Fidel Trujillo New Dean of Students at Highlands University
Fidel Trujillo is the new dean of students at New Mexico Highlands University.
“Dr. Trujillo brings a broad wealth of experience to Highlands and has a demonstrated passion for education,” said Highlands University President Jim Fries.
Over the years, Trujillo has served Highlands University in a variety of capacities, including teaching as an assistant professor in the School of Education from 2008 to 2009.
While earning his M.A. in sports administration at Highlands, Trujillo was the university’s assistant athletic director and the women’s assistant basketball coach from 1999 to 2002.
As an undergraduate at Highlands, Trujillo was student body president.
Trujillo, a native of Mora, N.M., earned his Ph.D. in education, with an emphasis in language, literacy and socio-cultural studies, from the University of New Mexico. His doctoral dissertation focused on academic success among Hispanic college students from northeast New Mexico.
While at UNM, Trujillo was awarded a New Mexico Department of Higher Education Minority Doctoral Fellowship.
Trujillo brings 10 years of experience working in higher education to his position at Highlands.
From 2005 to 2008, he was a liaison officer for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, working with 35 Hispanic-serving higher education institutions across a four-state region that included New Mexico, Colorado, Arizona and west Texas.
Trujillo received an exemplary service award from the U.S.D.A. in 2008.
During his tenure at the University of New Mexico from 2002 to 2005, Trujillo directed both the Upward Bound Program and the College Assistance Migrant Program.
Most recently, Trujillo was associate superintendent for operations and human resources at Española Public School District from 2009 through 2010. The district has 15 school sites and 5,000 students.
“I really understand the dynamics of this region, and how socioeconomic and cultural factors impact the educational process and student success,” Trujillo said. “As a first-generation college student myself, I understand the challenges these students face in navigating college life. I hope I can serve as a role model and human bridge to help all our Highlands University students succeed.”
Trujillo said an important role of the dean of students is to help students have access to institutional resources, social networks, and opportunities at Highlands.
He added that that the dean of students plays an important role in building and maintaining the relationship between students and the administration.
“My aim and my pledge is to be visible, accessible and approachable to students and the entire campus community.
“My experience as a student at Highlands University gives me insight, passion and enthusiasm for going back to serve the institution that gave me so much. It’s an honor to be named dean of students,” Trujillo said.
Trujillo can be reached at 505-454-3566 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Trujillo’s wife, Amanda Trujillo, is an elementary school counselor who earned a master’s degree in counseling from the Highlands University School of Education. She is also a native of Mora.