The New School May Adopt Parsons Moniker From Successful Art School

TV personality Tim Gunn. Photo by John Sciulli/Getty Images for March of Dimes.

New York’s the New School is reportedly in talks to rename the whole university after Parsons, the most profitable college in the institution, according to the New York Post.

Parsons gained national attention from its prominent appearances on the reality TV program “Project Runway,” hosted by the college’s former chair, Tim Gunn. The nationally televised series, which sees Heidi Klum head a panel of judges evaluating clothing by aspiring fashion designers, shined a spotlight on Parsons, transforming the art and design school into a household name.

Sam Biederman, a spokesperson for the New School interviewed by the Post, claims that re-branding talks are still in the “very early stages.” According to Bob Kerrey, a former president of the New School, the university has been contemplating adopting the Parson’s name for years. “Parsons is the biggest and best known, and in terms of finances, it’s the most important part of the New School,” he told the Post.

Parsons, the New School for Design.

Parsons, the New School for Design.


According to 2012 enrollment figures, Parsons, with some 4,000 undergraduate students, is roughly three times the size of the university’s next largest college. Annual tuition at Parsons is more than $42,000.

In 2019, the New School will celebrate its 100th anniversary.

UPDATE: The New School spokesperson Sam Biederman assures artnet News that the institution will not be changing its name to Parsons University, although “we are exploring different ways to express our identity when we speak about the school.”

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