Activity Report: February 21- February 27

Chancellor Garrey Carruthers

• I had a nice chat with David Abbey, the Director of the Legislative Finance Committee, regarding this and future state budgets. He was a little more optimistic about the future than I expected but did indicate the Legislature had used $88 million of one-time “swept” funds to cover the 2017 budget and these funds will obviously not be there for 2018. In addition, as the result of New Mexico participating in Medicaid expansion, the State’s contribution to Medicaid will increase by about $90 million in 2018. So, in the proverbial nutshell, the Administration and Legislature will start $178 million down relative to 2017. No one is anticipating that oil and gas will completely bail the State out.

• The Commissioner of the Sun Belt Conference has advised me that the Presidents/Chancellors of the Conference have decided they will remain a 10-member football conference, beginning in 2018. At one time, we thought they would vote on March 10 but for some reason moved the decision to last week. They will honor the agreement with NMSU and Idaho to allow these two teams to play in Sun Belt for the 2016 and 2017 seasons. While there is now some more movement in conference alignments, it is clear we will need a new home for the football team in 2018. We were left at the altar when the Western Athletic Conference disintegrated as a football conference in 2013, and now we are just looking for an altar!

• Greg Fant, Sharon Jones, and I met with Secretary Damron and the Articulation and Transfer committee she has organized to perfect a statewide system of course articulation and common course numbering. The meeting went well. Some progress has already been made on Math and English lower-level courses and now the staff of the Committee will seek syllabi and other course materials for the remainder of the general education and other popular courses taken by lower classmen at both two-and four-year programs. The key to articulation is to agree upon desired learning outcomes for each class – which necessitates faculty involvement. Many of you may be enlisted in this effort in the coming months, and I hope you will agree to participate.

• We have asked approval of the Secretary and the Higher Education Department to offer a version of in-state tuition to students from Mexico. We are proposing the Western University Exchange rate which is 1.5 times state tuition for New Mexico students. This is an important step in our goal to further internationalize NMSU and in meeting recent agreements we have with a consortium of University’s in Mexico. Provost Howard had a major role in this as he attended a meeting with New Mexico Legislators in Mexico recently where this idea seemed to gain traction with legislators and Mexican officials.

• I will be traveling to Washington, D.C. to visit with our delegation on issues NMSU.

Executive Vice President and Provost Dan Howard

Power of Not Yet – On Monday afternoon, I met with the “Power of Not Yet” group, an Advisory Council led by Dr. Rudolfo Chavez Chavez that has been working with my office on diversity and inclusion issues at New Mexico State University. We began the meeting by going over progress that had been made on recommendations of the group in 2015. Notable achievements include student coaches in the form of the student success navigators, training for department heads in building inclusive departmental communities, orientation for new faculty members that includes a description and discussion of our students and their backgrounds, and reporting of mid-semester grades for 100 and 200 level courses. The group then went on to discuss the establishment of an Office of Diversity and Inclusion at NMSU. The meeting ended with a discussion of diversity and inclusion themes and a request that each member of the group identify one or more themes on which to focus their attention over the course of the next six months to a year.

Discover Sustainability Symposium – On Tuesday afternoon, I had the pleasure of giving a brief presentation at the Discover Sustainability Symposium organized by joni newcomer. New Mexico State University has made significant strides in becoming a green university due to the efforts of people such as joni, Glen Haubold, and David Boje, and the passion for sustainability was evident in the packed Yates Auditorium. Congratulations to the speakers – Dr. Mary Lucero, Ms. Claire Catlett, Dr. Lisa Grayshield, and Dr. David Boje, all of whom gave marvelous presentations.

Closing the Achievement Gap – On Wednesday, I met with a group of NMSU faculty and staff, as well as representatives from NGAGE New Mexico to discuss an initiative to close the achievement gap in southern New Mexico, as well as at NMSU. The group was encouraged to be ambitious in their goals as we seek funding from the Kellogg Foundation and from NSF, which recently announced a new initiative (INCLUDES) designed to enhance the preparation of students, from groups traditionally underrepresented in STEM fields, for careers in science and engineering.

Arts and Sciences Department Heads Meeting – On Friday afternoon, I met for an hour with the department heads of the College of Arts and Sciences to answer questions and discuss the future of the college. In a far-ranging discussion we touched on budget concerns in the coming year, funding for summer courses, support for graduate students, health insurance payments for international students, the need for additional faculty lines, the importance of working across departmental and college lines to address complex research questions, and adjusting the increases in pay associated with promotion to associate and full professor. During the course of the discussion, I noted my strong support for the liberal arts teaching mission of the college and for the interim dean, Dr. Enrico Pontelli, who will be encouraged to be more than a caretaker and to undertake initiatives that advance the college and its mission.

