- BA in English and environmental studies, Oberlin College, 1996
Ben Jones ’96 was appointed VP for Communications in 2008. His office works with most departments on campus and provides the overarching leadership and strategy for Oberlinʼs internal and external communications. His team manages the oberlin.edu website, print and publications (including production of the Oberlin Alumni Magazine and the Conservatory Magazine), news and editorial services, media relations, social media, video production, and photography.
Jones is committed to authenticity and prioritizes the voices of primary sources in his office's marketing efforts. Early in his tenure, he created two fellowship positions for recent Oberlin graduates and significantly expanded the number of current students employed by the office, in order to be as inclusive as possible in telling the Oberlin story.
Prior to his appointment at Oberlin, Jones served as director of communications in the MIT Office of Admissions, where he was a nationally recognized expert on social media and online community building. At MIT, he developed a communications plan and admissions web community that has been cited nationally as the gold standard in admissions communications. During his tenure, MIT's applications increased 28 percent, and his successful employment of unfiltered primary source-driven content was ultimately featured on the front page of the New York Times.
Previously, Jones was a founder and partner at Blue Coda Inc., a web strategy firm whose clients included Harvard, MIT, and Boston University. He served as a director of design and production for About.com and also directed the online version of the American Prospect (the liberal politics magazine founded by Oberlin alumnus Robert Kuttner) for several years.
As a student at Oberlin, Jones was a double major in English and environmental studies, vice president of his senior class, a senior intern in the admissions office, head manager of the Cat in the Cream Coffeehouse, and an a cappella singer.
Jones is proud to serve on the Communications & Marketing committee of Kendal at Oberlin and on the board of the Ruby N. Jones Community Scholarship Fund.
In his spare time, Jones enjoys spending time with his family, writing music and playing in a faculty/staff cover band, cooking, bartending, and gardening.