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NMSU installs vending machines stocked with COVID-19 safety supplies

While snacks, beverages and ice-cold water have been staples of vending machines positioned all over New Mexico State University’s Las Cruces campus, new machines installed last week will offer another campus necessity – face masks and supplies designed to make it easier for faculty, staff and students to do their part to reduce the spread of COVID-19.



New Mexico State University Facilities & Services staff, along with a crew from Fastenal, set up vending machines with supplies like masks, gloves and hand sanitizer for faculty, staff and students across campus. (NMSU photo by Josh Bachman)

New Mexico State University Facilities & Services staff, along with a crew from Fastenal, set up vending machines with supplies like masks, gloves and hand sanitizer for faculty, staff and students across campus. (NMSU photo by Josh Bachman)

“We are learning to exist in a world with COVID-19, so it’s imperative that we create and enforce good habits when it comes to behaviors like wearing a mask, social distancing, frequent hand washing and cleaning high-touch surfaces,” said D’Anne Stuart, associate vice president for Administration & Finance, who oversees NMSU’s Procurement Services. “These vending machines will remain stocked with supplies to make it easier and more convenient to build these habits and help protect our Aggie community.”

Nine vending machines from Fastenal will be located in buildings across the central part of campus, in locations spanning from Gerald Thomas Hall to Corbett Center Student Union. A map of the vending machine locations is available at https://space.nmsu.edu/campus-maps or at https://ready.nmsu.edu.

The machines will be stocked daily with hand sanitizer, nitrile gloves, reusable and disposable masks, safety glasses, disinfectant wipes and other items, which are offered without charge to NMSU employees using their Aggie ID number or a swipe of their Aggie ID card. Funds for the supplies come from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

Departmental supply orders from various vendors are also available through NMSU’s Aggie Service Center. More information about supply orders is available at https://asc.nmsu.edu/covid-supplies/.

“We’ve got many ways for departments to ensure they are well stocked with the supplies they need to disinfect surfaces frequently in classrooms and workspaces,” said Javier Cordero, director of Procurement Services. “This adds another layer of protection to the enhanced cleaning and sanitizing protocols that our custodial teams are completing every day.”

Students, who begin online and in-person classes on Wednesday, Aug. 19, can pick up free reusable masks from the Associated Students of NMSU, Housing & Residential Life, Aggie Stampede, and other organizations and departments on campus. Two vending supply machines where students can access free masks and supplies throughout August using their Aggie ID card or entering their Aggie ID number have been installed outside of Taos Cafeteria in Corbett Center Student Union. Beginning Sept. 1, those supplies will be available for purchase at posted prices using cash or credit card. In addition, reusable masks and other personal protective supplies will soon be available for purchase by students at select snack vending machines in Aggie One Stop, the Activity Center, and other locations.

For more information about the NMSU Ready return-to-campus plan, visit https://ready.nmsu.edu.