By Bill Knief
GRADUATION AND EARLY ENROLLMENT
Spring is a busy time at UNM-Taos. Our graduation ceremony takes place May 13, but registration for Summer and Fall classes is already in full swing, and early enrollment is the name of the game.
“Students tend not to think about fall until the summer semester is over,” reported Patricia Gonzales, Enrollment Director. “That’s a mistake. It’s amazing how quickly classes fill. We already have a couple of fall courses that are getting close to filling up, even though the semester doesn’t start till August 22. When students register early, they ensure their place in the course of their choice, and they also have more control over setting up a schedule that works best for them. My best advice is, don’t wait—enroll now for both Summer and Fall.”
CINDY SCHAEDIG: MOVING ON
Meanwhile, Cindy Schaedig, our good friend and Senior Project Manager for all construction at UNM-Taos, is pulling up stakes to relocate to Northampton, Massachusetts to be closer to family and take on new challenges.
When she started there were only two buildings on the Klauer Campus and Pueblo Hall had just broken ground. Schaedig had been working for Health Sciences Facility Planning at main campus, and during a reorganization phase she was reassigned.
“I don’t know how I lucked out, but I got Taos,” she said with a laugh. “There were design/build projects starting up for the Childcare Center and the Computer Technology Center. The buildings had been designed for what people wanted and not what the budget allowed, with no feedback about what they could afford. I could only give them a third to one half of what they wanted. The budget for Pueblo Hall alone was $700,000 over budget at that time. I had to deliver a lot of really bad news, but fortunately, they didn’t shoot the messenger.
“I’ve always had a good working relationship with Dennis (Dennis Cruz, former Operations Manager) Dr. Kate (Kate O’Neill, Executive Director) Rudy (Rudy Baca, Plant Manager) right from the beginning, and now Mario (Mario Suazo, Operations Manager). It’s been a really great collaborative team. We figured out how to get the most out of what we’ve got, and we had to make some hard decisions.”
Not only was Schaedig responsible for completing the Kids’ Campus and Walking Path, the Computer Technology Center, Pueblo Hall and the Klauer Campus Master Plan during her tenure, she also redesigned and integrated the infrastructure for the campus, getting UNM-Taos “out of the business of being a public utility”.
“I’m very grateful for what I’ve received in Taos,” Schaedig summed up. “It has been a wonderful, wonderful experience.”
LOUIS MOYA: COMING ON BOARD
“I was actually born in Silver City, but I am a Taos High graduate and my heart and soul belong to Taos,” Louis Moya stated in explaining why he gave up a lucrative career practicing law on the East Coast to take on the position of Resource Development Director at UNM-Taos. He will be organizing our all-important fundraising efforts.
Moya, son of well known and highly respected educator Liz Moya, attended UNM-Taos before transferring to UNM where he graduated Magna Cum Laude, then lived in Seattle and Los Angeles before obtaining his law degree from Rutgers School of Law, Camden, New Jersey. He is licensed in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
“Like many of my peers, I explored a lot of different things before finding my way, and I don’t think that’s necessarily a bad thing. I wasn’t as serious about my academic pursuits until later on. It’s a different landscape now, though, considering the economy. It’s harder and that’s something young people need to think about.”
Louis and his wife Leslie are glad to be back in Taos.
“This is a community where progressive thinking and tradition coexist. As traditional as Taos is, there’s a very respectful attitude toward new things. There are issues here, certainly, but I think there is also harmony. People respect one another. They have respect for different perspectives, different beliefs.”
I asked him about the challenges fundraising posed in a tough economy.
“I want to see UNM-Taos really develop as an institution despite economic conditions and political attitudes, and the only thing that is going to get us out of this economic situation is to be innovative and be a place where people come and bring more business opportunities here, and to do that you’ve got to have a well trained, well educated workforce. It’s difficult to measure the full impact of education. But trust me, it effects everyone, not just the students. Education is the foundation for human development.
“We must seek new avenues of funding, and I think much of this will come from private sources. I want to set up a giving infrastructure so that people are aware of who we are and how a gift in any amount, through proper stewardship, helps us fulfill our mission. That’s why it was so important for me to come back here: the opportunity to be a part of something I believe in.”