Chancellor Garrey Carruthers
- The big news this week seemed to be about football – to play or not to play and, if play, where. NMSU will continue to play football and, given the Sun Belt Conference’s decision, we will play the next two years in that Conference. This gives us plenty of time to consider options. I am very hopeful, as a farewell message, that we can win the Sun Belt title as we exit their stage.
- Student fees are managed, in large part, by our ASNMSU leaders through their fees committee. After they have heard from most or all of the beneficiaries of student investments, the President of ASNMSU makes a recommendation to me regarding the level of fees and the distribution of the investments. Under Dustin Chavez’s leadership, they have been very thoughtful about both. I have asked them to maintain their current fee level (as I did last year) and approved their distributions, which involve a number of reductions to benefiting NMSU enterprises. The students currently invest $17 millions in NMSU.
- Sharon Jones and I spent two days in Washington, D.C., visiting with our Congressional delegation and some government agencies. Senators Udall and Heinrich, as well as Congressmen/women Lujan, Lujan Grisham, and Pearce, are all very supportive of our Unmanned Aerial Systems programs and assisting NMSU in becoming a designated center of excellence as well as continuing to be a certification center. I was not aware that most of the Defense Department pilot training for UAS vehicles occurs at Holloman Air Force Base. We have been advised by Congressman Pearce that we should become much better acquainted with Holloman’s programs as the Department of Defense is becoming a major player in UAS.
- We had dinner with Edward Avalos, NMSU Alum and Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs at the USDA and formerly with NMDA, (along with Jeremy Witte and Sage Petersen – two recent NMSU grads). The Under Secretary recommended that we invite the new Secretary of Agriculture in Mexico to the campus for a visit. He is a graduate of NMSU (MBA) and a former governor of the State of Queretaro. I am asking Sara Patricolo of the Domenici Institute to see if we can arrange a forum to include both of these agricultural leaders.
- We had a nice chat with Ted Mitchell, the Undersecretary of Education, regarding the Score Card reporting system for higher education. We currently report all of NMSU using a six-digit code but wish to move to an eight digit code, which allows our community colleges to be identified separately. This is significant as we deal with the default rate for student loans in that each of our community colleges would prefer to manage their own management of this aspect of financial aid. The Department of Education is planning on moving to the eight-digit code, it seems. I also volunteered NMSU to participate in a pilot program to experiment with alternative strategies to manage lending to students. We have struggled with some students who borrow money, pay tuition, spend the remainder of the loan and never attend classes. If the default rate reaches a high level, NMSU could lose millions in funding for student loans.
- Aggie Development/Regents Real Estate Committee met to discuss a number of development activities, to include a public private partnership to build a hotel on our campus, and RFP for student housing, the engineering firm preliminary recommendations on developing the land once occupied by the old Golf Clubhouse and State Police Headquarters, and the prospects of developing/selling some NMSU land located near the Pan Am Plaza. ADI was established to develop and manage NMSU land and water resources to provide a revenue stream to the University. Scott Eschenbrenner is the CEO of ADI.
Executive Vice President and Provost Dan Howard
Regents Budget Committee – The Regents Budget Committee met on Monday, February 29, to review the 2017 fiscal year budgets of the community colleges and the Las Cruces campus. Major topics of discussion included the state budget for higher education and the implications of budget cuts for the NMSU system. Despite the cuts, new investments will have to be made to keep the university moving forward, and those investments were a major focus of discussion.
State Gen Ed Steering Committee – The second meeting of the New Mexico Statewide General Education Steering Committee took place on the UNM campus on March 1. The purpose of the meeting was to identify essential skills that every graduate of a New Mexico institution of higher education should possess. Two hours of vigorous discussion led to the following list:
- Communication skills
- Critical thinking
- Personal and social responsibility
- Quantitative skills
- Information literacy
- Interdisciplinary skills (ability to apply knowledge in a new context)
It is important to note that this is a deliberately short list, and that each institution of higher education in the state will be empowered to add to this list as it is implemented on their campuses.
Aggie Pathway Implementation – The Aggie Pathway continues to take shape under the leadership of Danielle Staley, Delia DeLeon, Dr. Monica Torres, Brad Mazdra, Jerry Martinez, and Michelle Guzman-Armijo. Active recruiting for the program is now underway and 49 students have been admitted to the pathway. The target of 100 students should easily be reached before the summer.
