Activity report from week of November 29 – December 5

Regents Professor Chris Burnham

On Monday, Regents Professor Chris Burnham met with me to discuss how NMSU might do a better job of engaging its retired faculty members.  Most of our retirees stay in the area and continue to lead active lives of the mind.  They represent a wonderful resource for the university; it is time for a robust discussion of ways in which they can continue to contribute meaningfully to the university.


Congratulations to Andrea Tawney and her team at the University Foundation for a very successful GivingTuesday.  Not only did they raise a lot of money for scholarships by tapping into the generosity and goodwill of alumni, faculty, staff, students, and friends of NMSU…they reminded all of us of how important it is to give back to institutions, such as NMSU, that strive to improve lives.

Black Programs Fall 2015 Graduation Reception

There are few things that are more satisfying to a Provost than celebrating the achievements of talented and dedicated students.  Thus, without question, the highlight of my day on Wednesday was attending the Black Programs Graduation Reception.  Congratulations to all the graduates for their accomplishments and to the organizers, especially Dr. Festus Addo-Yobo, for ensuring that our students are recognized for their achievements.

Faculty Senate Meeting

Changes to the Viewing a Wider World requirement at NMSU was voted down at the Faculty Senate Meeting on Thursday afternoon.  The discussion was substantive and cordial.  Many of the senators opposed to the change noted that the General Education Taskforce is currently re-considering general education at NMSU and expressed concerns about dismantling our general education curriculum in a piecemeal fashion, while we are in the midst of pursuing a more global overhaul.

Chief Academic Officers Meeting

The week concluded with a meeting in Albuquerque of chief academic officers of New Mexico’s institutions of higher education.  The purpose of the meeting, which was called by HED Secretary Barbara Damron, was to review the higher education initiatives of the governor and the Higher Education Department.  Among the initiatives are meta-majors and transfer modules, common course numbering, and co-requisite remediation.  We also discussed the reform of the General Education Core Curriculum, an initiative of the provosts of the four-year institutions in the state and one that is being led by NMSU.  At the meeting, the CAOs agreed to begin the statewide discussion of General Education at a summit to be held on January 13 in Albuquerque.

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