Editorial: Welcome, Mr. President, Officially
Welcome to Oberlin, again. After much pomp and circumstance, you are officially Oberlin College’s 14th president. When you became the final candidate last May, the Review wrote an open letter to you in hopes that you would take seriously and resolve the many issues that we as a college must face.
So far you’ve made respectable strides. You’ve guaranteed that the McNair Scholars program will continue at least a year, albeit under a different name. You’ve responded quickly to the uproar regarding the recent student arrests by hiring a mediator to facilitate town-college communications. You seem to be a magnet for money: $12 million in grants in one week is impressive. Adding another endowed chair to the Environmental Studies program is also a laudable move.
This is where you begin your legacy, Mr. President. The issues are flowing in; student groups and faculty members are clamoring for your attention. The rest of us are watching, listening and expecting.
For now, we appreciate the way you eagerly solicit student input and seem genuinely interested in our suggestions. The Source is evidence of this new attempt to reach out. Your presence at multiple events, including last Friday’s organ pump, TGIF and the opening of Azariah’s, show that the input can be well received. It’ll be exciting to see you truly immersed in this college, teaching a seminar next semester. We hope you continue to show such sensitivity to the student voice.
We know that as any beginner in a job, you are excited and have so much energy. Don’t lose this momentum. The president’s word echoes far into the future.