Beyond Oberlin (Jobs & Grad School)


A liberal arts education prepares you not only for the specific field of your major, but also for the much larger professional world beyond - by teaching you critical thinking skills, problem solving, time management, and how to really engage a topic. That's all well and good, but what can you really do after walking across stage at commencement?

Actually, pretty much anything.

Whether you are interested in attending grad school, entering the workforce, or spending a 'gap year' figuring out what comes next, Oberlin can help you decide what that next step should be. The Office of Career Services had supported generations of Obies with career counseling, resume and cover letter help, internship opportunities, and many other services. The Conservatory Resource Center provides resume help, audition information, and a database of summer festival and graduate programs. Obies are also quick to take care of each other; through Obie Web or personal connections, many Oberlin students find internships and jobs with the help of Oberlin's alumni network.

Obies are also quite apt at securing fellowships after they graduate. Every year, a number of graduating seniors walk away with some of the most prestigious fellowships in the nation, including Fulbrights and the Watson. Both of these awards have allowed students to pursue their passions in regions outside the United States. Whether they are teaching English in Russia or exploring the politics of food on different continents, you'll find that Oberlin students always squeeze the most out of these experiences. Other fellowships abound for specific fields and for those who are underrepresented in higher education. With the aid of the Office of Fellowship Advising, many Obies successfully pursue a fellowship in their post-Oberlin life.

Blog Entries Related To This Topic:

Letters To Sammie pt.2

posted by Samantha Smylie '17 | I graduated from Oberlin and I still can't believe it. This is a short letter to myself and a lot of "thank yous" to faculty and staff who changed my life at Oberlin. Thank you all so much.

The Last Post

posted by Karalyn Grimes '16 | Goodbye, Oberlin Blogs. I'll miss you.

Where do I begin?

posted by Ma'ayan Plaut '10 | And ultimately, end.

From Obieland to Boston: Harvard Divinity's DivEx Program

posted by Karalyn Grimes '16 | I spent the first week of November in Boston, touring Harvard Divinity School as a Diversity & Explorations program participant, and attending the school's first Black Religion, Spirituality, & Culture Conference. But wait, this is the blog platform I write for Oberlin, where does Harvard come in? This is the story about how Oberlin got me to Harvard. (Maybe.)

The Summer Job That Felt Like Vacation

posted by Celina Kobetitsch '19 | Working with so many talented, motivated, and engaging students felt extremely meaningful and reminded me that teaching is definitely something I want to continue doing in the future.

Summer Sixteen

posted by Kameron Dunbar '19 | "Looking, looking, looking...All summer sixteen." - Drake

One Last Time

posted by Alexandria Cunningham '16 | A farewell post by this Class of '16 blogger.

How Jules Greene Does Summer: An Illustrated Look

posted by Jules Greene '19 | I now think about where I was this time last year, when I was fresh off the tails of high school and pretty darn directionless with how I was going to spend my summer, and yeah, I can totally see why some people have not been able to recognize me.

The Honor Is Mine

posted by Alexandria Cunningham '16 | Graduation caps, some love and a few honorable mentions from a blogger on her way out.

So I have this major...

posted by El Wilson '18 | The post in which I reveal that I have no idea why I'm a psych major.

"Is this really what I want to do?"

posted by Celina Kobetitsch '19 | I've always been told "only go into music if you can't imagine doing anything else." But without an imagination, how could I ever be a musician?

Dreams to Vision

posted by Alexandria Cunningham '16 | Oberlin is full of visionaries but how does all that happen? Where did these folks start? Can that be me too?! Let's talk about it!

Looking Forward, Looking Back

posted by Emily Wilkerson '15 | In my last entry for the Oberlin blogs, I look forward to my next adventure, look back at who I was before coming to Oberlin, and maybe learn a lesson in-between.

The End

posted by Charlotte Ahlin '15 | So long and thanks for all the fish.

The future is but a soup

posted by Simbarashe Runyowa '15 | I contend with my post-grad future through reflecting on age-old proverbs from my past.

