Activity Report October 29 – November 4

Chancellor Garrey Carruthers

  • The highlight of my week was the Arrowhead Board of Directors meeting. I am not a huge fan of Board meetings but this one was capped off with presentations highlighting the relationship between our academic programs and Arrowhead programs on entrepreneurship/startups.  The first presenter was Justin Dahrling, a recent PGM/Marketing graduate, who had an idea for making golf equipment but didn’t know how to move his idea into a business.  As a student, he sought the assistance of Arrowhead Center (Studio G) where he was hooked up with an engineering student (also at Studio G) and they collectively designed and began manufacturing Justin’s design of a new putter (guaranteed to make all putts?).  The putters retail for $300.  Today, Justin has six employees in his local company and is seeking funding for expansion.  Two faculty members discussed their intellectual property and how Arrowhead was helping them commercialize their ideas.  Geoff Smith has developed a “green” nontoxic pesticide, currently being tested in California’s central valley, which may eliminate fungi in spinach crops.  His son, who holds an MBA from NMSU, with the help of Arrowhead, is setting up the company to market the pesticide.  Dr. Khandan has developed a water purification system well suited for rural areas and will be using Arrowhead to assist in the commercialization of his intellectual property. Wonderful stuff!  We have over 250 students at Arrowhead (Studio G) working on commercializing property and/or starting their own companies.
  • I had a very good meeting with the Town and Gown Comission. Top outcome of the meeting was a commitment on our part and their part to assist in marketing NMSU to our community.  I have asked Justin Bannister to work on ideas to make sure our business community partners have the right Aggie material banners, stickers, helmets, flags,  shirts to display their pride in NMSU.  In addition, some of the business folks expressed an interest in helping to fund micro grants, which would be used for seniors who need a little cash to make it to graduation.
  • I am a member of the Board of the Universities Research Association (URA), a collaborative of 89 U.S. and foreign universities, that co-manages the Fermi Lab in Illinois. URA also has several members from the private sector, to include Honeywell, Lockheed Martin, NALCO, and NiSource.  The Board includes the presidents of University of South Carolina, Yale, Notre Dame, Colorado State, and Michigan State University.  URA is now competing for the Sandia Laboratory management contract.  I tell you all of this because I believe this group is about to embark on finding many more collaborative arrangements among the various partners. Could be some interesting basic and applied research projects herein.
  • I will be traveling to the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) meeting next week. The WAC is still wobbling; but we Aggies wobble in our shoes, so I guess we can be sympathetic.  Athletic Conference alignment continues to be a big issue for NMSU as we transition from the Sun Belt conference in football to independent football and have concerns about direction and stability of the WAC.  We will continue to be supportive of a viable WAC conference.
  • The Domenici Institute cosponsored an afternoon conference on mental health issues and opportunities. Sara Patricolo did an outstanding job of organizing this follow-up event to our Domenici Conference, which featured four great speakers on mental health.  There is a local movement here to replicate some of the best practices from around the country to reduce overuse of jails as the first option for folks suffering an illness.  There were 140 folks in attendance, including Jaime Michael, Director of Health and Human Services for Dona Ana County and the champion of the Stepping Up initiative-a collaborative dedicated to improving the quality of life and conditions for all citizens with a focus on those having mental illness.  It was a very informative session, and I have invited them back to have sessions on this most important topic.  NMSU needs to continue to be a big player in the Stepping Up.

Executive Vice President and Provost Dan Howard

  • On Monday, I met with the CRM Advise Implementation group to discuss progress on this project. This is a hard-working group; I appreciate their efforts and the challenges associated with implementing a complex predictive analytics system at NMSU.
  • On Tuesday, I hosted a reception honoring this year’s winner of the Westhafer Award, Dr. Hongmei Luo of the Department of Chemical Engineering. Luo has a distinguished research record and an equally distinguished record as a mentor.  She has set a high bar for all of us.
  • On Wednesday, I spoke at the Las Cruces Public Schools Institute for Parent Engagement graduation ceremony. This is a program designed to help parents understand the inner workings of our public school system and enable them to more effectively advocate for their children.  I congratulated the parents for their engagement and pointed out the increasing importance of higher education encouraged them to send their children on to institutions of higher education after high school.
  • On Friday, I spoke with this year’s Advancing Leaders cohort. At the end of our time together, I was asked where I thought NMSU would be in five years.  I replied that NMSU would likely experience a decline in state support that would have to be accommodated by a greater emphasis on student recruitment and retention, development of our real estate and water assets, and streamlining of our administrative structures.  The university is on sound financial footing, but we cannot afford to be complacent as the financial picture for the state continues to be cloudy.

