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Annya Loya

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Local gallery partners with Domestic Violence Resource Center to raise funds

  Weems Gallery & Framing, a local art gallery, has partnered up with the Albuquerque Domestic Violence Resource Center to host a private fundraiser and raise funds to increase resources at the center. The event will take place in April, according to a press release. In the United States, almost 20 people are physically abused by their intimate partner every minute. In New Mexico, “37.6% of New Mexican women and 33.3% of New Mexican men experience intimate partner physical violence, intimate partner sexual violence and/or intimate partner stalking in their lifetimes,” according to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.

GALLERY: New technology at UNM north campus

New technology at the Health Sciences Library hopes to innovate students' education

  The Health and Sciences Library and Informatics Center at the University of New Mexico introduced an anatomy virtual dissection table, a 3D printer and three VR headsets into their program for student and faculty use, according to the HSLIC staff. The anatomy virtual dissection table, the only natural and thoroughly segmented 3D human anatomy system, was added in October 2022. It is the latest model (Table 9) by the company Anatomage, according to the Anatomage website.

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Division for Equity and Inclusion prepares to release campus climate survey

  Beginning March 1 and ending on April 23, the Division for Equity and Inclusion at the University of New Mexico will release a student climate survey for students across UNM’s main campus, the School of Law and branch campuses, according to the DEI website.  The goal of the research is to conduct climate surveys that represent the full diversity of the UNM community, according to Assata Zerai, principal investigator and vice president for the DEI. Campus climate is generally defined as “current attitudes, behaviors and standard of faculty, staff, administrators and students concerning the level of respect for individual needs, abilities and potential,” according to professor Susan Rankin from Pennsylvania State University.

GALLERY: Jake Skeets Poetry Reading   Workshop

Award-winning poet and UNM alumnus returns for poetry reading

  On Thursday, Feb. 16, award-winning poet Jake Skeets visited the University of New Mexico, his alma mater, for a poetry reading from his book “Eyes Bottle Dark with a Mouthful of Flowers” at George Pearl Hall. Skeets read five poems: three from his book collection and two unpublished works. Throughout the event, he explained the significance and background of each poem. The event was followed by a Q&A session and book signing. On Friday, Feb. 17, Skeets led a poetry master class in Dane Smith Hall, which was open to all UNM students, faculty, staff and the general public, free of charge.

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UNM considers COVID-19 vaccine mandate lift

  On Feb. 6, the University of New Mexico’s Office of the President's communications team shared that the UNM administration is debating lifting the COVID-19 vaccine mandate for students, staff and faculty via email. The debate on whether or not to lift the vaccination mandate was brought to light based on recommendations from the University’s Health Protocols Committee and a discussion with the administration. “While we know that COVID-19 is not over and that we must remain vigilant in protecting ourselves against the virus, it is transitioning into a more manageable endemic phase in our state and across the country,” UNM President Garnett S. Stokes wrote in the email.

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New Mexico Education Department seeks to extend K-12 school year

  During the New Mexico 56th legislative session, the New Mexico Public Education Department introduced Bill 130 to the Legislative Education Committee which would add an extended school program called the K-12 Plus Program. Bill 194, which further explains the finance of the program, was also introduced to the Legislative Finance Committee. The K-12 Plus Program would provide additional program units for public schools that would increase the number of instructional days beyond 180 days for a five-day school week and more than 155 days for a four-day school week, according to the bill. This means grades K-6 would have 990 instructional hours and grades 7-12 a total of 1,080 instructional hours per school year.

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Santa Fe County Commission unanimously supports local choice energy

  On Tuesday, Jan. 31, Santa Fe county called for New Mexico state legislators and Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham to pass the Local Choice Energy Act, officially known as Senate Bill 165. A resolution in support of the legislation, sponsored by Santa Fe County Commission Chair Anna Hansen and Commissioner Camilla Bustamante, passed unanimously at Tuesday’s meeting. The act would allow municipalities, counties and tribes to generate or purchase electricity and provide it to those in their respective service area while still utilizing the transmission service from independent providers. The act seeks to introduce choice into a market that is almost entirely dominated by investor-owned utilities, according to Alysha Shaw, campaign director for Public Power New Mexico.

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UNM Basic Needs Project grows into statewide study

 In 2020, the University of New Mexico Basic Needs Project released a study that revealed that over a third of UNM students were food insecure, and nearly two-fifths were housing insecure. This year, led by principal investigator Sarita Cargas, the team will begin a year-long study that researches these insecurities at a statewide level. The statewide survey, which went live on Feb. 1, will run until March 15. The research teams hope to get a minimum response of 10% of each institution’s population including students, faculty and staff, according to Frederick.


GPSA to introduce amendments to Graduate Scholarship Act during legislative session

 On Monday, Jan. 30. the Graduate and Professional Student Association of the University of New Mexico will present the “Amending the Graduate Scholarship Act” bill during the New Mexico 56th legislative session to the Senate Education Committee. With this bill, GPSA hopes that they can provide a scholarship that could cover up to 100% of tuition fees for all graduate students throughout the state, with priority given to New Mexico residents, according to Isaiah Torres, the GPSA political director and Shaikh Ahmad, the GPSA president.

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UNM student bookstore highlights underrepresented communities

 In 2019, Robin Babb, a senior at the University of New Mexico, opened her own independent bookstore Harvest Moon Books in hopes to highlight stories written by underrepresented communities. In the three years since opening, Harvest Moon Books has gone from an online shop to an in-person shop as part of the And Stuff Retail Collective. Babb strives to make Harvest Moon Books  a place where new and local authors can have a platform. She especially wants to focus on queer and transgender authors along with newly translated English pieces — most importantly, she wants to provide what other stores can’t.

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