Second Semester Seniordom

posted by Emily Wilkerson '15 | In my classes I'm writing, reading, listening, watching, and learning learning learning. Outside of them I'm tackling that most dreaded question, "what are you doing next year?"

Charlotte the Spider is Dead

posted by Charlotte Ahlin '15 | Second semester senior thoughts and spoilers for E.B. White books.

Change of Plans

posted by Ben Reid '16 | I want to help people solve their problems, not corporations.


posted by Simbarashe Runyowa '15 | At this point in my college career, perspective is really important. What really matters, in the larger scheme of things? Sometimes, it has to be about self-preservation.


posted by Ben Reid '16 | My summer in New York that included work, friends, family, and Beyonce.

Four Years of Writing

posted by Alicia Smith '10 | So I asked myself, when did I genuinely enjoy what I was doing? The answer: while studying sociology at Oberlin.

What Did I Learn from Oberlin Anyway? Despair and Defiance.

posted by Griff Radulski '14 | In the vast dark sea: a few bright fish.

What's an Adventure? The view from 5 years out

posted by Alice Ollstein '10 | All life is an adventure, and moving to a new city, building/finding a new community, and scrambling to make it in a uncertain field definitely qualifies.

Winter Turmoil

posted by Peter D'Auria '14 | Reflections on friendship, Canada, the Oberlin experience, and wearing socks on your hands.

Riding the Wind

posted by Griff Radulski '14 | "Biology? What are you going to do with that?" Here's what I'm doing so far.

The Best Question I've Asked Myself in the Past Five Years

posted by Yitka Winn '09 | The single most useful question I've asked myself in the past five years is, "Whose life do I envy?"

What's Next

posted by Ida Hoequist '14 | I have a degree now, whatever that means.

ArbQuest 2K14: A More or Less True Story of Commencement Melodrama

posted by Peter D'Auria '14 | For the first time, perhaps, you come to understand the permanence of your departure.


posted by Ma'ayan Plaut '10 | ...with emotions, never-ending rain, smatterings of advice, and the overwhelmingness of the commencement/reunion weekend to end all commencement/reunion weekends.

The Final Payment

posted by Ma'ayan Plaut '10 | Student loans, begone! I'm through!


posted by Griff Radulski '14 | I'm taking steps to ensure that I will bounce.

Liberal Artspocalypse

posted by Peter D'Auria '14 | a.k.a. post-college life with a liberal arts major

On Taking a Gap Year

posted by Dara Lehrer '16 | I asked four of my friends why they took a gap year, what they did during their gap year, and what personal value it has had to them. Here is what they had to say...

Theory and Practice

posted by Ma'ayan Plaut '10 | Did I do my major right? I don't know! I hope so? I think so.

I'm Leaving Oberlin Early

posted by Tess Yanisch '13 | Like all the rest of the seniors, I have turned in my application to graduate. But, unlike most, I didn't check the box that says "May 2013." I'll be graduating in January.

Summer in Cape Town, South Africa (Part 2)

posted by Simbarashe Runyowa '15 | Thoughts on my human rights internship at People Against Suffering, Oppression and Poverty (PASSOP) in Cape Town, South Africa.

Ohio, I'm gone.

posted by Eli Goldberg '12 | Saying goodbye to Oberlin so the class of 2016 can say hello.

"So, what are you going to do with your life?" - resolved!

posted by Eli Goldberg '12 | The call was from AVODAH, The Jewish Service Corps: after four interviews, they had decided to offer me a placement as a Homeless Outreach Assistant at the AIDS Foundation of Chicago.

"So, what are you going to do with your life?"

posted by Eli Goldberg '12 | For those of you who are curious about what a liberal arts student does after Oberlin, I have some bad news and some good news...

Farewell to Oberlin, Part II, AKA 'Unlisted, Part II'

posted by Joe Dawson '12 | For now, gather round the campfire for the last of Uncle Joe's Story Times.

Grad Tips from a Pro

posted by Ma'ayan Plaut '10 | Tips, tricks, and advice from a five-year Oberlin commencement/reunion veteran. The fun is upon us!

