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NEC to Require COVID-19 Vaccination

May 21, 2021

Posted in Press Release

New England College will Require COVID-19 Vaccination for Students, Faculty and Staff

Henniker, N.H. (May 21, 2021)—Citing a successful on-campus experience this academic year, New England College (NEC) President Michele Perkins announced today that, “With the COVID-19 vaccine now widely available throughout the country, we will add it to our list of required vaccinations. With limited exceptions, all students attending classes on campus in fall 2021 must be fully vaccinated. Faculty and staff must also be fully vaccinated by August 1, 2021 if they work on campus.”

The College has urged community members to take advantage of the ready supply of vaccines now available. The College has held vaccination clinics on campus and plans more in the future but made this announcement to give all community members time to get their shots before the fall semester begins in mid-August.

Cognizant that the COVID-19 vaccination places another task on student checklists, Dr. Perkins added, “Vaccination of our on-campus community will help us return to normal. We will be able to have more face-to-face classes and non-class activities. We will be able to schedule travel courses, field trips, host athletic competitions, and open up our galleries and theatre for exhibitions and performances, and so much more.”


New England College Celebrates 74th Commencement

May 6, 2021

Posted in Press Release

Veteran, author, and social entrepreneur Wes Moore to Give Commencement Address

Henniker, NH (May 6, 2021) New England College (NEC) will honor its 74th graduating class and the class of 2020 at its virtual commencement ceremony on May 8, 2021.

“This year’s commencement holds special significance,” explains Dr. Michele Perkins, President of NEC. “We’re commemorating the College’s 75th year of transforming students’ lives and conferring degrees upon our 74th graduating class while also celebrating the accomplishments of the class of 2020. It is my absolute pleasure to congratulate all these students on their success. They have shown resilience and fortitude during very difficult times, and I believe these traits will serve our graduates well as they begin the next chapter of their lives.”

In all, NEC will celebrate 1,858 students. This number includes 772 undergraduate students and 1,076 graduate students. It represents the diversity of NEC’s student population, as graduates hail from 48 states; Washington, D.C.; Guam; Puerto Rico; the U.S. Virgin Islands; and 19 other countries around the world.

Wes Moore—a decorated combat veteran, author of five books, and current Chief Executive Officer of Robin Hood in New York City—will address the NEC community. During the ceremony, Moore will receive an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa, from the College’s Board of Trustees in recognition of his professional success and achievements.

The commencement ceremony honoring the graduates of 2020 and 2021 will be held virtually on Saturday, May 8, at 10:00 a.m.


Annual Bachelor of Fine Arts Exhibition Opening May 5

April 28, 2021

Posted in Event Press Release

New England College (NEC) will celebrate the 2021 Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) Exhibition on its Manchester campus, May 5–20. The exhibition showcases the top achievements of NEC’s Art and Design Division graduating class.

The Annual BFA Exhibition features works of art in a variety of media and includes paintings, illustrations, prints, ceramics, sculptures, graphic design, photography, comic arts, and creative writing. Styles range from the traditional to more experimental approaches. Artwork is displayed throughout two buildings on NEC’s Manchester campus, and most artwork is available for purchase with proceeds going directly to the student artists.

How to See the Exhibition

In person
Due to the pandemic, appointments must be made to view the exhibition. The exhibition will be open by appointment starting May 5 to families, and open to the public on May 8.

The exhibition can be viewed online at starting on May 8.

New England College Announces Summer Courses at Reduced Tuition Rate

April 6, 2021

Posted in Press Release

Henniker, N.H. (April 6, 2021) – New England College (NEC) will offer over 50 summer courses at a reduced tuition rate of $200 per credit. Over 100 students have already registered for NEC’s second consecutive summer session, which begins May 10, with a subsequent term beginning June 29.

Enrolled students will have the opportunity to pursue professional development, catch up on or get ahead in credits, explore college life, or encourage family members to earn college credit in schedule-friendly seven-week terms. Summer participants will include current NEC students or those home from other colleges, high school students preparing for fall semester, veterans, and professionals seeking career advancement opportunities.

“Many people have been cooped up inside for a long time,” said Jason Buck, Dean of Students at NEC. “Our summer programming provides an opportunity to enjoy the outdoors and have some fun while taking advantage of low tuition costs and learning something new.” This year, students can enroll in courses in Manchester or at the Henniker campus, where they can take advantage of planned events along the Contoocook River, hiking and biking trails, rope courses and a variety of outdoor activities. Additionally, some courses will be offered online.