College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences, Dean Rolando Flores

Media Productions/Learning Games Lab

Financial literacy game Night of the Living Debt has won “Best Overall Digital Game” at Meaningful Play 2016, an international conference. Produced by NMSU Media Productions’ Learning Games Lab, with University of Idaho Extension, this free iPad game immerses high schoolers in a zombie world where they navigate credit, debts, and choices about housing, education and transportation. This 2016 game previously won Gold at the International Serious Play Awards and is a finalist in the Serious Games Showcase & Challenge.

Extension Family and Consumer Sciences

NMSU Night at the Market – Dr. Sonja Koukel, Extension Health Specialist, and Haley Nohl, graduate assistant, represented the Extension Health & Wellness program at the Downtown Las Cruces for Halloween Market, October 26. One hundred youths were reached through an interactive poster display focused on poison prevention, Identifying candy from harmful products, such as over-the-counter medications. The poster was a great activity for the children to learn the difference – sometimes it was even hard for them to tell which was the medicine.

Plant and Environmental Sciences/Extension Plant Sciences

On October 26 Elizabeth Smith of Extension Plant Sciences, the New Mexico Climate Center, and the Environmental Science Students Organization planned the NMSU Night Market event that included 21 university departments, clubs, and an appearance by Pistol Pete. Hundreds of people attended the event at the new Las Cruces city plaza while our university participants provided games, safe trick or treating, and numerous giveaways. Clear skies and mild weather provided a festive and educational evening to this year’s night farmer’s market finale. The NMSU Night at the Market event was a great opportunity for our community to meet with students, staff, and faculty to showcase their research, service, and educational activities that are happening at NMSU.

College of Arts & Sciences, Interim Dean Enrico Pontelli

  • The College completed the external component of the program review for the Department of Geography.
  • The Music department hosted the annual tournament of the bands. The Discovery Scholars program offered an informational table for the attendees of the tournament, providing information about the college and its educational programs.
  • Congratulations to Letticia Martinez, she is a student in the Communication Studies Department. Letticia just competed in the Paralympics 2016 in Rio for swimming and was able to meet President Obama!


  • The successful NMSU Biomedical Research Seminar series featured a presentation by Michael Teitell, talking about “Mitochondria function and regulation during stem cell differentiation.”
  • The GEOMATIC – Art, Science and the Zuhl Collection event featured a presentation by Christine Gray and Emily Nachison, titled “Mythologizing Natural Phenomena, Scientific History, and New-Age Idealism.”
  • The Department of Astronomy offered an Observatory Open House on the NMSU campus, focused on the moon, mars, double star cluster Albereo, the M57 planetary nebula, H and K open clusters in Perseus, and many more celestial objects.

College of Business, Dean James Hoffman

  • Recruiting for new Student Ambassadors for the spring semester is under way. Ambassadors represent the College of Business, interact with the business community, and are provided with the opportunity to be mentored, as well as serve as mentors. Students interested in applying should see the Dean’s office to pick up an application.  Applications are due Monday, November 28.
  • New Mexico State University’s PGA Golf Management program won its second consecutive Jones Cup on the Wanamaker Course at PGA Golf Club in Port St. Lucie, Florida, November 2. With a two-day total of 594, the Aggies became the first program to win consecutive Jones Cups since Coastal Carolina in 2004 and 2005.  The 36-hole event included each of the 19 universities that sponsor the PGA Golf Management program showcasing the talents of five players in the annual team event. NMSU erased a three-shot deficit after the first day to claim their third Jones Cup in program history. NMSU’s initial victory in the event came in 2006.  Josh Salmon coached the team consisting of Redge Camacho, Josh Elder, Tristin Goodwin, Cole Lorenz, and senior captain Nate LeBlanc.
  • I met with Justin Bannister, who was recently named interim associate vice president for marketing and communications, to discuss NMSU’s marketing and communication efforts.
  • We hosted a luncheon for retired College of Business faculty and staff November 4 in the Business Complex conference room. Attending retirees included Ed Scribner, David Carlson, Robin Peterson, Anthony Popp, Doris Rios and Pam Speer.  Also attending were Jim Hoffman, Kathy Brook, Anthony Casaus and Larry Tunnell.  I gave an update on the college; Anthony Casaus covered alumni visits, college activities and Giving Tuesday.
  • We gathered faculty for meeting on November 4 to discuss undergraduate core curriculum and assessment issues.
  • The College of Business weekly activity reports are available in their entirety at

College of Education, Dean Donald Pope-Davis

College of Engineering, Dean Lakshmi Reddi

Talayeh Razzaghi has joined the Industrial Engineering Department as a new assistant professor. She earned a Ph.D. at the University of Central Florida and was a postdoctoral researcher at Clemson University. Her research is in the area of health care systems engineering—an area of significant interest in our state.

engThe College of Engineering hosted breakout sessions for Aggie Experience, a prospective student event on October 8 and October 29. Approximately 90 prospective students heard from the dean, department heads and ambassadors. The students heard about the various majors available to them on campus and toured the departments.

eng-2Arrowhead Center recently hosted its third Aggie Shark Tank event at which two industrial engineering students pitched their ideas for businesses or technology commercialization opportunities to local business leaders for possible investment. Carlos Murguia presented KoolKat, a roof-coating technology, which won the $1,000 Audience Favorite prize, voted on immediately following the presentations by a crowd of 200 guests. Avinash Kuna presented SOLAS, a lidar-based security system that brings new capabilities to the security surveillance industry to address today’s challenges and threats.

