of The College -
to Oberlins Alumni
late 1990s were great years for endowment performance. The market
value of our endowment more than doubled from $280 million in June
1995 to $610 million by June 2000. Even by the standards of market
performance in the late 1990s, Oberlins returns were unusually
impressive among American colleges and universities, and we have
taken advantage of this remarkable growth.
success has been equally dependent upon the generosity of our alumni,
parents, and friends. As you know, we are currently in a capital
campaign. Our goal is to raise $165 million, which we must reach
by June 2004. To date, we have raised $134 million for several major
objectives, including scholarships, faculty support, and construction
and endowment support for the new Science Center and two other critically
important building projects: a new visual arts building and a student
black box theater. We expect to meet and exceed our $165-million
goal over the next two years.
factors, thenspectacular endowment growth and the generosity
of our alumni, parents, and friendshave made possible our
admissions have turned around. Oberlin is once again a hot
college. The College has experienced record-breaking numbers of
applications for three years, and we have maintained our excellent
admissions profile in the Conservatory.
year, we almost reached our goal of 5,000 applications to the College;
the final number was 4,926, the largest number of applicants ever.
We are confident that next year we will easily exceed 5,000 applications.
year, we reached our goal of a 39 percent admit rate, and we achieved
a 35 percent yield (two points better than our goal of 33 percent).
This spring, we admitted just 35 percent of our College applicants
to the Class of 2006tying Oberlins admit rate in 1964
and 1965 and just two points higher than the 33 percent admit rate
in 1972. Our yield this year is 36 percent.
Conservatory admissions continue to thrive. We have admitted just
29 percent of the 1,110 applicants to the Conservatory, and our
yield was an impressive 46 percent. We are pleased, too, that our
incoming class of gifted young musicians is especially well distributed
among the major areas of study.
applications are up. The class that just finished its freshman year
includes a record 57 double-degree students. We have modestly exceeded
our double-degree goal for our new class as well: 42 will join us
new students in both divisions will come to Oberlin from 44 states,
the District of Columbia, the Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico. They
will arrive also from 22 nations around the world, including Australia,
Bulgaria, Canada, China, Denmark, France, Germany, Ghana, India,
Japan, Kenya, Pakistan, Panama, Romania, South Korea, Sweden, Turkey,
Taiwan, Thailand, Ukraine, Venezuela, and Vietnam.
have strengthened our scholarship program over the past seven years
and have made it much more competitive. These efforts have contributed
substantially to our success in admissions. Sixty-four percent of
our new students will receive scholarship aid in the form of grants
from Oberlin. In keeping with our mission, we have long aided and
will continue to aid a significantly larger percentage of our students
than do most of our peer colleges. Over the past seven years, Oberlin
recommitted itself to meeting the total financial need of each student
who qualifies for such assistance. (For a brief period in the late
1980s and early 1990s, Oberlin practiced gappingwe
agreed to meet 90 percent of demonstrated need, rather than 100
growth in our endowment and the wonderful generosity of our alumni
and parents, who have already contributed nearly $36 million in
campaign gifts and pledges to a new scholarship endowment, have
been essential in allowing us to return to meeting students
full need and helping us lower the loan and work-study portions
of our aid packages. In 1995, loans and student jobs made up 30
percent of students aid packages; for last years entering
class, they made up 18 percent.
has always attracted exceptionally serious and talented students.
This year is no exception. The academic qualifications of our students
are excellent. The Class of 2006 will come to Oberlin with an average
SAT score of 1353, up nine points from last year and up 32 points
from two years ago. Sixty-four percent of our first-year students
are in the top 10 percent of their high school class.
newest generation of students brings to Oberlin qualities that have
been central to this Colleges greatness as an institution
of American higher education, qualities that are are more important
than any scores or ranks: intellectual seriousness and curiosity,
artistic excellence and vibrancy, and a passionate interest in and
social engagement with the world at large.
College curriculum is being enriched by the addition of 10 new faculty
positions, and we have created a new first-year seminar program.
This coming year, every first-year student in the College will enroll
in a seminar, and we are working toward the same goal for first-year
Conservatory students the following year. Thanks to the rich and
varied interests and specialties of our faculty, the topics of these
seminars range widely. Here are a few of them: The First Amendment
and the Internet, taught by Professor of Politics Ron Kahn;
Medieval Iberia: Cultural Interactions from the Visigoths to
1492, taught by Assistant Professor of History Isaac Miller;
Pedagogies of Empire, taught by Professor of English Anuradha
Needham; Magical Realist Fiction, taught by English Professor
David Young; Neurobiology of the Mind: The Brain Is Wider than
the Sky, offered by Professor of Neuroscience Mark Braford;
The Writing of Women in Japanese Culture, taught by Professor
of Japanese Suzanne Gay; The Politics of Globalization, taught
by Professor of Politics Steve Crowley; Seeing War and Peace
through Religious Traditions, taught by Assistant Professor
Joyce McClure, our ethicist in the Department of Religion; and North
African Women and Islam, offered by Assistant Professor of French
to major grants from the Freeman and the Luce foundations and our
ongoing cooperation with Oberlin Shansi, we will soon enrich a number
of first-year seminars by combining them with winter-term experiences
addition of 10 new faculty members and some redefinition of several
vacant faculty positions have also made possible several new degree
programs in the College of Arts and Sciences. Just a few weeks ago,
the faculty approved a new program in comparative American studies
that will consider questions of race, ethnicity, class, gender,
and sexuality in American society and culture. With this program,
we can dramatically enhance our curriculum in, among other areas,
Asian American and Latino studies, thereby addressing a significant
to page 1 | 2
| 3 | 4
of State of The College