Regent designate Chris Saucedo visited NMSU Monday and Tuesday. Chris is a graduate of NMSU (Finance) and is an attorney in Albuquerque. He grew up in the County, still has family in the area, and is a die hard Aggie. I believe he will get a recess appointment that will make him a member of the team until the next legislative session where he will need to go through confirmation. Impressive young man!
With a little luck (oil and gas revenues are going up dramatically), a lot of hard work by our NMSU and Council of University legislative teams, and the very positive reputation NMSU has with the Legislature, we have had the best legislative session in my tenure as Chancellor. We started with a recommendation of a 6.5 percent reduction in base to be reallocated on performance and no new money for higher education to an appropriation of 2 percent new money in the formula, a 4 percent reduction in base. This represents a $2.454 million increase for the NMSU system as opposed to decrease of $754,000 in the 6.5 percent reallocation recommendation. NMSU system requested $31.4 million in General Obligation Bonds and the legislature approved $31.2 million. Legislators are also allocated Severance Tax Bond projects – NMSU received another $570,000 for various small projects, including the ASNMSU students’ request for $250,000 for more security cameras for the campus.
And for a much needed cherry on top of the sundae, the legislature appropriated money for a 2 percent increase in compensation for all state employees, including higher education. The money available does not cover the amount needed to assure an average 2 percent increase for all, so NMSU will need to come up with additional funding, which we plan to do, to cover that nut. Thanks to the Legislature and the Governor for this very positive contribution to our employees.
On Monday, I met with incoming Regent Chris Saucedo. We had a good conversation about the challenges and opportunities NMSU will encounter in the coming years. Regent Saucedo is a graduate of NMSU who values the education he received here and is committed to the mission of NMSU. Much of our conversation focused on the various student success initiatives underway at NMSU and the steps we are taking to revitalize NMSU’s research efforts.
On Tuesday, I met with Dr. Luis Cifuentes, one of the candidates for the position of Vice President for Research at NMSU. Dr. Cifuentes is the Vice President for Research, Commercialization and Outreach at Texas A&M University Corpus Christi.
On Friday, I met with Dr. Luis Vazquez, another candidate for the position of Vice President for Research at NMSU. Dr. Vazquez is currently the Interim Vice President for Research at NMSU and a Regents Professor in the College of Education.
FWCE Students Compete for Honors at Regional Professional Meeting Twenty undergraduate and graduate students from the Department of Fish, Wildlife, and Conservation Ecology attended the Joint Annual Meeting of the Arizona and New Mexico chapters of the American Fisheries Society and The Wildlife Society. The undergraduates included two teams that competed in the Intercollegiate Quiz Bowl, which tests students about their knowledge in the field. The underclassman team included Kevin Stewart (captain), Joel Glib, Gavin Petner, Esperanza Reyes, and Dillon Martinez (alternate); the upperclassman team included Sarah Grubel (captain), Tyler Carter, Wyatt Egelhoff, Ryann Smith, and Curtis Davidson (alternate). The upperclassman team won the event, making it the fourth time NMSU has won top honors over the past five years! Graduate student Matt Gould won the best presentation award for New Mexico and several undergraduates won top honors for categories in the photography contest.
At the New Mexico State University men’s basketball game on Thursday, February 8, NMSU Provost and Executive Vice President Dan Howard presented Stefan Zollner with the Research Discovery Award. Zollner, who was joined on at center court by several of his students, serves as head of the Department of Physics and also heads the Ellipsometry group at NMSU. Last summer, he was named a fellow of a prestigious interdisciplinary applied science organization, the American Vacuum Society, for his outstanding scientific and technical contributions over the last 10 years. Students who joined him to recognize his accomplishments are Pablo Paradis (Sophomore, engineering physics); Farzin Abadizaman (Ph.D. student, physics); Rigo Carrasco (Ph.D. student, physics); Nuwanjula Samarasingha (Ph.D. student, physics); and Carola Emminger (Ph.D. student, physics).
Global Connections series continues with Regents Professor Michele Nishiguchi!
