Our cover story this semester is about our first Starry Night award ceremony, honoring four visionary women. Hosted by the College of Arts and Sciences Dean’s Council, the event drew a large number of guests from all sectors of our community. We shared an evening of good food and good music and the opportunity to recognize Ammu Devasthali, Governor Susana Martinez, Heather Pollard and Pat Sisbarro for their legacy and contributions to New Mexico State University.
I want to thank members of our Dean’s Council for supporting me and furthering the mission and goals of the College of Arts and Sciences. The proceeds of the Starry Night event add to the Dean’s Fund for Excellence, which is used in various ways to benefit students, faculty and staff. Contributions to this fund allow the college to help award-winning students attend regional and national competitions, send graduate students to conferences to present papers, and support our faculty who travel across the country and the globe to conduct important research.
A year ago, we celebrated the opening of The Center for the Arts. This December, we are celebrating another achievement. The Center for the Arts has been awarded LEED Gold certification by the U.S Green Building Council.
LEED, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, provides an independent verification that a building has been designed and built using strategies aimed at achieving high performance in key areas of human and environmental health and sustainability. The Center for the Arts is New Mexico State University’s 9th Gold certified building. So in addition to its beauty and high tech capabilities, it also reflects the highest qualities of sustainability.
The College of Arts and Sciences is expanding its mission. In January, we add our 24th department. The Department of Interdisciplinary Studies will house women’s studies as well as the bachelor of applied studies and bachelor of interdisciplinary studies. This move successfully integrates areas that had been under the College of Extended Learning. We recently celebrated the graduation of our first group through this program.
Every interaction I have with our students brings our mission home. One group of music students dropped by our offices recently to share some holiday spirit.
As I begin my fourth year at New Mexico State University, I continue to be humbled by the outpouring of good will and support from our community and our alumni. Our faculty, and their heartfelt dedication to students inspire me every day to work harder to support them and ensure they have the tools they need to be successful.
Each year in the College of Arts and Sciences at New Mexico State University has been better than the last and I plan to make next year the best yet!
Don’t forget to stay connected with us through our Facebook page or find out about the latest events and read articles about the college on our website. We are always pleased to hear from you so let us know what you think.
Many thanks to all of our supporters and friends,
Christa D. Slaton
Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences