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Home | Tag Archives: NMSU (page 4)

Tag Archives: NMSU

NMSU Arrowhead Center’s business success spotlight: Backyard Farms

It’s plot of land next to the First Christian Church that appears unassuming, especially in contrast with Las Cruces High School’s modern architecture, but if you look closely, you can see a simply built Johnson-Su bioreactor composter creating rich soil for the garden and an outline sections of land ready to grow plants.

For Rachael Ryan, owner of Backyard Farms, the land is a piece of a larger network to cultivate and actively improve lives and farming in Las Cruces, New Mexico. To get from blooming ideas to a full-fledged business, Ryan went through the programs at New Mexico State University’s Arrowhead Center.

“First, I had to learn about business to grow Backyard Farms to where it is now,” said Ryan, who is a Ph.D. candidate at NMSU with a background in working as a population geneticist.

In 2017, Ryan joined Studio G, a business accelerator providing free services like workshops on marketing and accounting. That same year, Backyard Farms became a winner of Arrowhead Center’s Aggie Shark Tank competition. After that, Ryan went through the AgSprint, a six-week incubator for agriculturally focused businesses to get on the fast track of success.

“I had no business experience. For example, I didn’t know what a balance sheet was. AgSprint was like going back to grad school,” she said.

Ryan delved into learning as much as she could from the business aspect – the customer discovery, marketing, budgets – to create a sustainable model that could support nonprofit efforts, like working with Las Cruces High School students to get their hands dirty. The students were able to build a working composter and chicken tractor for the garden.

Kristin Gustine, an environmental science teacher at Las Cruces High School, said that many students had never thought about growing their own food, or had a conceptual idea of that cycle in their lives.

“Even for high schoolers, they are more likely to eat a new food if they’ve grown it. It inspires them to learn the story behind their food,” she said.

You might have seen more of the Backyard Farms story if you’ve walked into a Las Cruces local foods market and had a clear carton of

Backyard Farms quail eggs are gaining national and global attention. (Courtesy of Rachael Ryan)

speckled mini eggs catch your eye. Those quail eggs are another component of the business, one that’s even garnered it global attention.

In October 2019, the eggs were served at a charitable dinner event in a collaboration with El Paso’s own Taft-Díaz and Mexico City’s world-famous restaurant Pujol.

But Backyard Farms is not just focusing on the global marketplace, it’s also sharing a bounty with those in need. Some of the produce harvested has been donated to local school programs and food banks at First Christian Church, El Calvario United Methodist Church, and El Caldito Soup Kitchen.

For Ryan, Backyard Farm is also about adapting what comes out of the garden to where it’s planted, like cultivating lettuce that can thrive in July.

“It’s about breeding hardiness because our environment is harsh, not just in the lack of water but low humidity, windstorms and salty alkaline soil,” said Ryan. “Working with Arrowhead Center has opened many doors, like access to marketing, accounting, funding and legal help that small businesses need but often can’t afford in the early stages. Backyard Farms shows that an agriculture business can sustain conservation.”

Along with AgSprint, Arrowhead Center offers programs for businesses in other industries, such as healthcare and clear energy, along with initiatives that focus on ventures from a variety of sectors.

“Arrowhead Center can help businesses get started, no matter where they are in the journey or what their goals are,” said Kathryn Hansen, director of Arrowhead Center. “Our programs can kick off a whole network of opportunities.”

For more information for growing a business or even a business idea, check out the business accelerator programs at NMSU’s Arrowhead Center at Sprints Webpage and Studio-G.

Author: Cassie McClure – NMSU

NMSU provost announces new Beyond Borders community initiative

New Mexico State University Provost Carol Parker has announced the creation of Beyond Borders, a community of practice that focuses on international, hemispheric and border regions in alignment with the NMSU LEADS 2025 Global Challenge.

“I look forward to working to reinvigorate and strengthen our initiatives to globalize our curriculum, research and outreach missions under the banner of NMSU LEADS 2025,” Parker said. “Innovation in this area will enhance NMSU’s reputation, visibility and reach, while potentially growing new resources to further strengthen the NMSU system.”

