Now a professor at Nashua Community College, Hayley Cronin first came to the college as a student in the Business Program, where she balanced full-time college coursework with parenting, and a full-time job.
“I really liked it here, so I wanted to come back and teach and inspire people that no matter where you come from, and whatever cards you’re dealt with life, it is possible to break through,” said Cronin.
After NCC, Cronin transferred to a bachelor’s program at UNH Manchester, where she earned her business degree with a concentration in management. Then, she completed her MBA from SNHU in November 2022. “My son is now 8, I started college the summer I was pregnant with him – I have been going since, and it was not easy. I can’t tell you how many classes that kid attended.”
Originally from Florida, Cronin took a year off after graduating high school early, and moved to Nashua where she ended up visiting NCC during an Express Admissions day. “I noticed the business program and pathways to four-year universities. So, I popped in and got accepted and registered – it was quite convenient.”
She had been interested in business, but wasn’t sure which career path to take. “My sister-in-law majored in business and became a program manager for the Air Force. I admired her a lot, and the work she did, so I also decided to do for a business degree and see where it would take me.”
College faculty created a welcoming environment for students, she said, “The environment at NCC is very comfortable and welcoming. The professors I had, like John Carlisle and Patricia DiLorenzo, were great. Professor Carlisle made a comment on one of my assignments – ‘please major in business so I can give you a reference’. That really inspired me because I wasn’t sure what I was doing with my life. It helped boost my morale in my capabilities. If I could have finished my bachelor’s here, I would have done it.”
The program also proved itself to be immediately useful. “I enjoyed the real-world applications of business principles, for instance, I took Principles of Management, which I’m teaching now, and I used it as a supervisor at Starbucks on my staff. I could change my performance and shape how other people interacted with me.” Overall, she said the most important things she learned while studying business were people management, communication, and writing skills.
Cronin continued working full-time at Starbucks while advancing through her education. After graduating from UNH Manchester, she pivoted careers. “I got a contracting role as an HR Assistant with Elbit Systems for 8 months, and then I went on to BAE Systems as a Supply Chain Planner. I just started working for the Air Force in August as an Acquisitions Program Manager.”
She is also on the Board of Directors for the Nashua Cal Ripken Baseball League, and she coaches baseball and a First Robotics league team at Bicentennial Elementary.
Beyond her MBA, Cronin also holds a certification in Production and Inventory Management via APICS and is working toward her Project Management Professional certification. “As I realize my dreams, I want to find a way to mentor others and give back.”
Professor John Carlisle is the head of the Business Department at NCC, and said he was eager to welcome Cronin back to campus. “Hayley is a strong new adjunct faculty member. She has stepped into the fire with passion and fortitude. It’s a thrill to have her on the team!”
Degrees and Certificates