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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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Family and entrepreneurship: a valuable lesson for students

Today's students have an opportunity to shape their communities. That's the message Emma Jean Cervantes wants students to hear when she speaks about families and entrepreneurship.


ill be the topics of a presentation by Cervantes from 3:30 to 5 p.m. Oct. 12 in the Corbett Center Auditorium at New Mexico State University. She is the latest speaker in the Garrey E. and Katherine T. Carruthers Speaker Series in Economic Development.

Cervantes believes when students work hard and participate, they also build stronger families, more successful businesses and a better community.

"It's very important for students to get their education and value what they can do for a community," Cervantes said.

She has founded or co-founded five organizations in and around Las Cruces, and believes it's important to get her family involved.

She now owns JP Apodaca Farmers, Cervantes Agribusiness and Enterprises, in La Mesa, N.M.

She worked with several community leaders to establish the New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum in Las Cruces. She served on the USDA National Research, Education and Economics Advisory Board. NMSU honored her with the Leyendecker Agriculturist award.

Cervantes is also the mother of three. Dino and Kristina now work with her in the agriculture industry. Her son Joseph is a New Mexico state representative.

The seminar series is hosted by the Garrey E. and Katherine T. Carruthers Chair in Economic Development. Business Dean Garrey E. Carruthers and his wife Katherine created the chair with a $500,000 gift. The state of New Mexico gave the chair $1 million in matching funds.

During the fall 2006 and spring 2007 series, several speakers will address students on issues related to "The Changing Face of Economic Development." The next presenter, J. Mario Molina, president and chief executive officer of Molina Healthcare, is scheduled to speak Nov. 30.

Justin Bannister
Sept. 27, 2006