Student Feedback Crucial for Change

To the Editors:

At a time when higher education faces significant pressure to make good on its promises of equity and inclusion, and in light of debates on our own campus about the impact of discrimination and bigotry — including anti-Black racism and anti-Semitism — we ask that all members of the Oberlin community contribute to institutional change by sharing any information about experiences of bias in our educational environment.

Oberlin is committed to addressing any discrimination and bigotry on campus, using processes designed to protect the rights of affected individuals and the intellectual integrity of the academic program. We encourage individuals who may have questions or be concerned with participating in these processes to seek confidential advice about how to share their concerns so that meaningful action may occur.

Without such information, addressing these profound barriers to learning becomes a challenge. For example, we are aware of recent assertions that Oberlin is currently facing significant issues related to anti-Semitism on campus. These allegations thus far have come from anonymous or secondhand sources that we have not been able to substantiate. All involved campus offices — the Office of Religious and Spiritual Life; Safety and Security; the Ombudsperson; the Multicultural Resource Center; the Division of Student Life; and the Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion — have issued numerous invitations to our community members to report any incidents of discrimination and harassment they may have experienced. Our off-campus community partners, including the Anti-Defamation League, AJC Cleveland, the Cleveland Hillel Foundation and the Jewish Federation of Cleveland, are also available to support individuals seeking independent opportunities to express their concerns.

We continue to call on anyone who has personally encountered any incident of bias to share that information with us so that we can conduct a responsible and thorough investigation.

– Tim Elgren
Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences

– Andrea Kalyn
Dean of the Conservatory of Music

– Meredith Raimondo
Interim Dean of Students