Oberlin Blogs

Testing, testing

December 12, 2008

Prof. David Walker ’72

Hello? Is anybody out there?

The new blogs have been up for a little over two weeks now. The students have been busily blogging away, even in the face of the end-of-semester crunch, generously sharing little pieces of the Oberlin experience for the delectation of the wider world.

And what's that we hear in response? Crickets. Nada. Zilch. The only comments so far, with few exceptions, have been from other bloggers. Clearly we're enjoying reading each other's posts and getting to know one another (those we don't already know) online. But it's starting to feel a little, you know, inbred. If it were just about talking to each other, we could do that in the DeCafe. We hope prospective students have discovered the blogs, but we just don't know for sure. We'd like this site to feel more interactive, to hear from readers--assuming there are any out there--about their reactions, their observations, their questions about life at Oberlin. It would sure make blogging easier and more fun to know that we aren't doing it in a vacuum.

So here's a little experiment. I'd like to ask everyone who reads this who ISN'T on the blogging team to post a comment. Just say hello, or tell us why you're here, or pose a question you'd like me or one of the other bloggers to try to address. We're all new to this admissions blogging business, so it would really help to get a sense of who is reading the blogs and why.

We hope you'll get in the habit of responding regularly, but for now, just take this tiny step. Thanks for listening.

Responses to this Entry

Hello! I'm a prospective student who is currently awaiting my ED denial letter... Just kidding.
While reading student bloggers are fun, I'd like to see more faculty bloggers as well. Not many high school seniors have much idea what higher education is really like, and prospies like me would appreciate the wisdom of professors very much.

Posted by: Yun Jin Joo on December 12, 2008 7:12 AM

Well, since you asked. :)

I'm an '09 at MIT who misses Ben Jones quite a bit and has been keeping up with what he's doing by reading his blog.

That led here, so now I'm reading these blogs.

Posted by: Michael Borohovski on December 12, 2008 9:01 AM

Hey! I'm not new to this admissions blogging business.



Posted by: Ben on December 12, 2008 9:10 AM

Hello from the TIMARA department...

Posted by: Peter Swendsen '99 on December 12, 2008 11:30 AM

I read them, but I haven't had much to comment on just yet.

Posted by: Andy Bartholomew '07 on December 12, 2008 11:32 AM

I am a parent of a prospective student (RD) and am addicted to reading college student blogs.

Posted by: Melissa on December 12, 2008 5:31 PM

Hi! I'm a prospective student from Peru. I found this blog the day after I scheduled my Oberlin interview about two months ago. I love the new look!

Posted by: Stephanie Ho on December 12, 2008 6:14 PM

If David Walker says it's worth reading, then by golly, I'll read it! Keep up the good work, bloggers!

Posted by: Josh Thelin '97 on December 12, 2008 6:48 PM

Hello David! It's great to hear your voice out here in the land of the interweb. I'm a 2003 grad, and studied creative writing with David, among others. I enjoy these blogs, and I hope that they can give a little glimpse to people who don't already know how great the Oberlin community is. I enjoy being reminded.

Posted by: Rachael Sarto on December 13, 2008 5:04 PM

I graduated last spring. I'm not reading the blogs for any particular reason except for idle curiosity, but it's provided some interesting reading material, especially since I know a good number of the bloggers (either personally or by reputation).

Posted by: Becca Derry on December 13, 2008 5:29 PM

Wow, so it looks as though there really are readers out there!

@Yun Jin: We're in the process of recruiting a couple more faculty bloggers. Let us know if there are particular questions you'd like us to address. Good luck on the admissions decision!
@Michael: Any friend of Ben's is a friend of mine.
@Stephanie: It's great to think of you reading the blogs from Peru.
@Melissa: Prospie parents always welcome.
@Peter, Andy, Josh, Rachael, Becca: Ditto alums/old friends. (Hi Josh! Hi Rachael!)

Keep the comments coming!

Posted by: Prof. David Walker '72 on December 13, 2008 7:00 PM

Hi. I'm an alum, class of '77. Was wearing my "awkward" T-shirt today and realized I'd forgotten what the original marketese slogan was, and by some bizarre chain of links I wound up here after googling "We are Oberlin"!

Posted by: Roland Pesch on December 13, 2008 9:07 PM

I'm a prospective student from Oregon who also applied early decision (Yun Jin Joo, I know exactly how you feel!) and is, yet again, browsing the Oberlin website. I'm sure that I will find myself checking the mail all too often this week in anticipation.

