Oberlin seeks to maintain its vibrant campus life while ensuring that the entire community takes every possible step to reduce COVID-19 transmission. To achieve this goal, everyone’s creativity, patience, and collaboration will be necessary—exactly the kind of collective work at which Obies excel.

Throughout the ObieSafe campaign, you’ll see references to physical distancing. This word choice is very intentional. Although we will all do our best to maintain the space between us needed to reduce COVID-19 transmission, we will seek every opportunity to create, promote, and strengthen the social bonds that are a key part of individual and community health.

It is important that we continue to maintain a thriving cocurricular and community life by making changes that reduce risk. All in-person gatherings, whether organized or informal, must follow the ObieSafe guidelines, including instructions about the location, size, and types of events and social gatherings that may occur. In particular, please remember that organized and informal social gatherings and activities must observe the following requirements:

  • Activities and gatherings must be designed so that participants can maintain a minimum of 6 feet between themselves and others. Spaces that do not permit such distancing, such as some student organization offices, may not be used during the 2020–2021 academic year.

  • Masks that cover the nose and mouth must be worn when not in your private room with the door closed. This includes walking through or sitting in Tappan Square, the Arb, the Reservoir(s), laying in Wilder Bowl, visiting downtown Oberlin and other off-campus locations, and working in a student organization office or workspace.

  • Meeting rooms and non-class use of classrooms must be reserved in advance. No walk-up reservations will be permitted.

  • Attendance at meetings must adhere to the posted occupancy signs. Some activities may require the hosting group to limit occupancy below posted levels in order to maintain physical distancing.

  • According to state guidelines, gatherings in an education setting may exceed the state limit of 10 people. Participants must wear a mask at all times at such gatherings and maintain physical distance. Outdoor settings should be used whenever possible.

  • Student organizations whose activities involve physical contact will be suspended if and until a plan is approved by the Director of Student Activities in writing. Please submit a plan in writing at least 10 days before any planned event to ensure timely review.

  • Please eliminate activities that involve the transfer of physical materials from one person to another, in order to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission through such objects. For this reason, all student publications will publish electronically. All tabling is suspended.

  • To limit virus transmission, Oberlin College-sponsored off-campus travel is suspended. No student organizations will be permitted to travel until notified otherwise in writing by the Director of Student Activities.

  • An ObieSafe plan for use of an assigned office space regarding rotational use, occupancy, sanitizing, etc. must be approved by the Director of Student Activities in writing before access will be granted.

  • Any organization that fails to observe the requirement to submit a COVID-19 transmission plan for events or gatherings, or fails to follow its plan during an event or gathering, may be subject to the student conduct process and be subject to sanctions including loss of access to office space and campus facilities. In serious instances in which organizations create substantial threats to community health, the organization may be suspended indefinitely. Individual members may also face student conduct charges.

  • The Student Union suggests that gatherings be held remotely whenever possible.

  • Only enrolled Oberlin College students and faculty/staff will be permitted to use campus facilities. Organizations that typically welcome community members, such as the Pottery Co-Op, WOBC, and gymnastics classes, must suspend such participation until notified otherwise in writing by the Director of Student Activities.

  • External performers, speakers, and workshop facilitators are not permitted on campus but may present remotely/virtually. Offers and contracts must be handled through the Student Activities Office.

  • Protests, defined as planned, unstructured programs with an outcome focused on political, social, or economic change, will only be permitted out-of-doors and will be subject to the same directives and restrictions outlined in ObieSafe and College Rules and Regulations. All such events must require that all participants wear masks and maintain physical distancing.

  • Club Sports may not travel nor compete with other teams. We do, however, value the contributions that teams make to campus life and student success, and encourage teams to design gatherings to sustain their relationships, provided they follow ObieSafe protocols.

  • A social life is important, but to keep our campus and town community safe, there are to be no on- or off-campus parties. We encourage the use of Zoom and other technologies to create virtual dance parties and other forms of shared entertainment.

  • Consumption of alcohol and or illegal drugs can cause individuals to be less responsible in following ObieSafe protocols. Please observe all state and federal laws regarding alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs. If you meet the legal requirements and choose to drink or smoke, please be responsible and avoid actions that contribute to COVID-19 transmission.

  • RemObies (Remote Obies) social activities will continue throughout the semester. Please give them a try and encourage your friends to participate!

  • Everyone in our community will need support and care. Please use remote technologies to check on each other and to sustain friendships, make new ones, and help our community thrive in the face of the COVID-19 challenges.