From the Nominator
"We appreciate that CASE uses two issues to judge entries, as that’s how we want to be judged by readers. Not every issue will be for everyone, but if we haven’t gotten a reader’s interest over two, we aren’t doing our jobs well.
This entry exemplifies this approach. The first issue’s cover is serious and somber, while the second is lighthearted and soulful. Both issues present a wide variety of story and presentation types, yet they still hew closely to Oberlin’s identity: people in the Oberlin community care deeply about social justice and value intelligent discourse, but don’t take themselves too seriously.
For our first cover, two communications staff members asked questions specifically to Black staff, alumni, and faculty members about their experiences with racism. It was a raw time and our staff members felt extremely vulnerable in taking on the project. Their input and guidance created an authentic expression that we hope opened eyes and hearts.
For the second cover, we were lucky that veteran magazine editor (and alumna) Kim France was available to profile High Maintenance creator Ben Sinclair. It was a very good match between writer and subject.
Beyond the cover stories, each issue contains the kind of mix our readers have come to expect: a quirky story about Oberlin’s many organs, a quirky story about two pioneers of ornithology, reclaiming the untold stories of forgotten but important people and places, a dancer’s family flan recipe that ties into her next project, poetry, and art."
From the Judges
This magazine conveys a “real” feel. Issues are incredibly engaging and their design is a breath of fresh air from the standard formats of many college and university magazines. Oberlin also captures the quirkiness of its alumni and institution’s cultures. Love how this magazine varies its layout and uses great text treatments, photos, and illustrations. Even better: the editors take on tough topics and broad issues of societal fixation. The look at Black experience was thoughtful and rightfully disturbing. The Ben Sinclair profile is strong, and who knew a school could have so many Grammy winners?