Highlands Loves Alumni Feb. 9 Benefits Campaign for Football Field

Photo of couple

Photo: Margaret McKinney/Highlands University
Highlands alumni Therese and Mike Melton attended the Highlands Loves Alumni event Feb. 11, 2016. Therese is the victim assistance program director for the IV Judicial District Attorney’s Office and Mike is the regional president for Southwest Capital Bank. The couple met during their student days at Highlands and have been married 23 years.

Las Vegas, N.M. – The Highlands Loves Alumni event Feb. 9 is a festive and free evening of food, music, fun and a silent auction that benefits the Home Field Advantage Campaign aimed at replacing the university’s 14-year-old football field.

The Valentine’s celebration will be in the Student Center, 800 National Ave., from 5:30 – 8 p.m.

“Our football field is in critical need of repair and we can’t continue to use the field in its current condition much longer,” said Theresa Law, vice president of advancement at Highlands. “This is an important project in terms of recruitment, campus life, and community pride.”

The Highlands University Foundation Office, which Law directs, is leading the fundraising campaign and sponsoring the Valentine’s event.

The cost to replace the football field is approximately $450,000. The Highlands University women’s soccer team also uses the field along with the university’s two-time national champions Vatos rugby club and community groups.

“We’ve had a lot of interest from our alumni and the community in this campaign and are encouraged to see several donors already contributing. The Highlands Loves Alumni event will be a fun way for people to get involved in supporting the Home Field Advantage Campaign,” Law said.

Law said that the 2016 Highlands Loves Alumni event helped the university meet its goal for the High-Impact Practices Campaign for student success.

“We greatly appreciate everyone’s support last year at the Valentine’s event and hope people will turn out again this year to support another important Highlands University initiative,” Law said.

Some highlights of the Valentine’s event include hors d’oeuvres and desserts catered by Isaac Sandoval, live music from the Smooth Riders jazz ensemble, and a silent auction. Highlands’ President Sam Minner will call the numbers for the cakewalk, and there will be a selfie photo booth to snap and share photos.

“This Highlands Loves Alumni event is a chance to show our alumni, along with the community and friends, how important they are to the university and are part of our family,” said Juli Salman, alumni director.

Salman said the silent auction includes a wide variety of items such as a night at the historic Plaza Hotel in Las Vegas, dinners for two, wine baskets, jewelry, sports memorabilia including New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady’s jersey, and art such as prints from the Highlands’ fine art collection.

“We encourage people to buy Valentine’s gifts for your sweetheart’s personal taste,” Salman said.

She said alumni love stories are another feature of the event, with the stories and photos projected in a slideshow.

“These stories demonstrate the bond that alumni have to Highlands, and the support and nurturing they felt from the university family during their student years, which helped put them on the path to successful lives,” Salman said.

She said the Valentine’s event is generating generous support from the community as well as the university’s Alumni Board, Foundation Board, and Board of Regents.

“It’s heartwarming to see this kind of love for Highlands,” Salman said.

She said you don’t need a date for Highlands Loves Alumni, and you don’t need to be a Highlands graduate to join the fun.

To RSVP for Highlands Loves Alumni email lylamaestas@nmhu.edu or call 505-454-3248.