Before coming to Oberlin College, I wish I had a better appreciation for the Environmental Studies Department. Lead by Distinguished Professor David Orr, a leader in the field, the Environmental Studies curriculum equips students with both the ability and the passion to make real changes in ecological design and environmental policy. The Department resides in the acclaimed Adam Joseph Lewis Center and Environmental Science Lab. Outfitted with over 150 environmental sensors, the Lewis Center contains data monitoring and display systems for students to view and analyze energy use. Such a hands on approach is a rare and valuable education tool.
Even if you are assertive of your proclaimed career path, you should nevertheless take a class or two that isn't required for that field. Sometimes people find passions unbeknownst to them, or professors that may become lifetime friends by taking these classes. Overall, I recommend that you keep an open mind when selecting classes and extracurricular activities; learn a language you have always wanted to learn, take a class about a topic you know nothing of. College is about self discovery- take chances, and you may learn something new about yourself.
I wish I had known how to manage my time more efficiently before attending this school. College can introduce several temptations into a person's life and it is hard to make smart choices while keeping in good academic standing. Parties, new friends, an entirely new environment, and especially newly acquired independence can make for a tough first year. I am glad that I was raised by fairly strict parents who were able to keep me out of trouble for the most part, but the lack of independence in high school did not prepare me for the world of college.
That even though it's a rigorous academic environment, I'd actually come to ENJOY that so much more than I imagined! It was challenging, sure, but totally worthwhile. I had art history classes where I got to handle REAL Picasso sketches, English classes with discussions that fascinated me and I'd be thinking about for weeks later, and even outside class--just having off-the-wall philisophical debates with peers in the middle of the night was a blast.
People aren't as Type-A as I was afraid they would be--there's a lot of the hipster vibe here (very different from a hippie vibe, but just as far from the stereotype of the overachiever). Most people work hard, though, and LOVE what they're studying. Also, it really *is* very easy to avoid "party culture" if you want to--but on the other hand, not all people who party are stupid, immature jerks. Fancy that.
That we had such a fabulous neurology program. If I had known, I probably would have participated in the double degree program where you obtain a bachelor of music from the conservatory and a bachelor of science (or arts) from the college.
I wish i would have known truly how few teachers of african american decent there were . I didnt realize the extent of compitition academically there would be at a amaller liberal arts college such as oberlin college.
Wish I had already been more experienced, more mature, more well-traveled; I might have gotten even more out of everything. As is, I was perfectly happy and rarely felt out of place.
I wish I would have known how much the tuition was going to cost- it's not cheap, but what school isn't now days? Also, the weather can get pretty bad sometimes.
That there were more hipsters than I possibly could have imagined, and that musical theater was not taken seriously by the administration.