Since 1953, New Mexico has partnered with and benefited from WICHE through regional collaboration, resource-sharing, sound public policy, and innovation.

WICHE Commissioners

*indicates Executive Committee member

* Barbara Damron

Chief Government Relations Officer and Professor, University of New Mexico

Mark Moores

Senator, New Mexico State Legislature

Patricia Sullivan

Director, Office of Strategic Initiatives, New Mexico State University

Legislative Advisory Committee

Mark Moores

Senator, New Mexico State Legislature


Provides strong return on investment



  • 1,012 New Mexico residents saved $9 million in 2019-20 through the Western Undergraduate Exchange (WUE) and the Western Regional Graduate Program (WRGP). These WICHE programs provide significant student savings on nonresident tuition at 170+ Western U.S. public colleges and universities.
  • In 2019-20 WICHE Student Access Programs provided New Mexico a 515 percent return on investment, relative to the state’s annual WICHE dues.
  • New Mexico students and their families have saved over $103.8 million since the state began participating in WUE.
  • The Master Property Program (MPP) helps institutions reduce their insurance premiums and improve their coverage. The MPP includes more than 170 campuses with total insured values of over $100 billion.

Helps New Mexico attract students from other states

WICHE maps highlighting New Mexico student migration
WICHE maps highlighting New Mexico student migration
  • WUE and WRGP incentivized 645 students this year to invest their tuition dollars in New Mexico.

Bolsters New Mexico’s health workforce

  • Through the Professional Student Exchange Program (PSEP), students from New Mexico can enroll in participating programs in another state while receiving substantial tuition support. Currently, New Mexico supports students in dentistry, optometry, and veterinary medicine.
  • WICHE’s Behavioral Health Program (BHP) was contracted by the state of New Mexico to provide consultation and technical assistance for the development and implementation of the New Mexico Psychology Internship Consortium, which helps build quality behavioral health resources in rural areas of the state.

Helps New Mexico allocate resources efficiently with data and policy analysis

  • WICHE offers various data and policy resources to support better-informed decision-making. WICHE’s research projects and collaborations cover postsecondary completion, closing attainment gaps, adult learners, and multistate data-sharing to support educational planning and workforce development.
  • WICHE staff serve as expert resources and provide technical assistance on finance, financial aid, articulation and transfer, strategic planning, student demographics, and more.
  • Our website features Benchmarks, an interactive dashboard featuring the most recent data available on the West’s progress in improving access to, success in, and the financing of higher education, as well as other useful resources.
  • WICHE’s quadrennial Knocking at the College Door report is regarded as the foremost U.S. resource for projections of college-ready students. An abundance of information can be found on the Knocking website, including publications, reports, projections data, interactive data dashboards, recorded webinars, presentations, and New Mexico’s state profile.

Fosters idea sharing

  • WICHE’s Legislative Advisory Committee provides valuable insights on trends and promising practices to New Mexico’s legislative leaders as they build partnerships with leaders in other Western states.
  • Five New Mexico institutions are members of the Western Academic Leadership Forum (the Forum), a consortium of academic officers at bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral institutions and chief executives and academic officers for systems and state governing boards. New Mexico members include Eastern New Mexico University, New Mexico State University, Northern New Mexico College, University of New Mexico, and Western New Mexico University. Greg Fant, New Mexico State University, serves on the Forum executive committee. Academic leaders at community colleges (cc) and technical schools and at systems and state governing and coordinating boards associated with two-year institutions are members of the Western Alliance of Community College Academic Leaders (the Alliance). The New Mexico members of the Alliance are New Mexico Military Institute, and New Mexico State University Alamorgordo. Douglas Murray, New Mexico Military Institute, serves on the executive committee of the Alliance. Both the Forum and the Alliance exchange ideas and information, share resources and expertise, and collaborate on regional initiatives.
  • Central New Mexico Community College, Navajo Technical College, New Mexico State University, Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute, University of New Mexico, and Western New Mexico College are all members of WCET, the WICHE Cooperative for Educational Technologies, the leader in the practice, policy, and advocacy of technology-enhanced learning in higher education. WCET’s growing membership includes almost 400 institutions, higher education agencies and systems, nonprofit organizations, government agencies, and corporations in all U.S. states and several Canadian provinces. Through its Frontiers blog, convenings, and active online discussions, WCET keeps members informed of the latest in policy change, regulations, and trends in educational technology. WCET also offers a host of resources related to educational technology and faculty support including advice and guidance for institutions on how to transition their face-to-face offerings to emergency online alternatives and how to increase quality in these courses over time.
  • The State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA) is a voluntary, state-led initiative designed to establish comparable standards for U.S. states and territories regulating postsecondary distance education. SARA expands access to postsecondary educational opportunities, while ensuring meaningful consumer protections for students and reducing regulatory red tape for institutions. WICHE is responsible for coordinating the membership of SARA states in the West through the WICHE State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (W-SARA). See nc-sara.org/directory for a list of member institutions.
  • The State Authorization Network (SAN) provides institutional support in managing state regulations related to online courses and programs. New Mexico’s members are: New Mexico State University (NMSU), NMSU Alamogordo CC, NMSU Carlsbad CC, NMSU Doña Ana CC, and NMSU Grants CC.
  • At the outset of the recent outbreak of COVID-19, WICHE quickly reacted, shifted to remote work, and continues to advance our mission. WICHE is facilitating peer-to-peer videoconferences for higher education leaders to connect and identify solutions to common challenges, to follow legislation passed in response to the crisis, and to identify emergency funding for students and higher education institutions. The WICHE BHP is hosting webinars that offer guidance to support the mental well-being of their students, and WCET is providing updates and resources to help institutions address issues that arise due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Visit WICHE’s COVID-19 resources page for up-to-date information.