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Sharing learning from APLU


The Association for Public Land-grant Universities Council on Student Affairs (CSA) met June 23 – 25 in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. The CSA provides both formal and informal forums for discussion and dissemination of information on issues related to student affairs at land-grant institutions and on issues impacting the college student experience in general. I facilitated a lunch discussion on “hot topics” currently facing my colleagues from other institutions. The wordle from that activity to the right gives you an idea of what is on their minds.

This year, the focus was on 5 main topics: Persistence, Progress and Programs; Lessons Learned from Penn State; Technology and Student Development; Fundraising in Student Affairs; and Federal Legislation Impacting Student Affairs. Watch the website over the next few weeks for more from this conference.

Persistence, progress and programs

The main topic of discussion related to persistence was around the issue of choice. In fact, it was stated that “choice is the enemy of completion!” Perhaps students have too many choices in degree options, courses, etc., and this may hinder their ability from reaching their goal of graduation in a timely manner.

As we all know, the Federal Financial Aid definition of full-time is 12 credit hours. However, it is not possible to meet all degree requirements and graduate in 4 years if the student only takes 12 credit hours. If we lead students to believe that they can graduate in four years by only taking 12 credits, we are condemning them to a 5th or even 6th year, more cost, and potentially more debt. We do a disservice to students by encouraging a light course load. Many institutions have started programs to support completing a degree in four years. In Portland, they have a “15 to Finish” campaign. In Florida they have embarked on a “Finish in 4” program. At yet another institution, their version of our “Quick Connect” program had residence life directors actually knocking on students doors when they weren’t in class!

A couple of books were suggested: College Unbound by Jeffrey J. Sellingo, and Vincent Tinto’s work Completing College. We were also encouraged to question how often we asked students specific questions about their progress to degree and to ask ourselves whether those of us across the institution were working together or at cross-purposes to get students to graduate in four years. We depend on recruiters to make the promise to students to get them to get admitted to the institution, but is the rest of the institution delivering on the promise? Lastly, we were reminded that our entering freshman are typically students who have only been out of high school for only about 90 days, and for many, this is the first time they have even been away from home. Families are putting their trust in us!


Activity Report, July 5, 2013


This Wordle is a representation of the topics discussed by senior student affairs officers at the Association of Public Land-grant Universities Council.

Office of the Vice President, Dr. Bernadette Montoya

  • Bernadette Montoya attended the Association of Public Land-grant Universities Council on Student Affairs (CSA) from June 23–25 in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. This annual meeting brings together senior student affairs officers for discussion and dissemination of information on programs at member institutions and on issues impacting the college student experience in general. Key learning from this conference will be featured at http://studentaffairs.nmsu.edu/.
  • Dr. Montoya was nominated to serve as Co-Chair of the Executive Board of CSA along with a colleague from Purdue. The election will take place in November at the APLU Annual Meeting. During that meeting she will facilitate a panel discussion with university presidents on the role of student affairs in institutional strategic planning.
  • Dacia Sedillo is chairing the search committee for NMSU’s new Chief Information Officer. The initial meeting of the committee will be an orientation from HR later this month.
  • Enrollment on the Las Cruces campus is down 1.6% by credit hours and 5.3% in headcount. New graduate students are down nearly 10% compared to last year, and new freshmen are down nearly 7%.
  • Enrollment at all the community colleges is also down; system-wide, we are down about 8% in headcount and 7% in credit hours.

University Admissions, Ms. Valerie Pickett

  • To wrap up this recruiting year, Admissions is doing the following:

    Students and their families explore the many booths offered at New Student Registration.

    Students and their families explore the many booths offered at New Student Registration.

  • Working with Colleges: Colleges receive weekly reports of transfer students who have been admitted and credits evaluated, but have not registered. The colleges contact these students directly.
  • University Admissions staff are calling students who accepted financial aid but have not enrolled for courses. We also contacted students with scholarship awards and housing applications to encourage them to register for an NSR.
  • University Admissions is working with the President’s office on a letter to prospective freshmen to encourage them to choose NMSU.
    • The NMSU Phoenix Alumni Chapter and University Admissions will host new students and their families at Major League Baseball as the Arizona Diamondbacks take on the Milwaukee Brewers. This Arizona Summer Send Off will take place on Saturday, July 13, 2013.
    • Our final New Student Registration Program is scheduled for August 1, and an additional NSR has been added for August 2.
    • For the upcoming recruiting year, we are working with College Board to purchase the names of students who took AP exams in May, as well as the May and June SAT takers. We are working with ACT to purchase the names of students who took the ACT in June 2013.

University Financial Aid and Scholarship Services, Ms. Janie Merchant

  • The Financial Aid staff is seeking student advice on processes such as the Satisfactory Academic Progress appeal system. Director Janie Merchant met with ASNMSU representatives Daniel Sonntag and Jeremy Witte to discuss ways the Financial Aid office staff could better communicate with students. Federal and state rules and regulations are rapidly changing; the Financial Aid office would like to be proactive regarding communicating challenges to students.
  • Financial Aid staff is collaborating with Student Information Management (SIM) to provide more complete financial aid information on the registration document for families that attend the New Student Registration Orientation sessions.
  • Financial Aid Scholarship Staff and the FA Fiscal Group are streamlining our annual reporting to the Higher Education Department.

Student Engagement, Dr. Terry Cook

  • Dr. Cook is monitoring the progress of this summer’s campaign to call current students who have not yet enrolled for fall 2013. As of July 3, 1,147 students eligible to enroll in Fall 2013 remain to be called.
  • The Student Engagement Office spent the week closing out financial records for fiscal year end; several staff members attended Students Affairs & Enrollment Management sponsored Assessment 101: Construction of Learning Outcomes.

Albuquerque Center, Ms. Veronica Chavez Neuman

  • Albuquerque Center staff attended Assessment 101: Construction of Learning Outcomes, hosted by Michael Jasek via web conference.
  • In July, the Albuquerque Center will host events for the New Mexico Technology Assistance Program; NMSU Alumni – Crimson Chapter; Children, Youth and Families Department; the UNM Reading Program; New Mexico Higher Education Department Senate Memorial 101 Consortium; and Formula Funding Technical Committee.

Daniels Fund Scholar Success Forum

Kaylene Womack, NMSU Daniels Fund Ambassador class of 2011, with the statue of Bill Daniels. The statue oversees the front doors of the Daniels Fund Building in Denver, Colorado. It is symbolic for the vigilance of his legacy, “Making life better…one individual at a time.”

Kaylene Womack, NMSU Daniels Fund Ambassador Class of 2011, with the statue of Bill Daniels. The statue oversees the front doors of the Daniels Fund Building in Denver, Colorado. It is symbolic for the vigilance of his legacy, “Making life better…one individual at a time.”

