December 2021


Northern Rio Grande Corridor Collaborative


By Luis Cifuentes, Ph.D., Vice President for Research and Dean of Graduate School and Jim Chavez, Senior Administrator in the Chancellor's Office


“I am hoping for the opportunity to help NMSU become a leading research university in the Southwest, anchoring the southern end of New Mexico’s Rio Grande Research Corridor.”

The above statement was the last sentence of the letter of intent I sent to the search committee for the next Vice President for Research at New Mexico State University in June 2017. Almost four and a half years later, I along with colleague Jim Chavez am pleased to report on the Northern Rio Grande Corridor Collaborative (NRGCC).

The NRGCC bring together the institutions along the Rio Grande Corridor (New Mexico State University, University of Texas El Paso, New Mexico Tech, University of New Mexico, Sandia and Los Alamos National Laboratories) to collaborate on large federal research, education and economic opportunities.  The strategic goal(s) of the Northern Rio Grande Corridor Collaborative are to: 1) Generate Knowledge based on the wealth of scientific and technical talent that exists; 2) Increase Education (opportunities and level) along the Rio Grande Corridor and, 3) Create a workforce to support strategic areas of opportunity both locally and nationally; and (4) Generate economic development opportunities within the corridor.  The goal of the NRGCC is to collaborate in areas where the collective impact of the group is greater than what could be achieved by individual entities. 

The concept for a collaboration of research institutions along the Rio Grande was created through discussions among the Chancellors, Presidents and Lab Directors in mid 2021.  At the request of the Presidents and Lab Directors, the VPRs at the Universities and Laboratory Research leads at the National Labs were tasked, with leadership of Jim Chavez, to create the NRGCC.

The Leadership team has been meeting on a bi-weekly basis this year to create and stand up the collaborative.  An initial workshop, with over 40 participants (administrators and researchers) was held at New Mexico Tech in late August. To date:

  • A charter and principles of operation have been drafted.
  • A Memorandum of Collaboration has been developed and working its way through the institutions.
  • A web site has been set up and is being populated (release expected early 2022).
  • An initial research area of Dry Lands Resiliency (with themes of Water, Energy, and Climate) has been identified to propose for one of the upcoming NSF Regional Innovation Engine Centers ($100 M over 8 years).
  • Other RFQs are expected in energy, climate, water and carbon management.
  • Discussions of a Center at one of the Universities to operate the NRGCC.

The NRGCC structure should be completed by the beginning of 2022 and preparing to bid on emerging opportunities. Contact Jim Chavez at for more information.

We wish you a relaxing, healthy and safe Holiday Season.






VPRGS Seed Funding to Support Arts and Humanities Scholarly Activities


By Phillip De Leon, Ph.D., Associate Vice President for Research


Office of the Vice President for Research and Dean of Graduate School will soon release a solicitation that seeks proposals for seed funding from faculty in the arts and humanities disciplines at NMSU.  The solicitation is being developed by a committee which includes Drs. Julia Barello, Kerry Banazek, Fred Bugbee, Phillip De Leon, Elizabeth Horodowich, and James Murphy. This program is a step towards achieving the Goal 2, Objective 2.2 of NMSU’s LEADS 2025 that aims to “[i]ntentionally grow humanities, social sciences and creative arts to achieve comprehensive excellence in research and creative activity." It is also aligned with the Office's efforts to attain the R1 status. Please stay tuned and visit the program's website which will be updated with details about the solicitation.


LEADS 2025 Goal 2 and the Research Cores Program


By Tanner Schaub, Ph.D., Director, Research Cores Program


The NMSU roadmap to “Elevate Research and Creativity” (LEADS 2025 Goal 2) recognizes significant opportunity to improve the research success of our faculty by 1) strengthening and leveraging our existing foundational research infrastructure and facilities 2) investing in new research equipment, facilities, programs, and personnel as a means to grow our institution and its impact. In January 2021, the NMSU Office of the Vice President for Research formed the Research Cores Program (RCP) in response to this opportunity. The RCP provides access to state-of-the-art research instrumentation and expertise, provides tools and management structures that relieve administrative burden from faculty and lab directors, and engages efforts to establish new research cores in emerging areas of research and technology. 

And we have been active! Without compiling a comprehensive review, here are a few of the important milestones achieved by the RCP in this first year.

  • We formed an outstanding RCP Advisory Board: To maintain a high level of  connectivity to our faculty, RCP activity is guided by input from a faculty advisory board that includes 5 research-active faculty members, two outstanding external board members and the RCP director.
  • The RCP hired two exceptional core lab directors: Robert Young in the CAIL Lab and Dr. Samuel Belteton in the MICS Lab.
  • We wrote a number of grant proposals: RCP personnel, including the program director, are available to assist and lead proposal development. This year, RCP staff wrote or contributed heavily to the writing of 10 proposals, of which three were funded and two are pending.
  • The RCP brought new research infrastructure to campus: We installed >$500k worth of new instrumentation (a triple quadrupole mass spectrometer) in the Chemical Analysis and Instrumentation Laboratory in support of water research at NMSU.
  • The RCP provides excellent resource management software for not only our core laboratories but other NMSU entities that would benefit from these as well.
  • RCP worked with an advisory board to implement the Dryad Data Repository, which is now available to our faculty research community.
  • We formalized legal agreements that protect NMSU and external visitors when they utilize RCP resources.
  • We established an organization financial structure that is transparent and provides sustainability for each of our cores.

