LACONIA — Dr. Larissa Ruiz Baia has been named by the board of trustees of the Community College System of New Hampshire to serve as interim president of Lakes Region Community College, effective July 1.
Baia has served as vice president of Student Services and Enrollment Management at the college since 2012, having previously been associate vice president of Enrollment Management at Manchester Community College. She also had served as director of Graduate and Evening Admissions at Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida.
She currently teaches a section of LRCC’s College Essentials, a course to acclimate new students to the college environment, and she has taught courses in political science and international relations at other colleges.
CCSNH Chancellor Ross Gittell had recommended Baia for the interim president position, based on her leadership and involvement in several college and system-wide initiatives.
Baia is a member of the system-wide marketing team and a past chairman of the CCSNH admissions team, and has served as a management representative on collective bargaining teams. She has overseen budget development for the college and works with other members of the leadership team on preparation of the college’s operational and capital budgets.
She has served on the board of directors of the Women in Higher Education Leadership and Genesis Behavioral Health, as well as other boards and organizations.
“I am delighted to welcome Dr. Larissa Baia to this leadership position at Lakes Region Community College and within the Community College System,” said Gittell. “Dr. Baia has already proved herself to be a deeply engaged leader who brings very sound ideas, perspective and experience to her role at the college. I am confident she will be a tremendous asset to LRCC and CCSNH and will work well with the faculty and staff at the college and across the system.”
Steve Guyer, a CCSNH trustee from Gilford whose career was in education, endorsed the selection, saying, “Dr. Baia was appointed with the unanimous and enthusiastic approval of the trustees, and we are pleased that she has accepted this role and responsibility. She will sustain and strengthen very important efforts at the college to support student success, partnerships with regional employers, and innovative approaches to meeting the community college’s invaluable mission.”
“As a first-generation college student, I know first-hand some of the obstacles that students face when attending college,” said Dr. Baia. “Those challenges are part of the reason why community colleges and Lakes Region Community College specifically are integral to the higher education landscape and the economic growth of the regions they serve. I am honored to be given the opportunity promote LRCC’s mission of expanding access to quality, affordable education and professional readiness for all residents of the Lakes Region and beyond.”
Baia is a native of St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, and earned a PhD in Political Science and a master’s degree in Latin American Studies from the University of Florida, with a bachelor’s degree in Economics from Brandeis University. She resides in Concord.
The interim appointment is for one year, through July 2018. The trustees will conduct a search in early 2018 to fill the president position at the expiration of the interim term.
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