Michelle Saenz-Adames of the Student Success Center and Marlene Melendez of University Financial Aid traveled to Denver last week to attend the Daniels Fund Scholar Success Forum. Both Marlene and Michelle had the opportunity to answer questions from the newly selected Daniels Scholars, who will start at New Mexico State University in fall 2013. This event includes a banquet that provides the history of the Daniels Fund Scholarship program. It also honors the Daniels Scholars with a pinning ceremony. The event also serves as a transition  and an orientation for the new scholars.

The Daniels Fund, established by Bill Daniels in 1997, provides students from Colorado, Utah, New Mexico, and Wyoming with a scholarship to cover any unmet financial needs after other sources of financial aid have been applied. After undergoing an intense application process, 250 new Daniels Scholars were selected for this year and will be provided with financial aid during their time at a 4-year university. A Daniels Scholar also has the opportunity to participate in the Daniels Scholar Enrichment Program while in college. This program provides workshops for the Daniels Scholars covering topics such as ethics, character, leadership, critical thinking, and many more.

Six Daniels Scholars will be in the fall NMSU class. More information on the Daniel’s Fund is at http://www.danielsfund.org/Scholarships/Index.asp

Relocation of Admissions staff

The recruitment staff of University Admissions will be moving to suite 801 in the Educational Services Building, and they expect to occupy the new space by August 1. Between now and then, the Paint Shop Crew will be at work and the suite will get new carpet. This work should be completed by late July.

The new location for University Admissions recruiting staff is the suite that had been the home to Housing and Residential Life, which moved to Room 230 Corbett Center Student Union in June.

Admissions Processing staff have all moved back into Suite 101, following that suite’s recent renovation.

SAEM Activity Report, June 28

Office of the Vice President, Dr. Bernadette Montoya

  • 2009/04/22: Students walk on the International Mall (photo by Darren Phillips)Enrollment on the Las Cruces campus is down by 5.5% for undergraduates, 5.3% for graduate students, and 5.5% overall. SCH totals are down only 1.5% for the Las Cruces campus.
  • System-wide, enrollment is down nearly 8% and SCH is down 6.8%. Notably, student swirling enrollment patterns are dramatically reduced at all campuses. Two weeks before the semester starts, students will be able to enroll in courses at any NMSU campus regardless of which campus is their primary campus.
  • Four of our eight Equipment Replacement and Renewal requests were approved for the upcoming fiscal year. These projects will support improved technology for the Albuquerque Center, a new golf cart for use by our Campus Visitation program, an improved server for communication within SAEM, and a printer for Student Engagement to use for their marketing efforts.

University Admissions, Ms. Valerie Pickett

  • At last week’s New Student Registration Program, 573 students checked in to start their Aggie Career. We have about 150 students currently signed up for the NSR in August.

University Financial Aid and Scholarship Services, Ms. Janie Merchant

  • June 30th is the last day for students to file a FAFSA for the 2012–2013 academic year.  We received 34,728 FAFSAs system-wide to date for 2012–2013 and have already received 22,853 FAFSAs for the upcoming 2013–2014 academic year.
  • We received Building Renewal and Replacement funds to remodel the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships. The space will better accommodate students and improve FERPA compliance, efficiency, and office safety.
  • To improve reporting accuracy, consistency, efficiency, and compliance with state and federal regulations, Financial Aid staff is working with Employment Services to implement a single pooled position number with the implementation of the Electronic Personnel Action Form (EPAF). University Financial Aid and Scholarship Services awards and monitors all federal and state work study funds and works closely with departments to ensure compliance of federal and state rules and regulations regarding work-study employment.

Student Engagement, Dr. Terry Cook

  • The NMSU Academic Advising Council approved Terry Cook to serve a one-year term as Co-Chair beginning July 1, 2013.
  • Dr. Cook presented to families and parents of new first-year students at New Student Registration on June 21, 2013.
  • Campus Tutoring Service is finalizing services with tutors and faculty for all courses CTS will service with tutoring for the second summer term. 
  • TRIO Student Support Services completed telephone contacts to 103 TRiO SSS students who are academically at risk and are not enrolled for fall 2013.

Student Life, Dr. Michael Jasek


This word graphic was compiled from responses to the question “Why do we conduct assessment?”

  • As part of the SAEM effort to build a culture of evidence, Michael Jasek, NMSU Dean of Students, presented three workshops during June. Assessment 101: Construction of Learning Outcomes was conducted for 38 SAEM staff on Tuesday, June 18 and on Friday, June 28. The other workshop, Assessment: An Overview, was presented to the Executive Leadership Team of SAEM on June 27. The word graphic was compiled from responses to the question “Why do we conduct assessment?”
  • Each department within Student Life submitted their five-year plans.
  • Student Accessibility Services staffed tables for the New Student Registration Programs held Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday of last week. Twenty in-coming students registered with SAS for fall 2013.

Health and Wellness, Ms. Lori McKee

  • Rec Sports Summer Programming are hosting several camps this summer, including: 56 campers and 48 counselors or volunteers for Camp New Amigos (children on the autism spectrum); 26 campers and 12 facilitators for Lion’s Survivor Camp (children and siblings who are deaf or hard of hearing); 59 campers for Sports Camp (children ages 5–12 focusing on motor and healthy life skill development); 570 participants in Swim School (pre-school, beginners, intermediate, and advanced lessons); 28 participants in Splash and Dash (children ages
    7–14 focusing on dual-athlon skills in swimming and running); and 120 Early College High School students fulfilling their high school physical education curriculum.


    Rec Sports Summer Camp programs include opportunities for children to  work on swimming skills.

  • CHC Medical Director serves at June 26 Warped Tour:Dr. Benjamin Diven has been the Van’s Warped Tour Medical Director for the last eight years. During the remainder of the year, Dr. Diven serves as the Medical Director for the Campus Health Center, Police and Fire Departments, and the EMT Program at DACC. The annual event attracts thousands of fans to campus to brave the June heat and enjoy a concert with dozens of bands and stages. The medic area is staffed by NMSU Police and Fire, Campus Health & Wellness, Special Events, Auxiliary Services, and medical volunteers from the community, including 30–40 EMT students and paramedics from DACC. The event is used as training for mass casualties and illness as 100–120 patients are typically seen during the concert.


