Letter from the editor

By: Albert Luna

I love this publication. The past 11 months at the Round Up have been some of the best times as Editor.

Not only did we put life into a publication that had inarguably lost its identity, but we (hopefully) changed the outlook for this great institution in what I genuinely hope is the most positive way possible.

Last summer, when looking ahead to what has now been the past year, there was so much uncertainty from every angle: media advisor, a budget, a leader, a sense of direction as a whole.

The Round Up, and student media altogether, seems to now finally be able to be back on its feet. On our side, it only took a constant rotation of hiring’s, firings, and resignations alike, all within months, to finally be able to come to terms that these things are not easy by any measure and they take time.

However, at least for a year, we brought The Round Up back; we were able to cover clubs, events, sports, and the news for the first time in far too long for what should be a constant watch dog of the University. That alone should be chalked up as improvement – exit stage right. However, we simply do not see it in the same light.

With all of that said, we missed the mark this year. We recognize it. We own it. We missed opportunities, we missed tips, we missed where the students are.

Additionally, from an internal standpoint, we came up short as well. The very years’ worth of work we are trying to distance our self from —the previous cast preceding us— has inevitably crept back in from a managerial, financial, and content standpoint.

We need to reach students at a quicker pace, we need to become a viable presence as we once were on campus, and we need to get back to being a publication that students can not only be aware of, but proud of by the same token.

Therefore, it has come down to this: we cannot afford to print The Round Up.

Afford not only in the sense that the University’s money supply is drying up at an alarming rate for services that have been mainstays for years— which can affect the budget that is allocated to The Round Up and its expenditures— but also afford to be moving away from the students and the mediums in which they receive news.

The limited budget we have makes for a limited amount of staff which results in a limited amount of content – all of which is dedicated to filling the pages on a weekly basis of The Round Up.

For every story written, unless it is sports, is not posted online until the day the Round Up comes out in print to give the reader incentive to pick up the physical copy, of which we can go to advertisers and charge a certain amount depending on our readership. The print demanded the staff to devote all of their limited amount of work hours to the print, further neglecting the powerhouse of our online platform.

The easy answer is to simply have the staff focus on the digital aspect– yet NMSU Human Resources will not allow students to work more than their budgeted hours. The next logical step is to have people simply contribute for free— much like the majority of other college newspapers— however, NMSU HR also states that everyone must be paid, regardless. I suppose the majority of college publications in this country should be expecting a heavy fine for labor violations, as this University clearly has very questionable ways of interpreting almost anything.

Also, simply put, millennials don’t read print anymore. We see this as a perfect way to evolve into a more current and relative news entity – we see ourselves as an online platform going forward. Not only is the staff behind this, but we can justifiably say the community is as well. The process that led to this conclusion will be documented in greater length at a later time.

This decision has not and likely years from now in hindsight will still not be easy. The Round Up has always been in print. It is what we are. It is what we could hang our hat on at the end of the day but we must move forward with how quickly the journalism field is changing.

Next year will look drastically different, instead of being outside in bins when you are getting out of class, ideally, we will be that story on your Twitter feed that you click on while you are still in class doing the inevitable scroll down your timeline. The time to evolve is now, and we cannot miss this “opportunity” the University has given us.

We can promise one more printed Round Up for everyone that will be returning to school in the fall, as well as being (hopefully) an active part in input and comments about the change in the meantime.

We can also, however, promise timelier news, holding our University officials accountable for their decisions to a higher degree, and more coverage than NMSU has seen in a long time. At the very least, we can offer to you, the reader, an opportunity to watch next year’s unrelenting staff try to push this establishment to a higher level – and live with the results.

In the meantime, during this summer break, I would urge everyone with input to reach out to us – after all, this is the students’ voice.

Most of all during this time, as I have said all year, keep your ears to the ground for news, give us feedback, and most importantly, continue to write your own story.

Albert Luna is the Editor-in-Chief for The Round Up and may be reached at truprint@nmsu.edu or (575) 646-3743.

Aggie Baseball sweeps Northern Colorado

By: Derek Gonzalez

The New Mexico State baseball team has continued their hot start in conference play with a three-game sweep of the Northern Colorado Bears this past weekend inside Presley Askew Field.

NMSU won game one 10-3 and followed the win with a 7-4 victory on Saturday. In the series finale, the Aggies jumped out to a 5-0 first-inning lead and never allowed the Bears to threaten in the 6-2 win.

