president of the university and sixteen Yale graduates: ten appointed successor trustees and six elected alumni fellows. Successor trustees and alumni fellows have equivalent responsibilities and duties. In addition, the governor and lieutenant governor of Connecticut are board members ex officio.
Drawing from their wide-ranging areas of expertise and common commitment to Yale, trustees address issues of strategic importance and offer guidance to support the stewardship of the university. The Corporation meets multiple times each year with Yale’s academic and administrative leaders to review, discuss, and vote on such matters as faculty and senior leadership appointments, the conferral of degrees, major building projects, and operating and capital budgets.
Engagement with the community
During and between meetings, the trustees connect with members of the Yale community, including faculty, students, alumni, and staff. When they are on campus, some do so formally, in regular meetings with student government and faculty, and others informally, at lunches, university teas, and campus events. Off campus, trustees meet with alumni at a variety of small and large gatherings, engaging on issues of importance to Yale and higher education in general.
Service to the university and beyond
In their role, trustees undertake to see that Yale’s excellence continues for generations and across the entire community. Corporation members act as stewards for the generous gifts of their fellow alumni, protecting hundreds of years of giving; they safeguard the physical resources of the campus, from its hundreds of buildings to its open spaces; and they make sure that its nearly 5,000 faculty, more than 10,000 staff, and more than 13,000 students are able to teach, work, and learn at the highest levels. This commitment to preserving and deepening excellence across all aspects of the university also reflects a commitment to New Haven and beyond, and to Yale’s mission to improve the world.
To learn more about the composition of the board, its committees, its current and former trustees, and their roles, visit the Board of Trustees website. The site also features information about what happens at meetings and the governing and historic documents that guide the trustees’ activities and responsibilities.