We have collected hundreds of personal narratives from students, alumni, faculty, and staff that explain the merits and strengths of Oberlin through the eyes of those who have experienced it firsthand.
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On her first-year dorm

Anna Ernst ’10
“I hope that incoming Obies who decide to live in Barrows or Dascomb will experience the same feeling I felt often my first year... It was simple, but I felt like I was home. I think that’s good...

On learning from peers

Sarah Cheshire ’14
“My education at Oberlin has occurred not only in the classroom, but through living and constantly engaging with so many different people from so many different life contexts.”

On a poignant winter term project

Megan Cox ’18
“The lessons I learned and the experiences I added to my cache in life have yet to fully reveal their meaning to me; I know, however, that these lessons will continue to guide me throughout the rest...

On being part of the Posse scholarship program

Hope Rehak ’11
“The other students who received a Posse scholarship to go to Oberlin that year were incredible leaders in their communities; I was proud to be included alongside them.”

On the lessons learned working for the Oberlin Review

Ben Newhouse ’04
“[I’ve taken] with me the grinding productivity, invention of necessity, and constant grace under constant pressure that I acquired down in Burton basement.”

On organizing Dr. Seuss Day at the local public library

Sophie Schacht ’10
“I am one of six people on the varsity softball team who tutors in the Oberlin public schools -- my first order of business was to recruit the entire team.”

On America’s first black president

Myrina D. McCullough ’69
“I’m glad and proud that I … and countless other Obies who have also shared their stories here all rejected the paralyzing fear of “otherness” that keeps people apart and keeps our world fragmented.”

On learning to cook in a co-op

Jenny Bower ’13
“But in a co-op, plan incorrectly and you could be swimming in pinto beans, have enough lasagna to cover a mummy, pop enough popcorn to fill a bathtub - or not prepare enough vegetables to feed a...

On Oberlin’s inclusive music scene

Charles Abbott ’14
“Collaboration plays a fundamental role in the community’s constant appetite for great art. This inclusivity is indicative of the communal Oberlin personality that makes it such an incredible place.”

On being successful in business

Thomas Kutzen ’76
“It takes the same willingness to be involved that I discovered at Oberlin, the ability to examine the community and to be an individual therein with the right blend of independence, challenge,...

On her semester abroad

Nora Frederickson ’10
“What does dancing on the bar of a rural Austrian disco have to do with an Oberlin education? (Answer inside!)”

On the way we treat writing at Oberlin

Judy Karasik ’75
“I was so deeply engaged and tangled up in writing as a living, morphing entity, that when I got to graduate school I couldn’t tolerate the aridness of what passed there at the time for intellectual...

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