Brent Sakurai led off the bottom of the first inning with a single against UNC pitcher Aaron Hamilton. Austin Botello was walked after Joey Ortiz popped out, and NMSU perfectly executed a double steal to put both runners in scoring position.

Dan Hetzel converted on a sacrifice fly to score Sakurai to break the seal on the scoring for the Sunday matinee, and Tristen Carranza slapped a single up the middle to score Botello to double the Aggie lead to 2-0.

Catcher Mason Fishback closed out the first-inning scoring with a three-run home run off the scoreboard in left-center field to open the lead to 5-0.

NMSU (26-15, 11-1 WAC) decided to use a staff day in the game, meaning they would use the entire bullpen and leave it up the scorekeeper’s discretion as to who to award the win to. Andy Frakes got his second-career start for the Aggies and did a fantastic job managing the game and using his defense to get outs.

“We talked about picking each other up, and sometimes you are not going to have it (production) at the plate so we will need to pitch well and vice versa, but what an effort by Frakes,” NMSU head coach Brian Green said. “He brought it and we absolutely had to have it. We got that run in the eighth (inning) and it gave us some space. It was a great game for us and a great weekend for us.”

Frakes went 4.0 innings pitched and allowed only one earned run in 48 pitches. The senior side-winder is used to being brought out of the bullpen in later innings, and adapted to a new role and flourished to keep the Aggies rolling in WAC play.

Matt McHugh came in relief of Frakes and went 3.1 innings pitched and got out of a couple jams as the Bears (15-22, 4-8 WAC) tried to claw back into the game.

“You have to be able to win games when you aren’t hitting and we did that today and I am fired up about that,” Green said. “It was a great efoort from our guys and it shows them that there are different ways to win.”

NMSU will host Grand Canyon in a three-game series this weekend that will ultimately decide the WAC regular season champion. The first game is Friday at 6 p.m. at Presley Askew Field.

The Battle to Graduation

By: Jianna Vasquez

As another semester comes to end, it is time to say goodbye to another group of seniors.

Ashlerose Francia will walk across the stage inside the Pan Am on May 13 to receive her diploma.

Francia’s road to graduation hasn’t been easy, but it will be worth it because she will be the first in her family to graduate from a university.

Francia was adopted at a very early age and lived in Albuquerque, New Mexico for the first seven year of her life. Growing up, Francia admits that her family was low-income, but it was a factor that has contributed to her pursuing her education from a young age.

“My mom pushed me to work hard in school,” said Francia. “She was always active in my childhood.”

At the age of seven Francia and her family moved to Rosewell, New Mexico. Francia mother, Rosemary Matta, enrolled her in a charter school for her middle school years.

“My mother was always making sure I got the best schooling,” said Francia. The charter school provided Francia with many resources, put her in gifted programs and made sure she was on track for success. Francia admits that this school was another factor in helping her on journey to graduation.

Although, Francia was on the right track for several years that all changed when she was in high school.

“When I went to high school I didn’t want to do it anymore,” Francia admits. “I wasn’t doing my homework and I had bad grades.”

Francia was drained and tired of school. Francia’s mother continued to push her in academic’s even if Francia wasn’t doing too well.

“My mom was mad at me all the time telling me I needed to get it together,” said Francia.

Toward the end of her junior year in high school, Franica took her ACT and got a high score. Because of Francia’s high scores she was given a full-ride scholarship to NMSU.

“I was super excited I would be going to college,” said Francia.

In the fall of 2012, Francia attended her first semester at NMSU, but the setbacks continued.

Her parents were getting a divorce and she wasn’t adjusting to college, she failed a class and lost her scholarship.

Francia’s determination to get an education kept her striving for success. She got a job at Wal-mart and began to work over 40 hours a week so she could pay for her school.

“It was so hard,” said Francia. The following semester Francia met with a scholarship advisor that help her put things into prospective.

After meeting with the scholarship advisor Francia decided that her education was the most important thing and she needed to continue to push towards getting her degree.

“I wasn’t doing as well as I would have liked,” said Francia.

Francia got her scholarship back and after the spring of 2014 and started taking online classes to get back on track.

From the fall of 2015 Francia has maintained a 4.0 GPA and began to join many clubs and organizations around the campus that have helped her make it to where she is today.

