The Yeworkwha Belachew Center for Dialogue

Social Justice Institute

Group Photo of Social Justice Institute members
Photo credit: Dale Preston '83

New students arriving at Oberlin find themselves part of a culturally, economically, geographically, and racially diverse campus community. The Social Justice Institute is a two-day workshop, held during orientation, that invites participants from widely different backgrounds and experiences to come together to explore issues of social justice.

Sponsored by the Yeworkwha Belachew Center for Dialogue at Oberlin College (YBCD) under the auspices of the Ombuds office, the Social Justice Institute allows students to examine some of the ways structural and cultural mechanisms perpetuate privilege and disenfranchisement through institutions in society as well as through individuals. The format includes small and large group discussions, interactive activities, videos, and brief lectures. interactive exercises.

Historically, the institute has helped new students who participate to better integrate into the college community, and to foster the effective, concerned engagement with social issues that are so characteristics of Oberlin students.

Participation in the Social Justice Institute is limited to 100 students.

When does SJI take place? How do I apply?

The 2019 Social Justice Institute will take place during Labor Day weekend, Sunday and Monday, September 1 and 2, 2019. New students may submit the SJI application online via your applicant portal at You can find the link to the application in the New Student Registration Forms section.