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It's an Obie world after all

August 3, 2009

I'm just returning from my yearly vacation to Carolina Beach and it's so hard to be back at work. The weather was spectacular except for one rainy day. That's when I headed to a small coffee shop and discovered that it really is an Obie world after all.

I pulled up the Oberlin website so that I could read any of the new stories or blogs, and check on the status of the new Litoff Building. What surprised me more than seeing the progress of Litoff was that a young woman practically spilled her hot coffee on me when she shrieked that this was the College she hopes to attend! Lauren just finished her sophomore year but has heard from so many people that Oberlin is the place for her; that always makes me curious so I segued from vacationer to admissions officer.

I asked Lauren why people repeatedly suggest Oberlin to her. Her answer: "I love playing violin, but don't know if I want to play professionally, so I want to have an academic major like Chinese so that I can travel abroad. I lead my school's Environmental Club and canvassed for Obama. I'm thinking about the Peace Corps and heard a lot of Oberlin students do that. From everything I've heard, there are lots of students like me at Oberlin."

So I mentally ran through a checklist that went something like this:
Intellectual curiosity -- check
Musical talent/appreciation -- check
Concern for the environment/sustainability -- check
Involvement in social justice -- check
Wants to make a difference in the world -- check
Passionate -- check

I have to agree that folks seem to be steering Lauren in the right direction. I can't wait to read her application in a couple of years. And can't wait to meet many, many future Obies when I travel for admissions this fall. I'm in the process of planning my travel, but will have it posted as soon as it's all set. Hope to see you when I'm on the road!

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