    Dr. Diven

Office of Student Diversity and Outreach, Ms. Christina Chavez Kelley

  • OSDO reporting units participated in the New Student Registrations on June 20–22 to provide incoming students, families, and friends with information about services provided by the American Indian Program, Black Programs, Chicano Programs, and the Sexual & Gender Diversity Resource Center. Dr. Laura Gutiérrez Spencer of Chicano Programs conducted the second Family Orientation Session in Spanish for New Student Registration on June 19, 2013.
  • Dr. Festus Addo-Yobo of Black Programs is collaborating with the Teaching Academy regarding training on diversity practices that is being planned for the fall.
  • Dr. Laura Gutiérrez Spencer coordinated campus visits for 60 dual language students from Las Cruces High School and 35 middle school students from a summer education program in the community; she is also working with SAEM professionals on a training for advising of high school graduates with limited academic English, or who are undocumented, and students who have been granted deferred action status during the fall semester.
  • Dr. Joe Graham submitted the Indian Resource Development Program’s RPSP Project Overview and RPSP Expansion Request forms for the Government Affairs Office.  Dr. Graham will present IRD’s request to the Budget Committee on July 10, 2013.
  • The Sexual & Gender Diversity Resource Center has received donations in memory of Rachel Howell.  Dr. Jon Howell, Professor Emeritus with the Management Department in the College of Business, and his family requested that donations be directed to the Center in Rachel’s memory.
  • Christina Chavez Kelley and Teresa Burgin of the Center for Learning & Professional Development submitted an application for the Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award to Insight in Diversity.

Albuquerque Center, Ms. Veronica Chavez Neuman

  • The Center hosted events for The Southwest Institute for Family and Child Advocacy (SWIFCA) program, New Mexico Department of Agriculture, Sandia National Laboratories, Lovelace Healthcare Sales & Marketing, and the State Formula Funding technical group.
  • Mike Vaughn, IT lead for the Center, is developing a video on use of technology at the Center. The audience is faculty and guests. This will be part of an annual training program to be developed for all employees or users of the Albuquerque Center.

Staff Highlights

  • Angela Arvizo, Coordinator for Student Judicial Services, was married on Saturday, June 23 to Aaron Bates.
  • TRIO Student Support Services hired Chadrhyn Pedraza as the new Mentor Coordinator.

No Report: University Registrar

Western Association of College and University Business Officers

WACUBO: Western Association of College and University Business Officers
June 3 – 5, 2013
Anchorage, Alaska


Martin Buser and a sled dog puppy, with Dacia Sedillo.

The Enrollment Calculus: Tuition Discounting

Jim Doti, Chapman University and Natalie Pullaro Davis, NACUBO

  • Tuition discounting refers only to the institutional and foundation financial aid we offer NMSU students who aren’t willing or able to pay our full tuition. Does not include federal Title IV funds or aid provided by the state (i.e. Lottery).
  • NACUBO has been studying tuition discounting annually since 1996.
  • Nationally, in 11/12, 87% of new freshmen were receiving tuition discounts amounting to 53% of tuition.
  • Even though tuition rates are increasing, net tuition revenue has decreased significantly since 2007.  This effect is a direct result of state funding cuts.
  • Institutions of choice (exs. Harvard, Stanford, Cornell) have inelastic demand.
  • NMSU has to respond to elastic demand as students/families shop around.  Consumers are becoming more informed and price is a key factor being considered.
  • Almost no students are paying full “sticker” price (<15% of students).
  • Two strategies offered for consideration:
    • Is our price point similar to institutions that are like us?  If not, we can either offer more discounting or reduce both tuition and the associated need for discounting.
    • Tuition is a back door tax increase. When states decrease funding to higher ed, higher ed has to transfer actual costs to users.
  • Enrollment Management strategy could be to eliminate institutional and gift aid and just decrease tuition.
  • Marketing strategy could be to point out what students get for the price, as compared to our competing institutions.


Ethical Business Practices – Ethics in Leadership

Joanne Ciulla, University of Richmond

  • Speaker focused on moral leadership.  Examples included Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr.

Three levels of Ethical Analysis:

  • Am I doing the right thing?
  • Am I doing it the right way?
  • Am I doing it for the right reason?
    • what is the right reason?

You may never be able to respond yes to all three but you should, at least, consider and weigh the options.

  • Leadership is a group activity:  gather people together and talk, be explicit in purpose and direction.
  • Those who are elevated to leadership roles should not forget where they’ve come from or what they learned along the way.
  • A good follower should consider how to help their leaders – tell leaders what you know.  Morality requires courage.
  • Mistakes and regret are the best teachers of ethics.


  • Ethical people should be reluctant to be leaders…step up at risk that a less ethical person will fill the role –Plato
  • If a ruler sets himself right, he will be followed without command – Confucius
  • The best rulers are those whose existence is merely known by people – Lao Tsu
  • We are all fallible human beings and we often cause our own suffering because we don’t see others as we see ourselves – Buddhism
  • Lack of compassion causes envy, aggression and scorn toward others – Dalai Lama
  • Lesson from Magellan’s travels: Don’t forget where you come from or what you’ve learned along the way.


The Spellings Commission and Higher Education in America Today

Margaret Spellings, former US Secretary of Education

Ralph Wolff, Western Association of Schools and Colleges

  • There was never a plan of higher education in America.  It has grown organically over time, with no big picture strategy.
  • Issues classified into three main areas: Access, Affordability/Value, Accountability/Outcomes
  • Some key determinations:
  • Examples of successful programs
    • State of Tennessee college readiness testing with funding tied to results
    • Washington State’s “Career Bridges” college comparison shopping tool
    • Texas transparency and accountability legislation
    • Alaska utilization of degree completion for employment
    • Wyoming and Hawaii implementation of technical innovation
    • What can we do?
      • Communicate the value of general education and liberal arts education to society – there is more value in an educated society than just a weekly wage.
      • Provide students with a portfolio of skills useable across a variety of jobs – critical thinking and problem solving skills.
      • Demonstrate cost effectiveness and efficiencies.
      • K-16 needs to stop duplicating efforts – create continuous flow of education over disjointed approach.
      • Reach out and provide useful data analysis, educate external parties about what we do and why, explain how policy changes may affect us either favorably or adversely.
        • state and federal legislators
        • chambers of commerce
        • employers
  • High school students are not prepared upon graduation, but K-12 teachers feel they are adequately preparing their students.
  • Federal financial aid system is too complicated.
  • Department of Education increases regulations, seemingly, without strategy.
  • Bi-partisan politics are hard to come by.

Thoughts from Margaret Spellings:

  • “Change will either happen with you or to you.”
  • “Will you be reluctant and reticent or a change agent?”
  • “We have done a poor job of telling our story. “
  • If higher education has better ideas, step up and help Congress and policy makers


    Author Daniel Pink

  • Specific reference to the good of NM Workforce assessments

Drive: What the Science of Motivation Can Teach You About High Performance

Daniel Pink, Author

  • Employees value 1) autonomy, 2) mastery and 3) purpose most when describing their favorite jobs.
  • Appeal to purpose:  telling people why we are doing something, rather than how, tends to garner greater support.
  • To truly assess what motivates an employee, at the end of every day, ask how their day was (good or bad) and why.
  • Implement DIY performance reviews: set goals and review progress regularly.
  • Peer review can be highly valuable.
  • Provide the “new” generation with rich, meaningful, immediate feedback.
  • There’s a different between being a manager and leader – oversight versus direction.



