By Alexandra White – 1851 Contributor
Becker College announced on March 29 they were closing after 237 years due to financial issues caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The decision left roughly 1,000 students from the Worcester and Leicester campuses searching for a new school.
During the closing of Becker College, several colleges, including Lasell, created an agreement with Becker to make the transfer process easier for Becker students. Director of Admissions Yavuz Kiremit said Lasell changed its transfer requirements so Becker students could have an easier transfer. Lasell accepted students even if they had over 90 credits, and gave students credit if they got slightly under a “C” in a course.
“What we ended up doing is waiving the requirement for an essay, waving a requirement for a letter of recommendation, and so all we really needed from a student was their application and a copy of their transcript. With that, we would make an admissions decision and go from there,” Kiremit said.
Out of almost 1,000 students looking to transfer, Lasell only received 22 students from Becker. This number may seem small, but Kiremit says the number is double what he expected since Lasell doesn’t offer many of the programs Becker offered. “We don’t offer associates degrees, or majors like animal sciences [and] veterinary sciences….Those students wouldn’t be able to transfer here with their majors like equine studies, video game design, or nursing. Becker was renowned for their video game design [program].”
Junior Kylie Hilberg transferred from Becker College’s Leicester campus this fall after the closure. At Becker, Hilberg was in a dual degree program that allowed her to get an associates’ degree in Animal Care and a bachelor’s degree in Business. Hilberg graduated with her associate’s degree at Becker’s last commencement ceremony in May.
“When I found out that Becker was closing I felt lost, confused, mad, and it just kinda sucked. It felt like my dream at Becker got crushed because I had no idea what to do next,” Hilberg said.
With the closing of Becker, Hilberg felt ready to leave the Worcester area for a new start. She chose Lasell because of the admissions process, the business management program, and the clubs and activities. “I am really into sports and activities. I did cheer all my life so I am doing cheer here. Lasell also has so many clubs, so I’m gonna try a lot out.”
Hilberg is excited about the opportunities at Lasell and how close it is to Boston. While she is still new to campus, she is glad she transferred to Lasell. “ It was definitely different from Becker, I just felt very welcomed, it’s just been a very fresh change…here I feel at home.”