The Memorial Arch on Oberlin’s Tappan Square serves as a tribute to the missionaries of the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions who lost their lives in the Boxer uprising in China in 1900. Oberlin was chosen as the site for this monument because all but four of those martyred were Oberlin students or members of the families of these students.
Photo credit: John Seyfried

History and Mission

Although Oberlin’s values have been expressed differently over time to address the most vital issues of the day, at the root of Oberlin’s mission throughout its history is the fervent pursuit of social justice.

Oberlin College and Conservatory of Music educates students for lives of intellectual, musical, and artistic rigor and breadth; sustained inquiry, creativity and innovation; and leadership. Oberlin aims to prepare graduates with the knowledge, skills, and perspectives essential to confront complex issues and to create change and value in the world.

Oberlin is committed to educational access and opportunity. It seeks to offer a diverse and inclusive residential learning environment that encourages a free and respectful exchange of ideas, and shares an enduring commitment to a sustainable and just society.

Campus Events

Our values

Obie values infuse everything we do, and they all lead toward one goal: a more sustainable, respectful, and interconnected world for all.

Our Traditions

Like most schools, Oberlin has its enduring traditions; unlike most schools, some of them get a little quirky. From renting a quality work art for $5 to spray-painted messages on the Rock, these help make Oberlin special.