Dining at Yale

YDS Commons building

“The Commons”, photo credit Thao A. Nghiem

Part of your student fees include a $500 per semester meal plan ($250 for part-time students) to use over the course of the semester. The meal plan is a declining points plan, where points are spent like money.

The Refectory is located on the second floor of the Divinity School, tenderly nestled in between the Common Room and Marquand Chapel. It opens for a continental-style breakfast from 8:00-10:20 am. There is a break from 12:30-1:20 every day for lunch (there used to be formal, shirt-and-tie, sit-down dinners every day when students still lived on the Quad itself before the renovations in 2001.) The Refectory is a magical place to catch up with people and even to meet with faculty (many will eat in the Refectory also!).

For those of us who have become used to the delightful rush of caffeine, the Refectory provides three selections of coffee: two caffeinated options (usually one dark roast and one medium roast), and decaf.While the Refectory will not be open during BTFO—we cater all of the meals from local restaurants—it will quickly become a very familiar and dear space for you. A place to eat, a place to talk, and a place to share time with students and professors.

Food service inside the Refectory

“The Refectory”, Photo credit Yale Divinity School FB

Dining area inside the Refectory

“The Refectory”, Photo credit Yale Divinity School FB

Though options are somewhat limited, the conversations and connections you will make with your peers and colleagues throughout your years at YDS will provide a deeper nourishment than simple food could ever give. Whether it be a warm smile from a friend, or a hug from your classmate, the Refectory provides a place of community. And though the temptation might be to look at the limited food choices and remark on the redundancy of the gustatory options, the nourishment of the connection to your peers will sustain you throughout the year.

Dining Hall at the YDS Commons

“The Commons”, Photo credit Evy Behling

Divinity points, however, are accepted at all Yale Dining locations open to graduate and professional students. As with any Yale student or affiliate (including alumni, believe it or not), we also have access at the Commons, which at one time was Yale’s only dining room, but now serves as a “common” dining room for all students.

You are also able to use your points at the Slifka Dining Center. “The first Kosher Kitchen for Yale Graduate Students opened in the fall of 1959 in the Young Israel Synagogue, a twenty-five minute walk from campus, serving only week-night dinners. Today, the Lindenbaum Kosher Kitchen, run by Slifka Dining, functions as a seamless part of the Yale University Dining System in the middle of campus.” Not only do they serve breakfast, lunch and dinner during the week, but also Shabbat meals, and weekend brunch and dinner in the Sam and Ronnie Heyman Commons. “Every other Sunday, Slifka offers a bagel brunch, often attended by more than 400 students who come to chow down on dozens and dozens of bagels and mounds of lox – just one example of Slifka Dining’s focus on providing a full-service dining option for all, serving excellent food that happens to be kosher.” Feel free to peruse their homepage for dining events that schedule throughout the year: https://www.slifkacenter.org. 

Hall of Graduate Studies

“Hall of Graduate Studies”, photo credit Thao A. Nghiem

Another dining option is the charming neogothic dining room at the Hall of Graduate Studies (HGS). “HGS is open for lunch and dinner Monday through Friday with an all-you-care-to-eat buffet style menu. The menu features a wide variety of choices, from bold ethnic creations to home style favorites. Vegetarian and vegan selections are offered at every meal.”

HGS dining room is the main dining location for graduate students for dinner (the Refectory only serves breakfast and lunch). HGS accepts university meal plans, credit cards (Visa, Master, American Express) or Eli Bucks.

Hall of Graduate Studies outer walkway

“Hall of Graduate Studies”, Photo credit MK McAdams

*Content taken from Ann Jacob, Esther Boyd, and Patrick Burrows. Thank you for allowing us to copy, paste and render their words.

*Other content taken from Slifka and HGS homepages. 

Please note, some outdated prices have been removed from this page to prevent confusion. –YDS Webmaster, 09-26-2016