Dorms, Co-ops, & Other Housing

Overview:

As a residential campus, Oberlin compels its students to create a vibrant community that extends far beyond the classroom. College and conservatory students live together and share a single campus culture, thus making Oberlin a truly unified community. Sharing ideas and experiences at all hours of the day and night, we interact with one another like atoms.

To provide for the varied needs of its students, Oberlin offers a plethora of housing options: traditional residence halls, program houses organized around language or cultural affinities, student-initiated special floors devoted to an academic interest or hobby, and co-op houses in which students share in the preparation of meals and running the household.

New students have the option of residing in one of the two first-year dorms, Barrows and Dascomb. In these dorms, students are provided with special programming and events that assists in the transition to college life.

Fourth-year and some third-year students have the opportunity to live in "village housing" - houses and apartments owned by the college - to provide a greater sense of independence. A limited number of seniors are also able to live off-campus and rent local properties.

As an alternative, the Oberlin Student Cooperative Association (OSCA) is a student-owned and operated non-profit corporation that provides both housing and dining to Obies. Nine separate co-ops - each responsible for its own day-to-day operations - provide students with the option of living and/or dining in a communal and cooperative environment. OSCA members are expected to help run the operations of their various co-ops - through food preparation, cleaning the house, etc. - and are granted a say in how things are run. In addition, by using a lottery system in housing selection, OSCA ensures that even new students are given the opportunity to take part in the community.

There are no fraternities or sororities at Oberlin.

More information:
oberlin.edu/resed/housing
osca.csr.oberlin.edu

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My Experience of Barrows After (Almost) a Semester

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The Eleven Best Things About Dining in a Co-op

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posted by Celina Kobetitsch '19 | It's normal to be anxious about leaving home for college. It's also normal to be excited. I see leaving home as an opportunity.

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posted by Kameron Dunbar '19 | Where I live: what was expected and what was realized.

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Peek Inside My Dorm!

posted by Christie Krancer '18 | Whether you're a prospie looking for an inside look at Oberlin's dorms or a current student who wants to see what other people do with their living spaces, come on down to North/Langston and check out my room!

Alas, Poor Frederick!

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What's On Our Desks?

posted by Brendan Nuse '17 and Frances Casey '17 | In which Brendan reveals his greatest talent (Bop-It) and Frances shares her favorite inspirational quote.

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An Introduction to OSCA Hand Signs

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Why Should You Live In Harkness?

posted by Andres Cuervo '17 | Find out why I think you should live in Harkness!

The Case for Co-Ops: And Other First-Year Lessons

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CO-OPTIMUS PRIME

posted by Peter D'Auria '14 | OSCA is like a glistening gem, polished to perfection by a master gem-polisher.

Around and About: Welcome to my Humble Abode

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Scummin' It

posted by Anna Vernon '17 | "Dascomb has a charm about it, but that charm might just be us."

Going Back Home

posted by Andres Cuervo '17 | A small listing of differences between home and Oberlin/ Harkness.

A Few Things I've Learned

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On Being Back: Part I, My Orientation Life

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Class of 2017: Keep Calm and Read On

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FAQ for Incoming First Years

posted by Dara Lehrer '16 | Do you have the pre-orientation jitters? Are you at all anxious to leave home and come live in a place you've probably never spent a formidable amount of time at before? Do not fear! I am here to try and alleviate some of that anxiety.

An Argument for Vagrancy, an Argument for Home

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The Life of Eggboy

posted by Ruby Turok-Squire '16 | Cactus versus weed.

Many Thanks

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The Perks of Living in Dascomb

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Vitamins, The Civil Wars, and Love: My Roomie and Me

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Roomies!

posted by Ben Reid '16 | Now I know we can't all be lucky enough to have a roommate whose biggest flaw is being a Yankees fan, but you can trust that the Oberlin ResEd department puts in a LOT of time to make sure that you and your roommate are a good match.

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A Brief Introduction to Old B

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Cardboard Box Season

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On Being OSCAn

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The Mechanics of OSCA

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Three unrelated vignette blog posts

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More than a Room

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Sci-Fi Hall!

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Where I Live Now

posted by Zoë McLaughlin '11 | Please note the lovely framed Animorphs poster and the lovely Penang flag.

Week one: no classes and already behind?

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Hey Transfers!

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Hey roomie

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Oberlin in the outside world?

posted by Zoë McLaughlin '11 | There's the thumbs, but there's also a crude representation of a llama (apparently) to make a proposal and knocking in the air to signal agreement with a statement.

Hark is where the heart is

posted by Eli Goldberg '12 | I've spent the last week preparing to leave Harkness, the co-op where I've lived since my freshman year. So - to alleviate my own nostalgia, as well as give some info to folks who are filling out their housing forms - here's a little bit about Harkness.

Dear women's hall, you're the best

posted by Zoë McLaughlin '11 | Then, abruptly, the year ended. Everyone went home.

Big Choices

posted by Tess Yanisch '13 | Housing registration, class registration, and how I (probably) picked my major.

Cribs.

posted by Karl Orozco '13 | One can learn a lot about a person's home. Even MTV knows that.

