Carnegie Mellon University

Donner House Makes a Splash with Whale Week and Pohlees

December 14, 2017

Donner House Makes a Splash with Whale Week and Pohlees

Mandi Semple
  • Director of Marketing, Student Affairs
  • 412-268-3437

Leave it to the Donner House ResEd staff to host a supersized celebration of all things blue and fun!

Upon returning from Thanksgiving, Donner residents were greeted by a slate of nightly events to celebrate Whale Week, named in honor of Donner’s aquatic mascot.  From tie-dying t-shirts to a scavenger hunt, the ResEd staff in Donner hosted a wide array of opportunities for residents to take a break from academics, spend time together as a community, and to share the pride that they feel in their on-campus home.  Donner took over the Housing and ResEd Instagram feed while documenting the decoration of the Donner lounge, and then unveiled their ‘hype video” for Pohlees, a community-wide talent show with a coffee house vibe that took place on December 1, 2017.

 “To me, and to a lot of people, Donner is one of the most spirited communities.  That’s something we take pride in,” said Community Advisor Anagha Chandra.  “Pohlees is one of the best ways to be a part of the community and show your spirit.”

According to Chandra, Pohlees is important to Donner in part because it is an event that is steeped in tradition.  Celebrating its tenth year, Pohlees was the vision of Donner alum Justin Chou.  While a member of the Donner House Council, Chou proposed hosting a variety show that would showcase the talents of his fellow Donner residents in ways that would spread his joy and energy for the residential community.  Unfortunately, Chou passed away before seeing his vision come to life.  The Donner House Council followed through on Chou’s plans, and Pohlees has become one of the most significant and fun traditions in Donner House. 

 This year Pohlees included musical performances, poems, and comedy. Current residents, as well as Donner alumni from across campus, convened to celebrate their shared experience of living in Donner.   Current Donner residents served as masters of ceremonies, while the Donner family sang, played the piano, and shared stories about living in “Big Blue.”

“Pohlees is one of my favorite nights of the year because it brings out the Donner spirit in Donner residents, new and old.  This year, the Pohlees talent show featured Donneroos from every year since 2013!” said Donner Housefellow Mandy Best.

“You get involved with ResEd to do things for residents, and Pohlees is one event where you can really showcase all of the residents’ talents. Pohlees is the way we do that best,” said Chandra.  

The Donner ResEd Staff