Back to the Future

posted by Jacob Lamoureux '12 | ~ Congrats! We're delighted to inform you that you have been selected as a reader of this post... ~

In Which I Become Charlotte and Build a Web

posted by Ma'ayan Plaut '10 | This will probably be a first post of many discussing the most terrifying word in an Oberlin student/young alum's vocabulary: networking.

Stay Cool, Bra.

posted by Joe Dawson '12 | Brought to you by a card-carrying member of the cool committee.

The Plan

posted by Joe Dawson '12 | I wondered what literally burying my head in the sand would get me.

Pitfalls, Plans, and Prostates

posted by Jacob Lamoureux '12 | I cheer, you cheer, we all cheer for future!

Starting the Search Again

posted by Lauren Manning '12 | Oberlin has been the small, tight-knit and stimulating community I have needed for the past several years. But I am on the brink of exploring life and discovering my specific place in the world — a both exciting and terrifying prospect.

I am the boss. It is me.

posted by Helena Thompson '11.5 | In this post: rollin' like a G; how to succeed as Editor-in-Chief of an independent news organization without really trying; being elected to a board of directors when you just wanted to sit in on a meeting for the sole purpose of making witty side comments; thinking about things like an adult (even though it's terrifying).

The GREs Are: A) Stupid and Dumb, B) Dumb and Stupid, or C) All of the Above

posted by EJ Dickson '11 | If you have not woken up at 6:00 a.m. to take a standardized test in an industrial suburb of Cleveland before, I do not recommend doing so. It's like waking up at 6:00 a.m. to take a standardized test in an industrial suburb of Cleveland.

Summer Rap-up

posted by Joe Dawson '12 | Entry may or may not include a sick freestyle!

The pains of an intern.

posted by Karl Orozco '13 | A rather existential blog post about internships. Have I scared you away from reading this yet?

Who Moved My Compass?

posted by Joe Dawson '12 | WARNING: contains metaphorical language you may not yet be prepared to handle.

So we beat on, boats against the current

posted by Zoë McLaughlin '11 | That, I suppose, is as fitting a metaphor as any for the end of my college time. We, in some small way, touch a place, it touches us, and then we move on.

And After Graduation...

posted by Zoë McLaughlin '11 | Grad school was an obvious possibility, as was finding a job and working for a year, getting more lab experience. But I wasn't sure if I wanted to remain so heavily married to the sciences, at least in the immediate future.

Applying to Grad School, Ch. 3

posted by Will Mason '10 | Getting in

Snow busy-ness

posted by Joe Dawson '12 | Things got a little hairier at this point, if I remember right, and I found new uses for my simple tools. The flat head screwdriver could be easily used as a pry bar, I found, pulling up pieces of the tape player whose screws wouldn't yield to my five year-old hands.

Volunteers Reflect

posted by Prof. Steve Volk | So here's the deal. I'm looking for VOLUNTEERS. Students who would like to begin working on their own ePorfolios now. I provide you with access to an ePortfolio system, you use it (more instructions provided) and, every now and again, we get together to talk to other ePortfolio users about how it's going and what you're getting out of it (or not!).

Five Years

posted by Harris Lapiroff '10 | In five years, how am I changed?

Three unrelated vignette blog posts

posted by Zoë McLaughlin '11 | All you need to know is that it's legit real-world stuff, and she hasn't even graduated yet. Some people just really have their lives together.

Yet Another Open Letter

posted by Ma'ayan Plaut '10 | Another open letter to my family: being a big kid is eye-opening and good. Much love-profession enclosed.

Applying to Grad School, Ch. 2

posted by Will Mason '10 | Or, "This is a terrible idea!" (Inside: helpful faculty; I hate the GRE; Career Services rocks)

Applying to Grad School, Ch. 1

posted by Will Mason '10 | Or, "This is a great idea!"

I Think We'll Make It After All

posted by Alice Ollstein '10 | Even in the worst economy ever, we ex-Obies find a way. Glimpses of the post-college lives of the Class of 2010.