Where are we going? Again, this is not a comprehensive list, but here are a few key areas of activity where we would like NMSU faculty to consider participating:

  • We are speaking at departmental faculty meetings to introduce the RCP and some of our lab directors to the faculty, directly. Please reach out to me at to have this group make a brief presentation to your faculty.
  • We are writing a proposal for an ultrahigh resolution field-emission scanning electron microscope. To support this effort please contact me.
  • We are forming new research cores in conjunction with partners across the university. Please stay tuned!
  • We have an initiative in progress to establish a large, open format instrumentation facility. More information to be provided.
  • We will be hosting student training workshops in several core facilities. 

Please visit us at:  Go Aggies!



Student and faculty researchers participate in a training workshop to learn how to use the new Shimadzu
triple quadrupole mass spectrometer
that was installed in the CAIL
laboratory in September.




Recognizing NMSU's Large Proposal Submitters (Month of November)


By Hamid Mansouri Rad, Ph.D., Senior Proposal Development Specialist, RAS


Congratulations to Drs. Jill McDonald and Charlotte Gard for submitting a proposal exceeding one million dollars in the month of November.

Dr. Jill McDonald, Associate Dean for Research and Community Outreach of the College of Health, Education, and Social Transformation (HEST) and the Director of NMSU's Southwest Institute for Health Disparities Research along with Dr. Charlotte Gard, Associate Professor of Economics and International Business, submitted a proposal to National Institutes of Health, Minority Health and Health Disparities program for $3.3 million to address the overuse of cesarean delivery in New Mexico.

According to Drs. McDonald and Gard, cesarean delivery contributes to acute and long-term morbidity among women and infants. The results of this project is expected to provide information needed to develop a tailored, multilevel intervention to reduce cesarean delivery disparities in New Mexico.

Dr. McDonald can be reached at Dr. Gard can be reached at





Dr. Jill McDoald, Associate Dean for Research, College of HEST
Dr. Charlotte Gard, Associate
Professor of Economics and
International Business

NM INBRE Program Solicits Proposals Relevant to Biomedical, Behavioral, Social, Health, Community, or Population-Based Sciences


By Shelley Lusetti, Ph.D., Director of the NM INBRE Program and Head of the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry


New Mexico IDeA Networks of Biomedical Research Excellence (NM-INBRE) is seeking proposals for one-year research PILOT projects from researchers at NMSU working in areas relevant to biomedical, behavioral, social, health, community, or population-based sciences. Interested researchers must submit a complete proposal and application packet on or before February 1, 2022 through the NM INBRE Project Application Portal. This funding prioritizes short-term, highly focused projects that will result in peer-reviewed publications and/or federal research proposal(s). Investigators should propose a project period that does not exceed 12 months and falls between April 1, 2022 – March 31, 2023. Detailed descriptions of the Pilot project requirements and eligibility is available at NM-INBRE Support for Research. Proposal and application instructions are available at the application portal.



The New Mexico Space Grant Consortium Highlighted the Work of NM Faculty at the 2021 New Mexico Research Symposium


By Paulo Oemig, Ph.D. Director, New Mexico Space Grant Consortium (NMSGC)


On Wednesday, November 10th, I hosted a panel session titled, “Venturing into Space: How New Mexico faculty is reaching for the stars and taking students along the journey.” The panel featured seven researchers from UNM, NMSU, and NMT who highlighted the diverse and exciting space research happening in New Mexico. Topics included inner ear sensor research for manned space missions, exploring the human-robot interaction and trust establishment, and novel additive manufacturing techniques using moon dust for decreasing radiation exposure for extraplanetary structures.

Drs. Elba Serrano (NMSU), Marlena Fraune (NMSU), Douglas Cortes (NMSU), Sally Seidel (UNM), Fernando Moreu (UNM), Paul Fuierer (NMT), and Andrei Zagrai (NMT) discussed their research in relation to NewSpace, NASA, and their students. NewSpace, the influence of the private sector into all space-related efforts, and NASA’s Artemis program are making possible the realization of crewed long-term duration missions. New Mexico faculty are contributing toward this effort and the NMSGC and New Mexico NASA EPSCoR are supporting their research. The panel, representing the three research universities in the state, presented their research, their motivations to study out of this world concepts, and how their students gain experience into new space. Panelists are responding to the needs of a not-too-distant future where habitats on the Moon and Mars will one day materialize. The panel discussed some aspects of their research for making the dream of humans to travel and thrive in outer space safe and feasible. Everything begins with an idea; the panel shared some of their wildest ideas and entertained the wildest questions.

To view the recorded panel session, click here.