College of Agricultural Consumer and Environmental Sciences, Interim Dean Jim Libbin

Agriculture Future of America (AFA) has selected ACES student Mason Moore as one of 10 Student Advisory Team members and 15 Campus Ambassadors for the 2016-17 year. These students represent 24 schools from 23 states. During their year of service, these students will interact with agribusiness leaders, campus faculty and fellow students as they represent AFA. All 25 students will fill the Campus Ambassador role at their respective schools by serving as a liaison between AFA and university faculty, staff and fellow students. Additionally, the ten Student Advisory Team members are responsible for representing AFA nationally as well as planning and facilitating the 2016 AFA Leaders Conference. Throughout the year, the Student Advisory Team will visit corporate partners and potential partners of AFA, as well as develop plans for the 2016 Conference.

Family and Consumer Sciences

Student Recruitment – Dr. Sharon Bartley, Family and Consumer Sciences Education, and three members of the Association of Family and Consumer Sciences student club, had a booth at Aggie Experience on Feb. 15. They spoke to high school students who were interested in majoring in the department.

Council of Administrators of Family and Consumer Sciences meeting – Dr. Esther Devall, department head of Family and Consumer Sciences and Extension Family and Consumer Sciences, hosted the annual meeting of the Council of Administrators of Family and Consumer Sciences (CAFCS) at the Hotel Encanto February 16-19. Thirty-five deans and department heads from around the United States attended. Their mission is to strengthen family and consumer sciences in higher education through the development of excellence in administration. Participants learned strategies for holding crucial conversations overcoming leadership challenges, understanding their leadership style, and working with difficult employees.

Cooperative Extension Service

Think Trees Conference – John Garlisch and Graeme Davis of Bernalillo County Extension Office played a big role in the organization and hosting of the annual Think Trees NM Conference held in Albuquerque on February 4 and 5. The conference on its 30th year anniversary drew in over 340 attendees from throughout the state to hone their skills on proper care and management of the urban forest. Care and management of the urban forest has multi-million dollar economic impact to the state.

In February the Bernalillo County Board of Commissioners acknowledged the Bernalillo County Cooperative Extension Service (CES) for its continuing work to improve the quality of life in their community. The Bernalillo CES has been a department of the New Mexico State University College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences since 1914. The mission of the Bernalillo County CES is to provide the people of Bernalillo County with practical, research-based knowledge and programs to improve their quality of life. Classes, workshops, numerous publications, videos and multimedia products are offered to the public in the areas of agriculture and natural resources, consumer and family issues, 4-H youth development and community economic development. Ideas for Cooking and Nutrition (ICAN) is free nutrition education and its goal is to reduce nutritional health disparities in New Mexico and to make a measurable, positive impact on the well-being of the community through a series of research-based, hands-on nutrition experiences with adults and youth. The Master Gardener and Master Composter organizations share information with interested citizens about the art, science, materials, and methods of home gardening and home composting and trains volunteers to teach classes to the public. In 2015, the Bernalillo County CES served over 65,000 Bernalillo County residents.

College of Business, Dean James Hoffman

• This week I sat in on some interviews for the next cohort of the Woodrow Wilson MBA Fellowship in Education Leadership Program. We hope to have fellows identified shortly.
• Jeanelle Chavez, Indian Resource Development program, represented the college at the Jemez Valley Credit Union College and Career Fair at Jemez Valley High School on Tuesday.
• The College of Business weekly activity reports are available in their entirety at

College of Education, Dean Donald Pope-Davis

Learning Resource Center

Anthony Burns and Michael Miller from the Instructional Material Bureau (NM Public Education Dept.) visited the College of Education Learning Resource Center. The purpose of the visit to our Regional Review Centers was to review the materials and how they are arranged and address any questions or concerns. They offered to work to identify and assist with any needs related to this year’s instructional materials adoption. They were happy with the center, the website and our willingness to serve the school districts to make this a successful adoption process.

College of Engineering, Interim Dean Steve Stochaj

Sin títuloEngineers earn construction safety certificates – A series of Construction Safety Focus Four Seminars, led by Safety Specialist Juanita Miller, wrapped up this week with 26 students, faculty and staff completing all four sessions. This lectures was based on the OSHA Focus Four program to bring awareness to the most prevalent causes of fatalities in the construction industry. These hazards also cause loss of life in many other manufacturing and agriculture related industries. Each one hour seminar covered a topic of Caught-In/Between, Falls, Stuck-By and Electrocution Hazards.  Those completing all four sessions earned a certificate.

Sin título.png1STEM teacher training program to expand – As NM Program Affiliate, NMSU’s Engineering New Mexico Resource Network is expanding collaborations with the NM Public Education Department and national Project Lead the Way to expand the number of NM schools offering the PLTW STEM curriculum.  PLTW programs in engineering, biomedical, and computer science are among seven programs of study recently adopted by NM PED for Career and Technical Education. The expanded partnership between NMSU, NM PED, and PLTW will build on this program adoption to expand engagement across the state. Associate Dean Patricia Sullivan is leading this effort as NM Program Affiliate Director along with Interim Dean Steve Stochaj and Program Manager Linda Fresques.