Diverse summer courses include Photography, Community-based Art, Drawing, Public Speaking, Business Finance, Psychology of Sport and Movement, Teasing Death with Adventure, Freedom of Speech, Criminal Procedure, Relationship Status Complicated, Happiness: Positive Psychology, and Resilience and Wellbeing for Life.

“The summer is the time for our faculty to offer courses that speak to their passions,” said Dr. Wayne Lesperance, Provost at NEC. “Students come from far and wide to take advantage of these compelling options, while positioning themselves for academic success, whether as professionals or as new or returning students.”

With a reputation for building leaders, NEC has been trusted to provide quality education for 75 years. Interested students should reach out to Ian Harmon, Director of Student Success and Advising, at to register for courses. More information can be found at



New England College Anticipates Return to Normal Next Fall

March 30, 2021

Posted in Press Release

Henniker, N.H. (March 29, 2021) New England College (NEC) announces that all facilities will be open and available to students and faculty for the Fall 2021 semester. Last spring, the College decided to hold summer classes remotely, but for both Fall 2020 and Spring 2021, NEC held in-person classes and provided on-campus housing.

“We have been wonderfully successful in creating safe teaching and learning environments in Henniker and Manchester with very few COVID cases, nearly all of which were asymptomatic.” said Dr. Michele Perkins, President of NEC. “I am very confident we will be able to return to something close to normal by the fall.”

Throughout the pandemic, NEC has safely and responsibly opened its doors for face-to-face education while providing ample opportunity for students to study remotely and in a hybrid learning environment. In Fall 2021, NEC will continue to be open to all students and continue to provide remote learning options for those students who need them.

In the meantime, NEC looks forward to welcoming more than 300 students over the summer for in-person learning in Henniker and Manchester as well as online. Summer learning at NEC offers an excellent value: $200 per credit with inexpensive housing and wonderful facilities. Also over the summer, NEC’s pre-college and community education programs bring together future NEC students and members of local communities for safe teaching and learning.

“As we return to a nearly normal residential program, we know we still have a lot of work to do,” Dr. Perkins acknowledges. “Though we remain hopeful that the scourge of COVID will soon be behind us, we remain vigilant in this very volatile environment. Our faculty, staff and students have helped enable NEC’s success in the face of this health emergency by following the rules and demonstrating their commitment to learning. We also appreciate the efforts of public officials in Henniker, Manchester and Concord who have worked closely with us to find the right path during a difficult time.”

In another hopeful sign, NEC resumed athletic competition this spring and looks forward to a full schedule of competition next fall. Because of the large number of people involved and the limitations of social distancing, Commencement on May 8, 2021 will be held virtually and feature guest speaker Wes Moore, currently CEO of Robin Hood in New York City, one of the largest poverty-fighting organizations in the country.


Wes Moore Announced as NEC’s 2021 Commencement Speaker

March 17, 2021

Posted in Press Release

Combat veteran, best-selling author, and social entrepreneur will speak at a virtual ceremony honoring 2020 and 2021 graduates.

Henniker, N.H. (March 17, 2021) New England College (NEC) announces that Wes Moore will serve as the Commencement speaker at the College’s virtual commencement ceremony on May 8, 2021.

Moore’s professional journey includes serving as a paratrooper and captain in the U.S. Army’s 82nd Airborne Division; White House Fellow to former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice; author of five books; founder and CEO of BridgeEdu, a tech platform that reinvented the first-year experience for underserved students in order to address the college completion and job placement crisis; and current Chief Executive Officer of Robin Hood in New York City, one of the largest poverty-fighting organizations in the country.

“I often say that while potential is universal, opportunity is not,” Moore comments. “What a delight it is to speak to a college that dedicates itself to not only seeing the potential in students but also helping them make the college opportunity a reality. As these graduates leave New England College for the next chapter in their lives, they will no doubt face challenges, as we all do. But they leave equipped with the education, leadership, and fortitude to rise above.”

And rising above is something Moore himself knows well. Raised by a single mother in Baltimore and the Bronx, Moore overcame childhood challenges and now inspires people to think differently about their own lives, the lives of others, and how the two are connected. His New York Times bestseller The Other Wes Moore tells the story of another young man from the same time and neighborhood—and with the same name—whose life took a very different direction that resulted in a life sentence for murder.