Muhammad Dawood, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering recently received a four-year National Science Foundation grant entitled “Exploring the Relationships Among Metacognition‐based Study Practices, Student Learning and Retention in an Undergraduate Engineering Program.” Co-PIs are Patti Wojahn, English; Karen Trujillo, education; and Melissa J. Guynn, psychology. The group will “… study the impact of introducing metacognitive self-awareness and self-study strategies to freshmen engineering students. These interventions aim to positively impact student learning and retention. Based on results of our study, we will offer expedient means for implementing metacognitive practices in engineering courses nationwide. Disseminating results from this study can ultimately help enhance the diversity, the quality, and the quantity of the STEM workforce in the U.S.”

College of Health and Social Services, Dean Donna Wagner

Office of the Dean

  • The College of Health and Social Services is pleased to report that Dr. Joe Tomaka, Department of Public Health Services, has received the Stan Fulton Endowed Chair in Public Health Research. Tomaka directs the Crimson Research Center and teaches in the Public Health Science Department.

School of Nursing

  • The School of Nursing recently sponsored an event titled, iPad Symposium: Apps for Champs. Over 60 students participated in the symposium which was aimed to showcase various apps such as Evernote, Microsoft Word and PowerPoint, Canvas, and the NCLEX RN Mastery which may help students in various aspects of their academic life. This was the first year the symposium focused exclusively on students, and the School hopes to continue to hold the event each semester in the future.

School of Social Work

  • Maria Gurrola, Associate Professor, and Olga Cabada, College Associate Professor, recently represented the School of Social Work at the fall meeting of the New Mexico Social Work Educators Collaborative meeting hosted by Western New Mexico State University in Silver City. Attendees discussed the importance of compliance with credentialing requirements of the New Mexico Commission on Higher Education. The collaborative was initiated by the New Mexico State University School of Social Work in 2014 in order to address mutual concerns among the accredited social work education programs in the state.

Department of Public Health

  • The NMSU Exercise is Medicine on Campus student-led national campaign ended with a little trivia for fans at the Aggie football game on October 22. Since the initiative was geared toward promoting walking for wellness, attendees were encouraged participate in a drawing to estimate how many steps Pistol Pete took at the football game. Surprisingly, Pistol Pete took nearly 10,000 steps, and the winner of the drawing was a student in the College of Engineering.
  • The NMSU/Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center U54 Partnership recently funded research proposals by community health agencies to address health disparities in the U.S. Mexico border region. Each community agency who submitted a proposal was required to work with an NMSU academic partner to design and conduct their research study. This year’s Community-Academic Partnership Grants were awarded to Kari Bachman from Doña Ana Communities United (DACU) in collaboration with Dr. Julie Rice (NMSU), and to Claudia Lozano and Alexandro Simental from the City of El Paso’s Department of Health (CEPDOH) in collaboration with Dr. Rebecca Palacios and Karoline Sondgeroth (NMSU).  DACU will examine the effects of time bank participation on the health status of adults with limited income in Las Cruces NM.  CEPDOH will evaluate the effectiveness of a phone app called hAPPy El Paso, which is designed to promote colorectal cancer screening in Hispanics.

University Library, Dean Elizabeth Titus

  • universityThe New Mexico State University Library is pleased to announce the opening of a new exhibit celebrating the centennial of the National Park Service in Southern New Mexico. The exhibit titled, “New Mexico’s Natural Treasures: Celebrating 100 Years of the National Park Service,” contains material from the Archives and Special Collections Department that highlights the three National Park Service-operated sites in southern New Mexico: White Sands National Monument, Gila Cliff Dwellings, and Carlsbad Caverns National Park. The exhibit is currently on display and will run until mid-March 2017 in Milton Gallery on the 4 floor of Branson Library. For more information, contact Caitlin Wells, NMSU Library Rio Grande Historical Collections Archivist, at or (575) 646-6323.
  • The following NMSU Library faculty and staff members were presenters at the 2016 New Mexico Library Association Conference on November 2-4, 2016, in Albuquerque, NM: John Sandstrom, Susan Beck, Cyndi Watkins, Teddie Moreno, Sarah Allison and Matt Friedberg. Topics they presented on included materials deselection/weeding, federal and state government resources/publications on food and nutrition, transforming your media collection, and conducting a SWOT analysis to evaluate a student employee program.

