The Oberlin Review

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College Releases Details for Three Semesters of In-Person Classes

July 18, 2020

Information about changes to housing, dining, student activities, and campus social life was sent in an email to students, faculty, and staff last Wednesday, accompanied by a community agreement for on-campus enrollment. This year the College will adopt a three-semester model and enroll a limited student body in the fall, spring, and summer. The goal of this plan is to “de-densify” campus, allowing students to live in single rooms, practice social distancing in classes, and limit the potentia...

Black Lives Matter protesters marched from Tappan Square to the Post Office on June 6.

Black Lives Matter Protesters Gather in Tappan Square

June 30, 2020

Protesters gathered in Tappan Square on June 6 to protest the murders of George Floyd and other Black men and women killed by police. During the demonstration, several speakers addressed the crowd to talk about the history of police violence against communities of color and demanded change on the local and national level.  After protests against police brutality spread in cities in the U.S. and across the world, Oberlin resident Janet Gonzalez formed a Facebook group called Oberlin Peaceful Demonst...

UAW Leadership Calls Outsourcing Plan Inconsistent with College’s Racial Justice Values

UAW 2192 Leadership Team

June 12, 2020

To Oberlin College, Historically, the United Auto Workers union has played an important role in pioneering civil rights and freedoms in and out of the workplace. The UAW has walked hand in hand with civil rights leaders and the civil rights movement — from helping fund the Montgomery bus boycott and the march from Selma to Montgomery to providing an office at the Solidarity House for Martin Luther King Jr., where he penned his “I Have a Dream” speech. The UAW was also there to post bail for Dr. King’s release in 1963 from a Birmingham City Jail. That is what the UAW stands for.  In a recent email from President Ambar where she spoke from the heart about the black community, she mentioned that “Oberlin ...

College Implements Telecommuting Policies in Response to COVID-19

Katherine MacPhail, Editor-in-Chief

April 10, 2020

In coordination with local public health authorities, the College has drastically limited the number of employees on campus and developed new telecommuting policies in response to the local outbreak of COVID-19. Employees working from home have been asked to sign a Remote Work Agreement in which they commit to being available by phone or email during core work hours. Employees who still work on campus have been instructed to stay home if they have a temperature of over 100.4 degrees or otherwise feel ill. The College has also, in some cases, implemented a rotation strategy for employees who work remotely but come to campus periodically to complete essential tasks.  These policies were developed last month in antici...

Faculty and staff distributed packing boxes to students in the Root Room in Carnegie Building beginning Friday morning. Students in College housing are required to vacate campus by Monday at noon. Box distribution will continue 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday.

COVID-19 Outbreak Continues, College Moves to Remote Campus

March 13, 2020

In an email sent to the campus community Thursday afternoon, President Carmen Twillie Ambar announced that today will be the last day of classes prior to spring break and that students should plan to leave campus by noon on Monday, March 16. The decision is meant to help contain the spread of the novel coronavirus — known as COVID-19 — following the discovery of five confirmed cases in nearby Cuyahoga, Stark, and Trumbull Counties. Students should not expect to return to campus for the remainder...

Students, faculty, alumni, and United Automobile Workers members gathered to protest the College’s Feb. 18 announcement that it is “formally considering” outsourcing union labor.

Pressure Mounts Against Outsourcing Proposal; Senator Sherrod Brown Voices Support of UAW

March 6, 2020

Campus controversy continues to swirl around President Carmen Twillie Ambar’s Feb. 18 announcement that the College is “formally considering” outsourcing dining and custodial services, a proposal that could impact jobs currently held by 108 members of the United Automobile Workers union. While students and alumni have made their dissatisfaction with the proposal known, regional politicians and media have also begun to take notice — most notably Senator Sherrod Brown (D–OH), who circulated ...

Student Senate On Supporting UAW

Henry Hicks and Austin Ward

March 6, 2020

 This article is part of the Review’s Student Senate column. In an effort to increase communication and transparency, Student Senators will provide personal perspectives on recent events on campus and in the community. This statement was originally released in an email to the entirety of the student body in Student Senate’s weekly newsletter. Due to Oberlin College’s financial deficit, President Carmen Twillie Ambar and administrative staff have decided to formally consider contracting with outside vendors instead of continuing their contract with the United Automobile Workers union. This could lead to a total of 108 full-time workers losing their UAW jobs: 52 full-time dining employees and 56 full-time cus...

Administrators Address Potential Impact of COVID-19

Carson Li, Staff Writer

February 28, 2020

As the newest iteration of coronavirus, known as COVID-19, continues to spread around the world, Oberlin — like other colleges and universities across the country — is preparing to address challenges that the virus may inflict on campus life. Administrators are taking steps to support current and prospective international students impacted by the viral outbreak, as well as to anticipate the potential financial impact of COVID-19 on Oberlin. According to President Carmen Twillie Ambar, some of the potential financial difficulties could stem from foregone tuition from students who would not be able to come to campus in the fall, should international travel restrictions remain in place until that time. “Most colle...

Rapid Response Team Debuts at UAW-Related Protests

Rapid Response Team Debuts at UAW-Related Protests

February 28, 2020

President Carmen Twillie Ambar’s Feb. 18 announcement that the College is formally considering outsourcing 108 dining and custodial jobs currently held by United Automobile Worker union members incited a campus-wide conversation and student-led protests and demonstrations. As activism in support of UAW continues, the College is in the midst of considering how best to approach its relationship with student activists. One approach taken by the Division of Student Life is to assemble a Rapid Res...

An Open Letter to Students

Susan L. Phillips, OC ’76

February 28, 2020

 It’s with sincere and profound sorrow that I want you to know that the Susan Phillips Social Justice Scholarship Fund spring interviews have been suspended indefinitely. I know that this will disappoint the students who have benefited from stipends each summer for the past four years, and will deprive others of important internship opportunities in the future.  I have looked forward tremendously to coming to campus in the spring to listen to your creative project proposals and again in the fall to hear about your actual experiences. You have restored my faith in the future during these bleak, divisive times for America — more than I can ever express. Therefore, the decision I’ve made to suspend the program t...

Ferd Protzman, OC ’75, Retiring Chief of Staff, Reflects on Oberlin Career

Ferd Protzman, OC ’75, Retiring Chief of Staff, Reflects on Oberlin Career

December 13, 2019

After serving for three years as chief of staff in the Office of the President, Ferd Protzman, OC ’75, will retire at the end of the calendar year. Protzman will be replaced on an interim basis by David Hertz, managing director at Cleveland-based crisis communications firm Dix & Eaton, while a national search is launched to find a full-time replacement. Protzman returned to Oberlin in 2006 while working as an author and journalist for publications including The Washington Post and The New...

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