Dean’s Office

The Dean is the chief academic adviser to the 500 students assigned to Ezra Stiles College. Residing within the college, she helps in all matters concerning their academic programs, applies and enforces the Academic and Undergraduate Regulations that govern student behavior, works in conjunction with the Registrar’s Office and the Yale College Dean’s Office, oversees the Freshman Counselors, and supervises freshman advising.  The Dean is a great resource for a wide range of other matters and advises students on everything from personal crises to post-graduation plans. As needed, she refers students to resources, offices, or persons that can be of assistance to them. She teaches one course per year, writes letters of recommendation, serves on a range of University committees, and coordinates various college activities. In cases of incapacitating illness or family emergency, the Dean also has the authority to postpone deadlines for academic work or final exams.

The Ezra Stiles Dean’s Office is located in Room 112 in Entryway C, just to the left after entering the front gate.

The Ezra Stiles Dean’s Office is open Monday through Friday from 8:30am to 5pm during the academic year.

Nilakshi Parndigamage

Nilakshi Parndigamage is the Dean of Ezra Stiles College. Born and raised in Colombo, Sri Lanka, she earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from Yale University and her Juris Doctor degree from the University of Virginia School of Law.

Dean Parndigamage previously worked as a corporate litigator in New York and Washington, D.C. for a leading international commercial litigation firm. She was a member of several legal teams representing corporate clients in various breach-of-contract, fraud, products liability, qui tam, and securities cases. During her time at the firm, she also devoted significant time to pro bono litigation. She has been admitted to practice law in New York and the District of Columbia. 

Prior to her career as a litigator, Dean Parndigamage conducted human rights research, advocacy, and public policy work for the Institute for International Law and Human Rights in Washington, D.C. and Baghdad, the International Center for Transitional Justice in Cape Town, and at the Office of the Prosecutor at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in the Hague. She has researched the prevalence of wartime sexual violence in the former Yugoslavia and has assisted in editing a handbook for Iraqi legislators on how to re-draft Iraqi legal codes to better protect Iraqi minorities. She is the recipient of numerous human rights fellowships and is currently a Senior Fellow of the Humanity in Action Human Rights Organization based in New York City.

At the University of Virginia School of Law, Dean Parndigamage was an editor of the Virginia Journal of International Law, the President of the J.B. Moore Society for International Law, and the Coordinator of the International Human Rights Program. 

As an undergraduate at Yale, she served as President of the Center for Buddhist Life at Yale, head tour guide and senior interviewer for the Yale Undergraduate Admissions Office, and coordinated the Yale tsunami relief effort.

Outside of work, Dean Parndigamage is an avid swimmer who loves to cook spicy Sri Lankan food, throws impromptu dance parties for her 2-year-old son Gihan (pronounced Gi-Haan with a hard G), and stays up late into the night planning and sculpting fondant figures for surprise cakes she bakes for friends and family.

She lives in the Dean’s Residence at Ezra Stiles with her husband Patrick Lynch, who is a native of Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Patrick has a Masters in City Planning from the University of Pennsylvania and is currently the Vice President for Research and Analysis at Middleburg Real Estate Partners. Patrick was previously the Research and Development Manager for the Center for Real Estate and Urban Analysis at George Washington University in Washington, D.C., where he co-authored several reports on the rise of walkable development in the United States.

Their son Gihan is currently an expert in launching himself off of household furniture and conducting experiments on their mostly-affectionate but sometimes-savage cat Machang (“dude” in Sinhala).

Dean Parndigamage (pronounced PARN-di-gah-mah-gay) is available to meet with students both as drop-ins during office hours and by appointment. To make an appointment, please contact Jean Smith at the Dean’s Office.

Jean Smith

Dean’s Senior Administrative Assistant

Phone: (203) 432-0563
Fax: (203) 432-1999


Phone: (203) 432-0563
Fax: (203) 432-1999

Ezra Stiles College Dean’s Office
PO Box 208218
New Haven, CT 06520-8218

Ezra Stiles College Dean’s Office
302 York Street
New Haven, CT 06511

Dean’s Senior Administrative Assistant: