ExCos are a huge part of Oberlin’s admissions materials. The shiny brochures describe the hands-on, experiential learning that happens when students create their own curriculum and teach it to their peers.
There are classes like the super-popular Pottery ExCo, SexCo, and Queer Women on Screen — that’s enough to make any prospective student apply to Oberlin. And here’s the best part: everything you’ve heard about ExCos is true! They’re just as fun and interactive as they sound!
The ExCo Fair — when everyone gathers around tables in a huge, cacophonous room to hear about the different class options — is one of my favorite nights of the semester. But by the middle of my sophomore year, I somehow still hadn’t taken an ExCo. Onto my Oberlin bucket list it went …
Take an Exco.
Semester after semester, I would apply for ExCos, but be unable to take them due to my busy class schedule and nighttime work commitments. I promised myself that it would happen at some point. Finally, last semester, I took one. Taught by two seniors, Spicy Steppers was a weekly hourlong ’80s aerobics dance party. My classmates dressed up in bright colors and joined one another to prance around a dance studio. It was a burst of goofiness and fun that I needed in my week.
This semester, I’m taking the Rock Climbing ExCo. Oberlin has an incredible rock wall that’s free for students to use. I had gone a few times before, but wanted to take the ExCo to develop my confidence with climbing. I’ve only had one class so far, but I am already incredibly sore from climbing. It’s tough! But I’m looking forward to this challenge – it’s going to be a lovely part of my final semester.