College of Agricultural Consumer and Environmental Sciences, Interim Dean Jim Libbin
Cooperative Extension Service
- New Mexico Organic Farming Conference – The annual New Mexico Organic Farming Conference held on February 19-20 in Albuquerque attracted over 800 participants once again. The conference was a collaborative effort done by representatives from the New Mexico Department of Agriculture, Cooperative Extension Service, and Farm to Table and the Santa Fe Farmers’ Market Institute. This two day conference offered 36 educational sessions including: pest control, water harvesting, grazing management, vegetable production, and marketing of produce, fruit production, pollinators, soil fertility management and a few other topics. This year marked the 25th anniversary of New Mexico having a state organic certification program. Organic agriculture and food processing brings in close to $50 million to the state annually.
- Extension Family and Consumer Sciences – Newspaper interview – Dr. Sonja Koukel, Extension Health Specialist, was interviewed for an article in the Chicago Tribune about the safety and effectiveness of make-it-yourself cleaning products. The article can be found at http://fw.to/UCExvNJ.
Family and Consumer Sciences
- Community outreach – Dr. Wanda Eastman, director of the Dietetic Internship program, and Gaby Phillips, co-director, hosted a meeting of the El Paso Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics on February 23 in El Paso. Over 50 people attended. Gaby Phillips gave a presentation entitled “Dietary Guidelines 2015: What is New and Different.” Many of those in attendance were NMSU alumni and/or preceptors for NMSU students.
Fish Wildlife and Conservation Ecology
- Professor Emeritus Dr. Raul Valdez’s recent book, “Ecology and Management of Wildlife in Mexico” won the Outstanding Book Publication Award from the Texas Chapter of the Wildlife Society in 2016.
School of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management
- The School of Hotel, Restaurant, and Tourism Management held a very successful Career Fair, February 24 – 26. It started on Wednesday night with a reception for the recruiters in the Bobby Lee Lawrence Academy of Wine hosted by the HRTM 443 Meetings, Conventions, and Events class. On Thursday, over 50 recruiters from 22 hotel, restaurant, spa, beverage, and other tourism businesses had booths at the Las Cruces Convention Center to discuss their job and internship opportunities. The recruiters were impressed with the professionalism of the students and being able to fill their interview schedules with such qualified candidates. Another highlight was seeing so many HRTM alumni return as corporate recruiters.
College of Arts & Sciences, Interim Dean Enrico Pontelli
Rani Alexander (Anthropology) received $27,000 from the National Parks Service. Gary Eiceman (Chemistry & Biochemistry) received a $200,000 contract from Morpho, Inc. Laura Williams and Catherine Jonet (Interdisciplinary Studies) received a $2,000 award from the New Mexico Endowment for the Humanities. Heinz Nakotte (Physics) received $74,853 from LANL.
Four female undergraduate students in Physics attended the Conference for Undergraduate Women in Physics at the University of California-San Diego.
Charles Bruce (Physics) received $100,000 from the U.S. Army/Edgewood Contracting Division for his project to develop and characterize visible-infrared and millimeter wavelength obscurants.
The Department of Computer Science has received funding for an REU Site initiative focused on Big Data.
College of Business, Dean James Hoffman
- Mayor Ken Miyagishima spoke to College of Business Ambassadors last week. He shared his personal and professional experiences with the students and gave them advice when seeking employment.
- I attended a visit by the Saudi Arabian Cultural Mission on Tuesday. They were on campus to discuss several issues regarding currently enrolled and potential students.
- Two articles that I co-authored have received the 2015 Schulze Award. The award recognizes the quality of the contribution made to the Entrepreneurship and Innovation Exchange (EIX) and to the study and practice of entrepreneurship. One of the awards will bring a donation to the College of Business student scholarships.
- I met with candidates for an Assistant/Associate Professor of Accounting. We hope to determine a finalist and make an offer soon.
- The College of Business weekly activity reports are available in their entirety at http://business.nmsu.edu/news/activity-reports/.
