Freije Hosts “Need Blind Talk”

Ethan Bachand ’22

News Editor

On April 10, Holy Cross students packed into The Hub in order to have a group conversation about the new changes made to the admission policy. Provost and Dean of the College, Margaret Freije was on hand to speak about the change from a completely need blind admission process, as well as answer questions from the audience.

After being pushed back an hour for the completion of another event, students filed in, with only room left to stand by the door. Dean Freije opened up by explaining the financial situation of the college, and the subsequent necessity to lower the discount rate.

The main argument being put forward by Dean Freije was that due to the college’s commitment to heavy financial aid, the percentage of funds going back to students (the discount rate) was growing at a disproportional rate. Thus, a decision was made by the board to alter the admission process.

As described by the Dean, the new policy of the admissions office is to go through the first round of applications need blind, assessing applicants without a financial evaluation. Looking through the “box” for the second round, only students with a certain level of financial need would be considered for acceptance. This breaks the college’s tradition of a 100% need blind process, allowing for the possibility of a “pay to play” policy.

Throughout the talk, the faces of each student told the same story: this is not what they wanted to hear. While every member of the community that was present was there on a voluntary basis, most were disappointed by the actions of the college.

Upon finishing her opening speech, the floor was opened up to questions from the audience. These ranged from how the decision would affect future financial aid packages, as well as if this policy would be continued for future class years. One of the major issues that was discussed was the fact that no student of the college or applicant were made aware of the change in policy.

The discussion is not poised to stop, after it was made clear that the student body was not in favor decision was made. While the Class of 2023 was admitted under this new policy, there is sure to be more push back following the abandonment of 100% need blind admission.

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