WNMU COVID-19 Updates

WNMU Information Regarding the Virus That Causes COVID-19 Western New Mexico University works to ensure the health and safety of its community and is monitoring the global public health concern related to the new coronavirus (COVID-19). This page contains updates regarding the WNMU plan to mitigate the spread of the new coronavirus (COVID-19), protect the Mustang community, and ensure those pursuing degrees may continue working toward their goals safely. To reach the New Mexico Department of Health, call 1-855-600-3453. Thursday, May 14, 2020 Mustang ID Students wishing to receive a new or replacement Mustang ID may contact the WNMU Business Office through email at busaf@wnmu.edu to schedule an in-person appointment for ID issuance. Students must be finalized for the summer semester and/or currently living in a student residence hall in order to be eligible for a new or replacement ID. Replacement cards will require payment of $15 before issuance. Monday, May 11,...

Meet James Madison Senior Fellow Elly Loman

“One more course, and I’ll be finished,” says Elly Loman, a James Madison Senior Fellow who teaches high school in southern Idaho. Through the Madison Foundation, Elly is working toward a Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies at WNMU. “My bachelor’s is in history. I also have an endorsement to teach English language arts, but they’re not the classes I want to teach. As a teacher, I find social science exciting no matter how many times I teach it,” she says. “I thought if I could get a master’s in history or political science, I’d make myself more employable in social sciences.” The Madison Foundation requires fellows be enrolled in a program that emphasizes constitutional studies, which the versatile Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies degree allows. “It’s nice to take courses that are interesting instead of ones that are just part of a pre-packaged deal,” Elly says. “The course I just finished up is a course on the drug wars, which I...

New Location Planned for Mimbres Valley Learning Center

Western New Mexico University Leading Project, Invested in Land for New Site The Mimbres Valley Learning Center is slated to get a new location on the west side of Deming to be more accessible to the Deming high school and the local hospital. The new site will allow better access to advance higher education opportunities for the region’s population. At the beginning of 2020, Western New Mexico University purchased 40 acres on West Florida Avenue for the purpose of building a new learning center focused on health care and sustainability to provide Deming students of all ages broader opportunities. The campus will set a new standard in the southwest for how sustainability and education can work together to create unique indoor and outdoor learning experiences for students, faculty and the surrounding community. Western New Mexico University, which has an extended university in the existing Mimbres Valley Learning Center, is leading the project design and implementation. “The...

WNMU Board of Regents Passes Budget, Approves Two New Master’s Programs

During a virtual meeting Wednesday morning, the Western New Mexico University Board of Regents approved a fiscal year 2020-2021 budget to present to the New Mexico Higher Education Department by the Friday deadline but expects it will be necessary to change the budget once the legislature meets in special session to determine the overall state finances. WNMU President Dr. Joseph Shepard announced that WNMU will move commencement to a virtual live ceremony on Friday, May 29. “We’re going to Zoom all 300 plus participants,” President Shepard said. President Shepard also reported that the university is making plans for the return of employees and students this fall or when the state’s stay at home recommendations are lifted. “I suspect we’ll have to manage our class sizes. I expect the faculty might continue a hybrid method. We’re sensitive to maximizing the health and minimizing the risk of our faculty, staff, students and community as well,” he said. Regent Dr....

Mustang Senior Accepted to Forensic Psychology Graduate Program

Justyce Millan will graduate with her bachelor’s this spring and go on to the forensic psychology master’s program at Arizona State University. Millan majored in both psychology and sociology, playing Mustang softball for three years of her university career and being involved on campus through the National Society of Leadership and Success, Psi Chi: The International Honor Society in Psychology, and Mustang Cares. She also worked in the WNMU Center for Student Success. “I chose Western New Mexico University because I wanted to get away from home yet stay close. I knew they had good programs in psychology and sociology, which I was interested in,” she said. The senior said her WNMU professors advised her to double major and guided her through the graduate school selection and application process. “I’ve learned a lot from everybody there. It’s definitely been an amazing experience,” she said. When applying to graduate schools, Millan was looking for...