Dean Jim Hoffman and Director of Development Anthony Casaus met with College of Business alumnus, Victor Arnold (`68) on Monday, February 5. Arnold spoke to Dean Hoffman’s Management 461 New Venture Creation class in the Business Complex. Arnold is currently a business training consultant and retired owner of NAPA Auto Parts stores in Las Cruces, Deming, Silver City and Bayard, New Mexico, including Durango, Colorado. Victor and wife, Nancy a College of Business alumna (`68) just recently established an endowed scholarship in entrepreneurship.
On February 7-9, I attended our accrediting agency’s annual Dean’s conference. This year the Association to Advances Collegiate School of Business (AACSB) held its conference in Las Vegas, Nevada. It was a great opportunity to connect with other business school Deans from around the country and receive insight on topics specific to business schools.
Alliance for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning The Alliance for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning hosted the third annual Educators Rising State Conference in Albuquerque at the CNM Workforce Training Center. Over 275 people attended the conference, including 185 high school students from 20 different New Mexico high schools who have expressed an interest in becoming teachers. The students competed in 12 different competitions and attended 15 breakout sessions over three days.
Senator Howie Morales and the 2016 New Mexico Teacher of the Year, David Morales, both New Mexico State University Alumni were the keynote speakers and they inspired the students to become PHD’s, Persistent, Humble and Determined leaders. Dr. Cecilia Hernandez and nine students from the NMSU Educators Rising Chapter volunteered with the conference.
For more information about Educators Rising, please contact Dr. Karen Trujillo at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the Educators Rising website at http://educatorsrisingnm.nmsu.edu.
STEM Outreach Center Teachers from the Gadsden School District were invited to attend a daylong professional development given by the STEM Outreach Center, to fine-tune their computer programming skills. Teachers learned how to use Starlogo Nova, a client-based modeling and simulation software that allows teachers and students to create 3D simulations for understanding complex systems. By the end of the day, teachers had built a model, which simulates the effect of solar radiation and albedo on temperature. These teachers then take their new learned skills and implement them into their teaching during the after school program Project GUTS (Growing Up Thinking Scientifically).
The College of Engineering will be featured on Informed, an award-winning program that highlights stories and innovative concepts through documentaries on topics such as business, medicine, education, and environmental issues. Be watching this month, especially if you live in the cities of Albuquerque, El Paso, Amarillo, Phoenix and Tucson. The NMSU engineering piece will air during Peak (7 a.m.-11:45 a.m.) and Prime (6 p.m.-11:45 p.m.) time on the CNN, CNN Headline News, MSNBC, CNBC, Fox News, Fox Business Network, TLC and Discovery between February 19 and February 28. Following that, it will be distributed to 200 plus Public Television affiliates across the nation. You can also view the video from our website at View Video.
At the end of the fall semester, Mechanical Technology Engineering graduate and Cummins NMSU recruiting leader, Alonso Navarrete, contacted Assistant Professor Luke Nogales to discuss collaborating on a capstone project. After some back-and-forth discussion, a proposal was developed by the MET faculty to fund several MET/ECET/IET capstone projects. The proposal requested funding for four projects that would enhance the overall curriculum by developing or updating lab equipment. The argument was made that the strength of our applied engineering program are the hands-on labs. Enhancing the labs improves the education of the students Cummins is hiring. The projects being funded are: 1) updating an injection molding machine, 2) design and fabrication of interchangeable head CNC table, 3) design and fabrication of instrumented heat transfer fin, and 4) rehab of existing refrigeration cycle demo unit. Cummins wants to use these projects to strengthen its presence on campus and set the stage for future projects.
Representatives from Sandia National Laboratories visited three Project Lead the Way high schools about the career and internship opportunities for high school students available at Sandia. Joe Sorroche an electrical engineer with Sandia stated they are interested in building the pipeline and so outreach is key at the high school level. Joining Sorroche were NMSU graduate students and interns at Sandia Lab National Laboratory Shayan Abotalobi and Ty Vincent, both in electrical engineering.
NMSU Library Participating in #colorourcollections : a social media event NMSU Library’s Archives and Special Collections Department is participating in the 3rd annual #colorourcollections hosted by The New York Academy of Medicine. #colorourcollections is a social media outreach event with over 100 special collections, public libraries, and historical societies taking part in the weeklong event! Institutions all over the country have developed a virtual coloring book of material from their collections and want the public to color!