Although Francia admits that it hasn’t been an easy journey to graduation she knows that she isn’t the only student who has struggled to making it to graduation.

“You are your first priority and if something isn’t working for you, change isn’t necessarily a bad thing,” advises Francia.

Francia will receive her degree in Criminal Justice and Government with a supplementary major in Law and society, this May.

Being the first in her family to graduate not only makes her proud, but it also makes her mother and 11-year-old sister, Alex, proud.

Francia’s mother sends her a message, “Myself and Alex are proud of you and we love you very much.”

Commencement ceremony for NMSU will be held Saturday, May 13. For any information you can call 575-646-7382

A Trike Unlike Any Other

By: Isaiah Silva

One Aggie is literally, building his dream from the ground up. James Owen, a Mechanical Engineering Technology student, is building a prototype for his own invention. Owen wants to bring something new to the table in the sport known as, “trike drifting.”

“They’re essentially oversized tricycles. The sport itself started in Auckland, New Zealand, made its way to Australia, and then really as of recently has come over to the United States. It’s really up-and-coming; I think there are still a lot of people who don’t know about it,” Owen said.

Owen got his start with Aggie Shark Tank in the spring of 2016. Aggie Shark Take models itself like the television show, Shark Tank. Entrepreneurs present their inventions to investors in hopes that they will get a chance to take their dreams to the next level.

“I essentially saw an advertisement for Aggie Shark Tank and I thought, ‘Well, why not make this passion a business,’ and that was really actually when it got started,” Owen said.

It was through Aggie Shark Tank that Owen met the CEO of Mesilla Valley Transportation, Royal Jones. Jones was one of five investors in the Shark Tank.

“He said, ‘Look, you can use our labor, you can use our components, and hey, we got one of the best paint booths in town, so I’ll even paint it for you too,’” Owen said. “He saw an interest in it and he really wanted to see it go somewhere, so he gave me that opportunity.”

When Owen started, he designed the initial frame on the computer, using 3D modeling. What is special is that although the frame followed some drift trikes before, it was completely custom to Owen. He didn’t do it alone though, Owen has had some people join him on his journey.

“I would say, kind of along this venture, I’ve had a lot of guidance from various friends and such. But, I brought on a buddy of mine, Michael Rogers, who is also in the Engineering Department with me. I brought him on as the cofounder, so he played a role in helping me get this trike developed,” Owen said.

The trike was completed around October/November 2016. Owen has made a lot of progress and modifications to the trike, so it is a lot different than how it was back in March 2016.

“The plan for this year is to essentially wrap up the prototype, set our sights on a new prototype. Something that is, I want to do something along the lines of a collapsible trike, so something really mobile, something that customers can fit in the back of their car,” Owen said.

Before Owen devotes himself to the drift trike business, he wants to get a feel for the market and see if there is a demand. If so, he will start the process of pushing out units. One of Owen’s ideas to get drift trikes more exposure is to have what he calls, “Drift Trike Days.” This will showcase the drift trikes and allow people to ride them.

“That’s the biggest struggle we’ve encountered right now is just informing everyone of what a drift trike is. That’s the vision,” Owen said. “The mission statement, if you will, is to give everyone the experience, the thrill of a drift trike. You really don’t know what it’s like until you ride it.”

Owen has many goals as to where he wants his drift trikes to go. They include the possibility of doing made-to-order trikes and going into full production, not mass production, but doing a small number at a time. Owen expects to go back on Aggie Shark Tank with his prototype. Aggie Shark Tank is held every semester.

Paul Weir departs for UNM

By: Derek Gonzales

When former New Mexico men’s basketball coach Craig Neal was fired just before midnight on March 31, 2017, the Lobos had their fair share of candidates that were attracted to the position. The Pit is one of the most unique venues in the country. UNM has plenty of support from Santa Fe along with a big base of boosters. Albuquerque is a lovely city. But one by one, things did not work out. Not with San Antonio Spurs assistant James Borrego or East Tennessee State University head coach Steve Forbes. After swinging and missing a few times, Krebs and his search committee focused their attention on a new candidate. This candidate was in his inaugural season as a Division I head basketball coach and led his program to a school-record 28 wins, including a win over Arizona State and earned a trip to the NCAA Tournament, where his team led 3rd-seeded Baylor at the half.

The candidate was New Mexico State’s Paul Weir.