Honors College, Dean Miriam Chaiken

The schedule of spring semester classes has now gone live, so the Honors College was buzzing with students eager to discuss course options. Both Deans Chaiken and Ketelaar had open office hours every day this week, and we saw dozens of students in one on one advising sessions. In addition we met with the students living in our Living Learning Community in Rhodes-Garrett-Hamiel Hall on Thursday evening to talk with the freshman about how to register for classes, course options, and the importance of working with their academic advisors.

Administration and Finance, Senior Vice President Angela Throneberry

afA Spooktacular evening at the Fire Station   On Friday, October 28, children of all ages enjoyed a fun filled evening at the 1st Annual Halloween Extravaganza held at the NMSU Fire Station.  The event was hosted by Facilities and Services, Housing and Residential Life and many co-sponsors. Representatives from El Paso Electric and Dona Ana County Fire Prevention provided a demonstration on child electrical safety demonstration, and Exit Drills In The Home (E.D.I.T.H.).  There were prizes given for best costume and pumpkin painting.

Cyber Security Awareness Continues   Even though National Cyber Security Awareness Month ended in October, NMSU’s Chief Information Security Officer, John Roberts, reminds the NMSU community to continue to practice safe cyber security.  “Only 10% of cyber security safeguards are technical. The remaining 90% of those safeguards rely on the users of technology.”  Easy-to-remember cyber security tips, which were recommended during the month-long training, include the use character or longer passwords (ex. Ilovemyjobatnmsu), locking computers when left alone, changing passwords regularly, and being aware of malicious emails that may contain viruses or malware.  For more information, please visit .

af2Custodial Service Appearance Improvements   You may have heard the term, “if you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it,” therefore our FS Custodial Management Team is conducting an APPA appearance and cleanliness level for all of our NMSU academic and non-academic facilities.  The information will be utilized as a benchmark for discussion with each Building Monitor, or designated representative, about the goals and expectations concerning the appearance and cleanliness level. Studies repeatedly show that employees and students perform better in facilities that are orderly and look clean.  Furthermore, prospective students often rank the appearance of buildings and grounds high on their list of considerations when determining the university or college that they will attend.

Environmental Health & Safety (EH&S) provided safety refresher to campus lab researchers   During October, Environmental Health & Safety (EH&S) instructors provided the 2016 safety refresher to 442 NMSU lab faculty and researchers from 12 departments in the colleges of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences, Engineering, and Arts and Sciences. This annual training is in addition to the OSHA prerequisites required to work in campus labs.  EH&S provides instruction on hazcom chemical safety, laboratory standard and hazardous waste management classes as well as specialized safety training for mitigating other hazards.  Additional information on safety training requirements is provided on the NMSU Safety Website at


Special Events   The Pan Am Center was the site for the “Look Who’s Dancing” celebrity fundraiser for the Dance Department on October 23.  In addition, Special Events staff and students supported the Men’s Basketball Season Ticket reception for Faculty and Staff, and Aggie football, soccer, volleyball and women’s basketball sporting events.

Student Affairs/Enrollment Management, Vice President Bernadette Montoya

Prospective Students Attend Aggie Experience

Saturday, October 29, Undergraduate Admissions hosted the second Aggie Experience open house event of the semester. 234 potential students and 189 family members spent the day exploring academic, housing and dining options, as well as learning about the services and support NMSU students receive. The next Aggie Experience will be February 20, 2017.

Wellness, Alcohol and Violence Education (WAVE) Haunted House

WAVE hosted their annual Haunted House October 27-30 in the Aggie Underground at Corbett Center. The theme this year was classic monsters and included vampires, Frankenstein, werewolves and more. During the event, WAVE had a photo booth. For more pictures from the event visit the NMSU WAVE Facebook Page.

Halloween Howl

NMSU Campus Activities engaged the Las Cruces community during the 25th Annual Halloween Howl on October 31 on the south end of the intramural fields. The event featured over 50 Student Organizations. During the event student organization handed out candy and played Halloween games with trick-or-treaters. Over 300 children and parents from the Las Cruces Community attended the Halloween event.

Arrowhead Early College Presentation

Student Engagement Staff presented on Friday, October 28th at the Arrowhead Early College High School’s senior seminar courses to approximately 115 students. Staff spoke to students regarding the academic support and career services available to NMSU students. Many of the students at Arrowhead Early College High School expressed interest in attending NMSU starting Fall 2017.  Presentations were conducted throughout the day to four sections of the senior seminar with ample opportunity for future Aggies to ask questions.  Student Engagement staff look forward to continuing this partnership with Arrowhead Early College High School.


