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The New England Commission on Higher Education announced Friday that it has given a "show cause" order to Hampshire College, indicating that the college's accreditation is at risk. Under such an order, the college must provide information to the accreditor about why it should not be placed on probation or have its accreditation revoked. The announcement noted that institutional resources were an area of concern. If Hampshire loses its accreditation, its students would no longer be eligible for federal student aid.

Hampshire has been for several months debating its finances and future. Earlier this month, the president quit and the college's board indicated it would try to find a way to stay independent.

Hampshire's interim president, Ken Rosenthal, said in a statement released by the accreditor, "Hampshire is taking important steps to operate as a smaller college and to fund-raise in support our mission, guided by our Board of Trustees. We welcome this opportunity to come before the commission to present our plans as we restructure and financially reinvigorate the college, and to demonstrate that we remain in full compliance with the commission's standards."