Krebs, who is on the NCAA Selection Committee, was assigned to study the Western Athletic Conference amongst others as a part of his duties for selecting teams for the NCAA Tournament. He caught plenty of New Mexico State basketball as he said at Paul Weir’s introductory press conference last week.

“I saw a team that played hard and played really good defense,” Krebs said in his opening statement. “A team that gave great effort every night and were very strong rebounding.”

Those qualities, along with an impressive interview by Weir with Krebs and the UNM search committee, earned the 37-year-old first-year collegiate head coach a six-year contract to move up I-25 and replace Neal as the Lobo’s head men’s basketball coach. It was an unprecedented move by Weir to go from one state school directly to its main in-state rival. The only other comparable move in modern college basketball was Rick Pitino’s move from Kentucky to Louisville, but a stint coaching the Boston Celtics in between those two schools softened the criticism.

“I was at New Mexico State for ten years and poured my heart and soul into the place,” Weir said as he donned a cherry and silver tie that would have almost any Aggie fan watching the press conference uncomfortable. “It was very successful. I started my family there, and I got degrees from there. It would have taken a lot to leave and this was that opportunity. It was too good to pass up. There are people back at New Mexico State who are disappointed in me and will never forgive me but this opportunity was too good to pass up.”

Weir is now the first basketball coach to serve as the head man for both of New Mexico’s Division I institutions. In his only season at NMSU, the Aggies went 28-6 overall (10th-most wins in NCAA history for a first-year Division I head coach) and 11-3 in WAC play. After ending the season with a trip to the Big Dance, NMSU ranked fifth in the country in 3-point percentage defense, allowing opponents to shoot just 29.4 percent from the field (UNM ranked 284th in this category, allowing teams to shoot 36.8 percent from 3).

The Aggies also ranked in the top 35 in block percentage (5th), rebounding margin (19th), scoring margin (19th), free throws (21st), rebounds per game (25th), offensive rebounds per game (27th), and free throw attempts (28th).

Weir does have ties to the previous two UNM regimes, as he served as the Director of Basketball Operations at the University of Iowa under former UNM head coach Steve Alford. Craig Neal was an assistant on that staff.

Financial Ramifications

During Weir’s press conference, Krebs said on more than one occasion that the buyout on Weir’s NMSU contract would be “in between Weir and NMSU.” UNM does not hold a contractual obligation to give NMSU any buy out compensation, and per NMSU Director of Athletics Mario Moccia, “It is still my understanding that Weir owes NMSU $500,000.” (This is as of April 12)

“This is the business side of intercollegiate athletics, and though I am professionally disappointed in losing a great coach, I am also personally disappointed in losing a great friend,” Moccia said at a press conference almost 24 hours after Weir and UNM had theirs. “I want to thank him for his ten years of dedicated service to New Mexico State University. He helped produce one of the most successful seasons in the history of Aggie Basketball. As a friend, I wish him well…all but two days out of the year.”

Weir’s base salary for his only season at NMSU was $250,000. This upcoming season at UNM, he will earn a base salary of $625,000. A concern that has been sparked with this move is the state of NMSU’s finances, in the University as a whole and the athletic department. NMSU Athletics is mandated to pay back a debt to the University that was once $10 million. It has been cut to $4.3 million, and through payments of $890,000 this fiscal year, $970,000 next fiscal year, $1.63 million the following year, and $487,000 the year after that pays off the sum owed. Moccia reiterated the word “mandate,” to specify that his department MUST do what is asked by Carruthers. UNM also has a budget deficit in the athletic department, but on top of what they will pay Weir, they also will be paying Neal 24 installments over the next two years equaling $1 million.

Those mandated payments from athletics to the Universtiy would usually be money that amongst other places, could go towards coaching salaries. Moccia was asked about the type of contract he would be able to offer the next head coach, and it appears that Carruthers will not give Moccia increased financial wiggle room to make a more appealing offer than was given to Weir.

President Garrey Carruthers issued out a statement last week which said the following:

“This is an update to our campus community regarding the departure of our men’s head basketball coach Paul Weir to the University of New Mexico. We gave Paul Weir his first head coaching opportunity one year ago. We knew then, as we know now, he is a young, talented basketball coach who has enormous potential going forward in his career.”

