In early 2014, the founding professors depart the organization to accept positions at Harvard and Dartmouth. Dr. Betina Kaplan moves on to establish U-Lead, an educational program for immigrant high school students in Athens, Georgia. Dr. Laura Emiko Soltis, who had previously served as a volunteer human rights faculty member, is appointed Freedom University's Executive Director and first full-time staff member.
In August 2014, Soltis permanently relocates Freedom University to Atlanta, Georgia in order to develop a strong network of allied social justice organizations and set the foundation for future admissions campaigns at Atlanta area campuses. Soltis implements a new horizontal leadership structure by forming a Board of Directors and active Student Committee comprised of elected undocumented student leaders. As an experienced human rights educator and social movements scholar, Soltis recruits faculty from across Atlanta university campuses and expands the curriculum based on student surveys to include border studies, debate and public speaking, STEM classes, college preparation, SAT bootcamp, and arts courses in music, photography, and theater. As a longtime student activist and movement strategist in the South, Soltis also introduces a human rights framework to strengthen Freedom University's advocacy work, develops relationships with other student, labor, immigrant rights, and racial justice movements, and institutes a rigorous movement leadership program to empower undocumented youth. In June 2014, Soltis takes 10 students to Jackson, Mississippi to participate in the 50th Anniversary of Freedom Summer Conference and begins a mentorship program linking Black Freedom Movement veterans with undocumented student leaders.
As a result, Freedom University students are not only learning from top faculty in Atlanta and earning full scholarships to college, they are effectively leading and carrying out a movement strategy to change private university admissions policies and advance equal access to higher education across the United States.