Puppy Time On Tuesday morning a traumatized student arrived to her Honors College class with a very tiny puppy who she found after it was tossed from a car in front of her on her way to campus. After classes that day, she returned to the scene and discovered a second abandoned puppy who joined his sister the next day at the Honors College. The story has a happy ending as both puppies received tender loving care and puppy formula from everyone in the Honors College and the little girl is now named Pippa and has been adopted by student staffer Olivia Perez, and the little boy puppy is now at home with Dr. Kelly Jenks. The puppies have been checked by a vet and will start their vaccinations soon, and their new families promise to bring them for visits to the Honors College as they grow and become a little more independent.
Launching the Big Read Project We disseminated information across the campus and community about the Big Read Project, focused on the book Into the Beautiful North by Luis Urrea. There will be many events between February 24 and March 15, culminating in Urrea’s visit to campus as the University Speaker. These events are sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts, ASNMSU, and the Office of the Provost. A link to the full schedule of events is available on the Honors College home page at honors.nmsu.edu and if anyone would like a copy of the book for themselves and/or a book club or class, they can contact Miriam Chaiken at email@example.com.
Boren Scholarships We had a record four students (1 graduate student, 3 undergraduates) submit applications for the Boren Critical Language Scholarships. These scholarships specifically help provide students the opportunity to study in parts of the world that are typically underrepresented in study abroad and provides students with cultural and language study. This year, our students submitted applications to study in Morocco, Japan, and South Korea.
Congratulations to our last International Research Scholarship recipient Clara Hansen Our 2017 Honors College Scholarship winner, Clara Hansen (Biology, Uruguay) recently learned that she was accepted into her top choice of Veterinary Medicine Schools, Colorado State University. Colorado State University is ranked as one of the top Veterinary Medicine Programs in the world alongside Cornell University, University of Cambridge, and Texas A&M.
Collaborations with Admissions We had a productive meeting with the newest members of the Admissions staff, to introduce them to what the Honors College has to offer. We are grateful to have such positive partners, who help us attract top-notch students to NMSU, as we think the Honors College is a great recruiting tool for the university.
ICT’s 2018 Technology Day Event Technology Day, which is sponsored by ICT’s Student Technology and Planning group, was held in the Corbett Center Aggie Lounge on February 1. The event featured over 20 tables that showcased various departments and vendors and the technology and technology services they use or provide at NMSU. Over 300 students, faculty, and staff attended the event. Members of the NMSU basketball and football teams, as well as Pistol Pete, were also on hand to greet guests and assist with prize drawings. For more information about the event, visithttps://studenttech.nmsu.edu/tech-day/.
Housing & Residential Life – Faculty Fellow Luncheon On Friday, February 2, Faculty Fellows gathered with the Residential Life professional staff for an opportunity to brainstorm ways to serve residential students throughout the spring semester. Faculty Fellows are members of NMSU’s esteemed faculty who dedicate some of their time to partner with a residential community to participate in events, plan educational and social activities, and spend time with students where they live. During the luncheon, lively discussions led to wonderful ideas for ways to implement activities that are supportive, enjoyable, and informative for students who live on campus.
During the week of February 5-9, Career Services presented to five sections of BUSA 111 reaching 180 students. The presentations provided information about AggieCAREER Manager, Co-op/Internship Program, resumes, and How to Utilize LinkedIn.
On Friday, February 9, Mr. Steven Torres, project manager of ERC (College of Businesss Technology) conducted mock interviews for 16 College of Engineering students. This was a follow up to a former visit in which Mr. Torres spent time conducting resume reviews. Career Services conducted an orientation to the Secondary Student Teachers on February 8, to prepare them for the Educators’ Job Fair taking place on April 23.
Studio G Networking Hour On Wednesday, Studio G held its weekly networking hour, focusing on idea generation strategies for startups. The Studio G’s weekly networking hour provides students and local entrepreneurs the opportunity to learn about business strategies and the principles of entrepreneurship, as well as a chance to connect with other aspiring and successful entrepreneurs. Each session is broadcast on Facebook Live. Check out the following link to see the video and learn about upcoming events https://www.facebook.com/studiognmsu/.
