Oberlin College Top Questions

Is the stereotype of students at your school accurate?


Mostly. Not all the kids are super weird like most people would think, but it is a quirky campus. The musicians and superb, however, and we do try hard to stay green.


There's always a grain of truth to all stereotypes, in some way. We have our hippies. I enjoy hippies a lot. They give off great vibes, sometimes cook some great food (sometimes not) and are totally inoffensive most of the time. There are, however, a lot of hipsters who smoke a lot of cigarettes. These are, obviously, the extremes. Hippies and Hipsters make up about 10 percent of the college, I'd say. They're simply the ones everyone likes to focus on. Most people are simply intelligent, hard-workers who tend to like getting stoned every now and then. Everyone who goes to Oberlin is a little 'off-kilter', true, but we attract to other 'off-kilter' people. It's a good vibe, overall.


some of them--you can find all of those things here. but most people don't fit easily into those categories.


There are hippies, and there are hipsters, there are people that care a lot and there are people that smoke pot all day. The stereotype is only accurate for a select group, but Oberlin is overwhelmingly liberal for the most part.


I think there stereotypes definitely have some basis in truth.


Fairly accurate, but not your typical hippies.




We have plenty of people who fit those stereotypes, but just as many who don't. But we barely have any conservatives on campus at all.




in reality, there are too many types here to generalize. we've got lots of hipsters.


There is a certain truth to each of those stereotypes, but that's certainly not the whole story. There is a group for every kind of person and there are lots of mainstream people at Oberlin.


They all contain a kernel of truth.


not anymore, but there are still a lot


To some extent, but Oberlin has everything, there are exceptions to all.


No. Folks at Oberlin, like everywhere, have complicated identities. Maybe many students are liberals. A few are radical. The students here also deal with issues relating to complicated identities and oppression. Racism, classism, heterosexism, sexism, etc all play out on a daily basis.


For the most part, yes.


Actually it is only mostly liberal and filled with skinny hipsters from New York and a select few individuals who don't seem to shower. Nonetheless, I'd prefer hippies to hipsters any day!


in many ways, yes, in many individual cases, no


For sure!


There are definitely a lot more people like that here than at other schools, but there there are a variety of students here and not all fall into or associate with that category.


We are definitely stereotyped as a liberal school, and that is true, to a certain extent. But I think that the focus of our liberalism is random and not truly tied in anything. We seem to focus a lot of forming "identities" and being accepting of those identities, as long as they don't compete with the other issues that seem to take over all discourse - like racism and sexism. Otherwise, honestly, the stereotypes I listed above seem to be quite accurate. It's disheartening how few people are truly individualists.


Obies are liberal, that's for sure. Obnoxiously so. The PC culture is pretty big, but there is also a pretty big backlash because of it. Generally, people can be awkward. People are really nice once you meet them, but for some reason some people have a lot of trouble making eye contact and smiling while meeting each other in passing. Also, sometimes it seems like people have a really hard time getting laid here. It also sometimes seems like everybody is getting some. Hard to tell there.


we ARE liberal...Oberlin is a liberal haven MOST people here probably do not identify as hippies BUT there are a lot of people who ressemble hipsters AND the idea that we are socially awkward is either true or we love the joke (depending on the person), or both. HOWEVER, the Conservatory is DIFFERENT from the college.... the Conservatory is NOT really considered liberal... BUT we ARE weird.... eating/living in a co'op is a large part of student life


in many ways, yes, but that does not mean that any one of the stereotypes is all-pervasive on campus; if you don't agree/fit in to any of the categories or stereotypes, that is completely cool and accepted. basically, if you look for students who fit the stereotypes, you will find them, but if you look for people who precisely DON'T follow the stereotypes, you will find lots of them as well.


Each of them is accurate for a lot of the people here. Of course none of them is true of everyone.


to some extent...but we got em all. Jocks, science and math nerds, a few conservatives here and there. But after coming here...you realize everyone in this whole world is weird, so who am i to judge stereotypes?


Pretty much. We are undoubtedly a bunch of weirdos, whether theater kids, athletes, science people, activists what have you, we are all very weird. Music is all around, con or not. That being said there are a lot of people who don't fit the 'Oberlin mold'.


There is some truth to all of them, but no one individual conforms perfectly to any of them.


Not at all. People here are fairly mainstream and I have found that as someone who is fairly out there in terms of political views and personal behavior, I am often times in a strange minority. Students here are of an average liberal-arts intelligence, which is to say, well-educated with little drive and not exceptionally brilliant. Fortunately, drug use is not as pervasive as Obielore might suggest. But neither is studying or activism, which is shitty.


They only represent a small fragment of the population. Most people at Oberlin are friendly, engaging, immensely smart and creative, and just fun to be around - without conforming to any one stereotype.


This seems to be true to some extent, though every once in a while someone will surprise you. Also, there are nerds and jocks but I rarely notice them.


sometimes; i'm pretty sure a good portion of oberlin students are not actually so much either, but you know, most people have their quirks.


No. I find many of the students here to be friendly and "normal." There are a lot of gay couples but I am fine with that. The people that choose to be homosexual or bisexual make them no different from the heterosexuals. Lastly you don't have to be brilliant to get into Oberlin. Yes, the academics are difficult but I'm not the smartest person in the world and here I am.




People here definitely are very liberal, but few people would call themselves "hippies". That being said, many have dreadlocks or walk barefoot, and like having fun in wacky and socially inappropriate ways. There really isn't any more alcohol use thzn other colleges, but pot is fairly common. Other drugs are probably used at the same rate as other colleges.


It's complicated: Hippies: not so true anymore. Hipsters: more and more true, but its part of a larger trend. Therefore pot stereotype to be soon replaced by coke stereotype. Open mided: not true. (for the most part, like most human beings, but there are truly open minded and intelectually honest people here...not me) School becoming harmless: true...especially the students. The administration here has always been just liberal, but the students that go here are no longer the so called 'radicals' that Oberlin was famous for. And yes, excelent proffessors who are available...principal reason to go here.


Mostly. There are definitely a lot of politically conscious people, but not as many or as deeply conscious or active as I would like. I think it's a hard time for idealism anywhere in this country, though.


At some level.


There are far less hippies at Oberlin than you would expect. Hipsters have become the hippies of our generation and they have begun to take over Oberlin.




Like most places, they are to some degree. There are hippies and hipsters and crazy Con students. There are also so many amazing, smart, interesting and fun people.


for the most part, yes, but in a good way


Oberlin is a comfortable atmosphere focused on learning, not on what one is wearing, who their parents are, how much money they have...so one does often experiment and come to have a greater understanding of who they are, sexuality included.


They are grossly exaggerated. Yes there are hippies and yes there is a gay/lesbian population but this is true of any institute of higher learning.


The hippie arent actually that dirty, and they are not that intrusive. Oberlin is both normal and abnormal, you can find what your looking for and be confortable.


There are students like that on campus but theres also a lot of variety across the campus. It's not hard to find a group that you feel comfortable with.


To some extent - we're definitely not all dirty hippies, though there are some of those here. We definitely like to question.


Yes, for the most part.


In some cases yes as many Oberlin students can play an instrument. I'm a football player, but I can still play a trumpet. Even though Oberlin does have some "hippies", many other types of students exist on this campus, from jocks, to hipsters, to the normal everyday run of the mill Joe/Jane student.


No. Oberlin students are students that want to push themselves academically. The people here realize the importance of a good education rather than a mediocre one.

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