Student Union Building, Room 317
The Associated Students of New Mexico Highlands University (ASNMHU) is the official name for student government at Highlands. Elected student representatives serve the campus community in various ways, both formal and informal, and provide ideas and feedback to the administration that incorporate student perspectives.
Each spring the student body elects the next school year’s officers, which include senators and executives. The executives are made up of the president, vice president, secretary, treasurer, and parliamentarian. The senate is also charged with electing a president pro-tempore, who is both a voting senator and member of the executive board acting as a liaison between the senators and the executives. Constitutionally, senate seats are determined by the university’s enrollment on the main campus, with one senator representing 100 students. ASNMHU reflects proportional representation and is comprised of both undergraduate and graduate student senators. Graduate student Senators are required to represent each of the university’s schools and colleges. That is, at least one Senator needs to represent the School of Education, the School of Social Work, the School of Business Media and Technology, and the College of Arts and Sciences.
The senate has proven to be an excellent training ground and real-world experience for students in the area of politics, organizational communication, student affairs, budget and finance, and parliamentary procedures. Former ASNMHU members include U.S. Congressman Ben Ray Lujan, New Mexico State Attorney General Hector Balderas, Former NMHU Dean of Students Fidel Trujillo, and NMHU Dean of Students Kimberly Blea, among other distinguished alumni.
As one looks across campus, he or she can see the many projects initiated by student senate. Some of the more recent projects are the Flagship of Diversity located at the Centennial Tower, which displays the flags from various countries represented by students attending Highlands. ASNMHU was also instrumental in acquiring funds for the blue security poles around campus to help maintain a safe and quality educational environment. Other projects included assisting in efforts to ensure that the university is in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act and the installation of speed bumps in high pedestrian areas of campus. Many of the effective programs and resources available today were introduced and supported by student senate, such as access to computer labs and the laptop computer loan program.
The Senate has a strong voice on campus advocating for student needs. The ASNMHU president has a seat on the university President’s Advisory Council and a formal seat at Board of Regents meetings, providing a report on important issues facing students. Student representatives also have reporting functions with Faculty Senate and Staff Senate. ASNMHU also assists the Office of Campus Life in promoting activities and a vibrant campus life. Specifically, officers are active in school sponsored events and play an important role during Homecoming week.
ASNMHU’s budget is comprised of student fees paid by each student. At the beginning of the year, the senate approves a budget with several items covered. Some of the line items include an activities committee fund to fund events hosted by student senate, and allocated funding for campus clubs and organizations.
Eligibility requirements for student senators include satisfactory academic and disciplinary standing with the university. Undergraduate student senators must have at least a 2.5 grade point average to serve on ASNMHU. Graduate senators and executives must have at least a 3.0 GPA. Terms of office are for the duration of the academic year. Student Senate is required to meet eight times per semester. Typically, biweekly meetings are held on Sunday evenings in the spectacular governance room, located on the third floor of the Student Union Building.
For more information on upcoming meetings/events and available funding for clubs and organizations or if you are interested in serving in student government, please call the Student Government Office at 505-454-3594 or the Dean of Students Office at 505-454-3020.
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