- New Mexico
- North Dakota
- South Dakota
- U.S. Pacific Territories and Freely Associated States
Since 1953, New Mexico has partnered with and benefited from WICHE through regional collaboration, resource-sharing, sound public policy, and innovation.
2022-23 ACADEMIC YEAR
by New Mexico students through WICHE Student Access Programs
WICHE’s Student Access Programs
WICHE operates three Student Access Programs that together saved nearly 50,000 students $580+ million in 2022-23. Each program supports students at each level of postsecondary education: undergraduate, graduate, and professional healthcare studies.
- Students gain from increased choice and savings.
- Schools gain by optimizing enrollments.
- States and Pacific Island members gain by growing the skills of those they serve and strengthening their workforce.
What Students Are Saying
“PSEP removed some of the financial burden of veterinary school. I feel valued, affirmed, and supported as I pursue my personal career goals. It strengthens me to know that while there are struggles in this rigorous professional program, others are rooting for me and counting on me to return to New Mexico to practice.”
– Shaefer, New Mexico Resident | Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, Colorado State University
Improving Lives in New Mexico
WICHE works collaboratively to expand educational access and excellence for all residents of the West. By promoting innovation, cooperation, resource sharing, and sound public policy, WICHE strengthens higher education’s contributions to the region’s social, economic, and civic life. Learn more about our mission.
WICHE brings together senior academic leaders to foster dialogue about issues facing individual institutions through its leadership and professional development networks.
WESTERN ALLIANCE OF COMMUNITY COLLEGE ACADEMIC LEADERS – 2-YEAR INSTITUTIONS
- New Mexico Military Institute
- New Mexico State University Alamogordo
- San Juan College
Orlando Griego, New Mexico Military Institute, serves on the Alliance executive committee.
WESTERN ACADEMIC LEADERSHIP FORUM – 4-YEAR INSTITUTIONS
- Eastern New Mexico University
- New Mexico Highlands University
- New Mexico State University
- Northern New Mexico College
- University of New Mexico
- Western New Mexico University
James Holloway, University of New Mexico, serves on the Forum executive committee.
WESTERN ACADEMIC LEADERSHIP ACADEMY is a year-long professional development program for academic leaders aspiring to become chief academic officers in the WICHE region. Six cohort members from New Mexico institutions have participated in the Academy since its inception in 2015.
INTERSTATE PASSPORT® is a national network of institutions that simplifies the transfer process, as well as saves students time and money as they successfully complete their degree. Network members include New Mexico State University, San Juan College, Doña Ana Community College, and New Mexico Highlands University.
Thanks to collaboration with the Midwestern Higher Education Compact (MHEC), one of four U.S. regional higher education compacts, WICHE-region educational institutions, nonprofits, and public education entities can benefit from three programs: MHECtech, which provides competitively bid purchasing contracts for an array of hardware, software, and technology services; MHECare, which provides a student health insurance plan and teletherapy services; and a MHEC Cyber Insurance Program, which offers risk transfer and advisory solutions. Learn more.
New Mexico participates in the STATE AUTHORIZATION RECIPROCITY AGREEMENT (SARA) through WICHE. This voluntary agreement provides reciprocity for the state authorization of distance education.
WICHE Behavioral Health Program (BHP) works with partner agencies to develop a broad and culturally relevant training program to support the preparation and retention of doctoral-level psychologists through the New Mexico Psychology Internship Consortium (NM-PIC).
The BHP Together With Veterans Program, focused on reducing Veteran suicides, also has a recently established site in Taos, New Mexico, which to date has served approximately 65 rural veterans.
Knocking at the College Door is the leading U.S. resource for projections of college-ready students. Knocking, which includes a quadrennial publication with additional analysis, is essential for postsecondary policymakers, planning and workforce efforts, and economic development.
WICHE offers curated data and policy resources to support better-informed decision-making:
- Tuition and Fees in the West includes tuition, fees, and enrollment data about 350+ public institutions in the West.
- Benchmarks: WICHE Region presents information on the West’s progress in improving access to, success in, and financing of higher education.
- Data on over 35 indicators in WICHE’s Regional Fact Book for Higher Education in the West.
WCET- The WICHE Cooperative for Education Technologies is the leader in practice, policy, and advocacy of technology-enhanced learning in higher education. Eastern New Mexico University, Navajo Technical University, New Mexico State University, Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute, University of New Mexico, and the Western New Mexico University are WCET members.
Additionally, New Mexico State University (NMSU), NMSU Alamogordo Community College, NMSU Carlsbad Community College, NMSU Doña Ana Community College, and NMSU Grants Community College are members of the State Authorization Network (SAN), which helps guide institutions through state regulations around online courses and programs.
WICHE has convened the OERWest Network, which is part of a nationwide collaborative to scale the development and adoption of free course materials. Open educational resources (OER) have shown promise in improving student outcomes, particularly for poverty-affected students, for whom the high cost of textbooks can be a barrier to postsecondary success.
*indicates Executive Committee member
Barbara Damron *
Professor and Senior Advisor to the Dean, University of New Mexico
Barbara Damron is currently a professor and senior advisor to the Dean at the University of New Mexico College of Nursing. She also holds a faculty appointment at the UNM School of Medicine’s Department of Family & Community Medicine. Prior to that, she served as the Chief Government Relations Officer for the University of New Mexico. She was also New Mexico’s Cabinet Secretary of Higher Education for four years.
On the national level, Damron has been a Congressional Fellow in the United States Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor & Pensions (HELP); an American Political Science Association Congressional Fellow in the United States Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor & Pensions; a Congressional Fellow for Senator Lamar Alexander; Commissioner of the Western Interstate Commission of Higher Education (WICHE); Commissioner of the Education Commission of the States; and sits on the Board of Directors of Complete College America.
Damron’s long professional history spans over 35 years – 20 in New Mexico – including being a leader in education, a health care executive, an advanced practice nurse, a college professor, an international consultant, and a cancer scientist. She has built positive and extensive relationships within the state’s higher education community, as well as within the Legislative and Executive branches. She has also worked alongside community and state leaders on the promotion of civic engagement and was featured as a panelist at the Hispanic Leadership Institute’s (USHLI) “Latinas in Politics” forum last year at UNM.
Damron received a Bachelor of Science in nursing from Union College in Lincoln, Nebraska, a Master of Science in nursing from the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, and a Ph.D. in educational psychology from the University of Texas at Austin.
Senator, New Mexico State Legislature
Associate Dean, College of Engineering, New Mexico State University
Patricia Sullivan is the Associate Dean, of the College of Engineering at the New Mexico State University where she directs statewide engineering outreach services under the college’s Engineering New Mexico Resource Network in areas including technical engineering business assistance, professional development, and educational outreach programs. She also provides direction for the college’s corporate relations and student career services. Sullivan is the New Mexico affiliate director for Project Lead the Way, a national program to expand the STEM pipeline. She is also a member of the board of directors for Enchantment Land Certified Development Company (a program that certifies SBA 504 loans in support of economic development). Sullivan received her Ph.D. in industrial engineering with a focus on renewable energy regulatory policy, a master’s degree in public utility economics, and a bachelor’s degree in biology, all from NMSU.
Legislative Advisory Committee
G. Andrés Romero
Representative, New Mexico State Legislature
Senator, New Mexico State Legislature
Representative, New Mexico State Legislature