Last fall, Parker took steps to restructure NMSU’s International and Border Programs office, leaving oversight of the academic aspects of the office with Academic Affairs and realigning student support and co-curricular programs with Student Success to better serve international students and centralize recruitment, admissions, advising and co-curricular support for these students.

Parker said she has since continued to consult with academic stakeholders regarding current and future leadership needs and support for international programs.

Beyond Borders will support faculty and staff interested in creating a self-supporting community around interdisciplinary internationalization of curriculum, research and creative works, and community engagement and extension.

The Beyond Borders community will receive programming and logistical support from Parker’s office and Vice President for Research Luis Cifuentes. The community will be based at Nason House on the NMSU campus.

Parker will also launch a search for a faculty fellow to serve as the founding leader, convener and faculty administrator for Beyond Borders. The quarter-time faculty administrator will work closely with faculty and academic leaders from across NMSU and with members of the external community.

A second, quarter-time faculty fellow will also be hired to serve as the leader, convener and faculty administrator for a newly reinvigorated Center for Latin American and Border Studies, which will focus on promoting excellence in scholarship, research and creative works on topics and issues concerning Latin America, the U.S.-Mexico border and general border studies.

“I encourage anyone working on matters related to international, hemispheric and border regions to join the Beyond Borders community of practice,” Parker said. “If this approach is successful, NMSU will develop additional supported communities of practice to focus on other LEADS 2025 Global Challenges.”

For more information about NMSU LEADS 2025, visit the website.

Author: Adriana M. Chavez – NMSU

NMSU to implement new health, safety, well-being initiative for fraternity, sorority community

With the arrival of new leaders on campus, New Mexico State University officials have been working on a new initiative to enrich the health, safety and well-being of students involved in fraternity and sorority life communities.

“We’re adapting a model that is being used in the Big 12, Big 10, SEC and other schools across the country,” said Ann C. Goodman, NMSU’s dean of students.

The goal of the new initiative is to implement strategies, develop common guidelines for accountability and develop a system to report implementation for the fraternity and sorority life communities that have a history of shared governance and to address challenges such as alcohol abuse, hazing, sexual harassment and sexual assault that have plagued fraternity and sorority communities across the country, according to Goodman.

“Both Abby (Howard) and I are new and we are passionate about building a positive fraternity and sorority life community,” Goodman said. “One that is healthy, and one that would be attractive for students to come to New Mexico State.”

Approximately 400 students belong to the eight fraternities and six sororities at NMSU.

The initiative will create a permanent fraternity and sorority life excellence committee that will serve as an advisory board to review and support the needs of the fraternity and sorority community. Committee members may include representatives from the dean of students office, Greek Council, NMSU Alumni Association, a local chapter fraternity and sorority alumnus, a fraternity and sorority chapter adviser, faculty/staff adviser, ASNMSU and WAVE.

One of the 20 new measures was a new member orientation requirement for students joining fraternities and sororities, which was implemented in spring 2020. Additional measures included in the initiative are proactive risk management training for student leaders and advisers on how to identify procedures to handle issues the fraternity and sorority community faces and a continuous curriculum of educational programs for current members.

As the coordinator of fraternity and sorority life, Howard said one of her focuses is on advocating for the leadership in the fraternity and sorority life community.

“If they are not doing well individually, I can’t expect them to come together and be a unified front. You have to have a good foundation before you can go up to the next level,” Howard said.

Goodman said plans for a website with the initiative details is in development.

Author: Tiffany Acosta – NMSU

NMSU Extension to host two food safety trainings for produce growers

No one growing produce wants to inadvertently make people ill because of poor food safety practices.

Two training sessions will be held in New Mexico to help fruit and vegetable growers meet the regulatory requirements included in the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Food Safety Modernization Act Produce Safety Rule.

New Mexico State University’s Cooperative Extension Service and the Southwest Border Food Protection and Emergency Preparedness Center, housed at NMSU, are offering produce safety rule training in Las Cruces on Wednesday, March 4; and Albuquerque on Thursday, March 19.

