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New Mexico State University

New Mexico Alliance for Minority Participation
College of Engineering

New Mexico AMP Reports and Publications

April 2010 - Currents


Institutional Coordinator Profile: Robyn Hayes, Instructor of Chemistry at New Mexico State University- Carlsbad (NMSU-Carlsbad), is Institutional Coordinator (IC) for New Mexico AMP. Robyn has served as IC for New Mexico AMP for 2 ½ years at NMSU-Carlsbad, where she has taught chemistry for three years. She earned a
B.S. degree in Chemistry from New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology (New Mexico Tech) and an M.S. in Chemistry from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Currently, Robyn is involved in ongoing research focused on determining students’ perspectives on science laboratories by analyzing survey responses regarding students’ past and current laboratory experiences. As IC, Robyn assists students with advising in STEM, guiding them to STEM careers by discussing transfer issues, college choices, and professional STEM areas. A wealth of local STEM related businesses and organizations in Carlsbad has provided Robyn with many local scientists to visit and network with students, and she has taken them on many field trips to interesting sites, such as the Artesia Navajo Refinery and the Carlsbad Environmental Monitoring and Research Center. Robyn is very proud of two AMP students who work as research lab assistants. Robyn’s husband, Tim Hayes, is a chemist/physicist who works for Los Alamos National Laboratory, and she has two daughters, one who majors in English at McMurry University and another who attends NMSU as a geology major. Thank you, Robyn, for your commitment to our students!

Two Bridge to the Doctorate VI students from the University of New Mexico (UNM) were awarded fellowships through the Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP): Brandi Cron and Angelica Sanchez. Brandi Cron, Earth and Planetary Science (EPS) major, graduated from Gallup High School and earned the B.S. in Biology from UNM in 2008. Her advisor is Dr. Laura Crossey, Professor of EPS and Director of the Bridge to the Doctorate Program at UNM. Brandi plans to obtain a Ph.D. in the geosciences, with a planned research career in Marine Geomicrobiology. Angelica Sanchez is a Ph.D. candidate in Chemical Engineering/Nanomaterials Science. Angelica graduated from Rio Grande High School in Albuquerque, NM and earned the B.S. in Chemical Engineering from UNM in 2009. Her advisor is Dr. Abhaya Datye, Professor of Chemical and Nuclear Engineering. We congratulate these accomplished students on the GRFP Fellowship, a very competitive award that will provide three (3) years of support for the Ph.D, in addition to a $30,000 annual stipend and other benefits.

A group of ten (10) Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute (SIPI) engineering students, led by Dr. Nader Vadiee, SIPI senior student mentors, and two UNM graduate student mentors, tied for the First Place Award for the 2010 Indian Education Renewable Energy Challenge in which college and high school teams designed and built the most efficient portable wind turbine systems. The awards were presented on April 8, 2010 at the Interior Department’s headquarters in Washington, DC. Assistant Secretary-Indian Affairs Larry Echo Hawk stated that this initiative developed innovation and creativity, which are important to energy and economic sustainability in Indian Country. We congratulate this team of students and Dr. Vadiee on this significant accomplishment!

STEM students at NMSU-Carlsbad are invited to attend lectures at the local chapter of the American Nuclear Society, and many participate in the “Lie Down and Be Counted” program at the Carlsbad Environmental Monitoring and Research Center that tracks radioactivity in local residents to see what affect, if any, that the Waste Isolation Pilot Plan has on the local populace. Importantly, nine New Mexico AMP students are helping to present a recycling activity at the Living Desert State Park on April 24 in observance of “March for the Parks” and Earth Day.

Recently appointed NMSU President Barbara Couture will tour all NMSU campuses to network with campus communities. She has visited Grants and Alamogordo campuses, and she will visit NMSU-Carlsbad on April 28.

Bridgette Quintero and Julian Silva, undergraduate research assistants at NMSU, received a Certificate of Excellence in the Poster Division at the National Science Foundation (NSF) Second Annual Tri-State Western Consortium Meeting on April 6-8 at Incline Village, Nevada. Drs. Salim Bawazir and Leeann DeMouche are mentors for the students’ research. EPSCor is a university-based federal-state partnership which aims to enhance science and technology infrastructure in education, in the private sector, and in related government programs. Also in attendance at the meeting were URA’s Juan Solis and Timothy Woo.

A former SCCORE (Summer Community College Opportunity for Research Experience) student, Kenly Maldonado, went a group from NMSU that included Engineers Without Borders, local masons, and other student organizations. Kenly, a transfer student who attended both Santa Fe Community College and NMSU-Alamogordo, traveled with the group at Spring Break to Ruiz de Ancones, Mexico, located 80 miles southwest of Chihuahua to construct a new well because the previous well was contaminated with nitrates and making residents ill.

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