The 640-acre Elena Gallegos Open Space, located in the foothills of the Sandia mountains, is currently the subject of concern among community members of the legality and consequences of a potential project from the Albuquerque parks and recreation department to create an education center in the space, according to Save the Elena Gallegos co-founders Viki Teahan and Katrina Sanchez. The potential educational center would be no larger than 5,000 square feet, according to Dave Simon, the director of the Albuquerque parks and recreation department. Since the 1960s, advocates have fought for protection of the park from development when the Albuquerque City Council began a tax to purchase the space in 1969, according to The Paper.
With the start of the 2023 New Mexico legislative session on Tuesday, Jan. 17, the University of New Mexico unveiled its priorities for the upcoming 2024 fiscal year. The priorities focus on research and public service project requests and general outlined goals UNM seeks to further and accomplish prior to the session’s closing at noon on Saturday, March 18. The more general legislative priorities, outlined by the University’s Office of Government and Community Relations, include recruiting and retaining current staff, faculty and health professionals; improving student support services as well as “workforce development, research and public service,” improving campus safety, retaining state-funded scholarships, improving health care and health care access, and promoting economic growth, according to the Office of Government and Community Relations.
The Associated Students at the University of New Mexico plan to lobby for their capital outlay projects during opening day of the 56th session of the New Mexico Legislature on Tuesday, Jan. 17. ASUNM hopes to secure funding for three projects, all of which are centered around safety on campus. They will be decided on by the administration, with limited amounts of student input, according to ASUNM President Ian May. Each year, ASUNM decides on a project that ASUNM legislative members will lobby for in Santa Fe via a capital outlay bill, according to May.
The United Graduate Workers of the University of New Mexico’s first contract with UNM was ratified by the Union on Dec.16, 2022 and signed by Provost James Holloway on Dec. 22, 2022. This concludes bargaining that has been ongoing since early May, though not all are satisfied by the final agreement. The Union has been advocating for better working conditions for graduate workers at the University since 2020. After fighting for recognition as public employees from the Public Employees Labor Relation Board and having encountered numerous road blocks from the University, they were granted recognition and the right to unionize on Aug. 17, 2021.
Starting the semester of fall 2023, the University of New Mexico College of Nursing will be offering an accelerated bachelor’s of science in nursing as a second degree. The application period for the program began back on December 15, according to the Health Sciences Center website. This “new” pathway will allow individuals who currently have a college degree, preferably related to science, to acquire a degree in nursing at a faster pace: 16 months rather than the traditional 20 months. The pathway will provide access to all of the resources available at the college, “including state-of-the-art simulation and skills labs steps away from the College of Nursing building,” according to the Health Sciences Center website.
With fall graduation just around the corner, students graduating from the University of New Mexico and other universities alike may encounter a new set of obstacles upon completing their current college career. JahJett-Lyn Chavez will be graduating with two degrees: one in family and child studies and another in psychology. Chavez’s biggest concern after graduating is being able to pay for graduate school. Chavez intends to continue her education through the graduate program at UNM but worries about the lack of scholarships available for graduate students. She said she was able to pay the entirety of her undergraduate degrees through scholarships, but she won’t be able to do the same for her master's.
On Friday, Dec. 16th, students graduating from the University of New Mexico will celebrate the culmination of their undergraduate careers at The Pit for the fall 2022 commencement ceremony. “It's something that (graduating students) should be proud (of) … It's a huge accomplishment,” Nancy Middlebrook, the University secretary, said. This semester’s ceremony includes the traditional welcome by UNM President Garnett Stokes, as well as greetings from the Board of Regents, Associated Students at UNM President Ian May, and the Graduate and Professional Student Association President Shaikh Ahmad. The ceremony will finalize with a performance by Mariachi Tenampa.
On Monday, Dec. 5, the Albuquerque City Council passed an ordinance on a 5-4 vote to effectively stop zoning privileges and new proposals for the creation of safe outdoor spaces, an initiative to create dedicated spaces for the unhoused to temporarily stay at and receive social service support. The Integrated Development Ordinance determines land use and establishes zoning regulations in the city of Albuquerque. This passage would remove all reference of safe outdoor spaces from the IDO, stopping future development of SOS in the city, though the two SOS that have already been approved and the three pending approval will still move forward.
