The Reed College Quest


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  • Other People’s Stories, And, Eventually Our Own: On The Importance Of Role Models

    Growing up in rural Australia with dial-up internet and a school size of 400, I would have probably lost it without books. I read a lot — and like pretty much else in life, some of the stuff I read sucked, some of it rocked, and most of it fell somewhere in the middle. It […]

  • Letter: Housing Accomodations at Reed

    My name is Leilani Ganser. I am a first year at Reed and I have been disabled since I was 14. I have a rare disease called CRMO, or Chronic Recurrent Multifocal Osteomyelitis, wherein my own immune system attacks my bones as if they were a growing cancer. As a result of this disease, my […]

  • Letter from the Editors

    Historically, students with disabilities have received favorable cohort numbers in the housing lottery to ensure that they would receive on-campus housing with appropriate accommodations. However, students have reported being notified that they will not be guaranteed a favorable cohort as it would be disadvantageous to other students. This presents a number of problems. Students with […]

  • Fuck the Poor: The Gentrification of Reed College

    The fact that summer housing for this year has been raised by 43 percent without notifying the student body speaks loudly of the bureaucracy at Reed College. The students who tend to stay on campus over the summer, as I have done in previous years, are usually self-sufficient individuals who may not receive financial support […]

  • “This Is A God Dream”

    The Life Of Pablo is a life well fucking lived. From birth to death, it is scattered, unpredictable, and undeniably fulfilling. It sounds simultaneously unfinished and perfectly crystallized. Whether or not there is a method behind the madness, The Life of Pablo is the kind of crazy that one can’t help but stand in awe […]

  • And I would walk a thousand miles, just to see Ye smile

    I never liked playing hooky. Even on a day as long-awaited as this, I’m still swimming in guilt. It’s Thursday, Feb 11, mid-day, and this two-bus trip to the Lloyd Center Mall is brutal. My stomach is not right. For two years I have used the new Kanye West album as motivation to keep moving, […]

  • The Establishment And Revolt Towards Destruction

    The concept of “the Establishment” is not new. It is, in fact, quite established. This is a problem, yet the problem itself demonstrates the very nature of the establishment. I’ve been recently meditating upon that nature, since a prolonged neglect of the topic after last giving it serious thought some time ago. Recent media debate […]

  • A Report Card on Missing Commons Dishes

    In the spring of 2015, four members of Greenboard met with Debby Bridges and James Burback of Bon Appétit to discuss the possibility of providing a non-paper cup alternative for hot beverages in Commons. Currently, even if you intend to sit in Commons to finish your drink, your only options are to bring your own […]

  • A Letter to the Editors of the Reed College Quest

    We would like to bring the Reed community’s attention to a local organization called Right to Dream Too (R2D2), a program for houseless Portlanders. We’re a student group trying to raise awareness about this community, the support it provides for homeless individuals, and the pressing issues affecting its prospects for survival. Right to Dream Too […]

  • Education for the 21st Century, Part 2

    So, what can be done? Although Reed is currently far from the sort of progress its pedagogy must undertake—namely, the offering of an education that is at once critical, practical, and conscious of the dynamics of inequality, hierarchy, and oppression—there is reason to hope that we might attain this change sometime in the near future. […]

  • When I Go to 28th

    I’m a Reed graduate and former sex worker. I was a first-generation college student from a poor family, and Reed cost money that I didn’t have. In order to pursue a better life for myself, I chose to commodify my sexuality. I worked as an escort and professional dom/sub to support myself during my years […]

  • Essentializing 82nd Avenue

    Recently, the “82/28: Exploring 82nd Avenue” art installation prompted backlash from various sections of the Reed community. Articles in The Quest have testified to some problematic elements of the project, highlighting the potentially triggering nature of the material. Yet what worries us about the piece has little to do with its “lewd” nature or its […]

  • Education for the 21st Century, Part 1

    What do I mean when I say “education for the 21st century”? Am I talking about teaching advanced sciences, with the purpose of creating better technology? No, I’m not. Am I talking about an education that looks backwards, that is modeled on how things were taught in the past? Definitely not. I’m talking about education […]

  • Why We All Should Join the Million Student March

    This year, I swallowed my first dose of student loans. It was innocent enough — $3,500 in federal loans with fixed interest rates at or below 5%. But according to Reed’s financial aid formula, I’ll be asked to take on more and more loans each year, raising my predicted debt at the end of my […]

  • Art is Not Above Honor

    Some of you may know me as the person who has taken up a crusade against the student mural on the Reed Theater Annex. I have been working almost non-stop since I first noticed the provocative art to get it removed, and now I am asking for your help. I would like to explain my […]

  • Sculpture students address the changing cityscape

    82nd Avenue: the boundary of eastern Portland features schools, restaurants, groceries, and goods, scattered alongside strip clubs and used car lots. Far from the boutiques and small bars of the Inner Eastside and the commerce across the river, 82nd is a different kind of hub. On Thursday, October 29th, we bring our interpretations of 82nd […]

  • Honor Isn’t Incapable of Preventing Sexual Violence; It’s Essential to It

    Several community members at last week’s Senate meeting claimed the Honor Principle is incapable of preventing sexual assault. I am glad the community is actively discussing sexual assault prevention; however, I believe this claim rests on a flawed assumption about the Honor Principle. The Honor Principle, when viewed from a different perspective, is essential to […]

  • Deterrence is Not the Only Option

    One of the things that sets Reed apart from other colleges is Community Safety. Historically, the trust between students and Community Safety Officers (CSOs) has afforded a wide range of privileges to the student body while offering a true sense of safety. Many, if not all, CSOs genuinely care for their community, and several have […]

  • A Letter of Apology from Gary “Stranger Danger” Granger

    From Gary “Stranger Danger” Granger, Head of Community Safety AKA Minister of Mischief* To All Reed Community Members: It is I, Gary “Stranger Danger” Granger, and I would like to apologize for the racially charged remarks I made at the first Senate meeting this fall. Honor compels me to make this apology and I hope […]

  • Nigel Nicholson on Honorable Dialogue

    Dear Reed community, Many, if not most, of you are aware that one of our students prompted a heated debate on campus before spring break, and that the situation also precipitated public attention from social media as well as some mainstream media. In accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), Reed cannot […]

  • Lost Accountability: Are Students Ignored by the Administration?

