Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts, is among the most innovative colleges in the country, requiring students to pursue their passions by designing their own programs of study and recruiting a faculty committee to guide them on a rigorous path of intellectual discovery. Through active, engaged learning, students become creators of knowledge and are encouraged to make connections between their academic work and the wider world.
Students receive detailed narrative evaluations from faculty mentors, rather than grades.
Hampshire’s success can be measured in the mainstreaming of many of its experimental ideas in education, and in its roster of alumni achievement: Oscar and Emmy winners, best-selling authors, scientists, historians, Peabody awardees, MacArthur “Genius Grant” recipients, and more Ph.D. candidates than any other school of its size.
Hampshire is increasing its need-based aid each year and makes every effort to meet 100% of students’ demonstrated need. For Fall 2019 we met an average of 95% of demonstrated financial need.
|Endowment||$54.5 million (80% is donor-restricted)|
|One year return on investment||4.3% return|
|Annual operating budget||$36 million (FY20)|
|Room and board||$14,020 (2020)|
|Books, supplies, and personal expenses||$1,900 (2020)|
|Average financial aid package||$44,452 (2019)|
|Financial aid budget||$31 million (FY20)|
|Students receiving financial aid||95%|
|Average student debt upon graduation||$24,052 (lower than national average)|
|Alumni loan default rate||4.7% (2020)|
|Acceptance rate||59% first-year; 52% transfer|
|High school ranking||only 29% of high schools report a rank – N/A|
|First year students||96 (91 first-year; 5 new matriculated Baldwin Scholars)|
|Yield||16.5% total; 12.8% first-year; 47.6% transfer|
|Race/Ethnicity||68.1% White, 13.4% Latinx, 9.4% Black/African-American, 3.5% Asian, 0.2% Native American, 5.5% two or more races (+45 unknown, 42 international)|
|Residential life||86% of students live on campus
95% of rooms are singles
100% of first-year students will live in singles in fall 2020
|Number of states represented||43|
|Number of countries represented||12|
|Percentage of first generation students||21.3%|
|Degree offered||Bachelor of Arts|
|Student/faculty ratio||13:1 (2019)|
|Average size of class||20 (2019)|
|Number of full-time faculty||42 full-time, 41 part-time (2019)|
|Faculty with Ph.D. or other terminal degree in their fields||89% (2019)|
|Faculty of color||29% (2019)|
|Typical length of study||88% typically graduate in 8 semesters (4 years) (2019)|
|Students who study abroad||32% (includes international and domestic studies) (2019)|
|Students who take at least one Five College course||96% (2019)|
|Students who complete at least two Community Engaged Learning projects||100% (2019)|
|Students who do an internship, research assistantship, or similar activity||85% (2019)|
|Students who complete two or more similar activities before graduation||72% (2019)|
|Retention (first year to second year)||67% (2019)|
|Six-year graduation rate||67% (2019)|
|Alumni with advanced degrees within ten years of graduating||Top 3% of the nation's colleges|
|Graduate institutions most frequently attended||Columbia University, UMass Amherst, NYU, Harvard University, Yale University, Boston University, UC Berkeley, Cornell University, Smith College, UCLA, University of Pennsylvania, MIT, Northeastern University (2019)|
|Alums of record since 1970 (attended at least 2 semesters)||14,799 (2020)|
|All graduates since 1970||12,099 (2020)|
|Percentage of alumni with jobs or in grad school within 6 months of graduating||88% (2020)|
|Percentage of alumni who are entrepreneurs/self-employed||23% (2020)|
|Percentage of alumni who give on an annual basis||28% (2019)|
|Percentage of graduates who have made a gift during their lifetime||68% (2020)|
Hampshire students, challenged by the College to design their own programs of study and present to faculty committees, have a record of earning national awards equal to students of other top colleges and universities. Awards received by Hampshire students and grads since 2011 are:
The Board of Trustees is the governing body of Hampshire College. At present, the Board has 20 members (the Bylaws allow for as many as 31 members), all of whom volunteer their time, energy, and financial resources on behalf of the College.
Hampshire College is fully accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education to award the Bachelor of Arts degree. Membership in the association indicates that the institution has been carefully evaluated and found to meet standards agreed upon by qualified educators.
Hampshire College is an independent, not-for-profit institution.