The Oberlin Review

Conservatory Should Revamp Recital Booking System

Amber Scherer and Cordelia Mutter

February 14, 2020

 Amber (she/her) and Cordelia (she/her) are members of the Oberlin Conservatory Council of Students, serving as vice president and president, respectively. Early Monday morning, something odd occurred outside Bibbins Hall. Around 3:30 a.m., a student pulled up in their car, waiting for the building to open at 6:30 a.m. Not long after, several more students arrived and a line began to form outside Bibbins’ east door. By 5:00 a.m., more than 10 students had shown up. By 6 a.m., the line was nearly 30 students in length. At 6:30 a.m., when the Conservatory doors opened, the line was more than 50 people long. Finally, at 8 a.m., the line — finally indoors and out of the rain — was an astonishing 65 people in l...

Conservatory sophomore Josephine Lee and double-degree junior Phoebe Pan practice together in Bibbins Hall.

AAPR Recommends Structural Changes to Con

April 19, 2019

One of the primary areas of recommendation to come out of the Academic and Administrative Program Review concerns structural changes to the Conservatory. Specifically, the steering committee has supported the creation of a revamped Musical Studies major and minor, and recommended that Oberlin increase College enrollment by 100 students while simultaneously decreasing the Conservatory enrollment by 100 students over the course of four years. This recommendation was made partially in response to d...

New Options Provide Better Food Accessibility in Conservatory

Amber Scherer, Contributing Writer

December 7, 2018

Amber Scherer is a member of the Conservatory Council of Students, an elected body of students that works with College and Conservatory administrations to represent the Conservatory’s student body. Grab-and-go lunch in the Conservatory began in early October, due to efforts by the Conservatory Council of Students, the Office of the Dean of Students, and Campus Dining Services. The change was a response to student outcry, particularly within the Conservatory, over the lack of lunch options on South Campus. The Conservatory Council of Students conducted a survey, and published the results in the Review, which depicted a student body frustrated by their dining options (“CDS Must Address All Accessibility, Health C...

Oberlin Prepares for Re-accreditation

Amber Scherer

October 12, 2018

Oberlin College and Conservatory will be evaluated for re-accreditation on Oct. 15 and 16 to determine if the education provided by the College meets both internal goals and quality levels set by the U.S. Department of Education. This will be the College’s first evaluation in 10 years. The federal government appoints accrediting agencies to oversee colleges and universities in different regions. Oberlin College’s regional agency is the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), a Chicago-based organization entrusted with accrediting collegiate institutions from Ohio’s eastern border all the way to New Mexico. According to Conservatory Dean Bill Quillen, re-accreditation is a “a peer-driven process.” Accred...

Conservatory students retrieve personal belongings from conservatory lockers.

Conservatory Thefts Prompt Security Concerns

October 5, 2018

After at least six thefts inside Conservatory practice rooms and lockers, Campus Safety will be increasing its security presence in the Conservatory complex with more rounds and potential additional security measures. Over the past few weeks, at least four students returned to their practice spaces after brief intervals to find money taken from their wallets. Students also reported that their lockers, which often house personal belongings and instruments costing up to tens of th...

CDS Must Address All Accessibility, Health Concerns

Eilish Spear and Amber Scherer

September 28, 2018

Eilish Spear and Amber Scherer are members of the Conservatory Council of Students, an elected body of four students that works closely with the Conservatory and College administration to represent the Conservatory student body and foster a greater sense of community. Two weeks ago, Vice President and Dean of Students Meredith Raimondo hosted a forum to address students’ concerns regarding the changes to campus dining. Troubled by what she heard from Conservatory students about their difficulties in accessing healthy and timely meals, Dean Raimondo reached out to the Conservatory Council of Students to discuss further concerns and identify potential solutions. CCS quickly sent out a preliminary survey about the din...