Corbett County Fest

The Aggie Activities Council hosted the Corbett Center Country Fest. Students were invited to attend and enjoy music from Bri Bagwell & The Banned and Nashville artist, Stephen Neal on November 3, 2016. There were 150 NMSU students who enjoyed the concert and some were lucky enough to catch a dance with Pistol Pete.


Vice President for Economic Development, Vice President Kevin Boberg

  • CraftBox Design Hour On Friday, Arrowhead Center hosted its monthly CraftBox Design Hour, speaker series.  This month featured David Clark of WDG Architects, a Las Cruces-based architecture and design firm. Mr. Clark shared practical advice for graphic designers entering the workforce. This event was attended by 16 students and community members.
  • Studio G Networking Hour On Wednesday, Studio G hosted its weekly networking hour event that was attended by 14 students.  This week’s topic focused on Traction, a book that outlines 19 strategies to help your business gain its customer base. Studio G Networking Hours provide practical startup information to students as well as the opportunity for aspiring student entrepreneurs to meet their peers, make connections, and form partnerships. The discussion can be viewed at com/studiognmsu/videos/1786800084932328/
  • Tech Inclusion Conference Last week, Dr. Lauren Goldstein, program manager at Arrowhead Center, attended the Tech Inclusion conference.  The presentations and discussion explored solutions for tech diversity and inclusion challenges in education, entrepreneurship, policy, and workspaces.

Vice President for Research, Vice President Vimal Chaitanya

University Advancement, Vice President/Foundation Executive Director Andrea Tawney

Endowment Reports   Advancement mailed personalized endowment reports to almost 1,200 fund sponsors this week. Each fund report includes a fiscal summary, a short description of the purpose, and, in the reports for scholarship funds, the name(s) of the student recipients for the 2015-16 fiscal year. This year’s report was bound in a cover that highlights the many ways that our donors make NMSU a caring community.

College of Business Scholarships   The College of Business has three different alumni who have each committed to establishing a $25,000 endowed scholarship in the college using Giving Tuesday matching funds. The scholarships will support students in Marketing, Accounting and General Business, respectively.

Art Gallery Gift   The University Art Gallery will benefit from an in-kind estate gift of 91 exhibition posters and prints that includes themes of propaganda, product, sports, circus, theatre and art – appraised at almost $100,000.

Planned Gift   An alum of the College of Arts and Sciences documented an estate gift of $10,000 (present value) for benefit of the NMSU Foundation, Inc. The donor has been welcomed into the 1888 Society.

Athletics, Director Mario Moccia

  • Attended the Western Athletic Conference Fall Athletic Administrator’s meeting in Denver, Colorado. The meeting included Athletic Directors and Senior Woman Administrators to discuss conference related business.
  • Head coach Paul Weir and the men’s basketball program hosted an NMSU Faculty & Staff Meet and Greet. This was a great event for our campus partners to interact with the new coaching staff and student-athletes. Fans were able to renew their season tickets and purchase tickets at half-price.


  • Attended the pregame alumni tailgate hosted by the NMSU Alumni Association before the NM State/Texas A&M football game on Saturday, October 29. I had a great opportunity to interact and speak with over 125 alumni from the Texas area.


  • New Mexico State’s men’s basketball team hosted a friendly scrimmage with members of the Las Cruces police department and the Las Cruces fire department on Tuesday afternoon. This was similar to the event hosted by the Aggie football team, the Aggie Badge Bowl, to engage with and build relationships with our local law enforcement community.


  • NMSU’s women’s basketball hosted their annual season tip-off dinner at the Farm & Ranch Museum on Thursday, November 3. There were over 150 fans and supporters in attendance. Head coach Mark Trakh and his new coaching staff as well as the team were introduced. There was both a live and silent auction and turned out to be a successful fundraising event.


International and Border Program, Associate Provost Cornell Menking

Marketing and Communications, Interim Associate Vice President Justin Bannister

Marketing and Communications Staff

Marketing and Communications staff worked with colleagues at the College of Education to develop the first edition of a newsletter called “Core of Knowledge.” The newsletter showcases accomplishments of Education faculty, students and alumni. It also lays out where Education leadership wants to take the college in the future. We have mailed a printed piece and made electronic versions that will allow access from desktop computers and mobile devices, including e-readers.

mrktNews and Media Relations

The group assisted with the second monthly update from the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences Dean Rolando Flores, called “ACES Highlights,” It lists news highlights from the past month from across the college and is delivered to college faculty and staff via email.

With the election coming up next week, GO Bond C was in the news;

  • KFOX reporter Samantha Lewis aired a report on October 27, discussing the benefits of GO Bond C for NMSU students with a quote from Julia Barello and artist Felicia Castro.
  • The Las Cruces Sun-News ran a feature report on November 1 about NMSU art professor Motoko Furuhashi’s “CrossPASS exhibition,” which included information about GO Bond C.


