Update: August 12, 2020
The United Way of Eddy County has established a new “Project Feeding Families” effort for low income families and families in need of food that begins on Aug. 14 and will continue to take place on the second Friday of every month. Fresh produce and perishables are available for drive-thru food distribution at Epworth United Methodist Church (1406 W. Blodgett) beginning at 11:30 a.m. This is a drive-thru event and masks are required for individuals in their vehicle. There will be a similar event at 8:30 a.m. at First National Bank (908 W. Main Street) in Artesia. Thanks again to the United Way and many other local charitable organizations who have provided assistance over the past few months.
On Tuesday, Artesia General Hospital sent out a notice addressing several rumors. The hospital said that they have confirmed a positive COVID-19 case among AGH staff, but noted that they have continued to undertake extraordinary measures to make sure patients are safe. For example, all AGH staff are checked daily for symptoms of COVID-19, and those involved in direct patient care are checked twice. Additionally, airflow routes through the hospital have been changed to help isolate patients who might have COVID-19 from patients who don’t. AGH stated that rumors of portions of the hospital being closed are not accurate.
“Throughout the pandemic, we have been vigilant, and we continue to monitor the situation closely,” the hospital writes. “Artesia General Hospital continues to provide services in all departments and anticipates doing so on a continuing basis, along with emphasizing mask wearing and social distancing throughout the facility for the safety of all.”
Carlsbad Medical Center has also outlined similar safety measures. Their safety measures are available here: https://www.carlsbadmedicalcenter.com/covid-19. Please continue to seek medical assistance when you believe it is necessary.
This week, we learned that the campus president position at New Mexico State University-Carlsbad has been eliminated, according to a letter from Chancellor Dan Arvizu. We’re extremely disappointed to learn about this decision. The president positions in Alamogordo and Grants have also been eliminated as part of a realignment. Former President Dr. John Gratton, who retired this summer, did an excellent job linking the entire community with the college.
“While the mission of each campus will remain the same, the three community colleges will undergo administrative restructuring and other adjustments to transition into a more integrated system of branch campuses,” writes Dr. Arvizu.
A more integrated system could mean that our students here might benefit more from some of Las Cruces’ resources. However, we hope that “integrated” just isn’t a nice way of saying downsizing. It is very important that our local campus continue to retain its own identity and that administrators here get to make key decision-making abilities on behalf of this college.
Dr. Andrew Nwanne serves as Chief Academic Officer and Provost for NMSU-C and will be the highest ranking member of the NMSU program in Carlsbad now. We certainly hope that Dr. Nwanne will be allowed to continue to interact and partner with the community at a high level.
NMSU-C was established in 1950 as the state’s first community college, and we’re very proud to have it here. We’re disappointed in the decision to eliminate the president position and hope NMSU will work with Carlsbad in showing its commitment to this community and our students here.
Carlsbad Mayor Dale Janway