Time to celebrate engineers – In celebration of Engineer’s Week, E-Council hosted several events:Sin título.png2

  • Monday featured a Candy and Info boothcentered on student organizations and inviting comments, questions, or suggestions for E-Council on how to improve the Aggie Engineering experience.
  • On Tuesday, approximately 400 prospective engineering students from local high schools visited the College of Engineering. Ambassadors spoke about engineering fields of study and led tours of engineering labs. Visitors ate at Taos Cafeteria and received an engineering t-shirt.
  • The Bromilow Lecture was presented on Wednesday, featuring Sandia National Laboratories Vice President Jim Chavez. Chavez, an NMSU mechanical engineering alumnus, spoke about “Nuclear Nonproliferation: Treaties and Technologies.”
  • The E-Week Weenie Roast and Tug of War Contest were held on Thursday with free hot dogs, snacks and drinks for engineering students, faculty and staff.
  • On Friday, students engaged in competition with classmates student organizations in Engineering Olympics Events with Blackboard Relay, Paper Airplane Launch, Spaghetti/Marshmallow Tower Challenge, and water balloon toss.
  • The Engineer’s Social was held at Bob-O’s Family Fun Center in El Paso.

Sin título.png3Engineering recruits at Aggie Experience – Engineering Program Manager Elizabeth Howard hosted Aggie Experience on Feb. 15.  Approximately 120 prospective students and their families attended the event. The majority of the students were high school seniors. Ambassadors spoke about engineering fields of study and led tours of engineering labs.3


College of Health and Social Services, Dean Donna Wagner

Office of the Dean

CHSS’s faculty and staff were happy to welcome Kim Gear to the college this week. Kim will be on assignment from University Advancement as the Director of Development for the College. Previously, she has worked with the American Cancer Society, the American Heart Association and most recently with Boy Scouts of America. Kim is excited to be a part of the NMSU Aggie family!

School of Nursing

Members of the SON faculty attended the 2016 NMNEC Statewide Meeting at the DACC Workforce Center in Las Cruces, NM on February 26. This was a NMNEC business meeting in which nursing faculty from across the state gather to review change and progress with the implementation of the NMNEC curriculum model in member schools.

Department of Public Health

Rebecca Palacios, Associate Professor in the Department of Public Health Sciences and a member of the Good Neighbor Environmental Board, traveled to Brownsville, Texas, to learn about the effects of climate change in the border county of Cameron, Texas. The board members discussed efforts to restore three major “resacas” (former channels of the Rio Grande that are now dry).

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University Library, Dean Elizabeth Titus

pic 3• The NMSU Library Communication Plan Taskforce will be working with all library departments to meet and discuss communication goals and needs for use in the Library’s communication plan.
• Search committees have started for the following faculty positions: Head of Reference and Research Services, Head of Archives and Special Collections, Business Librarian, Government Documents Librarian, Meta Data Librarian.
• Cassie McClure, NMSU Library Communications Specialist, was awarded the Border Regional Library Association 2015 Staff Member of the Year for her “outstanding library service to the community.”


Honors College, Dean Miriam Chaiken

International Research Scholarship – the deadline for submitting applications for the Honors College International Research Scholarship is soon approaching. Dr. Ketelaar spent time with several students to give them guidance on how the can present the strongest case for the merits of their research proposal. We expect a strong group of applications, and hope that we may be able to fund more than one proposal this year. Last year’s recipient, Kira Turnham from the biology department will be part of the screening committee to review applications. Kira’s marine biology research in the Philippines is a model for other students to pursue.

Honors Tracks in Business – Miriam Chaiken met with the department heads in the College of Business to discuss possible models for creating honors tracks in majors in that college. There are several options to consider, and already the departments are looking at designating select courses as honors courses as a way to help their strong students accumulate the requisite number of credits to graduate with University Honors.

Lunch with friends – on Friday Deans Chaiken and Ketelaar met with a group of prominent women from Las Cruces to talk about opportunities to work with the Honors College. We were joined by three amazing students, Kira Turnham (recipient of the HC International Scholarship), Sativa Cruz (HHMI and MARC participant), and Michaela de la Rosa (model UN team member). Each of the students made a huge impression on the guests, which we hope will be the beginning of a beautiful friendship and collaboration.

Fulbright presentation – Miriam Chaiken made a presentation about opportunities through the Fulbright program to the anthropology senior capstone course. In the past we have had several Fulbright applicants emerge from this course, and this semester looks equally promising.

Common Reading – As part of the process of implementing a university-wide common reading each year, the committee who are spearheading this effort met at the Honors College. We have selected Temple Grandin’s insightful book Thinking in Pictures as the first title to introduce as our common reading. We will capitalize on the planned visit to campus by Dr. Grandin, sponsored by the College of ACES, and promote activities related to Grandin’s book. We are in the process of working with faculty and staff across the university to see how we might launch this effort across the campus and units.