Missin' You

posted by Joe Dawson '12 | I've been haunted in my sleep, you've been starring in my dreams, school I miss you...

Making ourselves at home

posted by Chris Gollmar '10 | Why live off campus?

Liquid days

posted by Megan Emberton '12 | Co-ops are wonderful, and the food is great. Do not worry, first years I've talked to who have expressed their doubts about this!

Labor Day: No Babies Allowed.

posted by Ma'ayan Plaut '10 | Way to rain on my Labor Day parade, Ohio. Even after four years, I still don't understand your weather patterns.

Desk Quest

posted by Will Mason '10 | Yard sales, integrating into the Oberlin community, and the hunt for the perfect antique desk.

Housekeeping, or The Secret Life of oBEErlin-ites

posted by Ma'ayan Plaut '10 | I mentioned before that the first few weeks of college equals '50s housewife meets college student: shopping for classes, ironing out schedules, and cleaning and unpacking all belongings, and if the weather doesn't take the temperature dip it did a few days ago, flowery dresses and sunglasses.

Winding Down, Gearing Up

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Helpful Hintz, Yo!

posted by Joe Dawson '12 | There is no required reading for freshmen at Oberlin, but a quick flip through Lord of the Flies could be real helpful.

Parallel Universes

posted by Ma'ayan Plaut '10 | I have just passed the two week point of being home for the summer. And since this is an Oberlin blog, this is about what's different at my summer home and my Oberlin home.

A vignette from finals week

posted by Zoë McLaughlin '11 | Luck, however, was with us, in the form of a front loader.

What's that about the bathrooms?

posted by Zoë McLaughlin '11 | You may or may not have heard that the bathrooms are gender-neutral at Oberlin. This may or may not concern you, your parents, or someone else whom you hold dear.

The Joys of Cooperative Dining

posted by Daniel Tam-Claiborne '09 | Thankfully, there were senior members who talked me through the best ways to peel garlic, fry potatoes, and make an omelet. Never would I have imagined that a group of students could be efficient and capable enough to orchestrate what functioned like a self-contained dining hall.

Life in a Cardboard Box

posted by Ma'ayan Plaut '10 | Remember how I mentioned there are all these distractions during reading period and finals? Ah, yes, there is another one I failed to mention earlier, and that is PACKING.

Breakfast in my PJs, knitting parties, Oberlin Christian Fellowship, & kittens

posted by Yitka Winn '09 | There's something cool about occupying spaces that have so much history in them, so many Obies who've lived there in the past...

Committee meetings are better over lunch

posted by Zoë McLaughlin '11 | I got a little overzealous and started quizzing people on their "action items," which I think only confused the issue.

Uncle OSCA Wants YOU To Scrub the Toilets!

posted by Ma'ayan Plaut '10 | I got into Harkness co-op the summer before my freshman year and have stayed loyal to the Harkness flag ever since. This year, I think I am the oldest and most experienced veteran Harkness resident. Just call me Auntie Harkness.

Al Franken and Garrison Keillor have Endorsed this Blog Post

posted by Ma'ayan Plaut '10 | Inside, podcasts of A Prairie Home Companion ushered Keepers and visitors into the dining room where we filled our plates and other eating receptacles with hamburger noodle hotdish, green bean casserole, wild rice, powdermilk biscuits, and jello with Swedish fish before heading outside to the sunshine.

Housing (or, new methods of procrastination)

posted by Zoë McLaughlin '11 | It must have looked pretty odd--all those mini lanterns hanging from tree limbs and about five of us with cans of spray paint looking like members of a graffiti ExCo, but you get my point.

My Valentine, or, the sappiest entry ever.

posted by Aries Indenbaum '09 | Things I didn't expect from college: Moving in with the boyfriend.

Pizza Night at Keep

posted by Daniel Tam-Claiborne '09 | I learned that there is a certain art to pie-making, kneading from the center out, making sure that the middle isn't too thin, and being careful to leave a slightly raised border along the outside so there's some semblance of crust after it bakes.

Moving in and life off campus

posted by Chris Gollmar '10 | Last Sunday I moved into my house for this semester. Now I officially live off campus.

Hallo, ich heiße Megan!

posted by Megan Emberton '12 | I am here to take Intensive German in an effort to shove enough grammar and vocabulary into my head to take German 102 in the coming semester.

Flavor Trippin'

posted by Ma'ayan Plaut '10 | It looked delicious... but we were told we couldn't eat yet. It is an extremely sadistic thing to show us food and tell us we can't partake. I was ready to dive in. But there was a reason.

The House Hunt

posted by Alice Ollstein '10 | Off-campus status is both a blessing and a curse...but mostly a blessing.

At the 'Kid: Fellowship and Seasonal Gluttony

posted by Nicolee Kuester '10 | As a rule, I try to avoid soaking in sicky-sweet pools of sentimentality (diabetes does, after all, run in my family), but when I talk about Thanksgivings at Fairkid I can't help but get that soft-eyed, distant-smile expression that means I've departed for that Lisa Frank horror-land of happy candy clouds and rainbow koalas.

Haphazard Packing Tips from an Incorrigible Slob

posted by Will Mason '10 | The worst part of college is getting there.

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