The Associated Students of the University of New Mexico (ASUNM) and the Graduate and Professional Student Association (GPSA) have put out calls for the next student regent. 

The student regent is a member of the student body who serves on the UNM Board of Regents as one of seven full voting members.

Melissa C. Henry, a doctoral candidate in the College of Education, is currently serving as the student regent, but her term expires at the end of the year. 

The next student regent’s two-year term will start in January 2021.

In an email to the Daily Lobo, GPSA President Naguru Nikhileshwara “Nikhil” Reddy said that both GPSA and ASUNM were only given three weeks to complete their search.

ASUNM and GPSA will interview applicants and each choose two candidates to recommend for the position, which they’ll pass along to UNM President Garnett Stokes.

Reddy said Stokes’ office sent them a memo on Sept. 1 telling them that the deadline for their recommendations was Nov. 1, but that deadline was later revised to Sept. 30 at Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham’s request.

Due to the deadline being moved up, ASUNM and GPSA have only a week to interview candidates and submit their recommendations to Stokes’ office. 

Stokes will then interview the candidates and send her recommendations to Lujan Grisham, who is tasked with selecting the new student regent. 

Applications can be found on the ASUNM and GPSA websites, and must be emailed to the appropriate student government — ASUNM for undergraduates and GPSA for graduates. The deadline is 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 23. 

It is unknown if an international student is eligible to serve as a student regent. According to Reddy, ASUNM and GPSA asked University counsel to interpret the state constitution and provide clarification on the matter. 

When asked why students should apply for the position, Reddy said, “Student regent is the most important position through which we as students can make our opinion heard by the University and Board of Regents.” 

Reddy said that GPSA and ASUNM don’t know when the new student regent will be chosen, as the announcement date is decided by the governor.

If someone is not selected by January 2021, Henry will continue to serve as the student regent until a new one is appointed. 

Spencer Butler is a beat reporter at the Daily Lobo. He can be contacted at or on Twitter @SpencerButler48