Administration and Finance, Senior Vice President Angela Throneberry

pic4Discover Sustainability Symposium – The first Annual Discover Sustainability Symposium was held on February 23, 2016. It was a successful event with three knowledgeable speakers who spoke on the environmental topics of water, soils, and our indigenous connections. Before the presentations, student clubs and NMSU groups had educational booths for all to enjoy. Provost Howard spoke about the importance of taking care of our planet for future generations. Manager of Environmental Policy and Sustainability, joni newcomer, shared the importance of acting from the heart and doing a better job caring for our planet.

Celebrating History – In recognition of African American History Month, Taos Restaurant showcased the diverse world heritage of African American culture with dishes such as Caribbean jerk chicken breast, rice and black bean pilaf, chicken and sausage gumbo, Ethiopian vegetable stew and more.

Mindful Monday – This week, Taos Restaurant and Campus Health Center focused on fitness and health education. Healthy options such as eggplant pastitsio with yogurt béchamel were served.

Student Affairs/Enrollment Management, Vice President Bernadette Montoya

Community Engagement with DECA: NMSU Admissions Recruiter and DECA alumni, Brandon Fields, attended the NM DECA State Career Development Conference. At the conference, Brandon, judged events and had a NMSU table set up throughout the three-day event to promote NMSU to 1,200 students from across the state. NMSU presented two-$500 scholarships to the 1st Place Winner in the Marketing Management Series Event (Skyler Faulkner) and the Hotel and Lodging Management Series Event (Emily McGehee). This amazing event gained a lot of praise from high school advisors and the NMSU support with this organization and its students.

DECA is an Association of Marketing Students and New Mexico’s High School memberships consist of 3,000+ students with 23 chapters across the state. DECA prepares emerging leaders and entrepreneurs for careers in marketing, finance, hospitality and management in high schools and colleges around the globe. DECA enhances the co-curricular education of members through a comprehensive learning program that integrates into classroom instruction, applies learning, connects to business and promotes competition.

NMSU Recruiter, Brandon Fields presents scholarship to DECA students.

NMSU Recruiter, Brandon Fields presents scholarship to DECA students.


 Campus Health Center Interns providing free blood pressure checks to NMSU employees.

Campus Health Center Interns providing free blood pressure checks to NMSU employees.

Campus Health Center Interns – The Campus Health Center health education interns have hit the trail this month visiting offices around campus providing free blood pressure checks in recognition of February-Healthy Heart Month. The positive feedback from the office visits has been overwhelming with personalized messages thanking the mobile unit for making the trek out. The CHC health education staff are available to customize health and wellness outreach and programming to specific needs if requested. For more information or to have a mobile blood pressure screening in your office call 646-4045 or email to


5-Year Grant – Each of the six colleges and universities that have been a member of the New Mexico Higher Education Prevention Consortium since 2005 have been awarded a 5-year grant that focuses specifically on prescription drug abuse and tobacco. The funding stream is as follows: SAMHSA, New Mexico Human Services Department, Behavioral Health Services Department, UNM, and then NMSU along with four other institutions of Higher Education in NM.

The sub contract with NMSU is in process and will be signed within the next few weeks. The contract will be backdated to November of 2015 and the award for that year will be $73,535. The grant is a 5-year grant and thus 2016-2019 an award of $100,000 per year will be granted. During 2007-2015, the WAVE program has brought in a total of $758,922 in grant funding in addition to this most recent grant for prescription drug abuse.

Vice President for Economic Development, Vice President Kevin Boberg

NSF I-Corps Site Program – Arrowhead Center opened applications for the first cohort of Aggie I-Corps to be offered this spring. NMSU students and faculty can apply for a $2,000 award and admittance into a five-week training program to test the viability of an innovative business idea. Aggie I-Corps will be offered spring, summer and fall for the next three years. The initiative is supported by the National Science Foundation I-Corps National Innovation Network Sites Program. For more information and to apply, visit

Highlighting Student Startup Success – Studio G hosted the first Studio G Startup Showcase this Wednesday in the Corbett Center Aggie Lounge. Nine Studio G ventures were available from 11-2pm to talk to students about their businesses and their experiences working with Studio G and Arrowhead Center. Roots Leather Co., QEstyle, Woodie Grips, Timer Glove, StudyBuds, Zeall, Big Top Beard Co., B.O.S. Tech, and Flooid Lingo all presented at the Showcase.

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Roots Leather Co. along with EcoSeal are also participating in CrucesKICK, a partnership between the Mesilla Valley Economic Development Alliance and the Arrowhead Center. The program brings together the economic development resources of MVEDA and the business development, technological and incubation services of Arrowhead in an effort to allow local businesses to crowdsource funding through social media while raising awareness of their product and boosting orders at the same time. Find out more about EcoSeal and founder Luke Smith at Arrowhead’s Entrepreneuring Podcast.

Among the 300-plus companies assisted, EcoSeal was honored as one of the Top Ten Innovation New Mexico Small Business Assistance (NMSBA) projects in 2015.