College of Education, Dean Donald Pope-Davis
The Alliance for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning
Dr. Karen Trujillo with The Alliance for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning hosted the first Educators Rising Student Conference from February 28 to March 1. 140 students and teachers from Aztec, Questa, Pecos, Espanola, Santa Fe, Bernalillo, Albuquerque, Roswell, Carlsbad, Las Cruces, Deming, and Gadsden were here at NMSU for three days. In that time they listened to dynamic speakers including David Morales, NM Teacher of the Year and Senator Bill Soules. They attended breakout sessions on innovative teaching including: Hands on STEM from the STEM Outreach Center and Methods in Learning Kinesthetically (MILK) presented by Dr. Deb Knapp and Ann Gavit from KIND, Game Based Learning presented by Dr. Barbara Chamberlin and her team from the Learning Games Lab and many more. 60 of these students also competed in 9 different events including Children’s Literature and Lesson Planning. The top 5 students from each event qualified for nationals which will be held in Boston in June. Many thanks to all of the student volunteers and judges. Without the help from the dean’s office staff, including Crystal Chavez, and Adelina Rodriguez, and Dr. Cecilia Hernandez, this would not have been possible.
College of Engineering, Interim Dean Steve Stochaj
Launching New Technology – Two engineering projects were among six 2016 Arrowhead Center Launch Finalists. Launch is a proof of concept and commercialization center for promising technologies developed at NMSU. Arrowhead provides these finalists with cash investments and mentoring services to bring new products and services to market.
- Small-Scale Low-Temp Multiple Effect Distillation for Brackish Groundwater:
Assistant Professor Catherine Brewer’s research group in the Chemical and Materials Engineering Department has developed a system for the thermal desalination of brackish groundwater using biomass energy. The multiple effect distillation unit is capable of purifying hard-to-treat water in a way that prevents scaling and high-maintenance needs, running on a low temperature heat energy source (hot water), partial vacuum, and a very small amount of electrical energy for pumps
- Greenie: Taylor Burgett, master’s candidate in electrical engineering, is developing an app/website that helps cities track and resolve thousands of non-emergency issues that cost taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars each year. Greenie has two parts: a mobile app where citizens report issues by simply taking a picture, and a website that local governments pay to access so they can effectively resolve these problems. Greenie will be able to handle reports for potholes, graffiti, illegal dumping, weeds, water main breaks, signage issues, accessibility issues, street lights, and abandoned cars.
Alumni Mentoring – Cummins was on campus to film a video featuring the NMSU Society of Automotive Engineers Mini Baja Student organization and Cummins employees who are NMSU engineering alumni. These alumni have served as mentors to the team and have made personal cash donations to support the team. The video will be posted on the Cummins YouTube station and will be used to promote Cummins and SAE.
Digital Ads Tout IE – University Communications started an online web advertising for the Master’s in Industrial Engineering program. The digital ad campaign has already yielded several queries. This links to the general graduate landing page, highlighting MSIE and two other programs in this campaign, https://online.nmsu.edu/. The campaigns will run through May, about three months. The goal is to build awareness about NMSU’s online graduate programs and to drive applications.
Alumni Kudos – Jeff Johnson (MS IE 2012), was officially presented with an Army Research Lab 2015 Award for Excellence in Engineering. Johnson wrote to Industrial Engineering Department Head Edward Pines, “This is really a pinnacle of my career and to that end I want to thank you for the excellent background and guidance you provided to me during my experience under you as a student.”
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 Friday, February 26, 2016. 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 3 major “resacas” (former channels of the Rio Grande that are now dry).
University Library, Dean Elizabeth Titus
National Fiery Foods Show – NMSU Library Director of Development April Anaya and Communications Specialist Cassie McClure attended the 28th National Fiery Foods and Barbecue Show in Albuquerque, NM. Anaya and McClure promoted the NMSU Library’s Ag Digitization Project, New Mexico Cookbook Collection, 2016 Library Calendar and chile note cards. NMSU Library supporter and show producer Dave DeWitt gave the Library a complimentary booth to showcase the work the NMSU Library is doing to collect, preserve and make accessible archives and collections related to chile peppers.
Honors College, Dean Miriam Chaiken
Golden Key — The Honors College hosted the first meeting of a group of students who hope to revitalize a chapter of Golden Key. This international honorary and service society had a chapter on campus for many, many years, but it has been dormant for a while. We exchanged good ideas about how to revive this group, and what might be the types of activities that the group will pursue. A follow up meeting will be held after spring break.
