Oberlin Blogs

The Fall 2015 Virtual Panels!

September 29, 2015

Tanya Aydelott

We try to give you as many opportunities as possible to get to know Oberlin. There are emails and paper mailings; we travel across the world and the US to various high schools and community-based organizations; we offer visit programs on campus, as well as tours and informational sessions throughout the year.

But it's not feasible for everyone to visit campus. And even if you do attend an info session or a high school visit, or flip through our viewbook and earmark your favorite pages, or gorge yourself on the blogs, or correspond with a professor or a current student — well, there are still plenty of things to learn about Oberlin, and plenty of questions that are as yet unanswered.

So, to help you get those questions addressed, we're hosting three virtual student panels this fall!*

The panels are scheduled for an hour each. They will be livestreamed on this blog and then archived on YouTube (so if you can't participate during the panel itself, you can always watch it when you do have time). We'll be able to take questions in the comments section of this blog, so feel free to start queuing up your questions now.

While the panels are themed, they are open for anyone to watch. We try to give them a bit of focus to help guide your questions, but remember that these are Obies and they have a whole host of communities and experiences on this campus that they can speak about.

The panels will be:

  • Sunday, October 11th, 10AM EST — international focus
  • Wednesday, November 11th, 7PM EST — general campus life
  • Monday, December 7th, 7PM EST — underrepresented communities

Our panelists are looking forward to this opportunity to engage with you. Please feel free to start asking your questions now in the comments section!

Our fist panel of the fall was livestreamed on October 11th. Thank you to our wonderful panelists Thanisa, Clover, Lujza, and Hassan!

:30 - Introductions
2:25 - How did you learn about Oberlin?
7:00 - How did you choose to apply early or regular decision? What were the factors that helped you decide between them?
11:36 - Oberlin has an amazing reputation for professors as mentors. Can you speak to the overall talent of peers? How do they push and support one another in critique and collaboration?
17:21 - Explanation of winter term
23:41 - Where have you found support on campus? Who has become your mentors?
31:47 - What was your biggest adjustment in coming to Oberlin and the US? What has helped you make that transition?
36:00 - What are the opportunities for entrepreneurship? What kinds of projects have been supported?
40:04 - Think back on your time as a applicant.
46:27 - What advice would you give your high school self about college applications if you could? What would you say to senior year you?

We had some technical difficulties with our second virtual panel, and have had to split the panel into two videos. Big thanks to our four panelists — Charlotte, Michael, Sam and Shannon — for their time and answers!

Part I of the second virtual panel:

:32 - Introductions
2:57 - Why Oberlin?
6:04 - https://myspace.com/thebucketkickers/music/songs
7:15 - ExCos
10:40 - Winter term
15:10 - Do you gain different kinds of credits based on ExCos?
16:52 - What's general social life like? Do students get out to Cleveland often (do you need a car)? What are the popular things to do?
22:42 - What is dorm life like? What are the different options? And how integrated are Con students in dorm life?
29:29 - Are Oberlin students consciously awake? What spaces are available for debate/discussion?
34:50 - What is the LGBTQ community on campus? What support exists?
39:02 - Study abroad! Non winter-term study abroad!

In the moment, our livestream cut out and we thought we'd lost a few minutes of footage, so we have a recap of some of the previous questions here in part II of our second virtual panel:

:30 - What is the LGBTQ community on campus? What support exists?
9:01 - How would you characterize the rigor of the academics at Oberlin? Are students challenged to think outside the box?
15:00 - Looking back at the college search and application process, what is a piece of advice or tip you wish you'd had during your senior year of high school?

If we didn't get to your questions tonight, we'll address them during our next panel on December 7th or our panelists will address them directly on the blogs. Thanks for joining in!

Our final panel, held on December 7th, featured Jenny, Linda, Nyquon, and Sammie.

:31 - Intros
2:07 - Why Oberlin?
4:58 - How do people with different backgrounds interact in the community? Is there noticeable separation between social groups, or do people mingle?
7:45 - What are the different housing options and where have you lived? What are the differences between the co-ops and program houses?
14:52 - How well integrated are the Arts & Sciences part of the college and the Conservatory? How can you get involved if you're not in the Con?
18:28 - What's the vibe on campus? is there a family feel?
23:55 - How did you navigate the financial aid process?
30:28 - How would you characterize the academics? What about your technology needs on campus?
36:15 - What is work study and what kinds of jobs are there on campus (or off)?
42:02 - What helped your transition from high school to college? From home to the small town of Oberlin?
55:24 - Would you say that the students at Oberlin are consciously awake? Do students participate in respectful debates? Is there enough difference of ideas that you can have debates?
59:44 - As we're now in application season, what advice would you give to your high school senior self?

* We've done this before; if you want to see what a virtual panel is all about, check out one of our past panels.

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