Due to the increasing cost of education, the decreasing amount of state funding available and the predicted drops in enrollment, privately donated funds from the Western New Mexico University Foundation are critical to student support. The Foundation aims to raise at least $400,000 by June 30, 2018, for WNMU’s 125th anniversary.
“The progress we are making at Western New Mexico University is thanks to the alumni and friends who give through the Foundation. They ensure that Western New Mexico University continues to be able to offer top educational experiences,” WNMU Foundation Director Jodi Edens-Crocker said.
The Foundation’s Annual Giving Fund is a way anyone can get involved and help the Foundation provide students with scholarships, and university program assistance. “The Annual Giving Fund is a straight-forward way to assist Western New Mexico University in transforming the future. Any gift amount matters,” Edens-Crocker said.
Just as the university has evolved since 1893, the Foundation has advanced since its beginnings. “Now the two are working collaboratively to support the vision of the university,” Edens-Crocker said.
Most of WNMU’s revenue comes from state-appropriated funding and tuition. Just three percent of funding comes from private sources. However, WNMU cannot count on state-appropriated or tuition-generated revenue. Private contributions become the only way WNMU can continue offering the experiences it does.
Many have called for tuition hikes, but WNMU President Dr. Joseph Shepard said that raising tuition is a poor solution since at least 85 percent of WNMU students draw on financial aid. “I want to keep tuition low and the quality of education students receive at WNMU high,” he said.
The university is focusing on improving retention rates, working to bolster enrollment and actively recruiting out-of-state and international students. Still, WNMU anticipates funding gaps. The Foundation helps fill those gaps with monies from the Annual Giving Fund.
Donations to the Annual Giving Fund may be made online (wnmu.edu/donate), over the phone (575-538-6310), through the mail (PO Box 1158, Silver City, NM 88062) or in person at the Foundation’s office (Hunter Hall, ground level). The WNMU Foundation office is open to accept gifts on Dec. 18-Dec. 21 from 9 a.m. to noon and from 1 to 3 p.m. and also on Dec. 27-Dec. 29 from 9 a.m. to noon and 1 to 3 p.m.