Oberlin Voices: Georgia
Hello all, I'd like to introduce a very special guest to the Oberlin Blogs--one of my best friends at Oberlin and my future roommate, Georgia Lederman! She rocks, and I'm sure you'll agree:
Pronouns: She, her, hers.
Hometown: Northampton, Massachusetts.
Home on campus: South Hall, but she dines in Harkness.
What's your favorite thing about Oberlin?
My favorite thing has to be that everyone has some artistic inclination. And for a lot of those people it has to do with music, which is something that's really important to me. I like that wherever I go there are people with whom I can talk about art in some form or another.
How did you decide to come here?
I have a ton of family members who went to Oberlin, so I've always had Oberlin in my mind since I've been very little as a possible college I wanted to come to, and I always knew it would be really musical, which was something that was interesting to me. I also chose to come to Oberlin because I think people are very open-minded in a way that I am used to, having grown up in Northampton, in that it tries to be inclusive of every type of person. Also, I think that all academic subjects are taught are in a very well-rounded interdisciplinary way, which is something that a lot of schools claimed in information sessions and stuff, but I think that Oberlin really does that. Every class incorporates Oberlin philosophy in some way or another, which I think is a really cool thing.
What is your favorite memory at Oberlin?
My favorite memory at Oberlin was an event that is hosted by Oberlin--Solarity--last Spring. I interpreted the theme to be a woodland theme, and I'm not sure if it really was, but I dressed up as a fairy anyway. It was just the most positive energy I've ever felt from a group of people, and it really made me feel that I was flying.
What have you done for your winter term projects?
This past year I went to Morocco--it was not an Oberlin program, but was sponsored and supported by Oberlin. I was teaching English in an elementary school. It was my first time traveling alone in another country and I felt really prepared--like I felt that it was the next step in my development in terms of academic, social and personal growth. And I felt really prepared from the courses I had taken at Oberlin--specifically a linguistics class that explored language as a political force. When I got to Morocco, I got to see how speaking French allowed me to communicate with a certain group of elite Moroccan people, but I couldn't speak with the majority of people because they spoke a different language. This really illuminated important power dynamics that I wasn't aware of previously.
My other winter term project was going to be interning at an organic bakery, but it didn't work out. So I ended up switching to do an independent music study, where I wrote music with a friend and studied Bach. The lack of structure was really fulfilling, as I got to make it exactly what I wanted to be, even last minute. It was really cool that that worked out and I got credit for it, even though I had to switch last minute.
I'm majoring in French because I think it's important to think of language as more than just a means of communication, and I think that the language you speak has a tremendous impact on your identity, your social mobility, and even your perception of the world. Because I think all of those things, it's important for me that I have two lenses to process and articulate things through. On a more tangible level, I might want to be a French teacher, and travel and spend time in France, so it's important that I have a language with which to do that.
Do you have any favorite spots on campus or in the town?
The arb is definitely my favorite place. Every time I'm in a bad mood and I go to the arb, it instantly makes me feel better, because I feel connected to something more than just work, teachers, and books.
Can you tell me about your roommate experience?
I would say I'm one of the luckiest people at Oberlin in terms of my roommate situation. I decided I wanted to live in a freshman dorm, but that was sort of the only decision I made, and everything else was fate. And we live together this year at Oberlin too. Though I think it is probably a coincidence that we ended up together, I know that Oberlin did have something to do with putting us together and I'm really happy they did!
What do you like about being in a co-op?
I think one of my favorite parts about being in a co-op is having people to talk about important issues with. Before I was in OSCA, I felt like I was exposed to lots of really hard topics, because I'm at Oberlin and everyone is so aware about political discourses. Still, I didn't really feel like I had people to talk about the issues with, and I didn't really have a structure in which to talk about them. And being in OSCA, these issues are brought up a lot, so it forces you to think about those things, and it gives you a place to talk about them.