Board of Regents Expects Budgets Cuts, Plans Accordingly

The Western New Mexico University Board of Regents unanimously agreed to raise tuition and also approved the fiscal year 2020-21 student fees during a meeting held over Zoom on Tuesday. The members also approved the final Budget Adjustment Request and the 2019-20 Quarter 3 Financial Actions Report, tabling a vote on the fiscal year 2020-21 budget until the next meeting, which they scheduled for Wednesday, May 13. In his report, WNMU President Dr. Joseph Shepard discussed oil prices’ influence on the state and university budget, which he recommended the board delay determining until the mid-May deadline. Projecting about a 20% decrease, he said this summer’s state legislative special session would determine what cuts WNMU should actually expect. “We’re in for a very, very difficult time. Higher education is 12.8% of the state budget. We can expect substantial cuts no matter what happens.” The president reported that while summer session applications are tracking about...

University of Puerto Rico in Mayaguez Student Participates in Exchange To Stay on Track With Her MBA

Diana Velez Cartaya is a master's of business administration student from the University of Puerto Rico in Mayaguez (UPRM). She is taking an online business statistics course this spring and was the first student who enrolled in a WNMU course since our universities entered a memorandum of understanding last fall. The past biology student had begun a bioengineering program at UPRM but soon realized it was not for her. “Thinking about other options, I figured having a degree as flexible as an MBA would still allow me to work in the health field but taking a more administrative role,” she says. “With science it’s black and white but business offers you the gray part of the spectrum.” In her third semester, she’s hoping to graduate in spring 2021, but due to having started in a different field, she’s behind her classmates. Courses are offered only every other semester at UPRM, so the option to take statistics online through WNMU helps Diana catch up. “This works with...

SRPD Research Assistant Contributes to Study About Equity in Online Education

Online graduate student Mike Olson worked as a WNMU Student Research and Professional Development Research Assistant studying equity in online education. He developed a literature database and designed and distributed a survey in collaboration with WNMU psychology professor Dr. Jenny Coleman. From his home office in Clarksville, Tennessee, Mike works for a small distance education career school based in Arizona. “I’m pursing my Master of Arts in interdisciplinary studies with focuses on instructional design and technology and psychology,” he says. His bachelor’s in instructional design taught him that the field is comprised of both theory and technological application. “What I got into was the theory and specifically those theories that are rooted in science. All the titans happened to be psychologists. I saw the relationships between these two disciplines and searched for a program combining them,” he says. “Turns out, that combo doesn’t exist but am able to...

Senior Program Manager of Advising in Deming for WNMU Extended University Elizabeth Davila

Elizabeth Davila is who WNMU students in Deming lean on for support through their degree programs — and through life. “Having positive caring people in our lives helps carry us to the next opportunity,” she said. Having worked for WNMU Extended University and other offices around campus in the past, Elizabeth started out in Deming as an advisor then began helping students complete financial aid paperwork. “I basically see the students through their general ed requirements until they declare their majors,” she said. For the past two years, she has worked in partnership with Deming public schools to process and advise dual-credit students, many of whom complete associate degrees during their high school years. Elizabeth also spearheaded a college fair at Bataan Elementary, bringing in WNMU academic departments, alumni, and current students to showcase opportunities the university offers. Her social work background lends itself well to the role she plays at WNMU...

Director of the WNMU Center for a Sustainable Future Dr. Kathy Whiteman

Dr. Kathy Whiteman was hired in 2012 to create a university outdoor program and share her GIS expertise as a professor. Since, she has grown the outdoor program from recreational club status to an academic program that includes an on-campus gear rental shop and a field-certified Mustang Search and Rescue Team and also offers regular Wilderness First Aid certification classes plus a minor in outdoor leadership studies. As of fall 2019, Dr. Whiteman is heading up the university’s Center for a Sustainable Future, serves on the New Mexico Outdoor Recreation Division advisory board, and was chairing the committee hosting the Association for Experiential Education 2020 Rocky Mountain Regional Conference, which was to be held at WNMU in April but is now canceled. “The outdoors is a huge part of our regional identity. I’m actively working to foster relationships and collaborations with entities that play roles in the outdoor economy,” she said. Western New Mexico...