No Need to Agree With Me — The Need To Be Unbelievaball

Lisa Mon'a Brown, Columnist

Are you graduating from Oberlin College in fewer than 75 days? Have you already completed a name pronunciation form? What about a graduation application? Do you know where the funds from this year’s senior class gift are being allocated? Have you familiarized yourself with the ever-so-important Commencement section of the Blackboard website? Well, if you answered yes to the first question, then you should have been able to answer affirmatively to all of the succeeding questions as well. Unfortunately, at this stage in the semester, many seniors do not even know the name of our senior class dean, let alone the content of the Commencement section on Blackboard. It’d be impossible to sketch every minute detail of what the next few months will look like, but hopefully I can make the big picture a bit clearer.

Spring break is right around the corner, and as soon as classes reconvene, seniors can expect the last two months of the academic year to whiz by us at lightning speed, regardless of whether we want them to or not. It is essential that our last memories as Oberlin College students are positive, memorable and enjoyable. This is why senior class dances and our highly cherished Senior Nights exist. Believe me — the Senior Class Gift Committee and the Senior Class Council do not revolve solely around fundraising efforts. Many of the upcoming senior events will also prepare us for the next stages of our lives once we venture out of our Oberlin bubble. The Life After Oberlin workshops and programming provided during Senior Week will prove to be enlightening, fun-filled and invaluable.

Shayne Wells, senior class vice president, stated, “May 30 is coming, and we’ve been working pretty hard to make sure that these last few months are as memorable and fun as they can be.” I couldn’t agree more. Up to this point in the academic year, there has not been a plethora of events exclusively for seniors. That’s all about to change very soon, beginning with Friday’s UNBELIEVABALL. What’s critical is that these events are highly attended and appreciated. Now, more than ever, is the time for the Oberlin College Class of 2011 to pull together. Let our Oberlin connection be the rope that unites us. Elizabeth Anderson, assistant director of the Oberlin Alumni Fund, described it in this fashion: “Despite what has happened, you came to Oberlin for a reason and Oberlin has been good to you.” As we begin our transition to becoming alumni, it’s our time to give back to Oberlin and show a great level of respect to our alma mater.

This year’s senior class gift will be allocated to three main areas. Anderson explained, “There are the bike rack covers; the Young Alumni Internship Fund, which helps current and future students offset the cost of housing, food, and things of that nature if they do not have a paid internship position; and then there are student scholarships. About 70 percent of the student body is on some type of financial aid or scholarship support.” With majority of the students at Oberlin College relying to some extent on financial assistance, it’s easy to see the importance of generosity for the upcoming generation of Oberlin College students. Luke Squire, senior class president said, “It’s important to realize that alumni are the reason that many students can go to Oberlin. Giving back, even if it’s only a few dollars, is really important.” If you still feel as though pledging $5 or even $300 of your matriculation deposit is not going to make a significant difference, then maybe there are a few other things that you should know. To begin with, President Krislov has announced that if the senior class reaches seventy percent participation, which would be a record-breaking achievement, then he would donate $750 of his very own money to our senior class gift. Not only that, the Board of Trustees will match any gift pledged by a senior with $25. Conservatory students shouldn’t feel left out either, because Conservatory Dean David Stull will also be matching any senior gift with $5. Consequently, anything that you donate or pledge will make a considerable difference in the total amount of money raised towards the senior class gift and potentially in the lives of the Oberlin College Class of 2015 and beyond.

Reflect back on your years as an Oberlin College student. Now, if you will, imagine what your life might be like 12 months from today. Life will be different! So please enjoy these last few months while they are still here. Remember what’s important. Give, love and dance like no one’s watching.

For more information about the Senior Class Gift or upcoming senior events, please visit