Sarah E. Insley to be next dean of Branford College

Sarah E. Insley will be the next dean of Branford College, announced Yale College Dean Jonathan Holloway in an email to the Branford community on July 8. Insley moved into Branford on July 27.

Sarah E. Insley will be the next dean of Branford College, announced Yale College Dean Jonathan Holloway in an email to the Branford community on July 8. Insley moved into Branford on July 27.

(Photo by Román Castellanos-Monfil)
(Photo by Román Castellanos-Monfil)

“I am confident that Ms. Insley will make many significant and positive contributions to the life of the college,” Holloway wrote. “Master Bradley and I hope you will join us in welcoming her to Branford College.”

Prior to her Yale nomination, Insley held a postdoctoral appointment in classics at Brown University that was sponsored by the ACLS New Faculty Fellowship. She taught courses ranging from a seminar for freshman students to an independent study for graduate students. She has also taught courses at Harvard in the Department of Classics at both the graduate and undergraduate levels, and won an award for teaching excellence. In addition, Insley has worked as an academic administrator in the summer programs at both Brown and Harvard.

“I am thrilled, along with my family, to be joining the Branford community this year,” wrote Insley in a separate email. “It has been my goal to move into a position that allows me to combine my dedication to student advising and mentorship with an increasing role in administration, and I’m very much looking forward to being a resource and support for the students of Branford. My husband and I are excited to become active members of the Branford and Yale College communities this coming year.”

Insley earned a Bachelor of Arts degree summa cum laude in Greek and Latin, and in medieval studies from the Catholic University of America and a Ph.D. in classics (Byzantine Greek) from Harvard University. She has presented papers at several conferences and has been awarded numerous fellowships, including the Bliss Prize Fellowship in Byzantine Studies and the U.S. Department of Education’s Jacob K. Javits Fellowship. Her research interests center on the period of transition from the late Roman Empire to the Byzantine Empire, particularly as regards literary and cultural history.

“Colleagues have praised Ms. Insley for her intellectual curiosity, her energy, and especially for the warm and thoughtful support she provides to her students,” continued Holloway.

Originally from Ellicott City, Maryland, Insley is “an enthusiastic amateur flautist and longtime choral singer who is excited about participating in the Yale music community,” wrote Holloway.

Her husband, Ozan Say, holds a Ph.D. in folklore from Indiana University and is a former professional dancer and choreographer, specializing in the traditional dance cultures of his native Anatolia and the Eastern Mediterranean. They will both move into the Dean’s Suite in Branford, along with their two-year-old Cairn Terrier Bertie.

In his email, Holloway also thanked Dean Hilary Fink for her service to the college and its students.

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