The Product Safety Rule requires at least one supervisor or person responsible for the farm to have successfully completed food safety training in accordance with the annual monetary value of produce the farm sold during the previous three years.

“This is a one-day event that is intended for fruit and vegetable producers and importers who grow, harvest, pack or hold produce and fruit that is usually consumed raw, and who sell more than $25,000 per year,” said Bob Silver with the Southwest Border Food Protection and Emergency Preparedness Center.

Participants who complete the course receive a certificate from the Association of Food and Drug Officials that verifies they have completed the training. The certificate is also useful for meeting buyer requirements for food safety.

Participants receive a course manual that is a useful reference for farm safety practices and to develop a farm safety plan.

The Product Safety Alliance grower training in New Mexico will be:

– March 4: Las Cruces Convention Center, 680 E. University Avenue, Las Cruces. Online registration payment due by Feb. 28
– March 19: NMSU Bernalillo County Cooperative Extension Service, 1510 Menaul Blvd, Albuquerque. Online registration payment due by March 13.

All training sessions are from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Online registration cost is $35. At-the-door registration is $50, which includes training manual and certification of course completion.

To register online click here. For more information, visit the website or call Janet Witte, 575-646-5949.

The trainings are sponsored by NMSU’s College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences and New Mexico Department of Agriculture.

Author: Jane Moorman – NMSU

NMSU On-farm water conservation, irrigation efficiency workshop set for February 22

The College of Engineering at New Mexico State University, in partnership with the Elephant Butte Irrigation District, will host a workshop February 22.

NMSU officials share that the workshop is for farmers, civil engineers and others interested in improving irrigation and on-farm water management practices.

The full-day workshop will cover numerous topics to include crop irrigation needs and delivery optimization, irrigation techniques and technology, irrigation scheduling improvements and pump and well efficiencies. Instructors also will discuss the surface water supply forecast and EBID ordering tools.

The workshop is appropriate for new and experienced farmers, agronomists, engineers and students.

Learn more and register to attend via this link or call 575-646-7852. Workshop cost is $40 if registered by February 19 with an additional fee for professional development hours, if requested.

The workshop will include lunch and refreshments and will be held on NMSU’s Las Cruces campus, Hernandez Hall, Room 103, 3035 South Espina Street.

Author: Sara Patricolo – NMSU

NMSU’s Arrowhead Innovation Fund invests in innovative community experience with Electric Playhouse

Technology can help connect us, and a new Albuquerque restaurant aims to use the newest tech to build experiences like no other.

New Mexico State University’s Arrowhead Innovation Fund invested to help jump start the new Electric Playhouse, a restaurant catering to new gaming and culinary encounters.

Officially open since February 1, Electric Playhouse is an interactive and immersive gaming experience that merges creative play with great food.

With two dining areas and a full bar with local beers in a 24,000-square-foot location in Albuquerque, the concept of Electric Playhouse grew out of Storylab, a business-to-business interactive entertainment company that tested the elements that have expanded into the new business.

John-Mark Collins, the CEO and founder, came from a merged background in hospitality, software engineering and art and said the idea grew from his interest in making software more interactive. Collins wanted to establish a place for social connectivity, using technology to bring people together. The games use projectors and motion sensors to track a guests’ location in the room, and the movement of their body, to let the whole space become a game.

“Any business venture is a challenge, but doing something that is first in the world, with patented technology, wonderfully unique food and drink, special events for all ages, and truly unforgettable customer service requires an all-in, seven-days-a-week effort from a whole lot of people, and never enough of them,” said Collins. “A big offering like Electric Playhouse needs at least a year to build community, get into people’s lifestyles and plant a flag on the tourism roadmaps.”

Beto Pallares, AIF managing director, explained how ingenuity and innovation came together for this investment.