Posted by: Rachel Coodley on December 15, 2008 1:15 AM

I am officially no longer a prospie! ^^ Woo hoo
It would be great if the faculty bloggers posted some reading recommendations. I graduate high school this Febuary, and now is a great time for me to get some reading done until the orientation and start thinking about what courses to take in my first college semester.
I hope you get the fat envelope, Rachel!

Posted by: Yun Jin Joo on December 15, 2008 12:16 PM

I found the blog courtesy of the Oberlin livejournal. But I guess I don't really understand, why does Oberlin have a blog? I mean, you already have a livejournal. And an anonymous confessional. If there isn't anonymity . . . I don't really understand. Also, I'm a master of incoherency.

Posted by: Roxie Mehdi '07 on December 15, 2008 5:10 PM

I'm checking in every once in awhile, but would also like to hear from more staff & faculty to offer a long-term view on the institution and where things stand now. The student experience is fun to read about, but it's not all there is...

Posted by: Jason Mittell '92 on December 15, 2008 9:01 PM

@Yun Jin: Congratulations! You must be really excited and relieved. Unlike many high schools, Oberlin doesn't have any assigned reading over the summer (or, in your case, the six months) before college begins. Since I don't know you or your interests, it's hard to know how to make reading suggestions. I would certainly encourage you, though, to take advantage of the opportunity to read as much and as widely as you can, since you're not likely to have time for lots of leisure reading once classes begin.
@Rachel: Good luck! I hear the letters are in the mail.

@Roland, Roxie, Jason: Alums are of course completely welcome here, but these blogs are intended primarily to meet the needs of prospective students. (Roxie, that's the answer to your question.) I can tell you, though, that in the coming months the Office of Communications will be developing an online community for alums and others interested in the kinds of questions Jason raises.

Posted by: David on December 15, 2008 11:23 PM

Hello! I just got into Oberlin Early Decision, class of 2013. I've been reading the blogs for a while, but I've only commented on a few. I can't wait to join the Oberlin community come September!!! Keep posting, I've found these blogs to be very helpful. :)

Posted by: Alyssa Cypher on December 16, 2008 6:41 PM

I am a parent of a prospective student. I am enjoying the blog and finding out what's going on at Oberlin. We have done the paperwork and now just waiting. My son attended the Solo Vocal Camp for high school students this past summer and LOVED Oberlin. We live in Alabama and it's going to be a long way from home but we are willing to sacrifice for the education. Vocal Performance is his interest.
Any tips for Me/MOM would be grateful.

Posted by: Sue Bland on December 17, 2008 9:01 PM

I am a prospective student from Romania. I rediscovered these blogs after quite a long time, in which I was busy writing college essays. I still am, actually, but I want to have a 'fresh' impression on Oberlin to add more condiments to my 'Why Oberlin' essay.
Congratulations to ED admitted students! I couldn't apply ED for finanial reasons, but I hope to meet you all in autumn.

Posted by: Ana on December 19, 2008 6:30 PM

@Alyssa: Congratulations! Glad you've found the blogs helpful.

@Ana: Good luck to you and everyone else applying RD.

@Sue: I'm pleased you're also finding the blogs interesting. I'm not sure I can remember other students from Alabama, but we do have many students from all over the country (and the world), and most cope quite well with the distance from home and family. Cell phones and the internet make the world seem a good deal smaller than when I was in college and talked to my parents only every few weeks. Maybe some of the student bloggers would like to comment?

You might also want to ask some of the Conservatory performance majors (John, Megan, Nicolee, Will) about their experience.

Posted by: David on December 20, 2008 2:42 PM

I'm a junior in high school searching online for information that will make me less nervous about beginning the college process in January of 2009. These blogs are great for that!

Posted by: K on December 21, 2008 12:46 AM

It's so nice to read everyone's comments on surviving finals as I look out into my backyard covered with 18 inches of snow. From survival to hibernation- now that's cozy.

Posted by: Eric Anderson on December 24, 2008 11:40 AM

Ah, hello David! I don't often read these but I've stumbled upon them recently in Googling (rather than using the site to find) information on professors. I agree they're a bit poorly publicized!

Suffice to say they're of no less interest to me now that I've pushed off--

Posted by: Collin Anderson on May 28, 2009 2:48 PM

You're a little behind the curve, Collin--since last December the blogs have attracted a ton of readers (we have ways of knowing...) even though they still don't get lots of comments. Anyway, thanks for dropping by, and good luck out in the wide world now that you've graduated! Keep me posted, one way or another...

Posted by: David on May 28, 2009 3:22 PM

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