“We are honored to host Wes at this year’s commencement ceremony for New England College,” says Dr. Michele D. Perkins, President of NEC. “He will address our community at a time when there is much work to be done, both at NEC and across America, to heal past hurts, overcome deep divisions and help each other rather than only ourselves. His experiences and personal passions will, no doubt, compel our graduates to take the best of NEC with them and to use the best of themselves to be changemakers in their worlds.”

Moore twice graduated Phi Theta Kappa, from Valley Forge Military College and from Johns Hopkins University. He went on to earn a Master of Letters from Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar.

During NEC’s commencement, Moore will receive an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa, from the College’s Board of Trustees in recognition of his professional success and achievements. The commencement ceremony honoring the graduates of 2020 and 2021 will be held virtually on Saturday, May 8, at 10:00 a.m.


New England College Welcomes New Director of Esports

March 10, 2021

Posted in Press Release

New England College (NEC) welcomes Dr. Josh Staley as its new Director of Esports. Staley was selected from a highly competitive pool of applicants and began his new role March 1.

“During my time in higher education, I have seen how esports challenges students, offers them a place to find connection, community and an outlet to just have fun,” Staley said. “I’m excited to be part of NEC, and I’m eager to lead this esports program into its next chapter.”

Staley previously served as Director of Esports at Keuka College in Keuka Park, N.Y., where he built the esports program from the ground up while also serving as a full-time professor of psychology.

An online gamer for more than 30 years, Staley’s other esports credentials include contributor to Genji Analytics/Oxygen Esports, working directly with NBA teams and the NBA 2K draft, and lead researcher with Gamer Sensei, where he developed and filed U.S. patents and created a system to build better efficiencies within the brand.

“The competitive pool of applicants for this role speaks very well of our esports program and our student-athletes,” said Dave DeCew, Director of Athletics at NEC. “Josh brings a holistic approach to student-athlete development and a strong belief in academics. He shares our belief that esports involvement enhances the college experience, academically and socially. We are thrilled with our new Director and the direction he will take esports at NEC.”

Staley earned his bachelor’s, master’s and PhD in psychology from Stephen F. Austin University.

NEC Expands Doctorate of Education Options to Meet Demand

February 25, 2021

Posted in Press Release

Henniker, N.H. (February 25, 2021) When working professionals pursue advanced degrees, they often require flexibility to make it work. This is one of the reasons New England College (NEC) has expanded its offerings for its doctorate of education (EdD). NEC launched a hybrid EdD program in 2011, which enables students to advance through a variety of online courses and residencies in cohorts formed at the time of enrollment. This initial program has focused primarily on leadership and administration in the student’s chosen area, Pre-K through grade 12 or postsecondary education.

“The courses absolutely prepare every student to be stronger practitioners,” said Dr. Michael Taberski, class of 2019. “The structure includes a perfect balance of in-person and online meetings, with time for students to complete their dissertations. The cohort model provides an incredible support system for students.” Taberski credits both the relevant content and the ultimate credential with helping him land his position as Vice President for Student and Campus Life at SUNY Geneseo.

Paige Fournier, class of 2021, is on track to graduate on time despite the challenges of juggling a family with three children, a career as a special educator, coursework and her dissertation. “Although I knew the online component of the program would be beneficial for my busy lifestyle,” said Fournier, “I also knew that having the in-person residencies would provide the support system I needed to be successful. Residencies also provided opportunities for me to practice my presentation skills and become more confident in sharing my work in public.”

Fournier recently co-wrote a journal article with a fellow cohort member, and she will present the findings of her dissertation research at a conference this spring.

In contrast to the original hybrid program, NEC’s new EdD program, launched this past January, is delivered 100% online and is designed for a national audience. “The online program focuses on educational leadership across sectors, combining Pre-K through grade 12 and higher education into one group,” said Dr. Gavin Henning, Professor of Higher Education at NEC. “And in response to the national conversation about racial justice, we have threaded an equity focus across the curriculum.”

Students can choose the program delivery method and curriculum that fit best with their professional aspirations. Either way, according to Henning, there is one thing students can count on regardless of which program they choose: the opportunity to complete their dissertation proposal by the end of the first year. “Our students have said that one reason they chose our program is because they started their dissertations in their first course,” said Henning. “This not only reinforces the realistic timeline to completion in three years, but it also enables them to apply their learning immediately.”

