Five WNMU students earn Hall of Fame recognition

Five Western New Mexico University students were recognized for their contributions inside and outside the classroom, with an induction into the annual Student Hall of Fame. The 2017 inductee class included David Cota, Casey Dickens, Claudia Osuna, Ryan Ruiz, and Timothy Stillman. David Cota is a graduate student in the Interdisciplinary Studies program. He transferred from Cochise College before earning a bachelor degree in criminal justice at WNMU. As an undergraduate, Cota was involved in student leadership positions including serving as a resident assistant and judicial hearing officer. Cota contributed to several non-profit organizations as a regular volunteer with the Silver City Gospel Mission and the Silver Care Center. Cota is originally from Douglas, Arizona. Casey Dickens will be graduating this month as an honor student with a degree in English. During her time at WNMU, she served as President of Sigma Tau Delta and a member of the ALAS Committee. Dickens is an...

Three career educators to be inducted into School of Education Hall of Fame

Western New Mexico University will induct three career educators into the School of Education Hall of Fame during the 2017 spring commencement ceremony activities. With nearly a century of combined educator experience in southwest New Mexico, Peggy Sue Larisch, Roberto A. Martinez, and Richard H. Moore will be recognized for their distinguished contributions to the classroom as alumni from WNMU. Peggy Sue Larisch earned two degrees from WNMU in 1983 and 1985. She is being recognized for 29 years of service as a computer science and math teacher at Silver High School and WNMU. Larisch implemented her passion for life-long learning by taking her students on annual trips to the Los Alamos National Laboratory Super Computing Challenge. Larisch was a sponsor for several classes, and supported many student activities including bake sales, car washes, and dances. She was a sponsor for cheerleading and the dance team. Roberto A. Martinez retired after more than 35 years as a...

Cody Willard, CEO and TV news analyst, to keynote commencement

Former cable news commentator and current investment analyst and writer Cody Willard will deliver the keynote commencement speech on Friday, May 12 during the spring commencement ceremonies. Willard is familiar to television viewers as the former anchor of the highly-rated Fox Business Happy Hour, on the Fox Business Network. His other TV experience includes serving as the Wall Street correspondent on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno. A writer and blogger, Willard currently serves as editor of TradingWithCody.com, and the Wall Street Journal’s Revolution Investing Newsletter. He is an adjunct professor at Seton Hall University where he teaches a class called “Revolutionomics” focused on technology and business. Residing in New York City, Willard is the CEO of an app company called The IAm App that develops apps for hundreds of celebrities including Neil Patrick Harris and Carly Simon. Willard’s diverse career includes being a Starbucks barista and a backup guitar...

Free community concert with ‘Music In The Gardens’ event

Western New Mexico University is hosting Music In the Gardens, a free community concert on Friday, May 5 featuring the critically acclaimed collective Birds of Chicago. Currently on a nationwide tour, Birds of Chicago is considered Silver City favorites, delivering exciting live performances in recent years. The group is recognized for its interpretation of melodies in the gospel tradition, with a modern twist. Music In the Gardens will open with a performance by local artists Melanie Zipin and the Sugar Leafs. The outdoor concert will take place at The Gardens, a new outdoor venue adjacent to Light Hall on College Avenue. Music begins at 6:00 p.m. and attendees are encouraged to bring lawn chairs or blankets for seating. The event is sponsored by the WNMU Office of Cultural Affairs. For more information, contact...

Ortego to speak on mysteries of Hamlet

Dr. Felipe Ortego, Scholar-in-Residence at Western New Mexico University, will lecture on the lasting mysteries of Hamlet, the 400-year-old classic tragedy by William Shakespeare. The WNMU Lecture Series event will take place on Thursday, May 4 at 6:30 p.m. in Light Hall Auditorium. Admission is free. The lecture will focus on the mysteries found in the text of Hamlet, the story of a Danish Prince, which has successfully been performed in theaters throughout the world for four centuries. The play touches on several themes including politics, theology, and morality in 17th century England. Ortego is a nationally renowned academic, with a distinguished career in writing, teaching, and activism. He is considered the principal scholar of the Chicano Renaissance, and the founder of Chicano literary history having written the first study in the field, in 1971. The event is sponsored by the Southwest Festival of the Written Word, Western Institute for Lifelong Learning (WILL),...