This story was originally published by Source New Mexico State Police in riot gear showed up at the Student Union Building at the University of New Mexico during a peaceful protest and detained three protesters of color on Wednesday, Nov. 30. The protest was held in response to Turning Point USA’s UNM chapter hosting a speaking event on campus with Charlie Kirk, the founder and president of the national conservative group.
The Associated Students at the University of New Mexico voted to approve a resolution calling for an increase in funding for the UNM Police Department during their last full senate meeting on Wednesday, November 30. The approval comes in the wake of a deadly shooting that took place on UNM campus resulting in the death of two students.
This story was originally published by Source New Mexico The realities of the Club Q shooting in Colorado Springs were close to home for many in Albuquerque, and people gathered in Morningside Park on Tuesday evening to grieve the lives lost in the queer bar. Several people knew people at the club on Saturday, Nov. 19, and many at the vigil frequented it themselves.
The city’s Animal Welfare Department will now be directed to donate animal tissue from spay-and-neuter clinics to the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center for biomedical research, after a resolution unanimously passed during the Monday, Nov. 21 Albuquerque City Council meeting. This tissue will be used to create in-vitro culture models with the intention of reducing the number of animals used in laboratory testing. Dr. Xiaozhong Yu, a professor at the UNM College of Nursing, said that they have been working at UNM to develop and validate methods for using in-vitro models as a substitute for animal testing.
Losers, rejoice — in a move sure to be celebrated by the worst men you know, Elon Musk completed his long-threatened acquisition of social media platform Twitter on Oct. 27, bringing with it changes that have prompted many users and staff members to finally call it quits. Verification overhaul, content moderation changes and more are all on the table and have already altered user experience nearly beyond repair. With Twitter going through rapid change, now is the time to leave it behind for good and move on to greener, less awful pastures.
On Saturday, Nov. 19 a University of New Mexico student was killed and a New Mexico State University student was shot and injured in an altercation that resulted in a shooting at approximately 3 a.m. in the parking lot of Coronado Hall, a UNM dormitory. The shooting occurred when 19-year-old UNM student Brandon Travis and three other conspirators lured NMSU basketball player Mike Peake on campus to assault him. Travis then confronted Peake with a gun and shot him. Peake, who was also carrying a gun, then shot Travis, according to a press release from the New Mexico State Police. Travis was pronounced dead at the scene and Peake was taken to a nearby hospital, according to the Albuquerque Journal.
The Graduate and Professional Student Association of the University of New Mexico showed their support for the United Graduate Workers of UNM through a joint resolution, which was adopted on Saturday, Oct. 29. Joint Resolution 1F advises UNM to tackle various issues that affect graduate students at UNM and are still in negotiation between the Union and the University. “For us, this means that we want to uplift the voices of our constituents. I believe as a minority-serving R1 institution, we carry a shared responsibility to support marginalized demographics in pursuit of Higher Education,” Shaikh Ahmad, GPSA president, said.
The evening of Thursday, Nov. 17, Professor Ernesto Longa, a University of New Mexico law librarian, discussed the data he collected surrounding the frequency and circumstances of the arrests of unhoused individuals in Albuquerque. Dozens of community members gathered in the Student Union Building for a lecture held by Salt of the Earth School, in tandem with Students for Socialism. “The statistical summary and key points provided today are based on an inspection of nearly 2,000 misdemeanor felony cases which were filed against 867 unhoused individuals in 2020,” Longa said.
Social media became a point of high contention during the recent election, according to the Santa Fe New Mexican, The Daily Lobo talked to three students at the University of New Mexico and they all agreed that while not personally influencing their vote, it did impact the election, mainly leading to a disinterest in politics and a negative impact on their mental health. Brandon Montoya said social media did not influence his vote because of his preexisting knowledge of politics, but that he did believe it could have influenced people who were undecided or less informed.
On Wednesday, Nov. 16, Gail Rosenblum, a journalist and alumnus of the University of New Mexico, visited the communications and journalism department to talk about a new form of journalism — solutions journalism — that Rosenblum has been incorporating in her work. Rosenblum is currently the editor of the weekly “Inspired” section in the Minneapolis Star Tribune where she aims to focus on the hope, optimism and solution stories, according to The Loft. Solutions journalism is a way of approaching the news by focusing on the responses to social issues as well as the problems themselves. The topics can range from racial equity to climate change, according to Medium.