The UC Board of Regents approved a proposal for the creation of Seventh College during the Academic and Student Affairs Committee meeting on May 15. Seventh College will replace The Village, the current housing area for transfer students, and begin enrollment for Fall Quarter 2020.
According to the proposal, UC San Diego’s campus is already close to its plan to have 32,000 undergraduate students enrolled by 2035; there are currently over 30,000 undergraduate students enrolled at UCSD.
“We are at a point right now where we can only offer a one-year housing guarantee to all of the undergrads,” UCSD Chancellor Pradeep Khosla said at the Academic and Student Affairs Committee meeting. “We want to become a residential campus with a four-year housing guarantee for every undergrad at below-market prices.”
Colleges at UCSD were originally designed to hold 4,000 students each; the six colleges currently have over 5,000 undergraduate students enrolled. Once Seventh College and Eighth College are added, UCSD plans to meet the 2035 enrollment cap and lower college enrollment to 4,000 students per college. Once new apartments are built for third- and fourth-year students, UCSD hopes to offer a four-year housing guarantee for all undergraduate students.
“I want to express my appreciation for the intentional plan to get undergrad residency back in alignment with the design capacity,” UC Student Regent-designate Hayley Weddle said during committee discussion. “I think student’s living conditions have both an impact on their well-being and an academic impact and so I hope the other [UC] campuses make such [an] intentional effort.”
The Seventh College curriculum program is called “A Changing World,” which UCSD Dean of Undergraduate Education John Moore said will allow for interdisciplinary study. Moore said the curriculum is designed in a way to make students engage with general education (GE) all four years, rather than finish their GE requirements in one or two years.
Curriculum will include the regular GE requirements from different departments on campus and three additional “capstone” projects. These projects are aimed at interdisciplinary education. Moore said that the first two courses will be writing-intensive and the third, an upper-division course, will be a research project.
“We are, right now, confident we have complete support of the whole campus and we have defined a general education program that we think is going to define the future of what gen-ed is going to be like,” Chancellor Khosla said.
Turning The Village into Seventh College will require several housing adjustments. Transfer students will be relocated to new Pepper Canyon East and West housing and Rita Atkinson Hall. Construction for Pepper Canyon West housing was approved by the Board of Regents in March and is expected to open over Summer 2022.
Medical students, currently housed in Rita Atkinson Hall, will move to Nuevo East and West housing on the other side of the 5 freeway, which is set to open for Fall Quarter 2020 with around 3,000 beds, according to Chancellor Khosla.
“Myself along with fellow transfers I have worked with all agree that UCSD doesn’t do a great job at making the transfer community feel like we belong here and have a place to call home, but their best effort is by far The Village,” Transfer Senator Erika Kelly told The Triton. “The Village is someplace we can actually call our home or our little community, and I know many transfers and transfer advocates were upset when UCSD started housing non-transfers in The Village for overflow housing.”
Ethan Edward Coston is the Managing Editor of The Triton. You can follow him @Ethan4Books.
Correction: This article was updated at 10:40 a.m. on May 17, 2019 to correct the opening date for Pepper Canyon West Housing and with information from HDH. A previous version of this article said that Pepper Canyon West opens in 2020. We apologize for that error.