Working Infidelity

posted by Sam Jewler '10 | I abruptly dumped my old internship for a better one. Don't judge me, you would too.

Real Life Begins

posted by Alice Ollstein '10 | From job hunting to house hunting to cheap cultural activity hunting, I don't think I'm in Kansas (or Oberlin) anymore.

Four Plus One: Another Year in Oberlin

posted by Ma'ayan Plaut '10 | And so, my life in Oberlin goes on. Slightly different, but definitely still very, very exciting.

Lights, Camera, Lots of Action!

posted by Ma'ayan Plaut '10 | As a veteran of several of their programs I am still completely obsessed with the Center's summer camps, but I'm a bit too old to be at WKU every summer. Instead, I've graduated to camp counselor, and this time to a roving group of creative teens at a film and media camp right here in Oberlin.

Energy and Electricity

posted by Zoë McLaughlin '11 | And I make bad jokes.

Shall we dance?

posted by Zoë McLaughlin '11 | The fairy godmothers are actually hillbillies, the prince is something of a dud, and the mice are a lot more concerned about where they're going to get their next meal than about anything that's going on with Cinderella.

Bread, butter and everything in between.

posted by Karl Orozco '13 | Inside: Karl's summer internship at the Bread & Butter Collective, a silkscreen studio run by Oberlin alums, and all things related.

How to survive as an unpaid intern? Get creative!

posted by Sam Jewler '10 | What do you do when you're broke and working an unpaid internship? Hint: begging your parents for money is only step one.

Problem Solving

posted by Elizabeth Houston '06, Admissions | What I learned at Oberlin and how, four years later, it relates to my job.

Name dropping.

posted by Karl Orozco '13 | Famous Oberlin Alums to make your parents go "Ooh!"

The end is nigh

posted by Chris Gollmar '10 | With commencement looming, have I already entered the "abyss"?

Major Improvement

posted by Joe Dawson '12 | What be the ferocious and intangible 3-2 Engineering Program, you ask? Aye, for one as young as you, it is a thing most mysterious and, again, intangible. Sit down, children, and I'll tell you a story that would burn the hair right off your chest to hear.

Ms. Ollstein Goes to Washington

posted by Alice Ollstein '10 | See Alice network with alums. See Alice shamelessly beg for a job. See Alice hobnob with reporters from Bloomberg, The Washington Post, The New York Times, and National Geographic.

Just a thought

posted by Joe Dawson '12 | A wordy and rambling entry rife with thoughts. There's also a picture thrown in to break things up.

A reporter let loose in the halls of the US Senate

posted by Sam Jewler '10 | My last day interning at TIME magazine was also my best day. One lesson learned: not all US senators are larger than life.

Graduation anxiety

posted by Will Mason '10 | A glimpse into my worries about life post-Oberlin.


posted by Will Mason '10 | Performing in Cleveland as an Oberlin student.

Winding Down, Gearing Up

posted by Alice Ollstein '10 | It suddenly hit me that I have only four days left at my internship at La Opinion, and only two weeks left in LA.

Life After Oberlin: New Blog

posted by Daniel Tam-Claiborne '09 | Think of it as essentially this blog (more long-form stories, anecdotes, photos), but with a slightly different focus. Now that I have graduated from my dear alma mater, I figured it was time to branch out a little on my own.

Diary of an Intern

posted by Alice Ollstein '10 | In the life of an intern, just about anything can happen. Well, almost anything.

How'm I Doin'?

posted by Alice Ollstein '10 | At first I was annoyed at the little assignments Oberlin's making me do to get credit for my summer internship, but now I'm grateful.

The Kid Stays in the Picture: Aries Gets the Job!

posted by Aries Indenbaum '09 | The job search is one of the most stressful experiences I've ever had. The only time I've ever felt so confused and overwhelmed was writing my college applications.

A long, strange trip

posted by Will Mason '10 | Notes from a month spent touring with an Oberlin rock band.

