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CNM ‘ready for the future’ and new leadership

It’s been the time of my life professionally, but my tenure as president of Central New Mexico Community College is coming to an end. In April, I informed the CNM Governing Board of my intention to retire after serving 13 years as president and a total of 23 years at the college. The board is currently conducting its search for the next president, and I know there will be plenty of highly talented leaders poised to guide this community gem we call CNM into the future.

Over nearly 13 years, we’ve accomplished so much for our students and community at CNM, which many of you still fondly remember as TVI (Albuquerque Technical Vocational Institute). We’ve remained committed to our roots as a technical vocational institute, while at the same time becoming an innovative and nationally recognized community college that has evolved to meet the needs of our students, our community and our economy in a fast-changing world.

As our community’s college, we have always been focused on keeping access to a CNM education affordable, while being supportive of students from all walks of life. Our faculty and staff truly care about each student, because we know that every time a student perseveres and becomes a college graduate, it improves the student’s life, and it positively impacts their family, our community and our economy. It’s also gratifying to note that the vast majority of our graduates stay in New Mexico and become the backbone of our workforce – from hospitals to construction sites, film sets to five-star restaurants, IT departments to fire departments, and virtually every industry in between.

For 54 years, local employers have relied on us to provide them with highly skilled graduates who are ready to thrive in the workplace on day one. That’s because we are constantly partnering with the private and public sectors to ensure that our programs, technology and learning environments are constantly evolving with the times. We are always leaning into the future, anticipating the next iteration of workforce needs and preparing our students for the quality jobs of tomorrow.

Responding quickly to our region’s workforce needs by creating new programs or retooling current ones has always been a hallmark of CNM. And with the ever-increasing speed of technological advancements, that agility has never been more important.

Recently, the governing board approved our strategic plan that will guide all efforts at CNM for the next five years. Rooted deeply in the college’s commitment to student success and community success, it will ensure that CNM continues to be a very powerful force for good in the years to come.

Of course, CNM wouldn’t be much of a force at all without the one constant that has powered us for 54 years – the steadfast support of our community. People here believe in us. And we always do our best to live up to that honor.

When I began this amazing journey as CNM president nearly 13 years ago, I felt so fortunate that the college had a rock-solid reputation for serving this community well, coupled with a wise and responsible strategic plan for the future. We were set up to succeed on behalf of our students and central New Mexico, and thanks to our hard-working and talented faculty and staff, I think we have.

I’m very confident that the next president of CNM will feel like I did nearly 13 years ago. CNM is ready for the future and will continue to connect New Mexicans to the American Dream for decades to come.

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