President’s Town Hall addressed important COVID-19 updates


Alana Hernandez

COVID-19 related signage on the NMSU campus, near the Aggie Health and Wellness Center

The New Mexico Student University President’s Town touched on updates relating to COVID-19 and Research and Creativity Week (RCW) on Oct. 12, but without President John Floros hosting.

Ruth Johnston, the vice chancellor and strategic chief financial officer, was facilitating the session since Floros, she stated was “not available”.

In the first topic, COVID-19, Johnston said “over 90%” of NMSU staff and faculty were compliant in submitting their proof of vaccinations or recording their weekly testing results through VaxTrax by the Sept. 30 deadline.  

The main issue was about NMSU students not being able to upload their information in time. About 30% of NMSU students submitted their proof of being vaccinated by the deadline, according to the Las Cruces Sun News 

Johnston stated there will be more campaigns to get students to get vaccinated while uploading their information. She also explained where students can get tested for COVID-19.  

“We do have testing here on the main campus in Pinon Hall, Lot 27,” Johnston said. “There is also testing at the DACC East Mesa.” 

Jon Webster, the NMSU COVID-19 project manager, said NMSU has “approximately reported 760 cases” since the beginning of the pandemic which is a positivity rate of about two percent and below the state of New Mexico’s five percent positivity rate.  

The meeting then discussed about RCW; a four-day event that will start from Nov. 2 then end on Nov. 5. The week allows the NMSU to celebrate all aspects of scholarly research and creative activity on campus. 

The categories that will represent certain NMSU departments for RCW are:  

  • Agriculture
  • Business
  • Education
  • Engineering
  • Fine Arts
  • Health and Social Services
  • Life Sciences
  • Physical Sciences
  • Social Sciences

 “We have over 200 posters, oral presentations, short performances and media installations contributed by NMSU students, faculty and staff,” Chris Sroka, chair of the University Research Council said. 

Vice President of Research and Dean of Graduate School, Luis Cifuentes, shared more information on the event via Twitter. He showed statics stating a combined 166 of undergraduate and graduate students will be participating in RCW.   

For people wanting to be updated on RCW, including the presentation schedule and more information on each category being represented, they can visit the event’s official website 

The next President’s Town Hall is scheduled on Nov. 9. For those interested in watching the recordings of the current and past webinars, they can look at the meeting’s archives at the Office of the President’s NMSU website 


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