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Research Week celebrates research, creative accomplishments of NMSU community

A collaboration between New Mexico State University’s Graduate School, University Research Council and Graduate Student Council has created a new event to highlight the research and creative activities of students, faculty and staff. The first-ever Research Week at NMSU will be held April 2-6.

Women, who is seated, is working with lab tools.
New Mexico State University’s kinesiology student Josi Gabaldon works with a sample inside a Rentfrow Hall laboratory. Research and creative activities will be honored at NMSU’s first-ever Research Week April 2-6. (NMSU photo by Andres Leighton)

“This weeklong event can help us recognize and celebrate the many research and creative achievements of our NMSU community through various planned presentations, poster sessions, workshops, exhibits and performances,” said Rebecca Palacios, public health sciences associate professor and University Research Council chair. “Faculty also are encouraged to highlight research and creative arts in their classrooms this week to promote a strong culture of inquiry and discovery. Faculty engaged in research and creative activities are better equipped to teach and serve their state. Likewise, students who participate in research learn to apply what they learn in class, thus reinforcing their learning.”

Graduate School Dean Loui Reyes said he learned about Research Week from colleagues across the country. He felt it would be a good fit for NMSU, since the university has both the Graduate Arts and Research Symposia and the University Research Council’s Faculty Research and Creative Activities Fair.

“The inspiration behind the event is to keep research and creative activities at the center of the graduate enterprise at NMSU,” Reyes said. “Our long-term vision is to bring together departments, colleges and the Las Cruces and regional community to honor and to celebrate our research and creative accomplishments.

“NMSU is a land-grant institution, and it is important to share with our state residents the excellent research and creative endeavors of their public institution,” he added.

A major hurdle for faculty to conduct research is learning to juggle competing demands, Palacios said.

“Our mission is to engage in teaching, research and service, each of these activities requiring significant time and energy resources. Securing grants and contracts to support our research also can be a struggle during challenging economic times. Despite these and other challenges, our faculty remain committed and engaged in their research and creative activities,” she said.

Research Week begins with an opening reception from 5 to 8 p.m. Monday, April 2,
in Corbett Center Student Union ballroom. The event will include wine and hors d’oeuvres along with music and dance performances. From 2 to 4 p.m. Tuesday, April 3, sustainability debates will take place at Corbett Center auditorium.

The University Research Council will host its 17th annual URC Faculty Research and Creative Activities Fair from 12 to 5 p.m. Wednesday, April 4, at Domenici Hall, Room 109. The event will begin with the poster judging session at noon. The keynote speaker, David Newell, from the National Institute of Standards and Technology, will start at 1 p.m. Tim Wright, biology professor and recipient of the URC Distinguished Career Award, will speak at 2 p.m. In addition, the two recipients of the URC Early Career Award, Kenneth (KC) Carroll, associate professor in plant and environmental sciences, and Catherine Brewer, assistant professor in chemical and materials engineering, will speak at 3 and 3:30 p.m., respectively.

On Thursday, April 5, a pair of regional talks will be held at 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 2 to 4 p.m., with a poster session set for 12 to 2 p.m. in Corbett Center. Research Week concludes with closing ceremonies and a picnic from 12 to 2 p.m. Friday, April 6, at Corbett Center amphitheater. The event also will feature music and dance performances.

Additionally, the Multicultural Education Conference will be held on campus from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, April 7.

For more information on Research Week visit http://researchweek.nmsu.edu.