Getting to Know Danielle Yabut ’24
Manila, The Philippines
That sweet smell of freshly-baked chocolate chip cookies? If you’re lucky enough to land in Danielle Yabut’s SCU dorm at some point, count on it wafting through your hallway late at night, or waking you up early morning.
That’s when the 19-year-old usually gets the urge to make batches of chocolate chip or oatmeal cookies.
“All four years in high school, I would feed the entire student body cookies,” she says of her 110-member high school. “I love to bake.”
Born and raised in Manila, the psychology major says she chose Santa Clara because “I take my education seriously, and I wanted a challenge.”
It helps that her uncle Gem Yabut ’86 is an SCU alum, along with cousin Jerome Yabut ’18. Another cousin, Gabrielle Yabut ’23, is a sophomore.
“It’s nice to have family around,” she admits of another important reason she chose to be a Bronco.
But so was a campus tour with her folks where she recalls having “a wonderful time” walking everywhere, from Benson Center to the Mission church—all the while listening to SCU students share stories about their experiences here. She was hooked.
“I liked the fact that Santa Clara has a Jesuit community and those types of values. That really helped me make my decision,” says Yabut, who started a baking club in high school with her sister to raise funds for a local elementary school.
Like her freshman class counterparts, Yabut has a range of interests and passions, from streaming Grey’s Anatomy on Netflix to Avatar: The Last Airbender.
She also plays competitive women’s softball, and is pretty good on the kalimba, an African thumb piano.
“I saw someone play it, and I got one online,” she recalls with a laugh. “I learned 10 new songs and even the theme from Jurassic Park. I love Jurassic Park, and I love dinosaurs!”
Yabut says she’s looking forward to meeting new people this fall, even though it won’t be on campus for a while.
Unlike most U.S. students forced to exit school this spring because of COVID-19, Yabut had to leave hers in mid-January after a massive volcano erupted 14 miles from her home in Manila, followed by dozens of earthquakes.
“So the majority of the 2020 year in high school was online,” says the good-natured Yabut, “and I kind of got used to the idea.”
Written by Tracy Seipel