“Book collecting is a surprisingly large part of my life. I’ve devoted many more hours than I would care to admit browsing through shelves at remote bookstores, and I’ve spent countless weekends in the last few years searching New England for elusive volumes. Before I came to Yale, though, I was the only book collector I knew. In fact, I didn’t even know that book collecting was a widespread activity! The Van Sinderen prize has allowed me to meet both undergraduates and professionals who share my interest, and has helped me strike up wonderful friendships centered on a common passion. For this, I am incredibly thankful, and very honored to be part of the Van Sinderen tradition.”
— Alexander Jacobson ’17, winner of the 2015 sophomore prize for his collection on Soviet and Marxist-Leninist history

“Participating in the Van Sinderen competition provided a unique opportunity to talk with like-minded people about one of my passions—book collecting. Through the dinners and lectures each semester, I’ve come to know and learn from other book collectors across the Yale community, including at the Beinecke Library, the Office of the University Printer, and beyond. These connections have influenced my methods of collecting, shaped my potential career plans, and allowed me a behind-the-scenes look at acquisitions and collecting. I feel fortunate to be a recipient of a prize and a member of the Van Sinderen network.”
— Emily Yankowitz ’17, winner of a 2015 sophomore honorable mention for her collection on the role of Westchester County, New York, in the early republic

“I loved the fact that others at Yale cared so deeply about the subject matter you collect and the time you spent in the hunt for that one missing book (with dustjacket!) that filled an essential gap in your collection. It is then you realize you are among that special breed of book lovers who are true “collectors. It’s an honor to look at the past winners of the Van Sinderen Prize and realize that among them are highly regarded collectors and booksellers who are shaping the face of book collections around the U.S. and the world.”
— Joseph Agostini ’93

“Entering and winning the Adrian Van Sinderen book collecting competition influenced my life more than any other single activity or experience at Yale. For me the prize led to a career in rare books, and equally important, led to lasting friendships with fellow book collectors, rare book librarians and antiquarian book dealers. I look forward to continuing a life of book collecting and productive antiquarianism thanks largely to this special prize."
— Joseph Bray ’94