A new higher education model embraces student well-being and mentorship. Higher education in America continues to experience criticism and uncertainty in the face of political backlash that has many questioning its value to our economy, its ability to create ever greater social mobility, and its purpose for those coming of age. In March 2020, as university administrators across the U.S. began making tough decisions to transition in-person classes to online formats, it was clear there would be another disruption to colleges and universities. COVID-19 has required massive organizational re-wiring as professional staff and faculty learn on-the-fly to embrace technology and keep up with their students. Yet for institutions known for their bureaucratic ways and deep traditions, some see the pandemic as having finally generated the sense of urgency to create a strong case for change. How can they successfully manage through these challenges? Indeed, this has spurred conversation in at least one public university—the University of Connecticut—where a new model is being considered that gets beyond the ROI promises and transactional classroom learning to embrace student well-being and mentorship. We’ll quickly explore key challenges for the current state of higher education and highlight a new alternative model called “Life-Transformative Education”, how it proposes to make an impact on future students, and what it might mean for UConn to implement the associated changes.