HealthSprint On Friday, the HealthSprint program completed the 4-week session of customer discovery and product validation. This session culminated with presentations of findings from seven teams participating this year. Each team has decided to continue moving forward with their business. The teams will now begin the second stage of the accelerator program, which provides intensive advising and mentorship for business growth and development. The teams will also work on crafting their pitch for the HealthAssembly event in June. The HealthSprint program is supported by the New Mexico Gas Company.
The Office of Grants & Contracts (OGC) submitted two (2) proposals to the U.S. Department of Defense for approximately $19.5M on behalf of Marcos Quinones of the Physical Science Laboratory, Department of Space Aerospace, for projects entitled: Theoretical Studies and Engineering Research – Flight Systems 1 and 2.
The Office of Grants & Contracts (OGC) submitted a proposal to the National Science Foundation (NSF) Research Traineeship (NRT) Program in the amount of $3M, on behalf of Dr. Huiping Cao of the College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Computer Sciences.
NM WRRI Institute Director Sam Fernald, current President of the National Institutes for Water Resources, attended the Joint Gulf Regional Meeting at the University of Alabama. The meeting included representatives from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Sea Grant College Program (Sea Grant) and the U.S. Geological Survey’s Water Resources Research Institutes (WRRI). The group explored ways to connect and cooperate between the Sea Grant College Program and the WRRIs.
Scholarship to Build Entrepreneurs A `68 College of Business alumni couple have established a new $37,500 endowed scholarship matched by Giving Tuesday funds for students interested in entrepreneurship. The couple previously owned a small business in the state and appreciate the need for building more small businesses and an entrepreneurial culture for New Mexico starting with students at NMSU.
New Endowed Scholarship Assists Finance Students A `78 NMSU alumnus from the College of Business has established a new $67,500 endowed scholarship matched by Giving Tuesday funds for students in the Department of Finance. As a current business owner in New Mexico, he believes NMSU provides higher education essential for students to flourish in their business careers.
Upcoming University Art Gallery Exhibit Secures Grant The Devasthali Family Foundation of Las Cruces awarded grants of $8,000 to support an upcoming art exhibit and programming at the University Art Gallery. The exhibit, “Superbloom,” with paintings by Eric LoPresti, including new work inspired by his trip to the Trinity Test Site between Tularosa and Socorro, opens in September. Another $2,000 will support the Las Cruces Film Festival.
College of ACES Receives Estate Gift A $75,000 estate gift from a retired husband and wife who held leadership positions at NMSU will benefit a named scholarship they sponsor in the College of ACES and will be welcomed into the 1888 Society.
Head Football Coach Doug Martin and I traveled to Santa Fe, New Mexico, on Super Bowl Sunday. We were recognized on the Floor of the House and the Senate. We met with NMSU alum Chief of Staff Keith Gardner who was a former athletic trainer for the Aggies. We also had a brief meeting with Governor Susana Martinez. Everyone we encountered was extremely positive about Aggie Athletics and appreciative of the success and notoriety that was brought to the State of New Mexico.
That evening Doug Martin coached the House “Aggies” team while University of New Mexico football coach Bob Davie coached the Senate “Lobos” team in the annual Hoops 4 Hope charity basketball game, unfortunately the Senate team prevailed. Over $32,000 was raised for the UNM Comprehensive Cancer Center.
NM State softball held their Meet & Greet on Thursday afternoon. Over 50 people attended the event including two local youth teams. Fans were able to meet the team and get autographs as well as participate in activities including learning to pitch, hitting a target in the batting cage and others. Fans enjoyed interacting with the players and coaches.
In addition, Aggie baseball kicked off the season by hosting their annual 1st Pitch Dinner Fundraiser at the Farm and Ranch Museum on Friday evening. Attendees were able to meet the 2018 Aggie team. There was a live auction as well as a silent auction. Over 30 tables were purchased for this event.
NM State football held their National Signing Day reception at the NMSU Golf Course Player Grill on Friday afternoon. Fans were able to meet the coaches and staff. They also got a preview of the players that have committed to NMSU for the 2018 season. Over 100 fans attended the reception.
Aggie Athletic Marketing through a local caricature artist unveiled an unbelievably popular poster of select men’s basketball student-athletes. The poster was turned into a t-shirt, which is on sale at all remaining Aggie basketball games for $15 with all proceeds going to support the men’s basketball program. Anyone interested in purchasing a t-shirt can call Maria at 575-646-7630.