Importantly, everyone should know we were proactive in our attempts to keep Coach Weir at NMSU. We knew we had good coach on our hands, and we also knew other universities would notice him, especially after the team rattled off 20 consecutive wins on their way to a 28-6 record. That’s why we started designing an improved bonus package for Coach Weir two to three weeks ago and the plan was shown to both him and his agent. Unfortunately, we never had an opportunity to finish the conversation.

We wish Coach Weir the best and a successful season next year, except for the two games against our NMSU Aggies.”

Incentive-based bonuses will not work going forward in keeping successful men’s basketball coaches. An increase in base salary is will what need to take place, and if an effort by Carruthers to increase Weir’s salary had been made, while probably not the $625,000 UNM offered, maybe Weir stays and waits for a better opportunity. A raise after a record-setting season was not too much to ask for.

“I want Aggie fans to know this,” Moccia stated as his attention shifted towards finances during the press conference. “Athletics has a mandate to balance its budget from campus every year. In my two full years here, we have done that. While we can bemoan what others have financially, to me, that is a tremendous waste of energy. What athletics can control is finding the best head coach that fits our financial means. The $250,000 base salary (Paul Weir’s NMSU salary) isn’t the ceiling, but it is getting close to it.”

Possible Candidates

NMSU is the only men’s basketball job in the nation that has a vacant position. It is mid-April, which is late in the hiring process, but the fact that Moccia is just a year removed from going through the same process will prove to be beneficial. The only candidate from last year’s job who got a head coaching job besides Weir was then-Arizona assistant Joe Pasternack, who has since been hired as the head man at UC-Santa Barbara. Moccia listed 11 qualities he is looking for in the next head coach. They are listed here:

* Ability to recruit quality, character, and talent that fits his staff’s style

* Focused on academics

* Have a tremendous work ethic

* Huge desire to win

* Be positive with the team

* Able to hire a staff that compliments his weaknesses

* Communicates well and directly with the team

* Ability to mentor individuals on and off the court

* Somebody that will instill toughness

* A coach who wants to be at New Mexico State

* Somebody who understands the role of being a head basketball coach and representing the program and department in the community and statewide

These are three candidates to keep an eye on going forward.

Reggie Theus (Current Cal-State Northridge head coach, former NMSU head coach from 2005-07)

This is a big name for most fans and students who remember the Theus era. In just two years, Theus turned around a program that was 6-24 the year before he arrived and won 16 games in his first year before winning 25 in year two and bolting for the NBA’s Sacramento Kings. The former NBA all-star is still revered by many in Las Cruces, but in four seasons at CS-Northridge, he has yet to have a winning season.

Ryan Miller (Current assistant at Texas Christian University)

Miller is known for being one of the top recruiters in the nation while working at TCU, UNLV, UNM, and Memphis. While at UNM, he was responsible for the recruitment of J.R. Giddens, Darington Hobson, Tony Snell and Cameron Bairstow. He has won over 250 games as an assistant over 13 years.

Jesse Bopp (Current NMSU assistant coach)

Bopp has only been in Las Cruces one season, but has gained for the respect of most current players on the Aggie roster. A.J. Harris and Matt Taylor have advocated for Bopp to be promoted on social media, but Bopp is a bit young at just 33 years old. He possesses some of the qualities Weir showed as an assistant, being fiery and full of energy as well as a quality coach in terms of X’s and O’s.

ASNMSU Presidency Run-off Coming Down to Wire

By: Albert Luna

The next President of ASNMSU should have been decided almost a week ago now. Instead, the Association does not yet have a leader for the 2017-2018 school year as a run-off race nears its end.

Kevin Prieto and Corey Stevens, both Juniors in the College of Business are the two candidates left standing after the original general election produced no clear winner after no one received at least 51 percent of the vote.

“Let’s do it again” Prieto told The Round Up on Wednesday about the run-off, “It lights a fire underneath you, now it is the homestretch.”

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Kevin Prieto 

Prieto, the current Vice President of ASNMSU, was just under 140 votes shy of winning the Presidency outright in the general election last week, ending up with 1,046 total votes initially out of 2,347 votes that were cast.

Stevens, on the other hand, finished nearly 220 votes behind Prieto, collecting 829 in all.

“Going into the General Election, we knew we were the underdogs and I knew that our goal would be to force a runoff” Stevens said, “When the results posted, me and my campaign staff were excited that we forced the election into a runoff; one step at a time.”

