A Massachusetts College Is Offering Admission to New College Students
In response to recent events at New College of Florida, Amherst, Massachusetts-based Hampshire College has announced its intention to offer admission to all New College of Florida students in good standing—and to match the students' current cost of tuition.
In a post on its website, Hampshire said that "the opportunity is in response to the continuing attacks on New College of Florida intended to limit intellectual exploration, turn back progress toward inclusion, and curtail open discussion of race, injustice, and histories of oppression."
For background, during several whirlwind weeks in January, Gov. Ron DeSantis appointed six new trustees to New College's board of directors—among them Christopher Rufo, a prominent conservative activist who pioneered the backlash to critical race theory; Jason “Eddie” Speir, who co-started the Bradenton faith-based private school Inspiration Academy; and Matthew Spalding, a constitutional government professor at Michigan’s Hillsdale College. At a fraught board meeting the same month, New College president Patricia Okker was terminated after less than two years in the position. She was replaced by Richard Corcoran, the former Florida Speaker of the House and education commissioner Richard Corcoran. Corcoran's salary, at $699,000, is nearly $394,000 more than Okker's was.
This week, Corcoran fired Yoleidy Rosario-Hernandez, New College's dean of diversity, equity and inclusion, and hired Kevin Hoeft, "a former Republican Party operative who belongs to the National Rifle Association and the conservative Heritage Foundation and once worked for an organization deemed an 'anti-LGBTQ' hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center" to oversee admissions, according to the Sarasota Herald-Tribune.
"We must reinforce higher education as a means to create a more equitable society, and resist threats intended to silence those who make visible the injustices embedded in our current structures, assumptions, and policies," Hampshire officials wrote in the school's post about welcoming New College transfers. "The undergraduate experience should be organized around the generation of new possibilities, new questions, and new solutions to the personal, local and global challenges of the 21st century."
New College students who are interested in taking up Hampshire College's offer to transfer can review Hampshire's transfer protocols here. The schools says those students will receive an aid award guaranteeing that their net tuition for the 2023–24 school year matches their current cost of tuition as billed by New College in 2022–23. New College transfers will need to provide official transcripts and copies of their most recent aid awards. For more information, click here.