Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts is nearing the end of a presidential search that has lasted more than a year and half. The state Board of Higher Education is meeting tomorrow to vote on the approval of Jaimie Birge as the college’s 12th president.
In August 2014, MCLA President Mary Grant announced she was leaving at the start of 2015 to become chancellor of University of North Carolina at Asheville. MCLA completed a nationwide search and selected Greg Summers, but in March 2015 he withdrew because of family health concerns that made him unable to relocate. Then this past summer, MCLA trustee James Clemmer took over for interim president Cynthia Brown when she decided to seek the full-time post. And last month, after its second search, the college selected Birge who previously served as the president of Franklin Pierce University in New Hampshire.
Birge, who graduated from Lee High School, spoke with WAMC’s Berkshire Bureau Chief Jim Levulis about why he chose MCLA.