Hampshire College retains accreditation following key review

"The New England Commission of Higher Education has voted to continue the accreditation of Hampshire College, which has been working to regain its footing in tough financial times.

In asking for a full progress report in two years, commissioners on Friday noted the hiring of a new president, achievements with respect to good practices for governing boards, and progress in planning for enrollment, fund-raising, and finances.

The commission’s vote came a day after a team of administrators and trustees, led by Hampshire College President Ed Wingenbach and Board Chair Luis Hernandez, met with commissioners to review the college’s progress report and five-year plans." …


An important step towards full recovery!


Statement from Hampshire’s President:

“On Friday, November 22, the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE) voted to continue the accreditation of Hampshire College. Hampshire will not be placed on probation. The Commission noted Hampshire’s substantial achievements since the spring and considerable progress in our realistic planning with respect to enrollment, fund-raising, and finances. NECHE will monitor progress between now and our next required report, which is due two years from now in December 2021.

The affirmation of Hampshire’s accreditation is an important milestone in our collective work to secure a thriving future for the College. NECHE’s decision offers external validation of what we already know: that our community has the creativity and commitment to build a Hampshire College that is both financially sustainable and visionary. We have worked extraordinarily hard to give ourselves the opportunity to maintain an independent Hampshire College; the decision to continue our accreditation means we have the chance to pursue our ambitious goals, and to invite future students and colleagues to join us as we enter our next fifty years.

We should celebrate this news, and share it proudly, while recognizing the hard work that lies ahead. NECHE continued our accreditation but also affirmed the “Notation on Institutional Resources,” which states that Hampshire risks falling out of compliance with the standard should our financial situation worsen. It is essential that we follow our plan for financial stability presented to NECHE, including limiting our expenditures to levels similar to the current year, implementing the new student experience, rebuilding enrollment, and raising $60 million dollars in operational support by 2024. I believe we can achieve our goals, and am grateful that the Commission found our plans viable.

We have made amazing progress over the past several months. I am excited about the progress we will continue to make over the next several years. We have achieved a major indicator for success — we will reach many more. Thank you for your dedication, commitment, and enthusiasm. I look forward to working with you for years to come.”

Ed Wingenbach