Letter to the Editor: Nonstop is a Laboratory, by Andrew Oswald ’92

Hello All,

It is my understanding that there is a meeting to decide the fate
of Nonstop, and how it fits into the scheme of resurrecting the

One of the powerful aspects of Antioch was that it is a laboratory
for education where learning by experience. All of the times I
have had access to such a program, I have learned much much more
than I would have if I has just “taken a class”, or even “got a
degree”. An Antioch education was never about taking a test,
instead — from the time I was a perspective student, to reunion
two years ago — Antioch is about a ambitious project, a cause, a
mission. This is the essence of learning by doing. I believe that
this is one of the aspects that sets an Antioch education apart and
above any other higher education institution that I have attended.

There are many alumni, faculty, staff, and friends that want to
help. Especially in the current economy, we are not all are in a
position to contribute piles of cash to save the college. But
Antioch has created many creative, ingenious people with many
skills and diverse influences — and many want to help, if they can
figure out how.

Nonstop is a laboratory. Nonstop is another way that we can
contribute. Nonstop can be a prototype platform for ideas for the
future college.

I listened to a web broadcast on the state of Nonstop. I was
floored. The descriptions of what is going on, what has been
accomplished, and what can be done somewhere between nothing and so
little amazed me. Like it or not, restarting the college will be
an expensive endeavor, and the ability to do much with little will
be a valuable intellectual capital to augment the funds that we do
have to start the college. Let’s remember that in addition to the
millions of dollars we need, there will be millions of tasks that
are required to start-up a college.

Additionally, I think that the program that Nonstop provides is an
innovative aspect of the caliber that can set Antioch apart. It is unlike anything I have seen in higher education. I am impressed that the Nonstop program can
have so many students–many that have traveled far– for classes
that they love. They attend with a lack of campus, accreditation,
places to live, and with lots of other uncertainty.

It is these people that can be the strongest ambassabors of what the
Antioch experience can be. In changing the perception of Antioch
to southwest Ohio, and public at large it can be a compelling
story. For people checking out the college–future students,
faculty, etc, the story of these people can also be very persuasive.

Antioch has always been an extra-ordinary institution. No college
has ever extracted itself from a university. No college has had a
group of alumni that would mobilize on such a scale to try to save
a closed college. And I can only think of one institution that
has dedicated students, faculty and staff to start an institution
to keep the institution alive until the institution comes back to
life. That is Nonstop.

We will need a place to prototype ideas for future programs. We
will need people who have experience with those ideas. We will
need the support of the community. It will be valuable to have the
community outreach that Nonstop represents. We need people on the
ground in Yellow Springs to reboot the College.

For these reasons I feel that it is essential to keep Nonstop
alive, and integrate it back into the College when the college is
capable of standing independent of the University.

Andrew “Ozz” Oswald