Hurray! You've gotten your acceptance letter, you've gotten your invitation to All Roads, and now you're visiting the convergence of Ohio State Routes 511 and 58 to frolic in Oberlin's grass and snow for a weekend of wonder.
How do you process everything that's here this week? Some advice from a student who wished she could have visited Oberlin during All Roads and has subsequently enjoyed every All Roads since follows here.
Above all else, talk to as many current students as you can. Not just the ones at designated All Roads events. That's a great place to start, since the tour guides, academic ambassadors, and other student leaders have more knowledge than we know what to do with, and can direct you to other places to find other students.
If your parents are here, there are activities for them too. Escape them for a few hours if you can. Parents, I love you guys to death, and I and other current students would be more than happy to talk with you convincing you that your pride and joy should be an Obie, but let them explore a bit on their own. You'll be visiting them a few times and rejoicing in the activities Oberlin has to offer, but they're going to be spending four years here, living, eating, classing, and activitying on their own. Trust me, they'll make you more excited when they come bubbling back to you on your trip home.
So, kiddos, whatcha gonna do while you're here?
- Take a tour or two. I love the tour guides, they love this campus, and they probably can't show you everything in an hour. Ask your overnight host about their favorite location on campus and have them show it to you. I'd also recommend touring around campus on your own when you have a bit of down time. Spring is one of the best seasons here, it's hard to get lost here, and our campus isn't huge, so take full advantage of it and get to know Oberlin with your feet.
- Eat with students. Whether you use your prospective student swipey card to get into a dining hall or head to a co-op, people open up quite a bit over food. Food is a social lubricant here. Most of my fantastic college experiences have happened over or as a function of co-op meals.
- Partake in our academics. You probably won't have time to visit that many classes, so make your choice count. Not that I don't think you guys aren't smart, but going to upper level classes isn't actually going to be your best bet this late in the semester, even if it's taught by someone famous and sounds amazing, you're probably gonna be lost.
- Partake in our culture. Concerts, dances, art shows, and if you're here this weekend, the Design Symposium, Oberlin College Improv Conference, or the Dandelion Romp (or all three!) should be on your list of things to do. Aries goes into more depth and recommendations in her guide to All Roads.
Sounds busy, no? You won't regret this whirlwind of activity, though, not for a single second. Chances are you'll catch the Oberlin bug something awful and there's no cure except more Oberlin. We'll see you in the fall.