Dacia and Robert Sedillo visited Surprise Glacier on a Sunday (early) morning glacier cruise.

Janet Judge, Sports Law Associates and Janice Abraham, United Educators

  • The Freeh Report is about governance and processes.
  • Focus on high impact risks
  • Focus on mitigation plans
  • Take on the tough issues and sacred cows (nothing is untouchable)
  • All risks must have owners, identify and name them
  • Tone from the top is important
  • Communication has to flow in all directions
  • Everyone is a risk manager
  • Be aware of what is happening and respond
  • Knowledge and responses must appear centralized and cohesive, even in a decentralized situation
  • Reporting without retaliationDo a better job of looking after vulnerable populations
  • More compliance trainings – include everyone
  • Stare down sacred cows
  • Everyone has a responsibility




Assessment 101

Assessment Wordle

Assessment might be livelier than you think! About 15 SAEM staff attended this week’s workshop, led by Michael Jasek, Dean of Students. We created the wordle from their responses to the question “Why do we do assessment?”

Are YOU interested in improvement? The next workshop is Friday, June 28, 9-10:30 am, Faculty Senate Chambers, Garcia Annex.

You will spend about an hour learning what assessment is, how to implement assessment in your job, how to improve our services to students, and how to collect evidence about the value of our services to the NMSU community. You should leave the workshop with ideas about how to use assessment in your area and how to get started with a project. Teams are welcome.


SAEM Activity Report, June 21, 2013

Office of the Vice President, Dr. Bernadette Montoyansr

  • Over the past year, SAEM Office of the Vice President and University Admissions collaborated to implement an online graduate admissions application through the program Hobsons ApplyYourself. Following the October rollout of the online application, we continued to add application requirements specific to graduate programs. Applicants to the 46 programs with fully online applications can now upload all materials, and departments have all application materials centrally accessible in a single place. Feedback from the departments has been positive.
  • Vice President Montoya completed the Listening Sessions for the Presidential Search for Doña Ana Community College on June 7 with a final session at the East Mesa campus. These listening sessions were attended by many community members, including members of the DACC Advisory Board, local school boards, and the NMSU Board of Regents.
  • The website for the DACC presidential website is now live at http://dacc.nmsu.edu/ps/index.html.
  • For Fall 2013 enrollment, as of June 20, the Las Cruces Campus is down about 3% in credit hours and 7% in student headcount; however, we expect these numbers to increase after this week’s New Student Registration Programs.
  • Enrollment for NMSU system-wide is down about 9% in headcount and 8% in credit hours. The community colleges continue to feel the loss of student headcount as students sort to their primary campus, and are adjusting to this change by shifting their emphasis to the educational needs of their service areas.

University Admissions, Ms. Valerie Pickett

  • Applications from new students are down for this year compared to last year. By category, applications from students in WUE states are up while in-state applications are about the same as last year. Applicants from El Paso are about 25% behind the number from last year at this time.
  • Over 540 new undergraduates attended New Student Registration Programs on June 19–22. We always see an uptick in excitement on social media from the incoming freshman class around these events, such as this tweet from Taylerjane: “An official Aggie now!”

University Financial Aid and Scholarship Services, Ms. Janie Merchant

  • Financial Aid is currently working on an initiative to use card readers when we serve students. These readers will allow us to track student use of Financial Aid services and better assess outcomes related to this use. They will also increase our efficiency and improve information security.
  • The appeal process for students who lose eligibility for federal financial aid (Pell Grants, federal loans, and work study awards) is presently being revised. We are improving the process to make students more accountable for their success and to ensure that appeal is adjudicated as fairly as possible.
  • The Financial Aid Office participated in New Student Registration last week. Over 400 students were expected to meet with a Financial Aid representative over the course of the event.
  • Scholarship Services staff are currently completing the 2012–2013 aid year. Students who have not already done so are sending thank you letters to donors, and we are working with College Scholarship Coordinators to verify that all awards have been fully paid in accordance with donor wishes.

University Registrar, Mr. Mike Zimmermangraduation

  • System-wide, NMSU awarded 2,652 degrees: this included over 800 Associate degrees; 1,300 Bachelor degrees; and over 500 graduate degrees, with 56 doctoral degrees.

Student Engagement, Dr. Terry Cook

  • Terry Cook attended the American Association of Colleges & Universities Best Practices Institute at University of Wisconsin-Madison as a team with Michael Jasek, Dean of Students, Beth Pollack and Lisa Bond-Maupin, Associate Deans from College of Arts & Sciences, and Jodie Kenney, Retention Coordinator for Arts & Sciences. The team developed an initiative incorporating curricular and co-curricular best practices to support second-year student retention.
  • Student Engagement is in discussion with the Regional Coordinator for Gates Millennium Scholars Program to implement support programming for Scholars attending NMSU. This program “selects 1,000 talented students each year to receive a good-through-graduation scholarship to use at any college or university of their choice,” according to the program website.
  • Fall 2013 Calling Campaign: Volunteers from SAEM and NMSU Colleges have called approximately 500 students who had not enrolled for fall semester to offer support and referrals to resources.  We still have 1,537 students to call prior to start of fall semester.
  • Student Engagement staff are preparing for New Student Registration Programs for families and students this week. This is a major outreach opportunity to make incoming students and their families aware of TRIO Student Support Services, Career Services, and other retention programming.
  • Career Services, Student Success Center, and Student Support Services are increasingly assessing their efforts to better serve NMSU students. As part of this, staff met with Dr. Luis Vazquez, Associate Vice President for Research and Ms. Nellie Quezada-Aragon, Director of Research Compliance to review protocols for IRB to ensure compliance with applicable guidelines and regulations.
  • Career Services is implementing CareerBeam, software that will help NMSU students and alumni with employment preparation items such as resume development and interview skills.
  • In collaboration with NMSU Human Resource Services, Career Services is transitioning student employment opportunities from SES Ventana to AggieCareer Manager. Starting this Fall 2013, students will be able to find all postings for student employment, including work-study, part-time, cooperative education, internship, and full-time employment, in the same system they can use to find employment after graduation.
  • Career Services staff also met with CSO, the vendor for AggieCareer Manager, to learn about new features of the program. This roundtable event was hosted by the University of Texas at El Paso.
  • Michelle Adames of the Student Success Center and Marlene Melendez of University Financial Aid and Scholarship Services attended the Daniel’s Fund Scholar Success Forum in Denver, Colorado. This pinning ceremony and banquet serves as an orientation for new scholars, where they meet with staff from their new schools.
  • TRiO Student Support Services Program attained their program service objective by providing services for 353 TRiO participants. In addition, they identified 123 TRiO participants who are not enrolled for Fall 2013 and who are academically at risk. These students will be contacted during the current calling campaign.
  • TRiO advisors served students through FAFSA assistance, appeals, and end of semester advising. Mentors and tutors continued to serve summer school participants. TRIO serves at-risk students who are low-income, first generation, or have a documented disability.