Two guests play at the Electric Playhouse, a new interactive gaming and dining experience in Albuquerque. The Arrowhead Innovation Fund invested to help jump start the restaurant. (NMSU photo by Carlos Murguia)

“Electric Playhouse is representative of the creative and technical prowess embodied in New Mexico’s entrepreneurs,” he said. “Moreover, the business acumen its founders and supporters exhibit point at elements of job and wealth creation that will inspire other entrepreneurs and wow the venue visitors. AIF is proud to support and foster that type of New Mexico talent.”

Electric Playhouse closed a nearly $4.4 million Series A funding round that helped them research and develop their gaming and business ideas, market the fledgling business, find the right staffing, and create the space.

“Investment such as from AIF is the lifeblood, the irreplaceable key to survival at least until that freshman year teaches all it can about sustained and gaining growth and prosperity,” said Collins. “It’s hard to put the gratitude into mere words and so there’s no motivation upon waking up every day like that of making good for those who put their fiscal trust in you, especially at the beginning, but always.”

“Technological innovation means leading in both creativity and the increase in the quality of life,” said Kathryn Hansen, director of Arrowhead Center. “It’s not just novelty to explore the boundaries between what is business and what connects people while using new technologies.”

AIF stands at $2 million in commitments and is looking for companies with entrepreneurs fully committed to growing and scaling their company and who are seeking between $25,000 and $150,000 in investment toward their total seed round fundraising target.

For more information about AIF, visit the Arrowhead Innovation fund page or contact Carlos Murguia at or by calling 575-646-2025.

Author: Cassie McClure – NMSU

NMSU’s KRWG partners with StoryCorps to record, share veteran stories

New Mexico State University’s KRWG Public Media is teaming up with StoryCorps to host a public listening event, sharing the pre-recorded stories of veterans and their families.

The event will take place from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday, March 5 at the New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum, 4100 Dripping Springs Rd.

Additionally, StoryCorps will be on campus March 2-13 to record new stories. Local veterans who would like to record an interview with StoryCorps as a part of the Military Voices Initiative are encouraged to reserve an appointment. StoryCorps interviews veterans along with a selected loved one and records a 40-minute conversation. At the end of the session, a copy of the interview is provided.

“KRWG Public Media is excited to partner with StoryCorps to record, preserve and share the stories of local veterans and military families and let them know that we as a nation are listening,” said Adrian Velarde, KRWG general manager.

To schedule an interview for StoryCorps’ Military Voices Initiative call 1-800-850-440 or visit the scheduling website.

StoryCorps stores recordings in its archive at the Library of Congress, which houses the largest single collection of human voices ever gathered. It also shares select stories with the public through StoryCorps’ weekly podcast, NPR broadcasts, animated shorts, digital platforms and best-selling books.

Founded in 2003 by Dave Isay, StoryCorps has given more than 500,000 Americans of all backgrounds and beliefs, in towns and cities in all 50 states the chance to record interviews about their lives. These powerful human stories reflect a range of American experiences, wisdom and values. This is intended to generate empathy and reflect commonality rather than differences.

For more information about StoryCorps and KRWG Public Media visit

Author: Faith Schifani – NMSU

NMSU’s Pride Season to kick off February 10, run through April

New Mexico State University’s LGBT+ Programs will begin Pride Season on Monday, February10. Five events over the next few months will include book and poetry readings, a drag show and a movie screening.

“We are very excited to collaborate again with the Black Student Association for a crossover with Black History Month and Pride Season,” said Zooey Sophia Pook, director of the LGBT+ Programs. “Our LGBT+ students are comprised of all races, all backgrounds, and all majors at NMSU and we must recognize and celebrate the diversity in our community.”

Lady Dane Figueroa Edidi, a performance artist known as “The Ancient Jazz Priestess of Mother Africa” will be performing at 7 p.m. in the Corbett Center Auditorium on Monday, Feb. 10. She will be doing some readings from some of her most recent books.

Stacie Waite, a poet, educator and scholar from Long Island, N.Y, will be doing a hybrid performance of poetry and a discussion on intersectionality and inclusion in writing at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 20 in Corbett Center, Doña Ana Room 312. This event is a collaboration with the English department to offer critical tools for students to promote diversity and inclusion in their studies.

