There are more than 200 liberal arts colleges in the United States, and size and location have long been a challenge for all but the most elite among them.
In the very first phase of their college search, students often make a definitive determination about size, eliminating a whole set of schools that have the attributes they desire. And colleges in rural locations are often summarily dismissed in favor of urban counterparts.
This year has changed everything about the college search
Enter the pandemic, which continues to change everything, including how we think about size and place. What was once a challenge for small, rural liberal arts colleges is now a straight up virtue–one magnified by their ability to respond quickly and imaginatively to the moment.
At Bennington College, where I was interim president last year, we shifted…