Student Life, Dr. Michael Jasek

  • Campus Activities is improving student outreach by installing a computer outside the office that allows students to search all organizations and their scheduled events. The wall in Corbett Center Student Union with all the student organizations posted required extensive maintenance and will be taken down this week.
  • Two counseling psychologist positions with the Counseling Center will be temporarily filled by Nisha Todi (Group Coordinator) and Angella Anderson (Behavioral Health and Wellness Coordinator) for the 2013–2014 academic year.

Health and Wellness, Ms. Lori McKeeswim

  • The Campus Health Center is updating the medical information system during this summer to better serve students and staff with insurance claims filing, starting fall 2013. The Affordable Care Act will require all persons to have insurance by January of 2014. The CHC system will be better equipped to collect and file insurance claims to all companies once the upgrade is complete. The upgrade will require system changes including scanning capability to bulk file claims.
  • The Aquatics Center just began offering our first specialized fitness program for Muslim women. The culture and religious customs of Muslims do not allow for co-ed recreation and activities. This program facilitates women-only swim time from 7:00-9:00 pm on Wednesdays. Female lifeguards and attendants are on duty during this time.
  • The Activity and Aquatics Centers have been hosting celebrity Chef Gordon Ramsay as a guest in training. Chef Ramsay is on location filming at Meson de Mesilla for the next two weeks and he is also training for a triathlon. Danny Montoya, Associate Director and an accomplished tri-athlete, was contacted by Ramsey’s company to continue his training while in Las Cruces. Ramsay has already used the facility and tweeted about the excellent service and personnel.

Office of Student Diversity and Outreach, Ms. Christina Chavez Kelley

  • Dr. Festus Addo-Yobo of Black Programs is working with the College of Arts and Sciences on an African course in the Government Department and an African American history course in the History Department.
  • Dr. Joe Graham of Indian Resource Development presented Laguna Graduates’ Assessment of Tribal Utilization of Laguna Academic Capital at the Native American & Indigenous Studies Conference held in Saskatoon, Canada during the NAISC’s annual meeting held on June 13-15, 2013. The presentation was well received.
  • Michael Ray with the American Indian Program recruited in Acoma, Isleta, Jemez, Laguna, and Santa Ana Pueblos. He also attended a Career Fair Planning hosted by the Education Department in Bernalillo and Gallup, New Mexico.

No report: Albuquerque Center.


Relocation of the Graduate School

The Graduate School will open the doors to a new office  in the Educational Services Building by July 3rd.

The Graduate School will begin the move from room 230 in Corbett Center on June 26 and will be closed until July 3. It could take a few days to return phone calls during this move. Contact numbers (phone: 575-646-5745; fax: 575-646-7758) will remain the same after July 3.

The new physical address will be: 1780 E. University Suite 301, Las Cruces, NM 88003. The campus address will be:

The Graduate School
New Mexico State University
PO Box 30001 MSC 3G
Las Cruces, NM 88003-8001


Additional Office Moves in Student Affairs.



Office moves

SAEM offices are moving around, as parts of Corbett Center Student Union are renovated, and Hardman Hall and Jacobs Hall are remodeled into the Undergraduate Learning Center. Also, starting this fall, Monagle Hall will be closed. The offices in these buildings are now or will be elsewhere on campus. Below is the list of changes in office locations:OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

  • The Dean of Students Office is now located in Corbett Center Student Union, second floor, room 235 (effective immediately), in the space previously occupied by Campus Activities
  • Campus Activities is now located at Corbett Center Student Union, second floor, room 237
  • Student Success Center-Zuhl staff are now in Hardman Hall, room 202. Tutoring is still available in Zuhl Library, in the south wing on the second floor.
  • Some University Admissions staff are now back in their offices, and the rest are expected back by Tuesday, June 18.
  • WAVE will move to Garcia Hall (room number to be announced) later this summer.

Also be aware that Housing and Residential Life has moved to Corbett Center Student Union, Second Floor, room 230 (effective June 15th)

Additional information on the Graduate School relocation.

SAEM Activity Report, June 14, 2013

Office of the Vice President, Dr. Bernadette Montoya

  • SAEM and Institutional Analysis collaborated on a survey of student enrollment preferences this spring (http://irpoa.nmsu.edu/EPS-SP13.pdf). Students who responded were divided into traditional students, who prefer classes face-to-face and Monday through Thursday, and weekend students, who wanted more online options and classes offered evenings and on the weekends. Most weekend students were part-time graduate students who work full time. About 40% of the comments related to advising.
  • SAEM presented eight items for about $100,000 in Equipment Renewal and Replacement requests to the University Budget Committee on June 12. Three requests will update technology at the Albuquerque Center and will allow us to better serve northern New Mexico students and faculty. Other requests will fund improvements for campus visitation and retention programs, and will help University Financial Aid and Scholarship Services track student data and outcomes.
  • SAEM has created an Assessment Team of staff charged with creating a culture of evidence by collecting and analyzing data to inform decisions. Michael Jasek, Dean of Students and Co-Chair of the lottery-ticketAssessment Team, will lead two workshops in June for SAEM staff seeking to assess practices in their area.
  • The New Mexico Higher Education Department has suggested that the Lottery Scholarship pay only 60% of tuition for the spring 2014 semester. According to an estimate from NMSU Institutional Analysis, and depending on actual enrollment, this could result in a shortfall of $5.5M – $7.5M between the tuition that students are charged and what the Lottery Fund will pay.

University Admissions, Ms. Valerie Pickett

  • The Admissions Office is currently reaching out to incoming freshmen who have scholarships or housing applications but who are not yet enrolled in a New Student Registration event. Nearly 500 students are scheduled to attend next week’s New Student Registration event.
  • We are collaborating with academic departments on graduate applications to finalize fall enrollment.
  • Candace Aragon and Danielle Staley attended the annual New Mexico Education Council meeting the week of June 10 in Santa Fe.  