The LGBT+ Program will host its annual drag show at 7 p.m. March 16 in the Corbett Center Ballrooms. The spring break party-themed show will feature the first appearance at NMSU of national queen, Amaya Sexton and Albuquerque’s Trey C. Michaels. Returning national stars include Eva Alicia Jane and Sabrina Heartt and Albuquerque’s ViLette Stratton.

“Our Halloween show saw over 350 people in attendance and we expect a similarly large and excited crowd this time around for our lineup of national, local, and student performers who make our shows one of the most talked-about and exciting events in Las Cruces!” Pook said.

Bradley Darryl Wong, an actor who is known for his roles in Jurassic Park, Mr. Robot and Law and Order will give a talk at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 7 at the Honors College. He will be discussing his experiences as an Asian and gay male actor.

The last Pride Season event at NMSU will feature a screening of “Never Goin’ Back” at 7 p.m. Monday, April 20 at the Creative Media Institute Theatre in Milton Hall. “Never Goin’ Back” is a comical “slice of life” lesbian love story that follows two teenage girls over a week as they try to find illicit ways to make their rent money after blowing it on a beach vacation.

All events are free and open to the public and coordinated in conjunction with ASNMSU. For more information, call LGBT+ Programs at 575-646-7031 or email

Author: Melissa R. Rutter – NMSU

NMSU HRTM launches new hospitality career center with $400k investment

The hospitality industry in New Mexico is on pace to grow by 7.9 percent over the next six years, adding a projected 7,102 jobs to the food services and accommodation sector by 2026, according to the New Mexico Department of Workforce Solutions.

The School of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management at New Mexico State University is now better positioned to help meet the demands of the growing hospitality industry, thanks to a four-year, $400,000 investment from The J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott Foundation.

HRTM – one of eight academic departments in the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences at NMSU – used funding from the investment to create the Marriott Hospitality Futures Center, a new on-campus center dedicated to fostering hospitality career development and promoting the importance of hospitality education.

The investment from the Marriott Foundation was made to the NMSU Foundation in 2019 to support HRTM.

“We are proud to work with the Marriott Foundation to make a positive difference in the education of our students as they pursue their hospitality studies and engage with industry professionals,” said Leslie Cervantes, interim vice president for University Advancement.

The Marriott Hospitality Futures Center, which opened to students in January, also will serve as a central hub for community outreach, connecting students to industry professionals and increasing the overall visibility of HRTM, which offers the only bachelor’s program in hospitality management in New Mexico.

The center’s key initiatives include refining existing recruitment, outreach and professional development programs, as well as creating career workshops targeted toward high school students, teachers, guidance counselors and community college students. HRTM program coordinator Andrea Arrigucci and a grant-funded assistant are spearheading the center’s efforts.

Last fall, HRTM renovated office spaces in Gerald Thomas Hall to house the center, creating a designated area for students to research work and careers, hold meetings, receive career counseling, and take part in interviews with industry representatives for internships and employment. One of the spaces has two computers for students.

“Our students now have the resources they need for their job searches, their classes and group projects right here in the HRTM department,” HRTM Director Jean Hertzman said. “We want the Marriott Hospitality Futures Center to be a key place for students to connect to the information they’ll need to find jobs and opportunities.”

As more resources are developed, Hertzman said, they will become available on the center’s website,

In addition to being a space for one-on-one meetings with industry representatives, the center also doubles as an area for HRTM students to study.

“I’m using it pretty much every day just to catch up on homework and reading, and also communicate with my professors about questions that I have,” HRTM senior Amber Ogaz said. “I like that this space is tailored for HRTM. It’s literally ours, which is awesome.”

College of ACES Dean Rolando Flores commended HRTM’s ongoing efforts to connect students to industry professionals through the Marriott Hospitality Futures Center.

