We welcome any questions with regard to our recent announcement, Newbold Looks to the Future.
Please fill in the form below, and include your email address if you would like a personal response.
Can the decision-makers provide substantial evidence that will demonstrate that their decision is financially sound? What kind of research did they do to support this conclusion?
Until the ‘New Newbold’ emerges as a result of many ongoing meetings of a variety of panels and committees, such financial details cannot be determined. However, the education that Newbold provides has always been heavily subsidised – and up until now this was generally considered an acceptable “cost” of the provision of Adventist education within the Trans-European Division, particularly given the College’s location in the UK where the cost of living is relatively high compared to many other countries in the Division. Unfortunately, in the increasingly challenging financial times we find ourselves in now, the College’s owners, stakeholders and Governors are clear that such significant subsidies are no longer possible. These changes will ensure the best use and stewardship of the Church’s money.
If COVID-19 was the catalyst it means that Newbold already had financial troubles. What was done to try to remedy them?
For some time, Newbold has operated on a very tight but successful budget, again thanks to the significant financial support from the Trans-European Division. Over the past few years Newbold’s student numbers had been slowly but steadily increasing and we are pleased with the initiatives that we have put in place over that time. However, COVID-19 has meant an unprecedented drop in income as well as unexpected expenditure both for the College and across the Division which has meant that we cannot continue to operate as we were.
Why did they allow students to start this semester? The timing of this decision is disappointing and hurtful.
We understand that the timing of this decision, coming early in both the academic year and the semester, was not ideal, but also acknowledge that there is no good time for news like this. The announcement was made by the Board of Governors to all staff and we felt that it was in the best interests of students to communicate this news to them as soon as possible as well. Please be assured that with the exception of our English Language Centre no changes will take effect before the end of the academic year in May 2021, and that this decision was taken during the most difficult of times and we are doing everything possible to support our students as fully as we can.
It is imperative that whoever made the decisions, or their representatives, should be present themselves in front of the whole student body and answer their questions directly.
Pastor Raafat Kamal, Chair of the Board of Governors and President of the Trans-European Division, has now met with students from the Newbold Student Association Executive Committee to explore students’ questions and concerns. Students can contact NSA representatives for more information about the content of this meeting.
I know this is a really difficult situation for Newbold, thank you for informing us and for the opportunity to ask questions. Could you please tell me, will the Business Department continue to operate in the next coming year? If this department will be shut down, what will happen with those students, who have not finished the degree yet?
Students who are in their final year of a Business Studies or Humanities degree programme will still be able to complete their studies, as teaching for these programmes will continue until the end of the current academic year.
On Wednesday 21 October, the Executive Committee of the Board of Governors voted that teaching on-campus at Newbold for programmes and courses in Business Studies and Humanities will end with effect from the end of the current academic year in May 2021. We will be working with Andrews University, Washington Adventist University and appropriate UK universities to ensure that each student will be able to complete their studies without being academically or financially disadvantaged.
The Executive Committee of the Board of Governors also voted that English Language teaching within the English Language Centre will continue as planned until the end of the current semester in December 2020. Those planning to enrol on one of our short English Language programmes in November 2020 can still do so.
What is going to happen to the students that applied for January or September 2021 for Business and Humanities?
We have contacted new applicants for January and September 2021 and are working with these students individually on their options. With the exception of the English Language Centre, students would of course be welcome to study with Newbold in the January semester, but as we are unable to offer teaching past the end of the academic year, it is likely that they will choose to pursue other options and we will provide them with all the support we can to help them do this.
Will this restructuring of Newbold mean that you will not be offering any programmes that are not associated with ministry and mission?
The programmes and courses that Newbold will be offering to its students from September 2021 will be decided over the coming months, and discussions have already commenced in this regard by means of a variety of Governor-led panels and committees. We will share further information as soon as it becomes available. We expect to have programmes on offer that will still appeal to a wide range of students from across the Division and further abroad.
What plans have been put in action to increase the DTS provision of programmes? Weren’t we struggling already to fill our capacity? Or are we merging with an/other institution/s?
It is proposed that the new Centre for Ministry and Mission at Newbold will have a target of 80-100 students across its range of programmes, whatever these may be. Newbold’s current Department of Theological Studies has around 100 students (although not all of these students are studying full time and include those who are in the Doctor of Ministry programme and who are completing their postgraduate dissertations). It is anticipated that the 80-100 student target will be spread across a larger range of programmes than those currently offered by our Department of Theological Studies.