Honors College Faculty Advisory Committee – the committee met to discuss challenges and opportunities facing the Honors College. We discussed the plans in the works for the revision of the General Education curriculum and the meta-majors initiative and how these might influence our courses and curriculum. We reviewed a draft of the college strategic plan, discussed ways to disseminate additional information about the college, and had a productive discussion about the state of the college.
Accreditation Report – Dean Chaiken submitted a first draft of a small piece of the accreditation review report which is in the works and will be providing feedback to other members of her team on their sections of our chapter. We hope to have a workable draft document by early April.
Administration and Finance, Senior Vice President Angela Throneberry
- ICT Intercepts Harmful Email – Using a sophisticated monitoring device known as Ironport, ICT security and systems staff blocked over 93 million suspect and potentially harmful email messages on February 29, 2016. The messages, which were sent to NMSU email addresses, were identified as containing viruses, SPAM, or other potentially malicious content or originating from untrusted sources. John Roberts, Chief Information Security Officer and Director of Computer Systems, stated, “We need everyone at NMSU to do their part by being careful not to open suspicious email that may have slipped through our security. If you receive a message you’re unsure of, contact email@example.com, and we’ll give it a look.”
- Greek Week 2016 – On March 3 and 4, approximately 400 students participated in the Greek week services days. During the first day, emphasis was placed on campus beautification. Volunteers worked with a Grounds crew to clean up vacant back yards in Student Family Housing. Another group worked with the Sign Shop to touch up the paint on campus building signs. On the second day, the volunteer students continued with back yard clean up, planted new flowers in the Chamisa village planters and painted the “A” on A Mountain. Operations appreciates the extra help provided by the student organization and look forward to next year’s event.
- Student Programming at Taos – Themed dinner highlighting BBQ Blues. This special Elite Event intended to “chase students’ blues away” featured smoked beef brisket, Carolina BBQ pulled pork, Thai barbecue chicken, macaroni and cheese, Southern coleslaw, ranch-style beans and grandma’s cornbread.
- Recycle Mania 2016 Tournament – NMSU is participating in the annual Recycle-Mania competition from February 7 to April 2, 2016, in the Grand Champion category. This is our seventh year to participate and there are 305 universities competing in that category. Currently, we are in fourth place with six weeks left in the competition. Our goal is to finish in the top three for the category. Go Aggies!
- FASFA Forward Night – On February 18 and 24, Financial Aid & Scholarship Services, Admissions, and Career Services with the support of ICT’s Students tech group held the FASFA event. The event was to instruct incoming freshmen on how to navigate the online application for Free Application for Federal Student Aid, as well as showcasing the many opportunities and learning avenues that are available at NMSU. ICT’s Annette Candelaria who worked to make this event possible commented, “Our jobs as NMSU staff is to contribute to students’ success while they attend NMSU.”
Student Affairs/Enrollment Management, Vice President Bernadette Montoya
- All Greek Social – The All Greek Social was held in an effort to unify all Greek organizations on campus. The event was targeted to over 700 Greek members. The attending members got together to enjoy talking, networking and enjoying an activity. The event was held at Ten Pin Bowling Alley in Las Cruces.
- Greek Week – Greek Week took place February 27-March 5. Over 700 Greek students participated in Carnival (open to the community), College Bowl, two days of Service, and the Greek Olympics. As part of the week, leaders of the Greek community kept a long-standing tradition of painting the A on “A” mountain.
- Activity Center Receives a Facelift – The Activity Center women’s locker rooms were closed most of the fall semester with a renovation that constructed a new locker for the NMSU Swim Team and provided facility enhancements to the existing space. The AC locker room received some new tiling, fixtures and paint while the cardio work out area got a fresh coat of Aggie crimson. Facility improvements are a daily task with a facility that records over 135,000 recreation visits a year.
- Student Accessibility Services – To better assist faculty with accessibility efforts, the staff in the Office of Student Accessibility Services developed the following chart. The chart is designed to help determine the audio components of their classes: “How Do I Caption My Class Videos?” http://sas.nmsu.edu/files/2016/02/How-Do-I-Caption.pdf
Vice President for Economic Development, Vice President Kevin Boberg
- Craftbox Design Hours – On Friday, Arrowhead held its monthly Craftbox Design Hour, hosting guest speaker Terry Lombard, Arrowhead’s Director of Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer. Bringing experience in protection and management of a portfolio of early stage University-developed technology Intellectual Property, Ms Lombard discussed various methods design students and entrepreneurs can use to protect their work and create strong contracts. There were 19 students in attendance at this event.