The NMSU Passport Acceptance Office at International and Border Programs held a Saturday Passport Fair for students and the community to get new passports. IBP processed over 70 passport applications at its February 3 event that was held on campus. The NMSU office is one of two places where the community can go to start the process for international travel documents and the only one that offers occasional special weekend hours to service the needs of those who cannot make time during the traditional workweek.
News and Media Relations A busy campus has enabled the News and Media Relations team to generate a sizable amount of social media this month, posting 20 items on the NMSU News Facebook page that have been viewed by more than 22,000 people. The top post so far this month is a story that first appeared in the fall Panorama Alumni & Friends Magazine about the DeMund family, which has three generations of family members currently enrolled at NMSU.
KRWG/SPU News22 students got back to work with rehearsals for the half-hour newscasts. The spring semester programs will go live on Tuesday, February 13. KRWG TV airs the student productions Tuesday through Thursday at 6:30 p.m.
Legislative Update The Senate Finance Committee on February 3, adopted amendments to the HAFC Committee Substitute for HB2, the budget bill. Funding for the NMSU system increased by a total of $2.5 million when compared to the FY18 funding level or 1.4 percent. The LFC recommendation included reductions of ($464,900) while the executive recommendation included reductions of ($754,900) for the NMSU system. The SFC adopted the following amendments that affected higher education and NMSU:
- The committee supported the Council of University Presidents’ requested amendment that was sponsored by several Senators to increase the funding for I&G by 1 percent or $5.6 million and maintain the redistribution at 4 percent. The SFC reported bill now includes a total of $11.2 million for I&G for all institutions.
- The SFC maintained the 2 percent compensation for faculty and staff.
- The SFC adopted a technical correction to move pest detection and mitigation money from AES to NMDA.
- The SFC adopted an amendment to move the Doctorate of Economic Development funding from the RPSP line item into the main campus I&G.
- The SFC included a total of $1.023 million in non-recurring funding for the following:
- Added an additional $200,000 to WRRI for a total of $500,000
- Added $200,000 to NMDA to carry out the provisions of the Chile Advertising Act
- Added $50,000 for the CAMP program
- Added $273,000 for the Sunspot Solar Observatory
The Senate Finance Committee also took action on Senate Bill 94, which contains appropriations for NMSU’s General Obligation Bond projects. The amounts accepted by the Senate Finance Committee are back up to the requested or HED-recommended levels.
The legislature also took action on Severance Tax Bond project funding for NMSU, as well as lottery bills. For a complete update and details, as well as regular updates, go to the Office of Government Relations website. https://govrelations.nmsu.edu/
VDS successfully completed a full lab ISO 17025 audit. Upon delivery of the final documents, which will take 4 to 6 weeks, VDS will be a fully certified ISO 17025 laboratory for the first time in its existence.
Standards and Consumer Services did two interviews and released a PSA regarding card-skimmers at pump. The Las Cruces interview can be seen here and more information on how NMDA works with law enforcement can be found here
ENI staff attended the New Mexico Bee Keepers Association Meeting and provided a presentation on state apiary survey programs, bee health issues, and future planned projects in support of the apiary industry of New Mexico. Approximately 100 small-scale beekeepers were in the attendance.
This week, our focus was on specialized accreditation processes and communication. We updated our website and developed on-line reporting processes. The accreditation liaison website now highlights protocol for internal communication about upcoming accreditations, annual reports, and other matters of institutional concern. On Monday, we will review the website, electronic forms and established processes with the college associate deans. Using their feedback, we will make additional changes and updates prior to sharing the same information with department/program level accreditation liaisons.
We also continued to make progress on documenting faculty credentials, particularly those that qualify to teach through equivalent tested experience. NMSU Grants is piloting a new process, and will work with us to ensure an efficient and effective process is in place before we move forward with a full implementation.
Another item we addressed this week was the need to create additional access points to the Academic Student Concerns website. The website launched in 2017, and initial documentation was limited to course-related concerns. We are now working to implement additional access points that allow for concerns that are not necessarily related to a particular course.
CTE Hosts High School Students More than 240 high school students toured the Career Technical Education Programs on both Espina and East Mesa Campuses thanks to the Carl Perkins Grant. Students from Las Cruces, Anthony and Hatch, participated in learning of the many technical careers available at NMSU Dona Ana. They also learned of the services available at DACC to help them excel. Here the Director of Financial Aid Michele Lukesh explains the variety of aid available for students.
