WNMU Board of Regents Advances Deming Learning Center Project, Receives Enrollment Report, Hears Program Review Updates

Western New Mexico University President Dr. Joseph Shepard, pictured far left, stands with members of the WNMU board of regents, including (left to right) former Student Regent Tim Stillman, Chair Jerry Walz, new Board Secretary/Treasurer Janice Baca-Argabright, Vice Chair Dr. Mary Hotvedt, and member Dr. Carl Foster.

© Western New Mexico University

The Western New Mexico University Board of Regents unanimously approved the university’s annual endowment report, capital transmittal for phase one of the Deming Learning Center project, and revised five-year capital outlay plan, also electing a new secretary/treasurer, during a virtual meeting on Thursday morning.

WNMU Vice President for Business Affairs Kelley Riddle said the Higher Education Department require the university submit an annual report of endowments. “The Foundation is working with Academic Affairs to promote the use of these funds, including for student scholarships,” she said.

Discussing the Deming Learning Center project, Riddle said this transmittal is just for the first phase. “If this is approved through the state board of finance, we will start work in December,” she said.

Presenting the Revised 5-Year Capital Outlay Projects and Institutional Capital and Infrastructure Projects, Riddle said, “We continue to revise the plan based on forecasts from the state.”

Regents took turns thanking Tim Stillman, whose service as student regent and board secretary/treasurer is ending, for lending insight on the board and the finance committee before electing Janice Baca-Argabright to assume the office of secretary/treasurer through the end of the year.

WNMU President Dr. Joseph Shepard reported that while fall enrollment is slightly down, the budget is level because graduate enrollment is higher and dual enrollment is lower. “The impact of these numbers needs to be taken into context with the pandemic that we have,” he said.

He invited Faculty Senate President Dr. Susan McFeaters and Staff Senate President Michael Acosta to provide updates on the program review processes that are taking place.

“Working closely with Dr. Crocker, our 18 volunteer faculty members worked tirelessly through the summer,” Dr. McFeaters said, sharing that the departmental reviews are due in early November.

Acosta said that the staff program review committee is interviewing departments frequented by students, asking questions centered around workflow and factors that hinder effectiveness. “Our goal is not to review individual positions but rather the processes,” he said.

Both committees will submit reports for the regents to review during their next meeting, which is likely to be held just prior to the fall commencement ceremony in December.

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