- VentureWell Open Annual Conference – Dr. Kramer Winingham, Director of Studio G at Arrowhead, attended Open, the annual conference for VentureWell. Venture Open was a 2 day cross-disciplinary event for faculty, students, and industry that employed unique workshop and networking models designed to inspire innovation and collaboration among participants.
- Studio G Networking Hour – On Friday, Studio G hosted its weekly Networking Hour event. The topic of this week’s meeting focused on the Business Model Canvas and discussed how aspiring entrepreneurs can use this model to help design their business plan. Studio G Networking Hour provides an opportunity for NMSU students and recent alumni to meet other who are interested in learning about entrepreneurship.
Vice President for Research, Vice President Vimal Chaitanya
- NASA Space Grant and EPSCoR Programs – Pat Hynes was in Washington, DC, at the National Space Grant and NASA EPSCoR meeting. She also spent a day on Capitol Hill informing our congressional delegation about the annual accomplishments of these two programs.
- Transboundary Aquifer Assessment Program – NM WRRI hosted a meeting with scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) New Mexico Water Science Center to determine short-term plans for collaborative New Mexico work on the congressionally funded Transboundary Aquifer Assessment Program that also includes work on U.S.-Mexico border aquifers in Arizona and Texas. Plans for groundwater and evapotranspiration foci include technical workshops, data gap analysis, field sampling, water quality analysis, and remote sensing data compilation and processing. NM WRRI staff, as well as NMSU faculty in the colleges of Engineering and Agriculture, will work with USGS employees from New Mexico and from USGS’s National Water Availability and Use Program.
- Statewide Water Budget – Several NM WRRI staff members met with representatives from the New Mexico Attorney General’s Office and the Office of the State Engineer for an update on the status of the Statewide Water Budget, a project that is creating a dynamic water budget using a variety of statewide water data sets. Program Specialist Ken Peterson described the model and then the visitors ran the Year One version of the model for a variety of spatial resolutions and time series. The Attorney General’s Office, through the Consumer Protection Fund, has contributed funding to the project, which has also endorsed by the Office of the State Engineer.
- American Psychology Association – Dr. Luis Vazquez was asked by the American Psychological Association (APA) President Susan McDaniel to serve on a steering committee to present a session as part of her presidential initiative related to “Public Conversations Related to Race and Ethnicity” at the American Psychological Association Convention in Denver, Colorado, August, 2016. The purpose of this session is to afford diverse members an opportunity to participate in a safe space in meaningful dialogue about the role of race in their professional identity and the ways in which race influences psychologists’ experience of and involvement in APA.
University Advancement, Vice President/Foundation Executive Director Andrea Tawney
Ag Sustainability Grant – University Advancement received a $50,000 grant from the Kellogg Foundation for Ag Sustainability.
CASE Accolades Award – University Advancement was selected as a finalist in the CASE Accolades Awards for their submission “GivingTuesday Fundraising Event.” As a finalist, the entry was deemed outstanding among a panel of judges and has been selected for an award. The award will be presented April 4 at the CASE Conference in Dallas.
Student Gratitude – The Alumni Student Delegates participated in their first Gratituesday this week. To show their gratitude for the support they receive across campus they wrote notes to staff, faculty, and mentors to thank them for their continued encouragement.
Homecoming 2016 – Alumni Relations is excited for Homecoming 2016! With the football schedule recent release, a date will be set and plans will soon begin for this long-time campus tradition.
Distinguished Alumni Nominations – The Alumni Association is seeking nominations for the 2016 Distinguished Alumni awards and the James F. Cole Memorial Award for Service. One Distinguished Alumni award each will be presented to a recipient from the colleges of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences; Arts and Sciences; Business; Education; Engineering; and Health and Social Services; and one James F. Cole Memorial Award for Service will be given during the 2016 Homecoming celebration. Nominations from the past two years will be considered; however, the nominator must resubmit their request through the new nomination form, which is available online at advancing.nmsu.edu/alumni-awardsandprograms. Completed application and supporting documents can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or mailed to NMSU Alumni Association, P.O. Box 3590 Las Cruces, NM 88003, prior to April 8.