What courses and programmes will be offered for the rest of 2020, and in January 2021?
All teaching and learning will continue as planned through until the end of the academic year, in May 2021. This includes our English Language programmes scheduled to commence in November 2020, and any English Language intake planned for January 2021. We understand that students who had been planning to start a full degree programme in January 2021 may wish to consider other options.
The announcement about Newbold’s future directions mentioned that the College will be focusing on provisions in ministry and mission. Does this mean that only courses relating to ministry and mission will be offered from September 2021?
We don’t know yet exactly which programmes and courses will be retained and what new ones will be introduced. This will become clear over the next two to three months. However, students already taking programmes in our Department of Theological Studies (DTS) will not be affected by these changes.
With effect from September 2021 we will be pausing intake in our English Language Centre (including our Summer School in English), our Business and Humanities courses, and our Study Abroad programmes. We are working on the best possible solution for current students, particularly in Business and Humanities, although we don’t yet know whether these programmes will continue to be taught until the current cohorts complete, or whether we will work with students on an alternative solution – such as transferring to another institution – to complete the requirements for their degrees. This will become clear in the next two to three months.
I am a current Business or Humanities student. What will happen to my studies?
At this stage we don’t know whether our offerings in Business and Humanities will continue to be taught over the next few years until the current cohorts complete their degrees, or whether we will work with students enrolled in these programmes on an alternative solution – such as transferring to another institution – to complete the requirements for their degrees. This will become clear in the next two to three months.
I am a current English Language Centre student. What will happen to my studies?
Our English language programmes will continue as planned until the end of the academic year, in May 2021. So if you are a current student, or were planning on enrolling in one of our short programmes in November 2020 or in January 2021, you can still do so.
I have applied to start at Newbold in January 2021 under the Andrews International Transfer Partnership (AITP). Will I still be able to undertake any studies at Newbold?
We are yet to have the relevant conversations with Andrews University but we would hope to be able to put together an experience at Newbold that would be equal to one or even two semesters of credit. We will be in touch with AITP students in the coming weeks.
I am a current student in the full Business or Humanities degree. I would like to transfer my degree or credits to another institution, what should I do?
We understand if you would like to explore other options for your education, and we will work with you to help you with what you need to transfer your studies to another institution. Our Academic Registrar or our Records Officer will be happy to discuss your situation with you, so please get in touch.
What is the background to this decision? Why was it made, by whom, why now and why is it necessary?
The Trans-European Division is the owner of the College, and has provided significant financial support to Newbold for many years. However, Newbold’s financial situation has become increasingly demanding. The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the College has resulted in low student numbers and a subsequent fall in income over the past six months. This has served as a key catalyst for a decision made by Newbold’s Board of Governors to make these significant changes to the College’s offerings and organisational structure.
Our Governors, owners (the Trans-European Division), and Newbold’s management (Principal and senior staff) will now work together to find a way forward for the College.
Will teaching be on campus in January 2021 or will it remain online?
We are working with external consultants to make our campus COVID-safe, and hope to welcome students back on campus for in-person teaching in January 2021 – pending any changes in government policy or health and safety advice.
Our decision whether or not to offer in-person teaching in January is not impacted by the recent announcement about Newbold’s future directions, and we hope to be able to communicate with you more in the coming weeks about how teaching will work in January.
I was planning to start at Newbold as a new student in January 2021. Should I still come?
This will be a personal decision, one that we would be happy to work on with you. Some of our teaching will still continue in the January 2021 semester, but the right options for you will depend on the programme or course you have applied for, and what your future plans might be. Our Admissions team would be happy to discuss your situation with you, so please get in touch.
I am an existing student and wish to continue my degree at Newbold as long as it is taught. Will any scholarships I have still be fulfilled?
Yes. Any scholarship that you have been awarded will be honoured, as long as the conditions of award are still met.
Is there anyone available to support students and staff during this time of transition?
We understand that this news will have been unsettling to many of you. Our Acting Chaplaincy and Campus Ministries Coordinator is on hand to support you so please get in touch. We also work with the Cornerstone Counselling Service and can put you in touch with them.