Board of Regents vote on tuition increase, fee decrease

The Board of Regents at Western New Mexico University voted to pass a modest increase in tuition for the upcoming academic year, a vote that all Board members verbally indicated were reluctant to approve. Tuition for undergraduate, in-state students will increase by $7.79 per credit hour, while student fees will decrease by $1.12 per credit hour, equivalent to a 2.71% increase in tuition and fees for the 2017-2018 academic year. With the new tuition and fee schedule, full-time, New Mexico resident students will pay $3,412.13 per semester, leaving cost of attending WNMU among the lowest in the country. The Board of Regents also approved a continuum of the existing Tuition Guarantee program which allows full time students earning a 2.0 grade point average a set tuition schedule for eight semesters. In addition to voting on tuition, board members also approved the budget for the upcoming fiscal year. “This budget is about looking towards the future,” said Dr. Joseph...

Mustang Festival to commemorate 50th annual Great Race

The Great Race, Western New Mexico University’s longest standing and most popular tradition, will be celebrating a key milestone, 50 consecutive years, with a Mustang Festival event on Saturday, April 29, from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. in Old James Stadium. The free, community event will include live music, food vendors, carnival games, and the opportunity to experience the Great Race competition. Teams will be competing on a route that circles the university campus three times with the start line at the footsteps of the Fine Arts Center Theater. Opening ceremonies for the race begin at 10:30 a.m. with a balloon release and remarks by some of the original event commissioners from the inaugural race in 1967. “Every year our students look forward to the Great Race as an opportunity to come together and celebrate community and friendly competition,” said Abe Villarreal, WNMU Director of Communications. “This year has extra significance because of the presence of special...

Grammy award winning Cuban group to perform at Light Hall

The historic sounds of Cuba will be performed live by the Grammy award-winning group Septeto Nacional de Ignacio Piñeiro, on Wednesday, April 26 at 7:00 p.m., in Light Hall Theater. Interpreting son, Cuba’s national music genre, Septeto Nacional was founded by the late Ignacio Piñeiro, considered the father of this quintessential Cuban style. The seven-member group is now directed by Francisco Oropeza, a bongo virtuoso. For more than eight decades, Septeto Nacional has garnered a reputation as a national treasure for Cuba, interpreting a timeless repertoire, familiar to dancers around the world. Seating is limited. Tickets are $25 per person and can be purchase by calling the Western New Mexico University Office of Cultural Affairs at 575-538-6469 or online at wnmu.edu/culture. The event is sponsored by AMP Concerts, the Western Institute for Lifelong Learning, and the WNMU Office of Cultural...

Hollywood themed gala to raise scholarship dollars

Hooray For Hollywood is the theme for the 2017 Scholarship Gala, an annual event hosted by the by the Western New Mexico University Foundation, set to take place on Saturday, April 22 in historic Graham Gym. Guests are encouraged to dress as their favorite movie star or character, glamorous Hollywood style or black tie. Beginning at 6:00 p.m., the evening will include a cocktail hour with a complimentary bar, dinner, a silent auction, and dancing to the live music of The Paso Del Norte Big Band, of El Paso, Texas. “We are excited to have this 17 piece jazz orchestra band in the style of the great big bands of the 1930’s & 40’s,” said Jodi Edens-Crocker, University Foundation Director. “I think it adds to this year’s event theme as well as provides an amazing opportunity for the dancer’s in our community, allowing WNMU supporters to have an excellent evening of entertainment, to build camaraderie among each other, and to support WNMU Foundation...

Students visit Panama during alternative spring break experience

For a group of five students at Western New Mexico University, this year’s spring break did not include late night movies with friends, or homemade meals during family visits. Instead, for these students, the 2017 spring break vacation was a week of volunteer work and life changing experiences in remote Panama villages. Termed, Alternative Spring Break, the international venture was a trip of a lifetime for the handful of WNMU students who participated in the first annual event. Partnering with SCORE International, an organization that coordinates short-term mission trips, Panama was the choice country for WNMU because of the university’s designation as a Hispanic Serving Institution, and the country’s official language of Spanish. “I first envisioned visiting a big city and the beach,” said LeShauntai Adams, an 18-year-old freshman from Shiprock, New Mexico. After her arrival, Adams quickly realized that the trip would have a bigger impact than the typical spring...