Athletics, Director Mario Moccia
- Held our monthly Full Staff meeting in the Football Hall of Legends Lori Paulson Meeting room. State Representative Doreen Gallegos was the guest speaker. She gave a short briefing on the Legislative session and her role as a state representative for the Las Cruces district. The agenda included an update on the budget, academics, compliance and other athletic related topics.
- I attended the Las Cruces Forum luncheon at Double Eagle where both Senators Mary Kay Papen and John Arthur Smith were the keynote speakers. They discussed the state’s budgetary issues and outlook for the future.
- Our equestrian team hosted their fundraising social, The Mane Event, on Friday evening. The event, held at the Danny Villanueva Third Floor Bistro, helps support and promote the NM State Equestrian program. Chancellor Garrey Carruthers was a guest speaker.
- Women’s basketball celebrated their regular season conference championship after the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) game. Unfortunately, the Aggies loss to UTRGV prevented them from going undefeated in the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) regular season with a 13-1 record. Congratulations to Head Coach Mark Trakh for winning WAC Coach of the Year for the second year in a row.
International and Border Program, Associate Provost Cornell Menking
IBP received two high-ranking representatives from the Saudi Arabian Cultural Mission on March 1. A large meeting was held with representatives from IBP, and Dean Hoffman from the College of Business, Dean Stochaj and Associate Dean Cooper from the College of Engineering, and Brian Atwood from accounts receivable. The meeting mostly focused on academic honesty and online course restrictions, but overall it was very positive, and we expect to continue receiving Saudi students.
IBP welcomed two visitors from of Hohenheim University’s College of Business in Stuttgart, Germany. Meetings and a luncheon were held with representatives from IBP and the College of Business. The establishment of an exchange program is expected.
The Office of Education Abroad received Jesper Sejersen of Aarhus University in Denmark. This is part of an active partnership with that university.
Dr. Menking convened the first meeting of the International Academic Partnerships Program (IAPP) Brazil Steering Committee. The IAPP is an initiative of the Institute for International Education and is designed to deepen NMSU’s engagement in Brazil. Committee members are Elizabeth Zarur (Art), Rod McSherry (ACES), Miriam Chaiken (Honors), Rick Adkisson (Business), Don Pope-Davis (Education), and Kristian Chervenock (Education Abroad).
The Office of Education Abroad held the first ever Culturalama , which was held on March 8th at Corbett Center. The event included information about study abroad, as well as games. Study Abroad Ambassadors, Exchange Students, HSS and the WAVE are expected to participate. (Photo: Bernadette Silva and Kari Rankin speak with a student interested in studying abroad.)
Office of Education Abroad is working to fill the remaining faculty led (FLiP) programs that will be going out this summer. Programs include geography and communications to Ireland, Documentary Filmmaking to Ireland, International Business to Taiwan, Spanish to Costa Rica, Greeks Go Global to Peru, and a German Opera Experience to Germany.
IBP held its second organizing meeting with over half a dozen Chinese faculty interested in helping NMSU recruit more Chinese students.
All staff from IBP attended an “Active Killer Training” presented by Police Chief Lopez.
IBP was a major sponsor of the first Las Cruces International Film Festival, and Dr. Menking presented one of the awards at the final event on March 5.
University Communications, Associate Vice President Maureen Howard
Sports Information – Athletics Media Relations staffed the final regular season contests of the WAC Champion men’s and women’s basketball teams. The Aggie men finished regular season play at 22-9 overall, 13-1 in the WAC and closed the season with an 83-44 win at UT Rio Grande Valley. The Aggie women finished the regular season at 24-4, 13-1 in the WAC. Both teams are the top seed in the WAC Tournament in Las Vegas this week. The sports writers also covered the play of the NM State baseball Aggies who beat No. 23 Texas Tech in Lubbock last Tuesday, 7-6.
News – Our stories during the week focused on good news about NMSU people, events and achievements. Using both traditional and non-traditional media to reach our audiences, we reported on a well-deserved statewide award for longtime Cooperative Extension Service Agent Woods Houghton in Carlsbad; the visit to campus of the 2016 New Mexico Teacher of the Year (and NMSU grad) David Morales for the first New Mexico Educators Rising State Student Conference; the selection of NMSU students Rachel Bean and Grace Smith Vidaurre as Fulbright Scholar finalists; and the announcement that the NMSU Wind Symphony has been chosen to perform at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., during the 2016 Sousa Band Festival in April.
