Each year, many students seek out the Office of Religious and Spiritual Life (ORSL) for guidance and support with their winter-term projects, and many students complete projects with the assistance of ORSL. ORSL has sponsored projects in all three of the traditional categories of winter-term projects: academic study and research, field education and internships, and personal growth and development. Our staff and affiliates have valuable training, experience, and connections that can help students develop an exciting and enriching project.

To spark your imagination, below are some of examples of the types of projects that students have undertaken with ORSL sponsorship in the past. For more information, please contact the ORSL staff.

  • Individual or Group Reading and Study with a Campus Minister about: 
    • One’s own religious tradition or spiritual and ethical development
    • Particular topics of interest in scripture, theology, philosophy, religious history and practice, personal ethics, social justice, or world religions
    • The practice of a particular type of spirituality, such as meditation, Christian spirituality, Orthodox spirituality, women’s spirituality, etc.
    • Past and possible topics include: African American theology, apocryphal gospels, Asian American theology, atheism, bioethics, death and dying, ecology, evangelicalism, immigration, Latino/a theology, liberal theology, liberation theology, peace, prayer, prisons, queer biblical studies, religious artwork, sacred space, and sexuality
  • Research and Writing on a Particular Topic, such as Oberlin’s religious history, a particular religion at Oberlin, world religions in Ohio, interfaith work in Cleveland, etc.
  • Residence in a Monastery, Convent, Ashram, or Retreat Center
  • International or Domestic Mission, Service, or Social Justice Trip
  • Pilgrimage or Travel to Holy Places, such as Israel/Palestine, India, Rome, Mecca, the cathedrals of Western Europe or holy places in Cleveland or North America
  • Internships in Religious or Nonprofit Work, such as an apprenticeship with a pastor, priest, rabbi, imam, religious educator, or sacred musician, or work at nonprofit organization such as the American Friends Service Committee, the ACLU, or a food bank

See other ideas for projects on the Winter Term Inspiration Website