Transitional Programs Manager

Why Laramie does this work...

I choose this work because it is highly personal. As a former teacher in Mississippi, I witnessed the school to prison pipeline firsthand. Students that I care about deeply, lost their lives far too young. Students who are extremely gifted, are sitting in a prison cell. Six years later, I see my former students in the faces of each of our current students. THEI is literally changing history by disrupting systems of harm-something I wish we could have done more of in my 8th grade classroom. When I see a THEI student turn in an assignment, when they are sitting in the classroom-they are literally changing history. I am honored to learn alongside these students and watch them change history along the way. That is why I wake up every morning excited to go to work, because it is much more than work-it is groundbreaking.

Laramie Riggs joined the THEI team in 2020. Every academic and professional step that she has taken over the past decade has been in service of her passion for education, social equity, and championing self-efficacy within underrepresented populations. Originally from Utah, she earned a bachelor of science degree in both communication and international studies, with an emphasis on global health. Laramie then joined Teach for America, where she gained classroom experience teaching Middle School math within the Mississippi delta. After falling in love with the South, she has remained here ever since. Laramie also served as the Dean of Community Life at a free public charter school in South Jackson, Mississippi. Fueled with the belief that those in the heart of struggle offer the most impactful solutions, she studied Community Development and Action at Vanderbilt University, and graduated with a Masters of Education. The excitement she gains from watching individuals shatter stereotypes and overcome barriers to success is precisely what excites her about THEI's Academic Coordinator position.