Manuel Ordoque received 368 but was eliminated from contention as he did not place in the top two of the voting results.

The run-off, which by ASNMSU election guidelines must occur over at least 5 full school days, will not conclude until Monday, April 17at 5 P.M.

The reason for this is that the University will be closed on Friday, April 14, in observance of Good Friday, thereby having to push voting, and the results of the fate of the presidency into the weekend.

“I expressed my concerns about voting being open during the weekend; about my issue with monitoring it over a Holiday. But, we will just have to fight until it’s over and hope for the best” Stevens said.

Prieto echoed similar remarks in the way that the voting schedule has been altered to accommodate the holiday, “I feel it kills the momentum that we’ve picked up” he says, “That Monday [April 17] is a little weird because you have to remind people that it is not over. I am not planning on doing too much campaigning during the weekend, I think people, including myself, should spend time with their family, that’s family time.”

Despite already campaigning for the two weeks preceding the week of the run-offs, Prieto says that he is still has found this extra week of campaigning to be beneficial and productive.

“The support and all of the people that I’ve met is truly revitalizing in a way that I get to meet new people almost again and again that come up to me on a personal basis and show their support” Prieto said.

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Corey Stevens 

With this week, Stevens says he is focusing on reinforcing some of the previous platforms points that he talked about during the campaign, “This week has been about ground campaigning and closing the margin with the supporters of the third candidate, Manny Ordoque” he said, “We have been focusing on creating conversations with students all throughout campus to solidify our message and increase our support.”

Prieto, for his strategy with the extra time, says he is trying to focus more on some of the voting sections he feels he could improve from the first go-around, particularly with the engineering college, “I’ve been able to reach out to a lot more engineering students this week, I have been able to go down there and speak with them more” he says.

“It’s amazing when a student knows what the run-off is and how important it can be” Prieto added.

Stevens says that despite the results next Monday, he has put together a past few weeks to be proud of, “Many individuals have poured their time and energy into this campaign and I am honored to represent so many students” he says, “My supporters have kept me going and I am honestly just so passionate about giving back to NMSU and our students.”

The election concludes at 5 P.M. on Monday. For full results and analysis, log on to http://www.nmsuroundup.net

Diversity Matters

The Round Up recently went around campus and asked readers how they feel NMSU has done in being a diverse campus, as well as how they have seen that play out in their day-to-day lives. Here are some of the best responses TRU received:

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“I think NMSU has done this very wonderful because I’ve never experienced anything that makes me feel like I belong to a different group or a minority group. Wherever I go, or whoever I talk to, I feel like I’m being mixed with them. They receive me very well, they talk to me very well, and I’ve been here for the past three years and have walked to different places and departments here on campus and everywhere I go it’s a wonderful reception. I’ve never felt that I belong to a different group or that I’m separated, it never feels anything like that.”

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“I guess being a minority you can definitely feel a difference because of course there’s other minorities here on campus, but I think that there’s not a lot of clubs that are really related to my ethnicity as an African-American. But I guess moving forward there is a lot of talk about NMSU providing tutoring for diverse students, rather than just telling us that it’s available, instead they’re coming to us and bringing us in.

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“I definitely feel different. I think people actually know it when I tell them, other than that I’m mistaken to be a Mexican so other than that I feel like the Native-American population is super small, like really small, here on the NMSU campus which is okay. I also feel like they have accommodated Native-Americans pretty well even if we’re a small percentage here because we have our own center and lab and stuff like that. And I feel like compared to most universities that I have visited before I came here they have some pretty good stuff for us Natives. So I actually feel okay. I think they’re diverse to others too and are trying to do their best to accommodate.

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“NMSU has provided not just me, but all types of color that walk this campus at a chance at opportunity and a pathway toward success. Not only have I grown as a student but I have also furthered my development as a person with an enhanced sefawareness, social development, real world training and a better look of who I am as a person. I was given a chance like many students here to further my education and pursue my purpose in life.”

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“They’re doing what a university can. It goes down to how people react to different beliefs and diversity. I think NMSU is welcoming, it’s just that sometimes the student body isn’t very welcoming of diverse beliefs. But I mean the school can only go so far and I think they’re doing what they can do accommodate in however they can.”

American – Indian Week at NMSU

By: Jianna Vasquez

NMSU’s American Indian program (AIP) kicked off their annual American Indian week on April 3rd. The organization showcased a variety of events throughout the week, which included native dances, art, discussion panels and tacos.

