Activity Report for Week of September 10 – September 16

  • On Monday, September 12, the Chancellor and I met with representatives from Student Affairs and Enrollment Management, as well as from Auxiliary Services, to discuss residential life and student life and whether the current management of these programs represents the best model for NMSU. Currently, residential life is managed by Auxiliary Services, which has responsibility for student housing at NMSU, as well as the Corbett Center.  Student Affairs handles Campus activities, Greek housing and life, and student judicial matters.  The mixed model of NMSU is not unique in the United States, but the more usual model is one in which student life, both on campus and in residences, is managed by Student Affairs.  After a productive discussion, it was decided to maintain the current model, for the time being, and for Student Affairs and Auxiliary Services to work more closely together to improve student life both in the residence halls and on campus.  This will be especially important as Housing and Residence Life implements FYRE, a First-Year Residency Experience designed to increase our student’s engagement with campus. To that end, I will set up a standing committee on student life to implement the recommendations of the Residential Student Success Initiative.
  • On Tuesday, I met with the University Research Council (URC) to discuss pay for postdoctoral fellows at NMSU and whether the minimum pay should be raised to ensure that these individuals remained exempt employees. After a good discussion that centered on new FLSA regulations and the many hours worked by postdocs outside of the workplace, the unanimous recommendation of the URC was that minimum pay for postdocs at NMSU be raised to $48,000 a year.  If this recommendation is implemented, PIs impacted by this change will be encouraged to request additional funds from funding agency program officers to help cover the increased cost of a postdoctoral fellow.  If additional funds are not forthcoming from agencies, departments and colleges will be encouraged to provide funded teaching opportunities to supplement funding from grants and contracts.
  • On Thursday, Renay Scott, President of NMSU Doña Ana, and I spent three hours discussing the promise and problems of dual credit with the New Mexico Legislative Educational Study Committee. I cover this topic in more detail in this week’s Provost Post.

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