Finding Social Footing at College Takes Time, Effort

Amber Scherer, Contributing Writer

May 5, 2017

It wasn’t until recently that I realized how fragile my friendships at Oberlin are. After a fairly solitary first semester, I was excited to develop a group of friends this spring. It was reassuring to have people I could geek out with over music or politics or just hang out with on weekends. That’s all I’ve ever wanted from friends: casual, easygoing relationships. In high school, at least, that’s all friends were for me. My real support came from my family, so I never sought it out at school. But now, away from my home and family, I’m realizing how much time it takes for people to get to know each other well enough to become the family we all need. I feel unsettled away from home. I’...

Emotional Focus Puts Facts Second in Politics

Amber Scherer, Columnist

March 10, 2017

Since the election, President Donald Trump’s opponents have struggled to find their role in the new era. Political norms seem irrelevant and liberals are struggling to make themselves heard. Two weeks ago in the Review, Will Cramer suggested that activists rely on intuition over facts to make arguments, particularly in regard to immigration reform (“Immigration Raid Discourse Requires Moral Intuition,” Feb. 24, 2017). I agree that appealing to people’s compassion and morality can be persuasive. I also share in Cramer’s frustration about the cold, empirical politics of establishment Democrats. But this perspective, fairly prevalent among Oberlin progressives, could exacerbate the anti-truth trend in American...

Guns, Not Bears, Threaten Ohio Schools

Amber Scherer, Columnist

February 10, 2017

In the first confirmation vote to ever require a tiebreaker, the Senate confirmed Betsy DeVos as education secretary Tuesday. DeVos was one of President Donald Trump’s most controversial cabinet nominees, provoking intense opposition from Senate Democrats and teachers’ unions. During her confirmation hearing, DeVos was asked about her stance on firearms on school campuses, which is particularly relevant to states like Ohio that allow concealed carry on school campuses. “I think probably there, I would imagine that there’s probably a gun in the school to protect from potential grizzlies,” she said, further stating that she believes state and local authorities have jurisdiction over firearm policies in school...

U.S. Should Rely on Constitution in Turbulent Times

Amber Scherer, Contributing Writer

February 3, 2017

In the months since the presidential election, I have heard people question our system of democracy. This is understandable, as the democratic process led to a result that many find abhorrent and in conflict with the United States’ core values. However, as we seek ways to resist Trump and move forward, we must follow the leads of former President Barack Obama, former Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and former acting Attorney General Sally Yates and commit ourselves to abiding by the Constitution. From the moment the election results were announced, Obama and Clinton have been two of the staunchest advocates for a peaceful transition of power. Clinton accepted her loss in a stirring concession speech, aski...

Democratic Party Must Consider Needs of Trump Voters

Amber Scherer, Contributing Writer

November 18, 2016

I worked for the Hillary Clinton presidential campaign for several months leading up to the election. It was surprisingly fun work and, as a generally introverted first-year, a big help to transitioning me to life away from home. But I saw a lot that frustrated and upset me. On one campaign trip, I heard students jeer “Killary!” and “Grab her by the pussy!” at my co-workers. Some campaign workers ignored it; others responded in kind. I heard things from both sides that genuinely frightened me. This is all to say that the vitriol and division of the campaigns were in no way exclusive to the candidates themselves. We view these politicians as so powerful — almost as something more than human — but they’re on...

Feminism Will Become Law Under Clinton

Amber Scherer, Contributing Writer

October 28, 2016

As a country, we’ve finally made it through all three presidential debates. The matches were tense and personal, which gave us a deep look at the candidates’ characters. One resorted to insult, accusation and primal displays of arrogance while the other prioritized policy over performance. She may not make great TV, but Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton is the model of poise and compassion in the face of ugliness. During the second and third debates, Clinton heatedly challenged Republican nominee Donald Trump’s mistreatment of women. She admonished his unforgiving position for women who receive abortions and condemned his alleged sexual misconduct. Call me biased, but I don’t blame her for her indignation. ...

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