The Oberlin Review

AAPR Must Address Living Wage

Editorial Board

May 10, 2019

 At their core, the recommendations that the Academic and Administrative Program Review’s steering committee will submit to President Carmen Twillie Ambar in just a few weeks are a vision of Oberlin’s future that is informed by its past and present values. Sure, it’s a vision developed by a 31-person steering committee, but that committee is broadly representative of many different parts of the Oberlin community, and the draft of the final recommendations they shared publicly last week highlight many values shared by all Obies.  It’s worth noting that nearly all of these value-driven proposals have received broad-based support from campus constituencies, including the offices and faculty governance comm...

Stevens Strategy Poses Potential Threat to Job Security, Program Funding

Matthew Senior and Marc Blecher

April 13, 2018

Editor’s Note: The following is a version of a letter posted to the faculty listserv and sent to President Ambar and faculty by Professor of Politics and East Asian Studies Marc Blecher in collaboration with Professor of French Matthew Senior. This revised version was provided to the Review by Blecher at the Review’s request. Because of the content’s potential impact on Oberlin students and faculty, we felt it appropriate to publish the text in full. Dear Colleagues: When Stevens Strategy was named to consult in our Academic and Administrative Program Review, many of us had immediate concerns and reservations. One look at the Stevens website raises suspicions that they hew to a corporate model of career-oriente...

Review Unintentionally Misrepresents History of Student Activism

Jeremy Poe, Double-degree Fifth-year, Student Senator 2015–2016

November 3, 2017

To the Editors: In the Oct. 27 edition of The Oberlin Review, it was implied that I began the student representatives initiative recently rejected by the board (“Trustees Reject Proposal for Student Representative,” Oct. 27, 2017). This narrative is understandable, given the time and word-count restraints on student reporters, but is unintentionally misleading. It is incorrect to credit me with initiating the pursuit of student representation at the highest level of Oberlin governance, or for coming up with the idea. Student representation was a demand developed internally by Defending Oberlin Financial Accessibility during their 2014–2015 organizing against proposed financial aid changes. In July 2015, after a tru...

New Strategic Plan Draft Pursues Inclusivity

Madeline Stocker, Editor-in-Chief

February 12, 2016

Published nearly four months after the release of the last draft, the newest version of Oberlin’s Strategic Plan continues to make marked departures from the contents of the 2005 document. Though it remains more of a comprehensive list of goals than a specific implementation plan, the current draft does identify two of the administration’s future initiatives — the development of “theme-based course clusters” and the creation of a guidance system that will offer support to students throughout their first four post-undergraduate years. The draft, which was made public Wednesday evening, focuses considerably on ensuring an “inclusive and equitable learning environment” — certainly more so than its...

Committee Weighs Possible Budget Reduction

Oliver Bok, News Editor

September 11, 2015

The College’s financial position isn’t healthy, and the community will have to make tough decisions about where to put resources in the near future. At any rate, that’s the conclusion that many members of the Strategic Planning Steering Committee — the group of students, faculty, staff, trustees and administrators who are tasked with planning the College’s fiscal and educational future — seem to be coming to. “To put it simply, we have made a lot of promises that cost money,” said double-degree junior and committee member Hayden Arp. “We promised to raise faculty salaries to the median of our peer group. We promised to be carbon neutral by 2025. And then there’s the things we want to do: We want ...

Steering Committee Releases Preliminary Report

Sarah Conner, Staff Writer

May 8, 2015

Students on the Strategic Planning Steering Committee held meetings on Wednesday and Thursday to hear from students about what direction the College should head toward when formulating the Strategic Plan, the document the Board of Trustees uses to guide its decision making. Much of the discussions at the meeting focused on the preliminary report released Wednesday morning. The preliminary report gives an early indication of what may eventually make it into the final version. Among other things, the preliminary report emphasizes providing students with health and wellness resources, establishing an “innovation zone” and integrating the Career Center and the Alumni Office. The report also states that Oberlin...

February Senate Update

Machmud Makhmudov and Megs Bautista

March 13, 2015

Student Senate has started off the semester diligently working on making the grass visible again; we’re glad to say that we’ve finally succeeded. You’re welcome. This rapid improvement in our efficiency is in no small part due to the election of seven new senators — all of whom were chosen in an election that saw the highest level of voter participation since the 2010–2011 school year. While we are thrilled about this tremendous spike in voter participation, we must recognize the relationship between this spike and the immensely talented and diverse pool of candidates who ran for Student Senate this semester. We are proud to share that Senators and College first-years Arianna Crawford and Deborah Johnson,...

Speaker Explains Benefits of Online Classes

Louis Krauss, Staff Writer

March 13, 2015

Michael Horn, the education director for the Clayton Christensen Institute, visited Oberlin yesterday to discuss his ideas for how small liberal arts schools can become more financially accessible by replacing lectures with online classes. Horn’s lecture was part of the Steering Committee’s Speaker Series, which brings in various education experts to talk about how Oberlin can improve. In his work, Horn has focused on implementing what he calls disruptive education: the use of technology that is cheaper and simpler in order to help lower-income students get a good education. Horn believes that lecturebased classes that don’t engage students on a personal level can be eliminated and replaced by online classes....

College senior Miranda Rutherford studies in the Science Library. Last semester, Tim Elgren, the dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, asked science faculty if a section of the Science Library could be better
used as classroom space.

Administration Mulls Over Library Future, Budgeting Process

March 13, 2015

Discussions about the future of the Oberlin College library system are in full swing as the Strategic Planning Steering Committee makes long-term decisions for the institution as a whole. According to members of the Library Committee, the administration may also be considering possible changes to the library system’s budgeting process, although it’s unclear what those changes would actually entail. “The faculty Library Committee has heard of a change in budgeting approaches on the administrative...

Student Senate interviews a prospective Steering Committee candidate, College first-year Joshua Koller. This week, the student body and Senate elected and appointed six new student members to the Strategic Planning Steering Committee.

Six Students Added to Steering Committee

February 27, 2015

The student body elected College junior Sophie Umazi Mvurya, College first-year Nina Pulley and College second-year Jasmine Anderson to the Steering Committee last week. In addition, Student Senate selected College junior Avalon McKee, College second-year Sarah Minion, and double-degree second-year Hayden Arp for the committee on Sunday, bringing the total number of students on the panel to nine — the highest ever. The Steering Committee is a group of administrators, faculty, trustees and students...

Steering Committee Adds 6 Student Positions

Louis Krauss, Staff Writer

February 6, 2015

Student Senate announced the introduction of six new student positions on the College Strategic Planning Steering Committee this Thursday — a change which the administration and Senate hope will provide better representation for the student body during the Committee’s long-term planning process, which determines the trajectory of the College for the next several years. After demonstrators last semester challenged the administration’s lack of transparency, Student Senate began working with President Marvin Krislov, Diane Yu and the other trustees to add six spots for current students to the Committee. Student Senate pushed for this change at the end of last semester when it realized students needed more of...

Established 1874.