NEC offers a January intake for the online program and a July intake for the original hybrid program. NEC’s hybrid EdD boasts strong on-time graduation rates, with 84.5% completing coursework and 62.3% graduating within three years.


NEC Joins Forces with MCPHS for a Dual-Degree Path to Nursing

February 19, 2021

Posted in Press Release

Henniker, N.H. (February 19, 2021) In the world of higher education, strong partnerships can offer students greater access to academic resources, faculty expertise and workplace learning. That’s why New England College (NEC) has formed a new dual-degree path with the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Science (MCPHS) at MCPHS’s Manchester, N.H. campus.

Many students who graduate with NEC’s bachelor’s degree in Health Science go on to pursue advanced degrees in health care, including post-baccalaureate nursing, pharmacy, physical therapy and biomedicine. As an expansion of established articulation agreements at NEC with MCPHS, the two institutions came up with a way to shave off a year of studies and enable students to graduate with two degrees, Health Science and Nursing, in five years. Upon completion, students under this dual-degree transfer agreement would then be able to sit for the National Council Licensure Exam (NCLEX) to become registered nurses.

For the dual-degree transfer agreement with MCPHS in Manchester, students will complete six semesters in the NEC Health Sciences program and, subsequently, four semesters in the MCPHS accelerated nursing program. While at NEC, Health Science students have the flexibility to take courses in other areas such as business and psychology, depending upon their career aspirations.

According to Dr. Debra Dunlop, Associate Dean of Science, Health and Education, the dual program also offers a pathway for candidates who may have struggled at first to meet pre-licensure nursing admissions criteria. “This program builds confidence while students gain a solid foundation in biology, chemistry, anatomy and physiology, and microbiology,” said Dunlop. “They will take a six-credit Licensed Nurse Assistant course as part of their NEC program, which will enable them to land a healthcare position as an undergraduate student to gain valuable patient care experience in preparation for greater things down the line. Many of the students who pursue this track are not inclined initially to pursue nursing, but rather come to discover the benefit of the partnership in a natural progression. A strong liberal arts and health science foundation becomes the scaffold for great nurses and nurse leaders.”


New England College Students Kick Off Spring Term with Founders’ Day Celebration

February 4, 2021

Posted in Press Release

In-person classes resume February 15 after first two weeks online

Henniker, N.H. (February 4, 2021) On Monday, February 1, New England College (NEC) began its spring semester, with the first two weeks of classes delivered remotely. Prior to arrival, students living or learning on campus were required to submit a negative COVID-19 test result. Once on campus, students were tested again, each of them agreeing to an additional test the following week, with the goal of keeping the NEC community safe and healthy.

The spring protocol mirrors that of last fall and relies on students’ commitment to predetermined expectations, such as wearing a face covering correctly, maintaining social distancing standards, limiting travel, monitoring self-health, minimizing contact with others, and reporting violations, among other stipulations. 

“We are starting this semester on a strong foundation,” said NEC President Michele Perkins in her email to the college community. “With broad community support and cooperation, our Fall term was a huge success. We aim to repeat that achievement for the Spring with our students living and/or learning on their campus to complete another term successfully and safely.”

To kick off the spring semester, Perkins invited the College community to participate in a virtual Founders Day celebration on February 2. This annual event, usually held in person on the Henniker campus, honors the vision and leadership behind NEC’s founding in 1946.

Founders Day also presents an opportunity to celebrate the academic achievements of NEC students who made the Dean’s List the previous semester. This year’s keynote was Kathryn “Kate” Luckett, New England College Class of 1984 and parent of a 2012 alumna.

Luckett, a highly successful sales executive who lives in Rhode Island, described the ways NEC helped her succeed. “My NEC education provided a continued path to learning in a safe environment that encouraged without intimidation,” said Luckett. “With small classes, fireside chats, and professors that made it their business to be a part of my learning experience and push me out of my comfort zone, I learned to embrace failure and to face adversity with courage and confidence.”

Luckett’s story, in many ways, mirrors that of New England College’s in 2020. “It is one of courage, strength, and perseverance in the face of adversity and challenge” said Bill Deptula, Vice President of Advancement. “Her success story is truly inspiring, and one of which  the entire NEC community can be proud.”