    I am disappointed. An inclusive institution requires a leadership capable of listening, discussing and addressing differing opinions especially if these positions are presented with respectful and polite means. Recently, our community, that is Reed, has gone through a difficult time regarding opposing views and the lack of regard to community members and their own personal […]

  • On Recent Events in Oklahoma

    Some members of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon (SAE) fraternity at the University of Oklahoma chanted the following words: “There will never be a nigger at SAE. There will never be a nigger at SAE. You can hang him from a tree. But he’ll never sign with me. There will never be a nigger at SAE.” […]

  • Protected Free Speech: A Guide for the Perplexed

    By now, most Reed students are probably acquainted with what has become this year’s Spring Crisis: Jeremiah True ’18 was permanently ejected from Pancho Savery’s Humanities 110 conference because, according to Savery, True’s actions in conference had engendered a hostile learning environment for survivors of sexual assault, and could no longer be tolerated. In a […]

  • “Corinthian 15” Student Debt Strike Is A Strike for All Students

    On Monday, February 23, 15 former students of the Corinthian College network announced that they are engaging in a debt strike and refusing to pay back their student loans. The students are part of “Debt Collective,” a spinoff of the Occupy movement that has been working to build an online community of Corinthian and other […]

  • What is a Healthy Relationship?

    “What does a healthy relationship look like?” asked one of my residents halfway through a healthy relationships workshop. As college campuses across the country (have been forced to) join the battle against sexual assault, discussions on intimate partner violence continue to take a back seat. When we do talk about abusive relationships we often focus […]

  • Honor at the Doyle Owl Fight

    Last semester, Honor Council held a forum for the community to discuss honorable behavior at owl fights. We received feedback, ideas, and concerns from both students and members of Community Safety, and after the forum, Gary Granger drafted a four-page interim directive proposing “guidelines for engaging groups regarding Doyle Owl crowds.” The student members of […]

  • A Proposal for Bon Appetit

    When you walk into Commons the first thing you approach is the menu, which sets you up facing away from the soup and salad and towards the dessert table. You then wend your way to the grill or daily planet or wherever your meal of choice is being served. Three out of the five hot […]

  • Letter: Senate Should Attend Upcoming Forum on Political Neutrality at Reed College

    The two-year-old student campaign for the divestment of fossil fuels is an issue for which the Student Body Senate should take some responsibility. The upcoming forum on political neutrality represents precisely such an opportunity. As fossil fuel emissions accelerate worldwide, the United States government continues to militate against the effective regulation of fossil fuel industry. […]

  • Fossil Free Reed Explores Alternative Means of Approaching Divestment

    The movement to divest university endowments from fossil fuel companies just got a booster shot in late December, when a new candidate for your year-end dollars came onto the scene: the Multi-School Fossil-Free Divestment Fund ( The fund, a collaborative initiative between sixteen university divestment campaigns, leverages the greatest power we as alumni supposedly hold: […]

  • I Will Not Be Giving You Trigger Warnings

    Unfettered expression is essential on a college campus, as it is for any writer’s freedom to say things others might not want to hear. Just as speakers must have the right to say the unsayable, so writers must be able to write the unthinkable, even the unmentionable, and to challenge the seemingly unchallengeable. Philip Roth […]

  • Using Trigger Warnings Should be a No Brainer

    Though the debate about trigger warnings (TWs) has been brewing throughout my four years at Reed — and I’d imagine it began long before I even applied — recently the discussion reached critical social media mass. Multiple comment threads on the Reed Facebook page, each hundreds of posts long, cast proponents of trigger warning use […]

  • There’s More to Graduating Than Wearing a Hat

    Reed College has an alumni problem. Granted, this is not the case with most of the alumni: the majority of Reed alumni are not a problem. In fact, they’re part of what makes Reed great: they help students out with career advice and internships, they stay in touch with friends even after they graduate, and […]

  • Why We’re Going to Divest From Fossil Fuels

    There is no question of whether or not Reed College will have to divest its endowment from fossil fuels. The only question is when. It is certain that in the coming decades, as the oceans rise, as famine and drought expand, as our cities sink beneath increasingly severe storms, as climate refugees number globally into […]

  • Using Your Outside Voice

    In November 2014, I had the privilege of attending the Association of Outdoor Recreation and Education (AORE) national conference, which was held in Portland and co-sponsored by Reed College and PSU. I went because I love the outdoors, I want to be an educator someday, and I am always looking for new perspectives on teaching. […]

  • There Are No Trigger Warnings in The Unconscious

    Over winter break, I posted an article on the Reed Facebook Group that sparked a vigorous debate about trigger warnings. Both sides were supremely confident of their positions, a fact that did not prove conducive to productive discussion. Students argued that warnings on syllabi would not detract from their education, would reduce the suffering of […]

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