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 building a sustainable coalition

Samantha Bass ’11
“It amazes me that one year after proposing the Compost Work Group, composting is on its way to becoming a permanent reality at Oberlin.”

On musical training and non-musical careers

Matt Rivers ’04
“I hadn’t been in law enforcement for long before I realized that many of the same characteristics of police work are similar to playing in a jazz group.”

On playing Carnegie Hall

Hannah Levinson ’09
“I never truly understood the relationship between a conductor and an orchestra until I played under Robert Spano ’83.”

On Oberlin’s Contemporary Music Ensemble

Avery Waite ’10
“In this new music, I heard nothing, only an ugly idiom that my ear could not, would not grasp... Then something happened that I’ll never forget.”

On combining love and science

Sierra Zuber ’11
“When I was starting work on my honors biology research with crayfish...I realized how many questions had been right in front of me at Ginko [Gallery] all the time.”

On an interdisciplinary education

Miranda Fisher ’12
“Learning isn’t just about memorizing static content for a specific class; it’s about shattering the boundaries of a subject and seeing how you can apply its content in different contexts.”

On opportunities and the people who help you grab them

Jane Clark ’16
“The people I have met at Oberlin have recognized potential in me that I did not know existed and held me together when I felt that I might crack.”

On being one of the first female runners

Carla White Freyvogel ’79
“Running became a political statement for me... while other women made statements in class, delivering heart-pounding lectures, papers, and demonstrations, I put on my shoes and ran with the men.”

On her Oberlin experience

Tanya Rosen-Jones ’97
“At Oberlin... I could design my own path. And I did just that, becoming more brave and adaptable with each new adventure. Being a student here makes you acutely aware of your own unlimited potential...

On discovering hip-hip culture at Oberlin

Niels Bantilan ’09
“As I accumulated more knowledge about the music, art, and history of hip-hop through my independent research, I started to think outside the dance.”

On theater during Winter Term

Josh Sobel ’09
“Friendships are strengthened, working relationships are fostered, and creativity blossoms as everyone comes together to spend a month making art. ”

On memories of Oberlin

Clinton Doggett ’43
“It gets so you know almost everybody. I recall especially the first day after we all got back from summer vacation at the start of sophomore year, greeting people as we all streamed back and forth...

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