Vice President for Research, Vice President Vimal Chaitanya

Research Partnerships – Vimal Chaitanya has been engaged in several activities to increase NMSU’s participation in collaborative research activities with partnering educational institutions and Industrial Corporations. One such activity included visiting Arizona State University and meeting with leaders of their Global Security Initiative, Sustainability Initiative and Future of Innovation in Society Initiative. Another activity dealt with participation in the APLU’s Council of Research executive committee meeting in Washington, D.C. where Associate Director of NIH discussed Science Policy. One of the major discussion topic at the meeting was the role of VPR in research promotion.

Borderplex 2020 – Pat Hynes, Co-Chair of the Aerospace and Defense Task participated in the February 25th Borderplex 2020 Steering Committee meeting. Space Grant students are signing up for the March 9th Space Race meeting with NASA’s Chief Technologist. This is a follow-up meeting to the Space Race meeting hosted at Arrowhead Center.

Major Research Initiatives – Office of Research Development and Office of Grants and Contracts are heavily engaged with Sam Fernald, Nirmala Khandan, Huiping Cao, Jay Misra, Omar Holguin and others who are responding to multiple initiatives with a number of institutions in developing, preparing and submitting proposals in response to the call from NSF EPSCoR, NSF INFEWS, NSF Big Data Hub and DoE ABY.

Society for the Psychological Association – Luis Vazquez attended Society for the Psychological Association meeting in Washington D.C. as a member of the Council of Representatives representing Division 45 to discuss the focus, framework and foundation of how diversity is embraced and implemented in the American Psychological Association’s strategic plan. The meeting was very successful and challenging working with a diversity of viewpoints, cultures and demographics. However, a resolution was passed by a vast majority of council members that embraces the integration of diversity through a prioritization in all aspects of the strategic plan’s mission, vision goals, objectives and outcome measures with milestones.

The U.S.-Mexico Transboundary Aquifer Assessment – Water Resources Research Institute (WRRI) Directors from New Mexico, Arizona, and Texas met to discuss activities associated with the Transboundary Aquifer Assessment Program (TAAP). The U.S.-Mexico Transboundary Aquifer Assessment Act was enacted in 2006 to conduct binational scientific research to assess priority transboundary aquifers and to address water information needs of border communities. NM WRRI Director Dr. Sam Fernald, Arizona Water Resources Research Center Director Dr. Sharon Megdal, and Texas Water Resources Institute Director Dr. John Tracy will carry out TAAP activities in collaboration with the U.S. Geological Survey in this unique Federal agency-university-binational partnership.

University Advancement, Vice President/Foundation Executive Director Andrea Tawney

Valentine’s Giving – Nearly 4,000 Aggie couples were reminded of the role NMSU played in their lives together when they received a Valentine’s Day Card featuring the story of President and Mrs. Carruthers. Many more saw social media posts featuring alum couples, Grady, ’82 and Marcy Oxford, ’83, and Abby Goodin, ’12 and Travis Dulany, ’09. Others received calls from student callers at the Aggie Pride Call Center asking them to share stories of how they met. Alums responded and showed their love for NMSU by contributing over $3,000 to scholarships and programs across campus.

President’s Associates Ball – We continue to receive fantastic auction items, including an all-inclusive private dinner for 12 in the Bobby Lee Lawrence Academy of Wine; Santa Fe Opera package including tickets and backstage tour; New York Mets Baseball package including four VIP tickets to a game; batting practice passes; dinner for four in the Acela Club; and a behind the scenes tour (good for any game during the 2016 season, except Opening Day, April 8, and the NY Yankees series, August 1-2). The PA Ball will be held April 22.
Faculty Estate Gift: An esteemed NMSU Department Head, who is also a member of the NMSU Teaching Academy, has made an estate gift that will establish four different endowed funds to benefit students and faculty. As a result, the donor has been welcomed into the NMSU 1888 Society.

NMSU-Carlsbad Gift – Friends of the University have made a $10,000 gift to benefit the NMSU-Carlsbad Associates Degree Nursing Program. The stellar program has the highest NCLEX pass rate in the State of New Mexico.
Alumni Association Membership: The Alumni Association membership committee met to finalize the benefit plan for all Aggie Alumni Association members. With over 8,000 alumni association members and over 100,000 living alums, the Alumni Relations office is focused on engaging current members while attracting new members by promoting NMSU and its many successes. Any gift to NMSU makes the donor a member of the Alumni Association.

Daniels Fund Gift – The College of Business received $250,000, part of a $1.25 million multi-year pledge, from the Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative-Principle Based Ethics.

Athletics, Director Mario Moccia

• Met with leadership of the New Mexico Department of Transportation and their ad agency about furthering their partnership with NM State Athletics.
• Represented the Department of Athletics as an invited guest of Mayor Ken Miyagishima at the State of the City Address.
• Attended the NM State /UMKC men’s basketball game where our men clenched co-share of the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) championship with their win. Soon after we clenched the outright WAC title earning the #1 seed in the tournament in Las Vegas. I interacted with some of our Kansas City alumni.