University Financial Aid and Scholarship Services, Ms. Janie Merchant

  • The Financial Aid and Scholarship Services Office alerts students when they are at risk of losing their eligibility for scholarships or financial aid. For this academic year, and for all campuses, we sent out nearly 8,000 letters to students about their eligibility. Students on federal aid and scholarships can get more than one letter each semester, so the actual number of students receiving these alerts is smaller.
  • NMSU Financial Aid and Scholarship Office is developing a plan to keep students informed about issues surrounding solvency of the New Mexico Lottery Scholarship Fund, in collaboration with ASNMSU.
  • The Financial Aid Office has adjusted our Cost of Attendance (COA) to more accurately reflect a student’s true cost of attending NMSU based on residency and a student’s actual enrollment. These changes will improve our federal compliance and the timeliness of the COA estimate.

Student Engagement, Dr. Terry Cook

  • Career Services staff are working with the Academic Deans to compile the 2013-2014 estimate of graduates for distribution to prospective employers for the upcoming recruiting season. We are also working with Texas Instruments on improving their hiring practices of NMSU students.
  • Career Services is collaborating with Institutional Analysis on analyzing responses from 1500 graduates to the Offers and Acceptances survey.
  • For the year, TRIO Student Support Services provided services for 344 students. This included mentoring for all participants and tutoring for 145 students (nearly 1,300 hours of tutoring). SSS is serving 105 students in summer classes.
  • Campus Tutoring is currently providing tutoring for summer courses in Zuhl Library and in the Chemistry Building.

Student Life, Dr. Michael Jasektumblr_static_krux

  • KRUX 91.5 FM, working in conjunction with KRWG 90.7 FM, submitted documentation last week to the Federal Communications Comission requesting renewal of its license for the next 10 year cycle.
  • Dean of Students Dr. Michael Jasek and Drs. Terry Cook, Beth Pollack, Lisa Bond-Maupin, and Jodie Kenney attended the Association of American College & Universities Institute of High Impact Practices and Student Success in Madison, Wisconsin from June 11–14.
  • Deb Darmata of WAVE is attending Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) conference on suicide prevention.
  • Student Leadership Programs is planning the first Fall Leadership Retreat. Thirty students will be taken to a three-day and two-night retreat in Cloudcroft.
  • Student Legal Aid has invited 200 local attorneys to participate in the legal referral program.

Office of Student Diversity and Outreach, Ms. Christina Chavez Kelley

  • Justin McHorse and Michael Ray of the American Indian Program attended the College Board’s Native American Student Advocacy Institute (NASAI) at the University of Montana – Missoula and Salish Kootenai College in Pablo, Montana.
  • Laura Gutierrez Spencer completed the Freshman Explorer Program funded by a 2012–13 IDEA grant; she will report on her findings within the next two months.
  • The Dr. Andrew Wall Memorial Scholarship Agreement has been completed, and donations to this endowment can be made through the NMSU Foundation.

Albuquerque Center, Ms. Veronica Chavez Neuman

  • Albuquerque Center is generating revenue from external use and is currently hosting a summer Reading Skills program for students from preschool to beyond high school.

Staff Highlights

  • Candace Aragon has accepted a new position as the Associate Director for Administrative Operations in Housing and Residential Life effective July 1.

No report: University Registrar, Health and Wellness

SAEM Activity Report, June 7, 2013

Below is the first weekly activity report to NMSU President Carruthers from Student Affairs and Enrollment Management. We will post these on the website to be responsive to feedback we received at the Open Forum for more communication about all the areas in SAEM. These reports are an opportunity to explain to our own staff as well as to the NMSU community about the strategic value that SAEM contributes to NMSU.

Office of the Vice President, Dr. Bernadette Montoyadr.montoya

  • This week we concluded the six Listening Sessions for the presidential search for Doña Ana Community College. We will develop the feedback into a Leadership Statement that will be part of the job description.
  • Student Affairs continues to work with the University Architect and Facilities and Services through pending building renovation to ensure that the need for classroom and other space is met during renovation of Hardman Hall. Many offices within Student Affairs and Enrollment Management have been affected by pending building closures and renovations: The Dean of Students Office is now on the second floor of Corbett Center, staff from the Student Success Center in Zuhl have moved to Hardman Hall, and WAVE will be relocating to Garcia Hall.
  • The final proofs for the 2013–14 Student Handbook were approved and returned to the printer. 5000 copies of the handbook will be delivered to NMSU in late July in preparation for the new academic year.
  • NMSU-LC enrollment for fall is down 5% in students compared to this time last year, but down in credit hours by only 1%. New graduate students are down by 17%.
  • NMSU enrollment system-wide for fall is down compared to this time last year: student credit hours are down by 7% and headcount is down by 8%. Reduced headcount for community colleges was expected as students enroll in more courses on their primary campus. Enrollment of first-time freshmen and continuing undergraduates are low across the system.

University Admissions, Ms. Valerie Pickett

  • Recruiters visited Central New Mexico Community College and the Education Fair at El Paso’s University Medical Center.
  • Applications for the Fall 2013 class are down compared to this time last year. Undergraduate applications are down: although in-state applications are even and students from WUE states are up, applications from the El Paso area are down. Graduate applications are down 22%.

University Financial Aid and Scholarship Services, Ms. Janie Merchant

  • Janie Merchant, NMSU Director of Financial Aid, attended a meeting on May 31 hosted by NMHED for all New Mexico Directors of Financial Aid and Scholarships. NMHED Secretary Dr. Jose Garcia announced that the New Mexico Legislative Lottery will be 100% funded for fall 2013. Spring 2014 funding is pending Legislative action. NMHED is seeking better communication between the state and FA directors.
  • The quarterly Round Table meeting of NMSU Financial Aid Directors will be June 12 at NMSU-Grants. Agenda items will include policy, technical issues, default prevention, and communication efforts for staff and students. This is part of our effort to improve coordination among campuses: we also hold twice-monthly conference calls and annual Spring Training at NMSU-LC for all financial aid staff.
  • For the 2013–14 academic year, NMSU Financial Aid Offices have processed 21,403 applications for aid system-wide. Applications are submitted throughout the year; for the 2012–13 year, we processed nearly 34,700 applications system-wide.

