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Oberlin President Marvin Krislov to Step Down

Krislov’s resignation will take effect at the end of this academic year, and follows a tumultuous year of protest and anti-Semitism scandals on campus

Yair Rosenberg
September 06, 2016
Oberlin President Marvin Krislov giving a speech at Commencement 2015. Facebook
Oberlin President Marvin Krislov giving a speech at Commencement 2015. Facebook

In an email today to the Oberlin College community, the school’s president, Marvin Krislov, announced he would be step down from his position June 30, 2017. “After nearly a decade serving as president, and with the recent completion of the new Strategic Plan and the successful comprehensive campaign, I have decided this will be my last year at Oberlin,” he wrote.

Krislov’s resignation comes in the wake of a tumultuous year at Oberlin that saw the school struggle to deal with both student protests and incidents of anti-Semitism on campus. Most notoriously, the college was slow to act after it was revealed that one professor, Joy Karega, was posting blatantly anti-Semitic material on social media, including content pinning 9/11 and ISIS on Israel and the Jews. (As Tablet has reported, Krislov himself was informed privately of Karega’s conduct a month before the media broke the story, but the school did not act.) The college finally placed Karega on paid leave in August pending an investigation, nearly eight months after her bigotry came to light. Since then, she has continued highlighting anti-Semitic content on her Facebook page. At the same time, there appears to have been little effort to ascertain how Karega was hired to teach “social justice writing” in the first place by a committee that included several of the school’s deans.

Krislov’s successor will have the unenviable task of wrangling a campus that has been wracked by leftist student protests and a persistent, documented climate of anti-Semitism and intimidation towards Jewish students.

Yair Rosenberg is a senior writer at Tablet. Subscribe to his newsletter, listen to his music, and follow him on Twitter and Facebook.