Vescovo Raises funds for charity DACC associate director of academic advising helped raise funds for the 2017 March of Dimes, which helps mothers and their babies be healthy. Vescovo received the stiletto award for raising the most money for the event. The combined total among all participants raised $183,788.
HLC Visits NMSU Doña Ana Final preparations for the Higher Learning Commission visit next week were accomplished. The national accreditation team will begin their visit on Monday, February 12, and conclude on Tuesday, February 13.
Border Education Issues Discussed Five Chicana/Latina distinguished scholars from Universities throughout the Southwest presented views on issues affecting education in New Mexico and the surrounding borderlands. The DACC Cultural Diversity Committee of the Faculty Council helped sponsor the Cultural Diversity Speaker Series. More than 85 students, faculty and staff attended the colloquium at the East Mesa Auditorium.
On the morning of Wednesday, January 31, fourteen faculty and staff from NMSU-A participated in the Career Expo at Alamogordo High School. Our NMSU-A team interacted with many students who might be motivated to continue their academic training at our college. Many of our programs and courses were highlighted by engaging displays and lively conversations between our subject matter experts and the students. The courses and programs included Allied Health, Automotive, Business, Computer Science (including Robotics), Criminal Justice, Education, Engineering, Engineering Technology, Paralegal, and Renewable Energy. About 100 students requested more information be sent to them, and many expressed interest in touring our campus. Many thanks to those who participated in this superb effort to recruit new students: Cathy Aguilar-Morgan (organizer), Clay Blevins, Genaro Brusuelas, Jim Busalacchi, Sarah Cerra, Susan Cook, Paula Harms-Van Duyn, Elma Hernandez, Richard Hernandez, Dr. Joyce Hill, Mark Nelson, David Overstreet, Dr. Bryan Preppernau, and Becky Ross.
On Friday, February 2, the Collegiate League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) student organization at NMSU-A presented LULAC History and Recruitment Day. Students viewed history of the largest and oldest Latino organization in nation and had active question and answer session. President Gerardo Sariñana also shared the many campus events offered by the student organization. Three new students joined eager to apply for internships in Washington, D.C.
On Monday, February 5, NMSU Carlsbad representatives attended the monthly meeting of the President’s Academic Council. The Chancellor and the Provost gave an update on system initiatives and updates were received on legislative initiatives, the capital campaign, and media relations.
On Tuesday, February 6, NMSU Carlsbad representatives met to discuss the College’s Veterans Affairs processes and to implement procedures to assist or veterans with being successful in their academic pursuits. The meeting was very productive and the suggested processes should be of benefit in meeting the needs of this population.
On Wednesday, February 7, NMSU Carlsbad representatives met with representatives from the Carlsbad Early College High School to discuss the college’s role in sponsoring internships of the Early College High school students. Each student is required to complete a 60-hour internship and the college was seeking more information on the initiative.
On Thursday, February 8, NMSU Carlsbad President John Gratton led a leadership presentation to the WIPP Leadership Academy. The presentation included a discussion of the different leadership styles, the completion of a Myers-Briggs type personality analysis, a Four Colors analysis of leadership preferences, and a discussion related to leadership traits.
ASNMSU, in collaboration with Corbett Center Student Union, held its annual Super Bowl watch party in the Aggie Lounge on Sunday, February 4. The first 30-50 students received fanny packs, as well as were welcomed to enjoy game day snacks. Prize packs were given out during halftime during a raffle.
The ASNMSU Community Outreach Department is traveling this February. The Director, Assistant Director, and three Roadrunners traveled to Texas A&M for the One Big Thanks Conference. They presented on Day of Logistics for our annual community service projects “The Big Event” and “Keep State Great.”
The ASNMSU Community Outreach Department attended the New Mexico Associated Student Council conference in Bernalillo, New Mexico. The team met with student government high school students and presented on ASNMSU’s charge. They had the opportunity to visit the Associated Students of the University of New Mexico’s (ASUNM) office.
Our Public Relations Department did a Social Media Bootcamp for members of the Faculty Senate on February 9. The basics of each social media platform were discussed with time for Q&A.