Student Spotlight: Tyler Baker
CRIMINAL JUSTICE ’23
HOME STATE: NEW HAMPSHIRE
When Tyler Baker does karate, he is the spitting image of his grandfather. At least his mother thinks so. Both men earned martial arts black belts, the younger Baker’s second-degree. Baker’s perseverance, a trait that also landed him with first, second, and third place honors in karate competitions, has served him well in other aspects of his life. A Criminal Justice major with a minor in Political Science, Baker serves as the founder and president of the Self Defense Club; a Student Ambassador for the Admissions office; a member of and presidential candidate for the Student Senate; and a member of the Criminal Justice Club, CiviCorps and the Student Entertainment Committee. He also did a stint as a Resident Assistant, a leadership role reporting to a Resident Area Coordinator and providing service and support to fellow students.
Baker was born and raised in Concord, New Hampshire, and is the first in his family to attend college. His passion about safety and well-being for himself and for others motivated him to take action. “I have been interested in teaching basic self defense to others for quite some time. So, I teamed up with some fellow Black Belts on campus and we founded the Self Defense Club, of which we currently have about 15 members.” Despite his local upbringing, Baker saw many reasons to choose NEC for his college experience. He loved the idea of smaller classes, a chance to get to know his professors, and the opportunity to tap their broad experiences and expertise. “Our classes were large at Concord High School, with 30 or more students in a class. At NEC, we’re talking about a faculty-to-student ratio of one to 14. Plus, our faculty network is incredible. Our Criminal Justice Club does trips like no other program in the state!”
Tyler is impressed with the close ties the professors maintain with graduates, and that they have tracked career placements for their alumni. According to Baker, this commitment to relationship-building, based out of genuine care and concern, has contributed to a sense of community at NEC. “You’re an actual human being with a name, a history, a life. And the people teaching you actually care about your success.” Some of the highlights of Tyler’s NEC experiences include expansive student activities—both on and off campus—like skiing, hiking, and excursions to major cities. College Convention, which brings together students from across the country and sometimes across the globe, is a highlight. Students engage in the political process, meet face-to-face with the politicians, and explore the issues that shape presidential campaigns. “I am the oldest of five boys, and I couldn’t wait to share with them the selfie I took with Dr. Jill Biden. Last month, my little brother got to meet her too, and when he showed her a print-out of that selfie, Dr. Biden remembered me.”
Tyler’s passion for the political process may have been a driving factor in his decision to run for Student Senate President. When asked by his peers why he had chosen to throw his name in the hat, he told them, “Because of my love for New England College.” His presidential platform includes implementation of policies that improve the student experience, leadership in the post-COVID-19 transition to normalcy, and a commitment to collaborative student experiences across the Henniker and Manchester campuses. Tyler prides himself in knowing random facts about the College as evidence of his deep affection for NEC. When asked about the future, Tyler is optimistic. “I am excited to see what we can achieve together as a community.”
This spotlight was published in the Spring 2021 edition of the New England College Magazine.