International and Border Program, Associate Provost Cornell Menking

paper 1On February 20-21 Confucius Institute staff traveled to one of our Confucius Classrooms in Albuquerque at Corrales International School for a day of professional development. They received a presentation by the CIS Middle Years Program Coordinator, Josh Ripp, and teachers who had been to the American Council on The Teaching of Foreign Languages conference in the Fall presented on workshops they attended. Master teacher Liu Yanfang presented ideas for students’ engagement in the classroom.

Tuesday, 23 Feb, Glenn Schwaiger, artist and Professor at DACC, gave a talk in our Speaker Series on his experiences throwing porcelain pots in the Chinese Imperial Kilns of Jingdezhen. About 120 people attended.

On February 26 the Confucius Institute had its annual New Year’s Lion Dance at UTEP, this year with TWO lions; one from Cathedral High School’s Chinese language program and one (courtesy of the Chinese Benevolent Association of El Paso) for the UTEP Chinese language program. Participants danced around the Centennial Plaza and then both teams joined for Chinese songs, tongue-twisters, and games in the classroom.

paper-cut+learningOn Sunday, February 28, the Confucius Institute sponsored the NMSU Chinese Students and Scholars Association’s Chinese New Year celebration at Corbett Center. Approximately 300 attended, including many parents of children taught by Confucius Institute teachers.

The Danay Suarez workshop and concert was on Wednesday, February 24. Ms. Suarez is a Cuban Hip-hop artist out of Havana Cuba. Her workshop was very informational talking about the integration of the different artist that inspired her. There was also a Q&A session where she answered questions from the audience. There were around 75 people in attendance throughout the workshop. That evening at her concert, attendance was phenomenal. There were approximately 300 people that attended. These ranged from students, faculty and the greater NMSU Community.

On Thursday, February 25 ISSS had a double feature for the Global Coffee Hour — Trinidad & Tobago and St. Kitts & Nevis. These two island nations were chosen in conjunction with Black History Month celebrations that have been going on all month. Two students spoke about the differences between their island nations, their culture, their dialects and of course their food. The event was very well attended and a good time was had by all.

Cornell Menking attended the annual meeting of the Association for International Education Administrators in Montreal, Canada.


University Communications, Associate Vice President Maureen Howard

Web Communications – The NMSU website received an additional recognition this week with an honorable mention in the 2016 CASE Accolades Awards. This program examines entries for quality, creativity, innovation, adherence to professional standards and success in meeting stated objectives. Congratulations!

This week our web team also delivered a workshop for faculty titled “Accessible Web Content.” The workshop was hosted in collaboration with the Teaching Academy and the Online Course Improvement Program. The content included the importance of web accessibility and provided hands-on instruction on how to ensure online courses and supplemental instructional websites are ADA compliant.

Sports Information – Athletics Media Relations covered the Aggie men winning their second straight regular season WAC Championship and the Aggie women remaining undefeated in WAC play with an overtime win in their next to last home game. The sports writers also reported on the Aggies finishing second at the WAC Swimming and Diving Championships and third at the WAC Indoor Track and Field Championships.

News – The third in a series of video crop reports was produced and sent to Ag Day TV, which broadcast it on February 23. Content for the report, which included an update on the New Mexico pecan harvest, was provided by Extension Specialist Richard Heerema. The Ag Day TV broadcast for February 23 can be viewed at

KRWG – Anthony Moreno, KRWG Director of News, has been chosen to participate in the Radio Television Digital News Foundation (RTDNF) German/American Journalist Exchange program this summer. Moreno will spend a week in Berlin and a second week in various German cities as well as Brussels, Belgium. RTDNF recognizes outstanding young professionals pursuing careers in electronic journalism. Congratulations to Anthony on receiving this fellowship award.

New Mexico Department of Agriculture, Director/Secretary Jeff M. Witte

• Marketing and Development released the first in a series of cooking videos on social media. As of February 25, the video has been seen by 10,439 people, received 236 overall likes, been shared 120 times and we have an additional 20+ page likes since the release. Go to

• I welcomed the Association of American Plant Food Control Officials (AAPFCO) mid-winter conference to New Mexico. I am proud to announce that Katie Laney, project coordinator for the Bureau of Feed, Seed, and Fertilizer, is President Elect for AAPFCO, which is a national organization that develops model laws, regulations, analytical methods, and inspection procedures for fertilizer, lime and soil amendments. She is the 3rd New Mexican in 70 years to be on the AAPFCO board of directors, and the 5th woman to serve on the AAPFCO board of directors. Currently Katie serves as chair for Uniform Bills, vice chair for Terms and Definitions, committee member on Education and Information, and Long Range Planning. Katie has served on the AAPFCO board of directors since the summer of 2013.