“This is a prime example of what we are trying to achieve in all our ACES programs by having a strong connection with the appropriate industry in each department,” Flores said. “Our students need to have contact with industry representatives and become familiar with the opportunities that a close relation with the industry brings to ACES students, internships and jobs.”

Arrigucci will host the center’s inaugural career workshop Tuesday, Feb. 11. The workshop will cover interview and résumé readiness, Arrigucci said, and students who attend can expect to learn about the key principles of résumé building, interview skills and dressing professionally. The goal is to prepare students for the annual Hospitality Career Fair, set for Feb. 26-28.

“We will host six to eight workshops throughout the year on a variety of different topics,” she said. “For example, we’ll have one that focuses on entrepreneurship in conjunction with NMSU’s Arrowhead Center, and we’ll have another one that centers on sustainability.”

For more information about the center and future workshops, contact Arrigucci at or 575-646-5566.

Author: Carlos Andres Lopez – NMSU

NMSU, UNM collaborate on New Mexico Ph.D. program in geography

Starting in fall 2020, New Mexico State University students will have the choice to get a doctorate in geography through a joint program developed with the University of New Mexico.

“UNM and NMSU professors had been approached by the national laboratories, LTER stations and also the U.S.G.S. (U.S. Geological Survey) and the BLM (Bureau of Land Management) state offices regarding the need for a Ph.D. program,” said Carol Campbell, NMSU geography professor and department head.

“UNM didn’t offer it. We didn’t offer it. There wasn’t a geography Ph.D. program in the state. The two departments have complimentary expertise across the discipline, so it seemed very logical for us to collaborate and to develop this joint program.”

Campbell estimates 30 percent of NMSU’s master’s degree of applied geography graduates are employed by federal agencies; another 30 percent go into local or state government. Many of these professionals seek opportunities for advancement within New Mexico.

Nearly 10 percent of NMSU students earning a master’s degree of applied geography continue on to pursue a doctorate, but at other universities across the country. UNM also has a robust program with its fair share of geography master’s degree students seeking a Ph.D., indicating a healthy supply of candidates from both universities.

“Geography is a really integrative discipline that draws on the social sciences and humanities as well as the natural sciences. Both programs focus primarily on human environment interactions, and geographic information science and technology,” said Campbell. “So, we create maps and surveys about places and interactions, or analyze satellite images and spatial models to examine issues such as land degradation, water management, public health, food and drugs and species distributions.”

With New Mexico’s national labs, federal research stations and state government agencies in need of diverse spatial researchers who hold a doctorate, the two universities have spent the last several years working together on the joint Ph.D. offering.

The process began in 2012 with a discussion that led to the proposal for a joint Ph.D. in geography in New Mexico. By 2016, the NMSU geography department was nearly finished with the internal review process. After successfully completing the internal and external processes, the proposal was approved by the state in April 2019. The New Mexico doctoral program in geography will be delivered jointly by faculty members at both campuses and will allow cross-enrollment. First-year courses will integrate distance-learning technologies with in-person meetings on each campus.

Campbell expects the joint doctoral program will encourage a diverse range of Ph.D. students to develop research that addresses human-environment relations. NMSU’s geography department is multifaceted. Its newest faculty member does community-engaged work around literary and artistic representations of place, in the Southwest and beyond.

“Environmental challenges are so complex at this time in history that you really need to have a broad background and a broad perspective to address many of these issues,” Campbell said. “Researchers need to be able to bring together their backgrounds and think about how natural processes are going to be influenced by what people are doing, and vice versa. What are the implications of these interactions?”

Among benefits of a doctoral degree, Campbell emphasized, is the collaborative nature of the research that can expand students’ perspective of geography and give them valuable tools to help them approach their jobs.

“They’re going to be able to think outside the box and may be stepping into other researchers’ shoes to get a feel for how their specialty or how their research might contribute to the bigger picture.”

Author: Minerva Baumann – NMSU

NMSU climate change series continues with focus on security issues

New Mexico State University’s Climate Change Education Seminar Series continues with a closer look at how climate change affects global and national security concerns.