The week-long event is organized by student-run organizations: American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES), United Native American Organization and Native American Business Student Association(NABSA) with the support of AIP.

Members of the American Indian program want to share who they are and where they come from with the NMSU community. It is also a week to recognize the many American-Indians that attend NMSU.

“There are so many cultures that we want to share with the whole university,” said AIP member, Shawn Aragon.

Lanirae Padilla, who is a part of the Navaho Nation Tribe and is the Current NMSU Miss Native American for the 2016-2017 year, said that American Indian week isn’t only a week for Native Americans, but it’s also a week for Non-natives to come together and encourage each other different ethnicities.

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“Being here makes me happy to see how everyone comes together to get educated on each other’s culture,” said Padilla. Padilla’s roommate and escort for the day, Taryn Smith agreed with her and said that this week gives her an opportunity to learn about her friend’s culture.

“As someone who did not grow up Native American I have learned so much, not only from this week, but by living with my roommate,” said Smith.

American Indian week offered a variety of different events for the community to attend and learn about the American Indian Culture.

Wednesday, April 5, the organization held its annual taco demonstration.

“The taco is basically a staple in all our communities,” explained Aragon. “It’s just called different in every nation we have Apache tacos, Navaho tacos, Indian tacos.” “Everyone just loves tacos.”

Indian Tacos are much like traditional tacos except they are on an open-faced fried bread. Indian fry bread is made up of: Flour, salt, baking powder, water and is fried in Vegetable oil. The fried bread is then topped with meat, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes and onions to make up what is known as the Indian taco.

The taco demonstration was accompanied by performance from the Cibecue Crown Dancers from the Southwest Apace tribe. The Cibicue Crown Dancers performed some of their traditional dances.

The Miss Native American NMSU pageant also took place during American Indian week. Padilla will give her crown to the winner of the pageant on Thursday.

Contestants of the pageant are judges on four categories which include: a traditional activity, public speaking, an impromptu question and overall presentation. The winner of the pageant will ultimately serve as an ambassador of NMSU’s Native American community.

American Indian closed out with an arts and crafts fair on Friday where members of the community will learn how to make traditional art and a story tellers concert.

The finale of American Indian week will be on Saturday where there will be another arts and crafts fair and one last chance for the community to purchase Indian tacos and see Jemez Dancers perform.

The American Indian program hopes that American Indian week has given the NMSU community a chance to embrace and learn about their indigenous culture and beliefs.

For any question on the American Indian Program you can call 575-646-4207

Regents Delay Tuition Vote – Approve Housing and Meal Plan Increases

By: Albert Luna

The New Mexico State Board of Regents met on Monday, April 3, in what was supposed to be a meeting centered mainly on a tuition increase, but the action item was ultimately tabled instead.

The Board, which had not met in an open action meeting since March 6, was originally scheduled to vote on four different action items, each having to do with a request for new rates.

However, before the Agenda for the meeting could be approved, which would have put the tuition vote on the action-required-platform, Regent Kari Mitchell requested to push back any voting.

“We received a request from the administration late Friday, which was to table [The Tuition Increase Proposition]” Mitchell said, “The reason for that is that there is a great deal of uncertainty in terms of what is going to happen with the state budget.”

This development comes off the heels of an apparent standoff between Governor Susana Martinez and the State Legislature after they approved a budget that would bring cuts to state supported schools like NMSU, which the Governor has said she would not sign. The Senate could use a special session to get the budget through this week in the likely case of a pocket veto by the Governor.

The cuts from the State for NMSU are expected to be anywhere from 1.1 percent to 5.7 percent in reduction of appropriations overall for the University.

“There’s rumored new discussions regarding tuition credit and I think it’s prudent of us to wait until the state brings more certainty to our budgetary situation” Mitchell said.

The change in tuition, when voted on, can range from no change at all, to as high as roughly $200 more per semester for a full-time student at the University.

With the tuition change tabled for at least roughly one month, the Board voted on three other action items, all of which were approved which included raising the price for on-campus housing rates from next school year through 2021, raising on-campus meal plan rates for at least next school year and keeping the same parking rates for on-campus parking for at least next school year.