Have Diploma, Will Travel (Back to College?)

posted by Daniel Tam-Claiborne '09 | It turns out that for a pair of liberal college campuses, both boasting large feeder populations from elite(ist) NYC high schools, Cornell and Oberlin couldn't be more different.

The Trappings of Relative Success

posted by Alice Ollstein '10 | My own computer, grammar errors, and what it's like to be the only Anglo at the country's biggest Spanish paper.

Senior Week (in Webcomics!)

posted by Aries Indenbaum '09 | College has been better than any other time in my life. When I think about who I was when I arrived here, and who I am now... I am a fundamentally different person. I grew up in Oberlin.


posted by Zoë McLaughlin '11 | Really, the only solution was to stay up until around 3:00 AM, listening to hit songs from the nineties, reading picture books, and learning the proper way to put on bangles.


posted by Joe Dawson '12 | My team T-Spain feat. Young Portugueezy, formerly Urethra Franklin, formerly Hurricane Kathleena and the Mansoon, really turned up the heat.

Teaching English as a Second Language

posted by Daniel Tam-Claiborne '09 | The challenge over the month came in donning both roles--as both a teacher and a student--all while being reassured along the way that we were likely to catch dengue fever, get taken hostage at a Jakarta airport, and be heaved out of a moving train on our way to Moscow.

Poetry, Lake Michigan, Blue Man Group, and overly mediocre Thai food

posted by Yitka Winn '09 | Forget that there was no hot water in my bathroom and that the hotel gym cost an extra $18 a day to work out at; I was delighted with our 13th floor window overlooking Lake Michigan, and the opportunity to spend some time with Linda, whom I adore.

Endless Summer

posted by Max Strasser '09 | Please excuse my first post waxing nostalgic about graduating. There will probably be more.

Starting to think beyond Oberlin

posted by Chris Gollmar '10 | Today I visited Career Services to get some quick advice on my résumé and on finding the right gradate program. It feels like I'm a junior in high school all over again.

A Resolution of an Oberlin Student

posted by Ma'ayan Plaut '10 | I've been running this entire last year on pure adrenaline. I know why, though, and it's because the life of an artist is a long and penniless road.

Two Years in Rural China

posted by Daniel Tam-Claiborne '09 | It is fitting that even in my last semester here at Oberlin, I am fortunate enough to be taking advantage of one more opportunity that this school has offered--one that is wholly unique to graduates of Oberlin. For two years, I will be teaching English in the northern Chinese province of Taigu through the Oberlin Shansi two-year fellowship program.

Four Thanksgivings: A Case Study in Evolving Independence

posted by Yitka Winn '09 | Although we were all a little homesick that day, there is something really special about the evolving sense of family you develop with the people you meet in your life after leaving home.

Foreign adventures

posted by Prof. David Walker '72 | Imagine someone handing you a check for $28,000 to go anywhere in the world to do whatever you'd most like to do in the year after college graduation.

From High School to Oberlin to...Oberlin?

posted by Elizabeth Houston '06, Admissions | In which I chronicle my journey from prospie to student to admissions representative.

Starting from Scratch, Part 2

posted by Alice Ollstein '10 | With our independent magazine finally published, now we just have to get people to read it.

Starting from Scratch

posted by Alice Ollstein '10 | Why everything is easier at Oberlin and harder out in the real world.


posted by Prof. David Walker '72 | If you're interested in a career in journalism, is it a mistake to choose a college that doesn't offer a journalism major? On the contrary!

Obies in the Holy Land

posted by Max Strasser '09 | Sorry for my hiatus from the Obieblogosphere, but I'm in Jerusalem, working at an internship and enjoying the Middle East. But Oberlin is never too far from my mind. Here's a quick update.

Where are they now?

posted by Prof. David Walker '72 | The overlapping events of commencement and reunion balance each other, since the inevitable melancholy of saying goodbye to the graduates is offset by the pleasure of reconnecting with old friends.

Summertime, and the livin' is easy

posted by Alice Ollstein '10 | I'm back home in Santa Monica with a real job at a real newspaper, and I'm realizing that my time at the Oberlin Review has been the perfect preparation for the journalism world.

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