Lee Gunn, retired U.S. Navy Vice Admiral and a member of the board of directors of the American Security Project, will give a presentation titled, “Climate Security: Threats and Responses at Home and Abroad.” His talk begins at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 12 at the Rio Grande Theatre.

Gunn has served as president of the Institute for Public Research at CNA Corporation. CNA, which also encompasses the Center for Naval Analyses, is a non-profit, non-partisan research and analysis shop that generates reports to advise policymakers on critical issues of the day. Gunn is a member of CNA’s Military Advisory Board, which was convened in 2006 to study the implications of climate change from the perspective of national security.

The Military Advisory Board produced a landmark report in 2007 titled, National Security and the Threat of Climate Change, that in Gunn’s words presented the global phenomenon as a “looming, and indeed current, threat to our national security.” The report referred to climate change as a “threat multiplier.”

“Until we issued our reports in 2007, there were few members of the national security establishment whose voices were heard in this conversation,” Gunn wrote in a 2017 commentary in the journal Elementa: Science of the Anthropocene.

He added, “In our view of the world from a security perspective, only Americans and American leadership are capable of contending with both the causes and consequences of climate change. Americans must be mobilized immediately, as generations of Americans have mobilized in the past, to face the most important climate change threats to our national security.”

Gunn’s talk is the second of four spring semester NMSUCCESS talks. NMSU and community collaborators began the series in spring 2018 with talks by experts from around the country for the once-a-month seminars.

Future topics will include carbon sequestration and mass extinction threats. The series’ goal is to shine a light on research and issues related to climate change for this region and the world.

Author: Amanda Adame – NMSU

NMSU to host 2020 Economic Outlook Conference February 13

National and state economists will gather in Las Cruces Thursday, February 13, to present their economic forecasts for 2020 during New Mexico State University’s ninth annual Economic Outlook Conference, hosted by the College of Business and Wells Fargo & Company.

The conference – free and open to the public – will take place from 10 to 11:30 a.m. at the Las Cruces Convention Center, 680 E. University Ave. A reception will start at 9:30 a.m.

This year’s speakers include Charles Dougherty, vice president and economist at Wells Fargo Securities, and NMSU Regents professor emeritus Jim Peach, who served as a faculty member in the Department of Economics, Applied Statistics and International Business from 1980 to 2018.

Dougherty, who joined Wells Fargo in 2017, covers the commercial real estate, housing and construction sectors of the United States’ regional and macro economy. He regularly writes indicator reports, produces special commentary and contributes to Well Fargo’s Weekly Economic & Financial Commentary report.

Before joining Wells Fargo, Dougherty worked as a regional economist and consultant for IHS Markit and CertainTeed, one of the largest building product manufacturers in North America. He holds bachelor’s degrees in economics and finance from the University of Pittsburgh and a master’s degree in economics from Temple University in Philadelphia.

Peach recently published two articles on Major League Baseball, as well as a book on the New Mexico economy and an article on the process of economic development. In addition to receiving numerous awards for teaching, research and service, Peach has served as president of four different academic organizations.

Peach earned a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Texas at Austin. His research interests include economic policy, energy, economic development, income distribution, demography and the economics of sports.

The deadline to register for this year’s conference is Monday, Feb. 10. To register, visit this website, or call Anthony Casaus at 575-646-5817.

Author:  Carlos Andres Lopez  – NMSU

NMSU extends Las Cruces Public Schools partnership to provide STEM after-school programs

The New Mexico State University STEM Outreach Center will continue to partner with Las Cruces Public Schools to provide extended learning time after-school programs.

The idea of offering these 15-week programs came from the strong bond that NMSU shares with LCPS. Currently, 11 schools are part of the 21st century community learning centers out-of-school time program offered by the STEM Outreach Center at the NMSU College of Education.

In collaboration with LCPS interim Superintendent Karen Trujillo, an additional 14 elementary schools will participate in after-school programming utilizing extended learning time funds.