KRWG FM’s Intermezzo interviewed violinist and conductor Simon Gollo. Host Leora Zeitlin chatted with the artist about his role as the conductor of the NMSU Philharmonic Orchestra and plans to encourage students. The interview may be heard at

Simon Gollo behind the KRWG mic

Simon Gollo behind the KRWG mic

With November candidate features and interviews completed KRWG’s attention turns to election return coverage Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning. National and local returns may be heard on KRWG FM 90.7 and followed online at

Government Relations, Assistant Vice President Ricardo Rel

  • November 9-10 – Economic and Rural Development Committee, Capitol Rm 322
    • November 9 – NM Grown Fresh Fruits and Vegetable for School Meals
    • November 9 – Double Up Food Bucks for Farmers Markets
    • November 10 – NM First Town Hall Recommendations
    • November 10 – Updates from the Workforce Solutions Department
    • November 10 – Updates from the Economic Development Department
    • November 10 – Updates on Capital Outlay for Broadband Infrastructure
    • November 10 – Discussion of Proposed Committee-Endorsed Legislation
  • November 14 -15 – Legislative Health & Human Services Committee, Capitol, Rm 321
    • November 15 – 2016 NM Health Care Workforce Committee (NMHCWFC) Report
    • November 15 – Burrell College of Osteopathic Medicine (BCOM): Primary Care in Rural & Tribal New Mexico
  • November 14-15 – Science, Technology and Telecommunications Committee, Rm  311
    • November 14 – Need for High-Speed Internet (Broadband)
    • November 14 – Proposed Legislation
  • November 15-18 – Legislative Finance Committee, Capitol, Rm 307
    • November 16. – Economic and Revenue Update
    • November 16 – Update of Medicaid Cost-Containment
    • November 16 – Potential 2016 Committee Sponsored Legislation
  • November 15- NM Finance Authority Oversight Committee, Capitol, Rm 307
    • Report on Bonds and Governmental Gross Receipts Tax (GGRT)
    • Sweep of Flow-Through GGRT
    • Report on Economic Development and Infrastructure in the Border Region
  • November 16 – 18, Legislative Education Study Committee, Capitol, Rm 307
    • No Time to Lose:  How to Build a World-Class Education System State by State
    • Potential Committee Sponsored Legislation
    • Senate Bill 153 Report:  Military Training and Experience for College Credit, Dr. Rommel, HED

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

  • The AES Division held its annual meeting. Presentations were given by each section as well as a presentation by marketing staff on the promotion of New Mexico commodities. Additional discussions were held on the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and implications to the division and the possible restructuring of NMDA sections. USAPlants, data consistency and new add-ins for future proficiency were also discussed. This meeting is an opportunity for staff to reconnect with each other and to give input which enhances their abilities in serving the constituents of New Mexico.
  • Tiffin Loader Crane presented a crane certification class on November 3 at NMDA.  All SCS Division staff CDL drivers participated. The company representative also performed a crane inspection.


NMSU Police, Chief Stephen Lopez

Police Activity   There were 39 police reports created, 28 supplements filed, and 40 traffic citations issued.   The Records & Evidence Office processed 35 items of evidence entered into the vault, 12 people were fingerprinted and 5 background checks were conducted.

Emergency Dispatch Center   Emergency Dispatch Center handled 353 police calls for service, (1 of which was a 911 call), resulting in 187 police calls (16 of which were agency assist) and 3 warrant entries.  There were 21 fire calls (13 of which were mutual aid), 3 emergency medical calls, 3 fire alarms, 1 natural gas odor and 1 public assist/lock out call.

Special Events   The Police Department provided support to Las Cruces Public Schools for the annual LCHS v. MHS football game on Friday night.  One of the key support functions was interaction with the National Weather Service to track weather danger for the event.  Lightning caused a delay around 7:10 pm when it started approaching and got within 10 miles (with strikes recorded as close as 1 mile by 7:25 pm), and then a second storm cell approached starting at 8:35, with an actual lightning strike at the stadium recorded at 9:20.  The game was postponed by LCPS until the following day, where it played out at the Field of Dreams.  On Saturday, the Tournament of Bands was held at Aggie Memorial Stadium, and the Police Department again provided coordination with the National Weather Service, as well as security support.

Victim Services   Amanda Bowen responded to assist with a three-year old who had been taken by his mother to A-Mountain for an alleged sacrifice.  The mother was nude, and the child partially clothed at the time officers located them.  While officers took the mother into custody and to Memorial Medical Center for evaluation, Amanda spent several hours calming and working with the child until Child Protective Services could find an appropriate, safe placement.

