Michele D. Perkins, Ed.D.
President and Professor of Higher Education Administration
New England College
Michele Perkins brings a successful record of higher education leadership and transformation to her position as the fifteenth president of New England College. Dr. Perkins was appointed president in 2007, and her tenure as president has been highlighted by renewed strategic and campus planning, curriculum innovation, compensation review, financial well-being, and enhanced external support. She also has led an integrated process of optimal enrollment planning, and New England College has grown to over 2,000 students, the highest enrollment in the College’s history. The College is nationally recognized for its programs in civic engagement and experiential learning.
Dr. Perkins began her service to the College in the fall of 2001 as Vice President for Enrollment. Two years later, as Senior Vice President, her responsibilities included all areas of admission, financial aid, student accounts, student development (including residential life, athletics, health and counseling, safety, career counseling, and academic support), registrar, and public information. She was instrumental in founding the current NEC program in graduate and professional studies, with diverse offerings online, on campus, and on location in schools and businesses throughout New Hampshire and Maine.
Dr. Perkins currently teaches in the master’s program in Higher Education Administration at New England College. Previously, she taught speech and drama at Emerson College and Curry College. Dr. Perkins’ research interests include organizational change in the small college and leadership decision-making.
Prior to serving New England College, Dr. Perkins held positions in admissions and enrollment management at White Pines College, New York Law School, Trinity College, and Emerson College. As an independent consultant, she has worked with colleges and universities across the country on a wide range of projects focused on recruitment, retention, and strategic planning. She was a co-founder of the National Association of Graduate Admissions Professionals (NAGAP—formerly NEAGAP).
Dr. Perkins serves on a number of boards and advisory groups in higher education. She is the Chair of the New Hampshire Commission for Higher Education and Campus Compact for New Hampshire. A member of the New Hampshire Commission for Higher Education, serves on the board of the Council for Independent Colleges. She also serves on the Financial Aid Committee of the NCAA Division III, and the Accountability Committee of the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities.
Dr. Perkins earned her Ed.D. in Higher Education Management from the University of Pennsylvania. She holds an M.A. with Distinction, in Communication Studies from Boston’s Emerson College and a B.S.S. in Theatre from Northwestern University.
President Perkins has remained active in theatre, occasionally performing at New England College and other locations across New England. She has been a member of the Milton Ensemble, a readers’ theatre group dedicated to performing all books of John Milton’s Paradise Lost, and a past board member and company member of the Champlain Arts Theatre Company. She serves as a judge for the New Hampshire Poetry Out Loud competition.
Dr. Perkins resides in Henniker, NH with her husband James and son Caldwell.