“Our hope is that students find the program innovative, engaging and inspiring,” said Sara Morales, NMSU STEM Outreach Center associate director. “Research shows that children in after-school programs attend school more often, get better grades, and are more likely to graduate. They also improve students’ homework completion, class participation and class behavior.”

Each school will be assigned a site facilitator who will ensure that the programs are high quality and engaging for students.

The NMSU STEM Outreach Center will provide approximately 114 educational curriculum kits and professional learning for about 120 teachers and educational assistants who will then implement the lessons in their after-school classrooms.

“What happens outside of the classroom is as important as what happens inside of the classroom,” said Morales. “It is our responsibility to ignite that passion for our children and youth at an early age and bring access to explorations that they otherwise may not have.”

Students must complete a registration form and select the session they prefer. Space is limited to 15 students per session encouraging a small student-to-teacher ratio.

For more information about these after-school extended time learning programs contact Morales at 575-646-3084 or

Author:  Faith Schifani – NMSU

NMSU, NM Department of Health to offer diabetes cooking classes in Las Cruces

Next month, New Mexico State University’s Cooperative Extension Service will present a series of cooking classes designed to teach adults with diabetes how to cook healthy meals.

Beatriz Favela, a Family and Consumer Sciences Extension agent at the Doña Ana County Extension Office, and Janae Kraus, a registered dietitian nutritionist, will teach the classes.

“This is a great, free program. I hope individuals suffering from diabetes and live in the area can take part in these classes and can benefit from the valuable information shared,” Favela said.

The four-class series, Kitchen Creations, will take place from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Feb. 4, Feb. 11, Feb. 18 and Feb. 25. at Mayfield High School, 1955 N. Valley Drive, in Las Cruces. The classes are sponsored by the New Mexico Department of Health.

Over four consecutive weeks, participants will learn food safety, how to plan meals, how to read food labels and how to manage carbohydrates. They also will prepare and sample healthy meals.

According to the 2018 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, 11.4 percent of adults in New Mexico had diabetes. Research has shown that lifestyle changes, including healthier eating, can help manage diabetes and reduce the risk of complications.

Kitchen Creations served more than 1,000 New Mexico residents over the past two years.

The class series is free and open to the public, but registration is required. To enroll in the upcoming class series in Las Cruces, contact Sofia Hernandez at 575-635-1230 or Favela at 575-525-6649. NMSU is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and educator. If you are an individual with a disability who needs an auxiliary aid or service to participate, contact Favela by Jan. 28.

For a complete schedule of classes in other counties, click here.

Kitchen Creations is sponsored by the New Mexico Department of Health’s Diabetes Prevention and Control Program and offered by NMSU’s Cooperative Extension Service as part of the “Paths to Health NM: Tools for Healthier Living initiative.”

To learn more, visit the Paths to Health webiste.

Author: Carlos Andres Lopez – NMSU

Date set for 2020 Domenici Public Policy Conference at NMSU

The Domenici Public Policy Conference held at New Mexico State University will resume this fall and be held September 16-17 at the Las Cruces Convention Center.

“We are really excited about this upcoming conference,” said NMSU Chancellor Dan Arvizu. “The focus will be on two topics that are widely discussed across New Mexico and the nation: energy and education. We expect to land a solid lineup of speakers as in previous years.”

The 2020 conference will be the 12th event, which is a two-day regional conference that attracts more than 1,000 attendees annually and focuses on significant issues facing the state, nation and world. A list of speakers and topics will be announced when they are confirmed.

The Domenici Institute for Public Policy at NMSU is named after Pete V. Domenici, New Mexico’s longest-serving United States senator who died in 2017. The institute at NMSU was created to continue Domenici’s legacy of service to both the state and the country.

Conference speakers have included the country’s top experts from a variety of sectors such as government and elected officials, including former U.S. senators; U.S. representatives; U.S. cabinet members; U.S. ambassadors and governors; military personnel; scholars; journalists; policy directors; business executives; and political consultants.

Ticket sales will begin in early April. Click here for more information on the Domenici Institute

Author: Tiffany Acosta – NMSU

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