Oberlin Blogs

Winding Down, Gearing Up

August 10, 2009

Alice Ollstein ’10

It suddenly hit me that I have only four days left at my internship at La Opinion, and only two weeks left in LA. Many of those final days will be spent on the couch nursing my missing wisdom teeth, high on painkillers and slurping down milkshakes. The rest, I hope, will be spent seeing friends and family, cooking, running around getting everything I need, and taking advantage of the beach while I still can.

I'm excited to head back to school, especially to move into our beautiful off-campus house. I was a little annoyed to learn that we'd have to order our own Internet service, but really, the more "real life" experience we get the better. Although if we can mooch off Keep Co-op's wireless from across the street I won't complain. Another big item on the to-do list is to buy as much toilet paper as can fit into my housemate's car, so as never ever to run out. Running out of toilet paper, along with finding gross expired food in the fridge, is on my zero-tolerance list. I'm thrilled to be living with three sweet females who share my values, and know well the difference between messy (which is okay) and dirty (absolutely not).

Side note: Many students prefer to live in Village Housing (college-owned apartments and houses) because they're generally in better condition and the college fixes everything for you if there's a problem. But my friends and I entered the off-campus lottery (chances dwindle with each passing year) because off-campus is far cheaper, lets you live with more independence, and teaches you important life skills like, say, paying rent.

As for my final days at the newspaper, I only hope that I can go out with a bang. I've had an article nearly every day recently, which is exciting, but exhausting, but nothing on the front page. Now that I've gotten a taste of the glory that is the front page, it's hard to be satisfied with a perfectly good third-page piece. But all in all, this internship has been amazing. I've gotten to write about issues that matter to me, improve my vocabulary by leaps and bounds, and work for a paper that has some clout.

Straw poll: Would baking cookies for my editors be...
a) A nice way to thank them and help them remember me
b) Childish and unprofessional
c) Delicious and nutritious
d) A and C

Responses to this Entry

Alice, I'm glad your internship was so rewarding for you, and I applaud you for doing something that truly challenged you. I enjoy reading your posts.

I'll go with A on the straw poll. I work in an office where people bring in home-baked goods from time to time, and they're always received with gratitude. When you have a job for years, anything that makes one day different from the others is very welcome. I don't think anyone would see it as unprofessional.

One unrelated question: I'm an alum from the class of 2000, and I was surprised to read that there's an off-campus lottery now. What's that about, and why do the chances dwindle with each passing year?

Posted by: Emily on August 16, 2009 12:35 PM

Hey Emily,
Thanks for reading! I did bring the cookies to the office after all and they were a big hit. The sports columnist boomed out, "A reporter who cooks?! We should hire you!" If only they would...

As for the off-campus lottery, you can't even enter unless you're a senior with 6 semesters of residence (study abroad counts but time off doesn't) and each year they release fewer people. ResEd has said publicly that they envision an all-residential campus in the future. They say it's for safety and community building. I am quite against this, because I believe in independence and learning important life skills (also, off-campus is far cheaper) but qué será será...

Posted by: Alice on August 18, 2009 12:00 AM

Hey, I'm an upcoming junior in high school and a "prospie" as I guess kids my age have come to be known by. Your blog is really interesting and when I was looking at the Oberlin Majors the two that you're taking, Latin American Studies and English, really jumped out to me and as of right now Oberlin is my top choice-I was wondering if you could tell me a little bit more about the ins and outs of both of the majors? Thanks so much!!

Oh! And on the poll I vote d-because cookies are ALWAYS good!

Posted by: Sarah on August 18, 2009 6:14 PM

Hey Sarah,
Glad you're interested in Oberlin and my majors. I've been really happy with them both. Latin American Studies is wonderful because you can take courses in so many different departments (history, Spanish, politics, anthro, etc.) and English has a ton of great professors and classes. Here are so websites for more info:



Let me know if you have any more questions,

Posted by: Alice on August 18, 2009 10:14 PM

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