About Us

meetingsThe Yale College Chess Club is open to all Yale students, faculty, staff, and affiliates, regardless of previous chess experience. Come visit, play, and learn with us on Thursdays 8-11pm at Bass Library Room L73 and Fridays 1-3pm at Commons.


Yale can boast the oldest college chess club in the country, having sent a delegate to the First National Chess Congress in the 1850s, and taking part in the original Columbia-Harvard-Yale-Princeton (CHYP) league formed in 1892. It has achieved competitive success as well, winning the Pan-American Intercollegiate Team Chess Championship in 1978, 1983, and 1987. More recently, the Chess Club won the Columbia-Harvard-Yale-Cornell Ivy Tournament in 2007. Its notable alumni includes U.S. Grandmaster Joel Benjamin (yes, that Joel Benjamin), who graduated from Yale in 1985.

Meeting Times

The Chess Club meets three times a week. Come whenever you can! Each meeting is based on a certain theme, but they are guidelines, not scripture.

Thursday Training @ Bass

Looking for some serious practice and tutoring? Come to our training sessions every Thursday from 8:00-11:00pm at Bass Library, room L73. Here, we usually play slower matches, and analyze the games of Yalies and masters alike.

Friday Blitz @ Commons

Start the weekend on the right note with some wild Blitz chess! Grab lunch every Friday at Commons from 12:00-2:30pm and unwind at the Chess Table for some casual, fast-paced action.

New Haven Public Library Tutoring

The Yale Chess Club has a long history of community involvement.  We provide free tutoring at the New Haven Public Library on Mondays, from 4-5pm. You are free to come and play with friends, or meet one of the many the Yale Chess Club tutors for casual games, serious training, or lessons. The program has proven to be especially popular with young children.