• I attended a Forest Health meeting in Santa Fe. Over 70 individuals from across NM were present to discuss opportunities and challenges with watershed management in NM. NM is fortunate to have many players who are actually engaged in watershed health and forest management and there are several large scale and successful projects happening on the ground in NM. Other states expressed envy at our partnerships an impacts.

• Inspection staff met with the National Environmental Health Association to continue work with the Food and Drug Administration’s feed inspection job task analysis in Denver, CO. Staff participated in a group of 8-10 inspectors from across the country in developing questions for a feed inspector certification exam that will be utilized to assess competencies at a future date.

• The Dairy Division spent the week with FDA Regional Milk Specialist conducting check ratings on dairy farms and a cheese plant. During these check ratings staff were recertified as Sampling Surveillance Officers, and Rating officers.
APR staff participated in a TriCounty Local Government Coordination Meeting with the Las Cruces Bureau of Land Management to discuss the inventory for lands with wilderness characteristics, proposed areas of critical environmental concern, and allocation of additional forage production resulting from restoration projects.

NMSU Police, Chief Stephen Lopez

Police Activity – There were 26 police reports created, 17 supplements filed, and 23 traffic citations issued. The Records & Evidence Office processed 15 items of evidence entered into the vault, 30 people were fingerprinted, and 9 background investigations were conducted.

Emergency Dispatch Center – Emergency Dispatch Center handled 292 calls for service (7 of which were 911 calls) resulting in 202 police calls (40 of which were agency assist) and 2 warrant entries. There were 35 fire calls (15 of which were mutual aid), 9 emergency medical calls, 1 bush fire, 1 flooding, 2 public assist and 1 standby. There were also 3 animal control calls.

Special Events – Special Events staff worked 298.5 hours and reviewed 5 events. Crime Prevention – Staff conducted “Fight Like a Girl Training” at the Activity Center with 15 participants and Victim Services staff provided “Stalking” Training; Further assistance with referrals; Problems with restraining order from last week and coordinated with courts to resolve; Referral from LCPD.

Aggie Memorial Planning Meeting – Planning is underway for this year’s Aggie Memorial which is a way to remember those students, alumni and employees of our community who have passed during the last year. The memorial pays tribute to all those who have passed in a ceremony that is important to the campus. This year’s Memorial will be held on May 4.

Weather Spotter Training – On Tuesday February 23rd the Emergency Dispatchers, Commander Harvey, and Chief Lopez attended a Weather Spotter Training for Telecommunicators class sponsored by the National Weather Service. This was a refresher class intended to keep NMSU recognized as a Storm Ready University and maintains the skills of the dispatchers when it comes to hazardous weather events.

Multi-Hazard Emergency Planning for Schools – Several members of the Department attended the two-day Multi-Hazard Emergency Planning for Schools training program, held in the classroom of Environmental Health and Safety. EHS and the NMSU Fire and Emergency Services Departments also attended. This program provided an opportunity for the NMSU representatives to go over the current All Hazards Emergency Operations Plan and identify areas where it could be strengthened. .

Dealing with Difficult People Training – Chief Lopez conducted training for the Parking Department staff on the topic of dealing with difficult people.

DACC Police Sergeant – Sgt. Ryan Beck has been reassigned to a newly created position at DACC. He will oversee their security staff effective March 16, 2016. In this role, he will be responsible for the scheduling, training, and supervision of the DACC security officers, while still retaining his status and authority as a Police Sergeant in the NMSU Police Department. This new, collaborative partnership is expected to yield significant improvements in service level and capabilities.

Accreditation, Executive Director Shelly Stovall

I recently traveled to Grants to meet with our Grants campus leadership team and faculty, and presented an open forum on our HLC accreditation. While the other community colleges in our NMSU system are independently accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), the Grants campus is accredited with the Las Cruces campus. I also met with the Grants Quality Initiative team and was updated on the good work they are doing to help improve student writing. They have been focusing on building vocabulary and using writing as a tool to help students learn course content. In addition, as part of a Title V grant, they will soon have a writing and math center on their campus.

Our writing teams for the HLC assurance argument continue to meet and are in the process of receiving feedback from various constituents across campus on their initial outlines. Their next task will be to draft a narrative for the assurance argument (formerly known as the self-study).

Three of our Writing to Learn mini-grant award winners – Patricia MacGregor-Menodoza, Henrietta Pichon and Salim Bawazir – presented at the New Mexico Higher Education Assessment and Retention (NMHEAR) conference in Albuquerque on February 25 and 26. In addition, three of our Quality Initiative teams did the same, including our Grants campus team, our College of ACES team, and our Las Cruces campus team. This, along with other presenters from our Las Cruces and community college campuses, was a great representation of NMSU to the state.

To learn more about accreditation go to To become more involved in our accreditation efforts, click on the link “Get Involved.”

