Campus ghost stories

By Chloë Bazlen ‘18
Staff Writer

Students listen as Sahak shares all the haunts of Scripps campus. Photos by Tyra Abraham ‘18

The night was chilly and the lights were dim; It was Mischief Night at Scripps College. With wide eyes and eager ears, a large group of women huddled in the Toll Hall recreation room to hear of the haunts around campus.
Judy Harvey Sahak, librarian of Denison Library, has become a wealth of knowledge for Scripps. That night, students learned that not only does she know everything about the library, she is also in tune with the hauntings on campus.
As a Scripps alumnae herself, Sahak admits that ghost stories are more of a recent addition to the college’s history. Only in the last twenty or so years have students and employees opened up to tell of their spooky encounters. But, be it a recent development or not, Scripps seems to be a hotspot for ghosts among the 5Cs.
Although Pomona lays claim to a few ghosts, Scripps far outnumbers the other campuses as a host for ghosts. Sahak says she believes believes that women are more in tune with the spiritual world, allowing themselves to be more approachable by ghosts. Furthermore, the ghosts seem to congregate in the places in which we students spend the most of our time: our very own residence halls.
When considering where to live next year, be sure to factor in the ghosts. If you are supernaturally inclined, Toll may be the place for you, as it earns the title of having the most ghosts.  The browsing room seems to be the center of spiritual activity, with two resident ghosts making frequent appearances.
Have you ever noticed the blue chaise in the Toll browsing room? It was a gift to the college from the family of a girl who died before she got the chance to attend Scripps, her dream school. Although she did not attend Scripps in her natural life, she sure is making herself known on campus in her afterlife.
The next time you are studying in the Toll browsing room, be sure to bring a sweater. The cold breezes from the aura of the ghosts passing through you are sure to be annoying. And if that does not disrupt you enough, the sounds of the fun-loving ghosts throwing parties in the hallways surely will.
Speaking of browsing rooms, good luck to whomever enters the Dorsey browsing room, especially in the wee hours of the morning. Knocking noises and unsettling feelings are known to arise during these witching hours. One student in the audience even had a personal tale of hearing knocking all along the bookcase of the browsing room.
But it is not merely Toll and Dorsey which the ghosts love; we cannot forget Clark. According to Sahak, two first years  on the first floor of Clark in the freshman wing claimed to have seen a young woman in white with red hair peering into their window. The roommates looked at each other for one second, and when they looked back, she was gone. As if that were not scary enough, this woman has made several repeat appearances, including the last two years in a row.
Clark is also known for having items such as magnets move to the opposite side of the room. And if someone knocks on your door, be careful; you just might be opening up the door to a seemingly empty hallway.
Browning has its fair share of haunts, with chandeliers inexplicably swinging and the eyes of portraits following you. In Frankel, footsteps can be heard across the second story roof, and indentations have mysteriously appeared on beds. Even the President’s house is affected, with sightings of a ghost who looks eerily like Ernest Jacqua, the first president of Scripps.
Despite all of these haunting, you should be fine to live a normal life here at Scripps College — that is, as long as you never, ever, ever even think about entering the Dorsey basement. If you do happen to make the mistake of going into the basement as a male, you will kindly be reminded to “GET OUT!” by Scripps’ meanest and arguably most infamous ghost.
If these ghosts stories have given you the heebie jeebies and you cannot sleep at night, just remember that the ghost on the third floor of Toll will always wish you goodnight. But of course, the ghost on the second floor of Dorsey is equally willing to give you a comforting pat on the back — your choice.
A big thanks to Judy Harvey Sahak for narrating the evening and for taking the time to collect these stories, and another to Bekah Manikowski, NSP Organizer, for planning this event. Keep a lookout for this event next Halloween, and be sure to say “hi” next time you run into one of our many resident ghosts.