April 25, 2014

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Oberlin College classes canceled after ‘hate-related incidents’; activities to promote inclusion are being promoted

OBERLIN — Classes have been canceled today for both Oberlin College and the Oberlin Conservatory of Music so students and faculty can come together at several events to promote inclusion.

The decision to cancel classes in favor of the events comes after several racial and homophobic statements were written on posters throughout the campus, college spokesman Scott Wargo said.

There also was a report early Monday of a person seen wearing a hood and robe resembling Ku Klux Klan outfit near Edmonia Lewis Center and the Afrikan Heritage Center, according to a letter to the Oberlin College community posted online today.

“This event, in addition to the series of other hate-related incidents on campus, has precipitated our decision to suspend formal classes and all non-essential activities for today, Monday, March 4, 2013, and gather for a series of discussions on the challenging issues that have faced our community in recent weeks,” college President Marvin Krislov and other college leaders wrote in their open letter.

There will be a teach-in led by the African American Studies Department held at noon in the Lord Lounge at the Afrikan Heritage House. That will be followed at 2 p.m. by a demonstration of solidarity at the Wilder Bowl.

The day’s events will be capped by a community convocation at 3:30 p.m. in Finney Chapel. The convocation had originally been slated to take place on Wednesday.

“We hope today will allow the entire community — students, faculty, and staff — to make a strong statement about the values that we cherish here at Oberlin: inclusion, respect for others, and a strong and abiding faith in the worth of every individual,” the open letter said.

Check back at Chroniclet.com for more on this story as it develops.