Emergency Dispatcher Graduation   Emergency Dispatcher Isaac Ramos graduated from the New Mexico Law Enforcement Telecommunicator Academy on Friday, October 28, 2016.  He attended the 3-week academy at NM Junior College in Hobbs, along with dispatchers from Carlsbad, Jal, Lea County, Lovington, Portales, and Artesia.  He is now in a field training program back at NMSU for the next few months before being on his own.

Dealing with Mentally Ill in Crisis Training for Dispatchers   The NMSU Police Department hosted a training program for emergency services dispatchers (telecommunicators) from NM State Police, Mesilla Valley Regional Dispatch Authority, and NMSU on Tuesday.  A total of 20 dispatchers completed the training program taught by Chief Lopez.  It focused on how dispatchers can improve services to the community when dealing with calls where someone is in a mental health crisis, including use of crisis communication skills that each student had to demonstrate in order to pass the class.

Canine Agency Assist   NMSU provided explosive detection canine support for the U.S. Secret Service at Las Cruces International Airport where Governor Mike Pence, Republican Vice Presidential Nominee, addressed a crowd on November 2.

Accreditation, Executive Director Shelly Stovall

Congratulations go out to Doña Ana Community College for a positive report from the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) for their recent site visit review of their multiple locations.

On Thursday, four faculty who were awarded mini-grants to participate in cohort 1 of NMSU’s Writing-to-Learn program presented a panel discussion for the campus community on their implementation of writing-to-learn practices in their courses. Panelists were Patricia MacGregor-Mendoza of Languages and Linguistics, Merranda Marin of Family and Consumer Sciences, Henrietta Pichon of Educational Leadership and Administration and Amelia Rau of Special Education and Communication Disorders.

NMSU-Alamogordo continues to finalize their Assurance Argument for their upcoming comprehensive site visit from the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), scheduled for February 13-14, 2017.

NMSU’s Quality Initiative team had an article published in AALHE’s Intersection.

To learn more about accreditation go to

New Mexico State University – Doña Ana, President Renay Scott

Successful Result for HLC Multi-Location Visit– HLC visited NMSU Doña Ana satellite centers and found the centers “Adequate.”  This is the highest evaluation possible for a multi-location review. The HLC Evaluator specifically visited Gadsden and Hatch during their recent visit.  They met with a number of DACC faculty, staff and administrators. I want to thank Dr. Susan Wood for her leadership of the team of people who prepared the multi-location self-study.  Our next HLC review will occur in 2018.  Dr. Wood is already working with many people in preparation for the submission of that report and subsequent visit.

Redesign of Community Education — NMSU Doña Ana is in the process of redesigning community education courses, keeping them sustainable and relevant for community members interested in continuing their education. As a result of declining enrollment many face to face classes will be phased out beginning in the upcoming spring semester.

New Mexico State University – Alamogordo, President Ken Van Winkle

NMSU-A hosted the Holloman Air Force Base Industry Day and Contracting Symposium on Thursday, November 3. Trish Livingston, Director of the Small Business Development Center, organized the event. Guest speakers from Holloman, contractors, and small business owners gathered at the Tays Center for important conversations concerning potential opportunities for small businesses in and around Otero County.

The NMSU-A STEM Club sponsored its Second Annual NMSU-A Service Learning Meeting for faculty and agencies on Thursday, November 3. The purpose of the meeting was for faculty and employees of local agencies to discuss service-learning opportunities for NMSU-A students in our region.


NMSU-A hosted the 2nd annual Summit on Hunger and Homelessness in Otero County on Friday and Saturday, November 4 and 5. Speaker Bill Jordan, Senior Policy Advisor for New Mexico Voices for Children, highlighted the two-day event. Twenty-two agencies participated in the “Community Resources Expo,” and a free community meal was served on Saturday.

New Mexico State University – Carlsbad, President John Gratton

  • On Monday, October 31, NMSU Carlsbad welcomed Trick or Treaters from across the community as campus offices decorated, wore costumes, and distributed candy to the attendees. Also, ASNMSU conducted its annual Halloween Carnival on the NMSU Carlsbad campus on the afternoon of October 31.
  • On Tuesday, November 1, NMSU Carlsbad representatives met with NMSU Facilities personnel and two contractors to receive updates on the status of the fire suppression installation and the boiler room/ITV renovation projects.
  • On Thursday, November 3, NMSU Carlsbad representatives attended the annual Carlsbad Community Foundation Reception at the Pecos River Conference Center. Donors and benefactors from across the Carlsbad community and South Eddy County were recognized at the reception which was very well-attended.
  • On Friday, November 4, NMSU Carlsbad representatives attended the one-year anniversary of American Bank. The reception was hosted by the bank in conjunction with the Carlsbad Chamber of Commerce.

