Edward Martínez Named American Council on Education Fellow

Las Vegas, N.M. – The American Council on Education (ACE) has announced that Edward Martínez, Ph.D., interim vice president for strategic enrollment management at New Mexico Highlands University, is an ACE Fellow for the academic year 2019-2020. ACE is the largest coordinating body for the nation’s higher education institutions, representing more than 1,700 college and university presidents.

Martínez won the prestigious honor following his nomination
by Highlands President Sam Minner and a rigorous application process. Martínez
is among 39 ACE Fellows from across the country who are named as emerging
higher education leaders. As an ACE Fellow, Martínez will be placed at a host
institution where he will observe and work alongside the institution’s
president and other senior advisers.

“To me, the most exciting aspect of this fellowship is
the opportunity to spend a year studying leadership at another institution,”
Martinez said. “What I want to gain is insight into how other higher education
leaders deal with current issues in higher education such as decreasing state
revenue and declining enrollment. The challenge is how to continue to provide
an excellent education to their student population while facing these and other
issues.”

 According to the
American Council on Education, the ACE Fellows Program, which was founded in
1965, is designed to strengthen institutions and leadership in American higher education
by identifying and preparing faculty and staff for senior positions in college
and university administration.

“I nominated Dr.
Martínez for this ACE Fellowship because we need strong servant leaders in
higher education,” Minner said. “After many conversations with him, I knew he
puts students at the very center of all of his decisions. Clearly, Edward has
the potential to lead and manage at the president or chancellor level. His
excellent faculty credentials coupled with his time as our interim vice president
of strategic enrollment management and finally, his ACE experience, prepare him
to lead at the highest level.”

Minner said that
over the past three years, Martínez has literally built a new unit – strategic enrollment
management – that has modernized Highlands’ processes in recruitment and
retention.  

“We still face
enrollment challenges as do many other institutions, but we are now employing
numerous best practices and analytical tools and that is almost entirely
Edward’s doing. He is already a great leader and is poised to do even more,”
Minner said.

 “I’m in the
process of selecting from 12 host institutions based on my interests. I’m a
strong believer in access to education regardless of socioeconomic status and
background. I want to learn from another institution that stays true to this
mission. One goal of the ACE Fellowship is to bring back knowledge and concrete
ideas that can benefit Highlands,” Martínez said.

He said he is thankful to Minner and Highlands for the
chance to participate in the ACE Fellowship.

Martínez earned his doctorate in environmental and
natural resource sciences from Washington State University, where he also
earned a master’s in environmental and regional planning.

He joined the Highlands University faculty in 2005 as a
professor in the department of natural resources management. Martínez’ research
interests are in the multidisciplinary field of environmental aquatic science.

Martínez has led numerous science grants at Highlands
through granting agencies such as the USDA Hispanic Serving Institution
program, the National Science Foundation, and the U.S. Department of Education.