Crime & Safety
I love the diversity of the college students in the town. Basically, I found that almost everything I read/heard/experienced about Oberlin was pretty amazing. The quality of academics aside - music pervades the atmosphere there, students love discussing and are very intellectual, and they are politically active. It also seems like a place where you can be whomever you want to be and be perfectly accepted. The atmosphere seems comfortable, intellectually nourishing, and homey (community feel). My interview was by far the most comfortable interview I've had. My interviewers and I had some fun conversations, laughed, and just talked - they didn't try to pry academic information from me or sell Oberlin. They just wanted to find out who I was, put a face to all those stats. They sent ME a thank you card, and then admission sent me a birthday card! More than any other school with the possible exception of Hampshire, I felt that Oberlin really cared about who I was as a person.
I generally feel very safe here, particularly on the college campus, as do the considerable numbers of students who walk alone or in small groups at night. There are, however, (very) occasional reports of harassment or drug overdoses within the county. Rent is affordable, there are reasonably priced places to eat, and concerts are most often free. The culture of the college and that of the surrounding area, however, are almost entirely different. It makes for some interesting encounters.
Growing up in Oberlin, you're exposed to a lot of different people and ideas. Literally anything can happen. I find that I'm more open minded than others from different cities than mine. I love that I can just walk around feeling completely safe at any time of day and I could go and sit down town in Tappen Square, in the grass. Its a nice safe place to grow up in and I'm happy I got to experience life in a place like Oberlin. But just like every town, it has its cons. I wish everything wasn't for the college students. I hate that they own half of the town and can ban community members from stepping on college grounds. That makes it hard to live here considering how small Oberlin is. This town is built on equality and diversity but the public schools choose the white and "smart" kids to help and leave the rest of us to figure it out. They make it seem like they believe that we're the problem. The principals are twisted. But at least I'm about to graduate.