Student Engagement, Dr. Terry Cook

  • Student Engagement began the Fall Enrollment Calling Campaign to contact students who were enrolled in Spring 2013 and have yet to register for Fall 2013 courses.  Volunteers from SAEM and NMSU Colleges will contact students to offer resources and assistance. Currently, 2,039 students are pending registration for Fall 2013.
  • Student Mentors for the Chase Scholars Program (Bailey Shivers, ACES and Kendall Farah, A&S) and Terry Cook attended a workshop in Artesia on May 30–31 with mentors from UNM, ENMU and Texas Tech about strategies for college transition and success. They also met with NMSU’s 19 incoming first-year Chase Scholars.
  • Staff from Admissions, Student Engagement, Housing & Residential Life, and CCSU reviewed outcomes from May New Student Registration (NSR) sessions and will revise June NSRs based on the assessment.
  • Career Services is working with the City of Las Cruces Economic Development Committee regarding contributions of NMSU Career Services to regional economic development efforts.
  • The Red to Green Money Management Program and Wells Fargo are collaborating on marketing materials for academic year 2013–14.
  • The Student Success Center is offering the Graduate Record Examination/Graduate School Preparation of the Minority Access to Research Careers (MARC) Program and is collaborating with the College of Business advisors to develop an online academic success workshop for students who are on academic probation or suspension.
  • Student Success Center staff participated in a webinar “Trends in Higher Education.”
  • TRIO Student Support Services is mentoring and tutoring 105 summer session students, and they are developing program planning for academic year 2013–14.

Student Life, Dr. Michael Jasek

  • ASNMSU leadership has extended Aggie Transit for summer! The Blue Route will operate from 7:10 am to 5:10 pm Monday through Friday during both summer sessions, serving Family Housing, DACC, campus, and connecting to city transit on University Avenue.
  • Counseling and Student Development submitted their materials to the International Association of Counseling Services for re-accreditation.
  • The Dean of Students office held an all-day retreat for CARE (Concern Assessment and Response) Team to review cases; discuss procedures on suicide attempts and cases; hold a tabletop exercise, and discuss ways to market the CARE Team to the University community.
  • Student Accessibility Services is seeking to provide Braille texts for an incoming freshman who plans to attend NMSU for her bachelor’s degree. SAS is currently obtaining quotes for textbooks for English 111 and Philosophy.
  • Trudy Luken of Student Accessibility Services was appointed to the Governor’s Commission on Disability in late 2012
  • Student Legal Aid has been working with participants in the Ecuador program on family visitation issues.

Health and Wellness, Ms. Lori McKeeamanda gallivan

  • Amanda Gallivan, Health Education Specialist at the Campus Health Center, will travel to Southern Italy and Greece for 3 weeks with the People to People program. Students are nominated to be People to People ambassadors by teachers, community leaders, parents and alumni due to their scholastic merit, leadership potential, and exemplary citizenship. The 14 southern New Mexico students in this program have been meeting monthly at the NMSU Health Center in preparation for this travel. Two of the students will attend NMSU in the fall and will receive 6 college credits for this travel.
  • From Recreational Sports, Ben Gabriel, Manager of Operations and Matt Brigance, Program Coordinator attended the Climbing Wall Association (CWA) Provider Training and Annual Conference May 30-1st in Boulder, Colorado.   

Albuquerque Center, Ms. Veronica Chavez Neuman

  • Programs in Engineering Technology and Hospitality, Restaurant and Tourism Management will be offered at the Albuquerque Center this fall semester.
  • Staff are developing a marketing plan and brochures for the Albuquerque Center.

Office of Student Diversity and Outreach, Ms. Christina Chavez Kelley

  • Jessica Spohn has been hired as the new Coordinator for the Sexual and Gender Diversity Resource Center.

Staff HighlightsBlack Prog Grad 2013

  • In this academic year, SAEM staff earned 4 associates degrees, 3 bachelor’s degrees, and 2 master’s degrees. In addition, Denise Esquibel of the Registrar’s Office and Festus Addo-Yobo earned doctoral degrees.

No report: University Registrar

Career Services Online Conference 2013

Career Services Online (CSO) Conference968854_537744769600926_1970496427_n
May 22-24, 2013
Austin, Texas
Attendees: Charles Morgan, Donna Hill, Marilyn Alejo and Roseanne Bensley

CSO is a resource to register students and to provide information about job postings, campus recruiting, workshops, career fairs, and special events.  In addition to schools from the USA, clients are also represented internationally.

Participants learned about outcome assessment, reports, marketing, custom reports, met with client representatives to review their individual school site and learned about new features that will take place in fall 2013 to improve services for both the administrators and the students.  Roseanne Bensley was invited to serve on a panel presentation along with the University of Texas-Austin, and the University of Wisconsin on Social Media & Career Services.

Three take-away messages from this conference:

  • Training shortcuts and tips: Jing – A FREE program that can be used to take screenshots and short screen capture videos, http://www.techsmith.com/download/jing/, and once installed it is accessed through the yellow Jing ball that will appear around the edge of your screen. 
  • Networking – Roundtable discussion on communication process for posting jobs, watching for job scams, and using disclaimers to properly inform students on how to advocate for themselves in the search process. 
  • Free resources within CSO that are available to help our service to students. Ability to create any type of survey to deploy to students and or employers; Mentor Module to allow student to contact mentors, faculty module to inform faculty of jobs, employers and events


Legislative Lottery Update from Santa Fe

lottery-ticketIn a letter dated May 31, Dr. Jose Z. Garcia, Secretary of Higher Education announced that the Lottery Scholarship will cover 100% of tuition for the fall 2013 semester. He also announced that the “scholarship will experience a significant deficit” beginning in the spring semester of 2014 if the Legislature takes no further action.

Dr. Garcia stated that the scholarship saw a $20 million shortfall during the 2012-2013 academic year, and predicted that the shortfall will continue to grow unless “the Legislature passes a solution that is financially responsible, sustainable for years to come, and capable of supporting New Mexico’s students well into the future.” According to the letter, increased tuition costs, flat revenue from lottery sales, and high demand are the causes of fund insolvency.

Senate Memorial 101 calls for a work group to study ways in which the “scholarship can be reformed in order to preserve it over the long run.” Dr. Garcia announced his intention to work with legislators, students, and other stakeholders to seek input on this process. NMSU student Daniel Sonntag and Vice President Bernadette Montoya have both been recommended for service on this group.

Video from Open Forum 2013

Here is the link to this year’s Open Forum video!

Open Forum

Thank you all for your attendance at our 2013 Open Forum! It was great to see all of you and have the opportunity to answer your questions.DSCN1943

Events like the Open Forums are an important part of the work we do at SAEM. We heard from you last year that learning about other areas helps you understand our role at NMSU, and the Open Forum is part of that education process.  As always, I appreciate your feedback and look forward to working with you on improving our service to the NMSU community.

This year’s discussion ranged widely and touched on topics from enrollment, to the community colleges, and the status of the Lottery Scholarship. Many people asked about leadership changes within our university. I will keep you updated on each of these topics as information becomes available. We also just posted about the moves some of the offices in SAEM have made and will be making within the next few months.

Many of the comments I received from the Open Forum had to do with communication. I appreciate the encouraging comments from many, but as always, we will continue to work on improving our communication.