New Mexico State University-Dona Aña, President Renay Scott

dona anaNM HEAR Conference – New Mexico Higher Education Assessment Association held their annual conference in Albuquerque last week. The conference highlighted “Using Assessment Outcomes to Inform Campus Decisions.” Several NMSU Dona Ana faculty presented workshops to highlight how assessment is implemented at DACC. Assistant Professors Becky Corran (Public Health) and Liz Gamboa (Math), pictured here, presented a session: “Numbers are People, Too: Putting Academic Program Review into an Institution Wide Context” which helped facilitate a culture of data literacy at DACC.
Run With Your Doc – NMSU Doña Ana East Mesa Campus hosted the second annual “Run with your Doc,” to benefit St. Luke’s Healthcare Clinic last Saturday. More than 800 runners and 100 volunteers showed up to help raise money to provide healthcare for the homeless and near homeless.

New Mexico State University-Alamogordo, President Ken Van Winkle

NMSU-A Supports Local Science Fairs – Many of our NMSU-A faculty have volunteered as Science Fair judges throughout the Alamogordo Public School system. From our Math, Engineering, Science and Health division we had faculty support the La Luz Elementary School, Buena Vista Elementary School, Desert Star Elementary School and Father James B Hay Catholic Elementary School as Science Fair judges.

NMSU-A Faculty and Students Support BGNDRF Educational Days – Students and faculty assisted with the “Making Fresh Water from Salty Water” educational days, which were February 16 – 22. All third graders from Alamogordo Public Schools visited the Brackish Groundwater National Desalination Research Facility (BGNDRF) to learn about the intricate process of desalination. We had students and faculty support the following activities: illustrating how salts dissolve and turn into very tiny ions with electrical charges; using sun and wind to make fresh water; and teaching the students how much water is on earth, and what percentages of water are salty, fresh and frozen. We also transported students around the facility to view various research projects, including a project that involved using salty water to grow plants and a stop at the evaporation ponds to illustrate that water can be evaporated and the remaining salts can be disposed of in solid waste dumps.

Unique Cultural/Historical Music Class – On Thursday, February 25, Todd Green, a multi-instrumental solo artist, presented an hour-long clinic to an audience of 60 college students and community members. Todd discussed the cultural and historical roots of the numerous instruments that he displays. He also played the instruments to demonstrate the rhythms and scales used by different cultures. The presentation was hosted by the ProTech Division and the Learning Signature Task Force.

New Mexico State University – Carlsbad, President John Gratton

• President John Gratton met with Carlsbad Fire Chief Rick Lopez on Monday, February 29 to discuss the status of the Emergency Technician program of study and to discuss possible Carlsbad Fire Department staff who could serve as instructors for the program.
• On Tuesday, February 23 and Thursday, February 25, President Gratton participated in the interview processes of two of the five finalists for the open Vice President of Student Services position.
• On Friday, February 26, John Gratton attended The President’s Communications Council meeting and the monthly meeting of the NMSU Carlsbad Steering Committee which oversees all committee and AQIP functions on the Carlsbad campus.
• In the afternoon of Friday, February 26, John Gratton attended the graduation ceremonies for the WIPP Leadership Academy class which had completed their four-week course of study on campus.

New Mexico State University – Grants, Interim President Harry Sheski

Professional Development Participation – Several faculty and staff attended the New Mexico Higher Education Assessment and Retention Conference held in Albuquerque, on February 25 and 26. NMSU Grants was well represented by the presentation of three sessions. The first presentation focused on the NMSU Grants Online Course Review Program developed through the Title V Grant in collaboration with the Teaching Excellence committee. The Online Course Review presenters were Kathleen O’Connor, Megan Stoneking, and Karen Henry. Another session hosted by Karen Henry focused on developing efficiency skills to help nurture assessment and retention. Lastly, Assistant Professor Beth Humphreys presented how to create a curriculum map on the course, program, and institutional level.

Outreach to Grants Cibola County Schools – David Stokowski, Assistant Professor of Natural Science Program, conducted an experiential learning lab in climate science for 30 sixth and fifth graders from Mesa View Elementary on Thursday, February 25. The lesson consisted of learning about El Nino and weather patterns. The visit concluded with a tour of the science labs on campus.

Recruitment – Beth Armstead, Vice President for Student Success, presented our programs and courses to teachers from Los Alamitos Middles School on Wednesday February 24. This is one of several visits planned within the Grants Cibola County School district to market courses that teachers may need to earn more credits beyond their current degree. The courses being promoted would help current teachers become highly qualified in various teaching fields such as middle school math, science, language arts, or history.

Associated Students of New Mexico State University

• President Chavez and the Director of Governmental Affairs, Bryce Smith, traveled to Washington D.C. last week to advocate for underrepresented minorities, funding for sexual assault, and student debt.
• Our “Meet ASNMSU” event last week was a success. We met with several students who learned about ASNMSU services, and gave donuts and coffee to students on their way to class.
• The Big Event, our annual spring community service event, will be on April 9. For more information and to register, please visit:

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