New Mexico State University – Grants, Interim President Harry Sheski

First Annual Big Halloween Bash / Pumpkin Poetry Extravaganza   On the afternoon of Monday, October 31, the NMSU Grants Writing Center hosted the First Annual Big Halloween Bash sponsored by the Student Business Club.  The festivities began at 3 pm with the announcement of the three winning authors of the Pumpkin Poetry Extravaganza, a poetry contest sponsored by the Writing Center.  Nina Capitan received an honorable mention award (free meal at JJ’s Snack Shack), Gail Clemons was the 3rd prize winner (a BIG bag of candy), Callie Treadway took home 2nd prize ($50 gift card to the Cheesecake Factory), and Eden Alexander was the grand prize winner and recipient of a $100 Amazon gift card!

After the winners were announced, the little kids from Small Wonders arrived, all decked out in their little costumes and begging for candy.  They were not disappointed, as we filled their bags and then traumatized them with scary videos on the big screen.  The adults in the room also enjoyed the videos, helping themselves to a wide variety of snacks and taking in the holiday atmosphere, complete with jack-o’-lanterns aplenty.  Gail’s spicy hot salsa was a big hit, and the participants partied away the afternoon, with no let-up in the action until nearly 6 pm.  In the end, all went away satisfied, and an iconic Halloween tradition had been established.  See you next year!

Economic Development Initiative   NMSU Grants hosts SoloWorks Pilot Program,  a job creation initiative that is being delivered and facilitated by the Cibola Communities Economic Foundation.   The first day of the program was on October 31, 2016, and is the only program like this in the state of New Mexico.   SoloWorks is a program for matching people with jobs that can be done remotely from home, a co-working space or a mobile platform.  The SoloWorks contract team will recruit local residents who are interested in full time solo work, train them, place them and support them through their careers.  Candidates who enroll in the program work with the center director to identify their skills and preferences and then are provided with a free 3-6 week training course.  At the end of the course, trainees will be placed in a remote position that best fits their work preferences.  The SoloWorks team will work with each trainee to find the ideal job with the best possible starting wage.  After placement, candidates are awarded with membership to the SoloWorks Center where they will have access to their own workspace, computers, high speed internet, onsite mentoring and opportunity for up-placement into more advanced, higher paid positions.  There are currently nine candidates enrolled.  The SoloWorks project is a job creation initiative that evolved from the NM Legislative Jobs Council tasked to create jobs in New Mexico.


Faculty Professional Development   On Thursday, November 3, Zac Smith, Computer Science Adjunct Faculty, gave a presentation on how to use ZOOM.  ZOOM is an online collaboration and conferencing tool that enhances the course delivery in online and blended classes.

Library Display:  Voter’s Guide to the Electoral Process   For anyone in the NMSU Grants community who hasn’t made up their minds about the upcoming General Election, the Library staff has developed an exhibit on the electoral process to help. Located in the exhibit case outside the Library and across from the Theater is a display on the history of U.S. elections. Included are books, DVD’s, magazines, and a 33 rpm record of the music played at John F. Kennedy’s funeral.  These titles highlight past elections, profile the leaders selected, and point out controversial aspects of the U.S. election system. Foreshadowing the upcoming November 8 Presidential election is a display on the Electoral College, where according to the U.S. Constitution a candidate must earn 270 out of 538 electoral votes to win the presidency, or the decision is made in the U.S. House of Representatives. Also, for local voters there is a Cibola County sample ballot. Come see U.S. history unfolding.

First Annual Big Halloween Bash / Pumpkin Poetry Extravaganza   On the afternoon of Monday, October 31, the NMSU Grants Writing Center hosted the First Annual Big Halloween Bash sponsored by the Student Business Club.  The festivities began at 3pm with the announcement of the three winning authors of the Pumpkin Poetry Extravaganza, a poetry contest sponsored by the Writing Center.  Nina Capitan received an honorable mention award (free meal at JJ’s Snack Shack), Gail Clemons was the 3rd prize winner (a BIG bag of candy), Callie Treadway took home 2nd prize ($50 gift card to the Cheesecake Factory), and Eden Alexander was the grand prize winner and recipient of a $100 Amazon gift card!

After the winners were announced, the little kids from Small Wonders arrived, all decked out in their little costumes and begging for candy.  They were not disappointed, as we filled their bags and then traumatized them with scary videos on the big screen.  The adults in the room also enjoyed the videos, helping themselves to a wide variety of snacks and taking in the holiday atmosphere, complete with jack-o’-lanterns aplenty.  Gail’s spicy hot salsa was a big hit, and the participants partied away the afternoon, with no let-up in the action until nearly 6 p.m.  In the end, all went away satisfied, and an iconic Halloween tradition had been established.  See you next year!

Associated Students of New Mexico State University

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