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Not Just a Hurricane

I am writing this as Frankenstorm “Sandy” hits the windows of my apartment with the force of up to 48 miles per hour. One would think that the following thoughts would run through my mind as I witness the world of agendas turn upside down: Did I buy enough dry foods? I wish I were in Dubai right now. How long before we have electricity? Sure, I could be pondering all of these questions or reminiscing over my previous sunny days at a premiere dispute resolution center in the Middle East right now. Instead, my brain picks up on the below. My mobile phone beeps incessantly. Every eight out of ten messages are from my school. The SOM Student Services Director maps out a detailed plan of how we are going to make it through this cataclysmic time together, the Yale police reminds us that there are safe parking lots to protect our cars, and the Vice President of the University makes sure that all students blocked from returning home in New York are granted special guest passes at the Yale Club of New York. Yale SOM clubs offer ideas on how to make the most of this time without Internet and possibly hot water, such as navigating our apartments to see whether we would know how to get around in the dark if we lose power. My classmates’ brilliant sense of humor comes to the fore with their quirky tweets and posts--for example, reminding the rest of us to hold on to the "top 15 priority items when shipwrecked on a desolate island" that we learned in one of our "Managing Groups and Teams" leadership sessions. So, as I preheat my oven to hopefully come up with baked pumpkin masterpieces for my neighbors (who are also Yale students), I think to myself, “What an incredible experience I am living.” I have heard how adversity brings people together and helps them expose their best selves. Nevertheless, it is incredibly rewarding to see it in action, especially from an institutional community intended to be primarily academic in nature.