As part of that, and starting this week, you can look for an update weekly from SAEM Leadership on this website. President Carruthers asked us to send updates to him every week about our milestones, efforts, and challenges. These updates will be posted to our website after they are all compiled.

We also posted the video that was part of the presentation.

Check out the Storify post about Spring 2013 Commencement!

[<a href=”//storify.com/NMSU/spring-commencement-2013-new-mexico-state-universi” target=”_blank”>View the story “Spring Commencement 2013 – New Mexico State University” on Storify</a>]

New Mexico Legislative Lottery Summit 2013

Photo by Jimmy Emerson.

Photo by Jimmy Emerson.

New Mexico Legislative Lottery Summit
April 27, 2013
Fidel Center, New Mexico Tech Campus, Socorro, New Mexico 

Attendees: Bernadette Montoya, Janie Merchant, Judy Bosland, and Melody Munson-McGee

Lottery Update
Tom Romero, New Mexico Lottery Commission

  • 100% of the net proceeds from the Lottery Commission go to the Legislative Lottery Scholarship.
  • Over its history, $560 million has been raised for education by the Lottery Scholarship; there have been 82,000 recipients of the Lottery Scholarship and 34,000 Lottery Scholarship graduates.
  • The return of Lottery proceeds to education has improved, and last year set a record.
  • The Lottery is required to send 30% of proceeds to the fund. Recent changes related to this requirement have reduce retailer and employee incentives. The Lottery Commission reduced employment from >100 employees to only 55 today; advertising and prizes were also reduced.
  • 10-20% of the ad budget goes to beneficiary awareness. Jackpots and specific games are also targets of ad campaigns. 

Tracy Hartzler-Toon, Principal Analyst, Legislative Finance Committee

  • High school graduation rates are flat (~19,000 students/year). The number of students within the White and Native American demographic groups will be flat, but the number of Hispanic students are greatly increasing. We are seeing a gap between young people with post-secondary education and older people. We are not replacing college education credentials in older generations.
  • New Mexico students have $15-16,000 average debt compared to $26,000 nationally.
  • FY 14: $9.8 million was added to Lottery Tuition Fund by the Legislature.  The Higher Education Department will have an estimate of how much tuition this will cover in late Spring.
  • State-wide goal: we want more degree holders at all ages and more students to complete. We would like to increase rates amount broader range of income levels, ethnicity, etc.
  • National conversation on where aid should go is focusing on need plus basis: students should demonstrate a need for the funds PLUS they should be making progress toward degree attainment.

Travis Dulany, Legislative Education Study Committee

  • The Legislature amended Lottery Scholarship eligibility to add those serving in the military, veterans, and people with disabilities. Military dependents are eligible for the Lottery Scholarship if they earn a New Mexico high school diploma.
  • Questions: Should the Lottery Scholarship pay for developmental work? Pay for only 6 hours of developmental course work? Should there be a limit on the number of credit hours the scholarship will pay for? Should we limit eligibility for GED recipients to those 24 years old or younger? Should we allow year-round Lottery Scholarship support?

Judy Bosland, NMSU Institutional Analysis

This talk addressed three questions:

1. Are more students pursuing higher education at NMSU because of the Lottery Scholarship?

  • There is an increase of Lottery recipients across all ethnicities, especially Hispanics.
  • There is a higher percentage rate of students with the Lottery Scholarship if those students have higher income or are more prepared for college.

2. Does the Lottery Scholarship make a difference in student success at NMSU?

  • Graduation rates are higher for students that receive the Lottery even for just one semester. This is true regardless of ethnicity, income, or preparation scores.

3. Who will be affected by changes to the Lottery Scholarship at NMSU?

  • Some of last year’s proposed changes would make Hispanics, other minorities, and lower income students less likely to receive the Lottery Scholarship.

Bottom Line: There are no easy answers. But we should seek to understand the Legislature’s purpose of the scholarship.

Miss Native American NMSU crowned

May 21, 2013valerie_lujan_2013_1369164548_article
WRITER: Samuel Horstman, (575) 646-7565, shorstma@nmsu.edu
CONTACT: Justin McHorse, 575-646-4207, mchorse@nmsu.edu

New Mexico State University student Valerie Lujan was crowned Miss Native American NMSU 2013-2014 during the university’s celebration of American Indian Week in April.

“Valerie was present throughout the week and expressed her interest in being Miss Native American NMSU,” said Justin McHorse, American Indian Program director. “She has been actively involved with the American Indian Program and really has a great network among the student body.”

McHorse said the Miss Native American NMSU pageant is different from traditional pageants; it is more cultural and academic. A student must also demonstrate knowledge of their culture.

“Being selected is an amazing opportunity. I was overjoyed,” Lujan said. “It has been a wonderful experience so far. There is so much support. Being able to inspire fellow students and my community is awesome.”

Lujan is double majoring in pre-nursing and hotel, restaurant and tourism management. She is a tribal member of Taos Pueblo and has been active in the American Indian Program, along with other NMSU organizations since her freshman year. 

Now that Lujan has been selected she plans to take her involvement with NMSU even further.

“I have gone out and encouraged students to pursue a higher education,” she said. “In my community only 15 people graduated from my class, two are still in college three years later. I want to use my accomplishments here at NMSU to inspire other students to stay in school.”

American Indian Week was organized by the NMSU American Indian Science and Engineering Society, the United Native American Organization and the Native American Business Student Association with support from the American Indian Program. American Indian Week was also sponsored by ASNMSU.

McHorse is not involved in the selection process, but was happy to see both he and Lujan are members of Taos Pueblo.

“I am very proud of Valerie,” McHorse said. “She will have a significant impact on the youth to consider college. It is great to see the younger generation taking advantage of higher education.”

Student Affairs Director to serve on the Inceptia Commission

Dr. Anthony Marin has been selected to serve on the Inceptia Commission on Student Success. Tony Marin

Inceptia, a provider of support and resources for higher education in the areas of federal compliance, financial aid management, repayment solutions and financial education, formed the Commission on Student Success to provide advice and assistance related to student success and retention with a focus on secondary and post-secondary students and administrators.  Members provide counsel and insight for Inceptia to develop industry-leading solutions to help students persist and schools improve retention and graduation rates. Members also participate in thoughtful discussions around best-practices and trends and share ideas for new opportunities and partnerships.

Membership is comprised of areas representing research, student services, academics, financial aid, special interest, and corporate.  Members are appointed and reappointed by Inceptia. Dr. Marin is an alumnus of NMSU and currently serves as the Director of Student Affairs with oversight of the Student Success Center-Hardman, TRIO Student Support Services and Career Services. The twelve-person Commission will convene their first meeting in June 2013 at the Inceptia headquarters in Lincoln, Nebraska.