The residential college is expected to open in the fall of 2026. It will be named Hobson College, and it will be built on the site of what was formerly known as Wilson College, which was named for Woodrow Wilson, the former president of the university, former governor of New Jersey and former president of the U.S.
"My hope is that my name will remind future generations of students — especially those who are Black and brown and the 'firsts' in their families — that they too belong," Ms. Hobson said in a recent university news release. "Renaming Wilson College is my very personal way of letting them know that our past does not have to be our future."
On June 26, the university's board of trustees voted to remove the name of Woodrow Wilson from Wilson College and the School of Public and International Affairs. Wilson College was renamed First College, and it will be closed pending completion of two new residential colleges now under construction on campus. Hobson College will be the third new residential college.
"We have taken this extraordinary step because we believe that Wilson's racist thinking and policies make him an inappropriate namesake for a school whose scholars, students and alumni must be firmly committed to combating the scourge of racism in all its forms," the trustees wrote.
Michael Hotchkiss, a university spokesman, declined to comment on the size of the gift from Ms. Hobson and the Hobson/Lucas Family Foundation other than to call it "significant." He declined to comment on the cost of building the residential college, which will include the building of "an entire complex of dormitories and social and study spaces," he wrote.