Senior Vice President Angela Thorneberry and Associate Vice President D’Anne Stuart presented a proposal for all of the action items. Stuart initially talked about the new projects that have been in development from a housing standpoint. Among other financial goals that office of Administration and Finance has set, there are also plans underway for a new residence hall on the site of the old Monagle hall that was demolished in late 2016.

“The residential hall facility will be the Monagle Hall replacement and be built on that site” Stuart said.

The new facility, which is expected to be ready by the beginning of the 2019-2020 school year, will have an estimated 300 beds and, as Stuart said, it will focus more on interior amenities in order to attract a new market of students to on-campus living.

The new hall, which will cost roughly $21.5 million, will be solely funded from the net proceeds of the 2017 Bonds.

In addition, Stuart said that there will also be facility renovations, which aside from basic maintenance improvement projects, also includes facility renovations to Rhodes-Garrett-Hamiel, Pinon and Garcia Halls, along with Chamisa and Vista Del Monte Villages.

“We have $11 million going to facility renovations” Stuart said, “Those key facilities [3 Residential halls and 2 Apartments] that we’ve identified need to remain online [in use].”

In order to keep up with current market movements among college campus living nationwide, the department ultimately proposed to set housing rates at an increasing rate per year through the end of the 2021 school year.

The housing rate request would affect all campus housing. The proposition would increase housing rates the primarily the most next school year, with a Pinon Double Suit (4.8 percent) and a Chamisa 2-bedroom apartment (3.4 percent) seeing some of the notable jumps.

By the end of the 2021 school year, most housing rates will have risen from anywhere between 5 and 8 percent, meaning around a $750 increase per year by the 2021 school year for most housing.

“Rhodes-Garrett-Hamiel, even with our increase, is below our peer’s [similar sized Universities] average low [price] for double suites, which is our most common type of facility” Stewart said.

In regards to the meal plan increase, the Board approved a plan that would increase all prices by 2.9 percent for only the 2017-18 school year. The Aggie Choice 230 plan, which is one of more popular plans on campus, would be raised from $1,796 to $1,848 per semester, a $104 increase over the course of a school year, excluding the summer.

The Board also voted on a proposition that would not increase parking permit costs for next school year as well, but acknowledged an increase would have to be looked at in the near future.

If and when a state budget is passed, Board Chair Debra Hicks said she will call a special meeting to discuss tuition for next year. However, if a budget does not get approved relatively soon (at the latest by the start of the fiscal year on July 1), the state would go into a furlough, which Chancellor Garrey Carruthers says would be catastrophic.

“We have I think a 90-day reserve [after July 1] that could hold us over, but the Governor and the Legislature have to get together and give us something to work with” Carruthers said, “We have to have a resolution to the budget [from the state] by July 1 or we cannot operate this University.”

The Time For Collaboration is Now.

By: Emerson Morrow

It’s no secret that the administration here at New Mexico State University is going to have to make some incredibly difficult budget choices over the next couple years. Decreased enrollment means that less student fee money is coming in than before. This could eventually lead to a severe decline in the both the quantity and the quality of the activities being offered to students on campus. We, as students, cannot allow this to happen.

 I believe that the best way to ensure that our college experience, and the experience of future Aggies, is a good one, is to encourage collaboration and teamwork between our student organizations. Specifically, I am calling on the leadership of the main, overarching campus organizations- ASNMSU, Aggie Activities Council, Residence Hall Association, Interfraternity Council, and Panhellenic Council- to meet monthly in the next year. By simply gathering once per month, we can solve scheduling conflicts and work through problems together. By sharing ideas and resources, we will be able to cultivate a more vibrant campus culture, with timing that works for more students.

Imagine what could happen if even a couple of these groups made working together to serve students a priority. AAC and ASNMSU each sponsor several concerts per year. On their own, each group is usually able to bring beginning artists that perhaps some students have heard of. If they pooled their resources, it would ease the financial burden on each group and we would be able to afford some fantastic performers that would draw in current students and potential students alike. Teamwork between these large groups would ensure the success and increased attendance of just about any event from tailgates, to diversity programs and awareness weeks.

An oft-quoted African proverb says, “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” Over the next year, it is crucial that student organizations break down their walls and work collaboratively to serve other students. Let’s start by meeting together. Then, let’s go far.

Emerson Morrow is a sophomore in the College of Arts and Sciences. He was named the NMSU Leadership Pioneer of the Year in 2015 and is a candidate for ASNMSU Vice President.