KRWG – KRWG’s website set a record high for activity during the past week. More than 86,000 people viewed the story “Border Crime Taking a Toll on Residents in Southwest New Mexico and Arizona.” Over 1,300 people made comments on the post. The story may be viewed at: http://krwg.org/post/border-crime-taking-toll-residents-southwest-new-mexico-arizona?nopop=1
Government Relations, Assistant Vice President Ricardo Rel
For a legislative update visit our website http://govrelations.nmsu.edu/.
New Mexico Department of Agriculture, Director/Secretary Jeff M. Witte
- This week I presided over the ceremony for the Governor’s signing of SB72 Right to Farm Operations as Nuisance, at Southwest Cheese in Portales. Many members of the agricultural industry were present to support and witness the Governor signing the beneficial legislation. This legislation protects farmers and ranchers from nuisance lawsuits that often occur due to increased urban sprawl in agricultural areas.
- I also provided keynote remarks to the NM Wine and Grape Growers Association Annual Conference in Albuquerque. This is a new version of two former organizations who merged to better serve their members. The wine sector continues to grow in NM and the quality is being recognized with outstanding awards across the world.
- Recorded the first in an occasional series of short videos called “On the Road with Jeff” https://www.facebook.com/NMDepartmentofAg/.
NMSU Police, Chief Stephen Lopez
Police Activity – There were 44 police reports created, 27 supplements filed, and 28 traffic citations issued. The Records & Evidence Office processed 54 items of evidence entered into the vault, 32 people were fingerprinted, and 3 background investigations were conducted.
Emergency Dispatch Center – Emergency Dispatch Center handled 319 calls for service (5 of which were 911 calls) resulting in 236 police calls (18 of which were agency assist) and 12 warrant entries. There were 23 fire calls (8 of which were mutual aid), 10 emergency medical calls, 2 fire alarms, 2 stand by, and 1 public assist. There were also 3 animal control calls.
Special Events – Special Events staff worked 232.75 hours and reviewed 6 events.
Crime Prevention – Staff conducted “Pepper Spray Training” at the Police Department with approximately 12 participants.
Victim Services staff rescheduled restraining order with district court; provided assistance with Housing & Safety Plan; contact with victim regarding violation of restraining order.
Active Shooter Training – Chief Lopez provided Active Shooter Training to the International Border Programs on February 29th. There was a lot of great discussion and questions during the program.
DACC Campus Safety Meeting with Dr. Renay Scott – Chief Lopez met with Dr. Renay Scott to discuss any campus safety issues and to provide any training or planning support where the NMSU Police Department might be able to provide services to the campus. There was discussion about possibly creating a CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) program at DACC, along with identification of training classes to be offered at the DACC campuses.
Grants Campus Safety Meeting with Dr. Harry Sheski – Chief Lopez traveled to the Grants Campus to meet with Dr. Harry Sheski on March 4th to discuss any campus and safety issues and to offer assistance in training or planning support. Several training classes were identified, and Chief Lopez had an opportunity to tour the campus and meet a number of the faculty and staff. He also was able to look over the special collection in the library that contains a wealth of information about early New Mexico, including ties to the early days of NMSU.
POD EXERCISE – NMSU has been asked to participate in a state-wide Point Of Distribution (POD) exercise in conjunction with the NM Department of Health on April 9, 2016. Planning is underway for the first ever “drive-thru” POD near the Pan American Center to test the ability to dispense medications to large numbers of people without them having to exit their vehicles. The concept would allow a head-of-household to drive up and pick up enough medications for their entire family. The University Health Center and the Police Department are the entities at NMSU helping with coordination, with a number of other departments and organizations assisting. More details on this exercise will be provided as it gets closer.
New Mexico State University-Dona Aña, President Renay Scott
National Magazine Honors DACC – The Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education magazine listed NMSU Doña Ana in the top 25 community colleges for associated degrees awarded to Hispanics. The February issue listed NMSU Doña Ana as number 22 in the nation with more than 805 associate degrees awarded to Latinas and Latinos.
Ska concert – The Casual Fridays Band played on Casual Friday to an enthusiastic crowd with their brand of Ska music at the East Mesa Auditorium. The concert was arranged by the NMSU Dona Aña cultural diversity committee.
New Mexico State University-Alamogordo, President Ken Van Winkle
Library Hosted APS Librarian Staffs – Library staff conducted an in-service workshop for the librarians, library aides and assistants of Alamogordo Public Schools. The workshop, titled “Information Resources for the School Library,” allowed the attendees to learn where and how on the Internet to access information for use in their libraries.
NMSU-A Held Community Auditions – The theatre group held auditions for their upcoming production “The Mystery of Pirate’s Cove.” The auditions were open to the whole Tularosa Basin community-there were roles available for adults and young performers. Every spring the theatre group puts on a play which includes a mix of adult actors and young performers, and NMSU-A offers special matinees to the local schools.
Class Visits Dripping Springs – On Friday, March 4, the Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Ecology-Natural Resource Management class went to Dripping Springs Natural Area near Las Cruces. The students heard from the ranger on how the Bureau of Land Management operates the park and manages its natural resources. The students hiked and learned about the plants, topography, wildlife and geologic resources in the park and visited a cave to see pictographs left by early nomadic people. They also saw anthropomorphic historical structures and learned about how BLM manages and protects these resources.
New Mexico State University -Carlsbad, President John Gratton
- NMSU Carlsbad President John Gratton traveled to Las Cruces on Monday, February 29 in order to present the NMSU Carlsbad budget sources and uses document to the Regents’ Budget Hearing. This year’s budget is difficult as colleges are facing state and local funding decreases.
- On Tuesday, March 1 and Thursday, March 3, President Gratton participated in the interviewing processes of two of the five finalists for the open Vice President of Student Services position.
- On Wednesday, March 2, John Gratton attended an afternoon meeting with NMSU Facilities personnel in order to finalize plans for the upcoming release of bids for the boiler room and IT renovation project on the NMSU Carlsbad campus.
- On Thursday afternoon of March 3 and on Friday, March 4, John Gratton assisted with the Leadership New Mexico Core Class session which was held in Hobbs. This was a great session and very enjoyable as Provost Dan Howard is a member of the Core Class of 2016.
New Mexico State University – Grants, Interim President Harry Sheski
New Small Business Development Center Director – Denise Chavez, new director of the NMSU Grants SBDC. She brings years of experience from the world of banking, finance, and human resources. She most recently was employed in human resources at Bio-Pappel Paper Mill in Prewitt, New Mexico which is approximately 25 miles west of the NMSU Grants Campus. The center was previously directed by Clemente Sanchez, who retired in December and is a member of the New Mexico Senate.
Leap Day Fest – Students, faculty, and staff of NMSU Grants celebrated Leap Day 2016 with games, snacks, and presentations by faculty. David Stokowski, Natural Sciences faculty, explained why Leap Day exists while the Billy O’Keefe (Astronomy instructor) discussed the role of the solar system and planets in relation to Leap Day. Students also created a time capsule to be re-opened in four years. In addition to Leap Day, International Rare Diseases Day was also acknowledged with a talk by Rachelle Bassen, Natural Science Faculty.
Video Game Night – NMSU Students and guests came together on Friday night, March 4th to find the Smash Bros. champ. Louis Bear Eagle, NMSU IT Staff, came out on top this time but many are looking forward to a rematch, which is scheduled for April 1, 2016, in the Fidel Activity Center, starting at 6:00 pm.
NMSU Grants Library – The NMSU Grants Library has mounted a new exhibit celebrating National Women’s History Month, March 1 – 31. This year’s celebration is entitled “Working to Form a More Perfect Union: Honoring Women in Public Service and Government.” The exhibit is located in the middle display case in the front hallway of Martinez Hall between the Library and the CyberCafe. Also included in the display case is information on International Women’s Day to be celebrated on Tuesday, March 8. The 2016 theme for International Women’s Day is “Planet 50-50 by 2030: Step It Up for Gender Equality.”
Associated Students of New Mexico State University
- The ASNMSU Finance Board and Senate Budget Committee have met to prepare the 2016-2017 GAA.
- Campaigning for Spring Elections starts this week. More details on the candidates will be released later this week.
- The Big Event, our annual spring community service event, will be on April 9th. Staff and Faculty are welcome to join! For more information and to register, please visit: http://asnmsu.nmsu.edu/get-involved/the-big-event/