Corona Range and Livestock Research Center's Annual Field Day


By Cindy Ramirez, Proposal Development Specialist, NMSU


The week of November 2-5 brought us Research and Creativity week where we celebrated all aspects of research and creative activity here at NMSU.  This week also provided us with an opportunity to explore the research and creativity occurring at one of our off-campus research centers as well.

The Corona Range and Livestock Research Center held its annual field day on November 3rd to highlight three years of research and provide an update of the newly constructed wind farm near the center.

The field day opened with a reception, keynote address, and poster presentations by researchers and graduate students conducting research at the center.  Lunch was provided for all attendees and allowed for attendees to interact and learn more on how the research at the center will benefit them.

The day closed with an update and visit to the wind turbines by the New Mexico Director of Operations of Pattern Energy. The Center will have 39 turbines installed on ranch property and the income generated from the wind farm will enhance the mission to provide research and outreach to New Mexico.

Most College of ACES statewide Agricultural Experiment Station Centers host field days each year in late summer or fall.  The Field Day schedule for 2022 will be posted in early spring and updated dates and information can be found at their website


NMSU's recently installed wind
farm by the Corona Range and Livestock Research Center

Streamlyne Update


By Phillip De Leon, Ph.D., Associate Vice President for Research


  • One of the critical gaps that OVPR intends to close is system-to-system (S2S) interoperability of NMSU's electronic research administration (eRA) system with other internal and external systems. Streamlyne offers S2S features that will improve several aspects of pre- and post-award administration and project management.  For example, when a PI or research team notifies RAS of an opportunity that they wish to develop a proposal for, a Streamlyne record is created and the opportunity number is entered.  This event triggers an exchange with and all required forms are pulled into Streamlyne and automatically populated with preloaded NMSU data.  As a second example, when NMSU is notified of an award, a Streamlyne record is created for the award and tied to the proposal record.  This event will trigger a "push" of budget information into Banner via new APIs being developed "in-house."  As a third example, using the CITI APIs, Streamlyne can pull (co-)PI training information from CITI.  Currently these (and many more) functions are done manually and often repeatedly with existing systems that offer no S2S capabilities.  Our team is hard at work developing the software and service infrastructure necessary to support a state-of-the-art approach to managing the research enterprise.
  • Members of the Streamlyne implementation team attended the UP! conference Nov 8-9 in San Diego where they received new training on pre-/post-award and reporting, clarified several outstanding migration issues, and previewed upcoming and planned Streamlyne features,
  • In the week of November 30, the NMSU implementation team met with University of Central Florida and Streamlyne to respond to remaining questions regarding the Extract, Transfer, and Load (ETL) scripts under development. These scripts will pull proposal, award, and agreement data out of ARGIS, and transform (remap and format) into a file for migration into Streamlyne.  NMSU expects to take delivery of the proposal extract script this week and begin testing next month.  We anticipate migration of proposals on January 21, 2022. In addition the NMSU implementation team is finalizing proposal development approval chains for all units (648) in the NMSU system.  A typical approval chain would be department head then college research office and then RAS.  To construct each approval chain, we list NMSU username(s) for each link in this chain.  We have developed custom code to automate some of this work and manually complete the rest followed up by review.
  • Currently NMSU is on track (all green) and 40% completed.  Five of the six tasks past due are related to ARGIS migration and these are being managed and the Implementation Team anticipates no major project risk.






Streamlye Project Dashboard
[Click to enlarge]



Workshop on Developing Effective Proposals


Cindy Ramirez, Proposal Development Specialist, NMSU


As part of the Principal Investigator (PI) Academy training program, Dr. Hamid Mansouri Rad, Senior Proposal Development Specialist with Research Administration Services will hold a workshop on strategies to develop effective proposals on December 14 from 3:00 to 4:00pm (MT). "I’ve been involved in proposal development for more than 15 years and have noticed how proposals often fail not due to issues regarding their scientific merits, but because of non-technical issues that are important and need to be addressed," he states. NMSU faculty and staff who are not members of the 2021-2022 PI Academy are welcome to register for this workshop by sending an email to subject line "Workshop." 



New Mexico SBIR/STTR Innovation Summit


By Hamid Mansouri Rad, Ph.D. Senior Proposal Development Specialist, NMSU


NMSU Arrowhead Center's NM FAST program, which provides free SBIR/STTR proposal development assistance to businesses in NM, will be hosting its fifth annual NM SBIR/STTR Innovation Summit on Wednesday, December 15th. Because of continued COVID-19 restrictions, the event will be hosted virtually. "It will be a day packed full of informative panels, interactive booths, and the ability to meet one-on-one with SBIR/STTR program managers," states Dana DeRego Catron, Director of the NM FAST SBIR/STTR Program. Registration for the Summit is free, and can be accessed at: 


Limited Submission Funding Opportunities


By Hamid Mansouri Rad, Ph.D., Senior Proposal Development Specialist, RAS

Research Administration Services maintains a list of limited submission funding opportunities for NMSU research community.  The list is accessible through a link on the Research website,  through the Research Administration tab. NMSU users can also access the list directly on SharePoint.  We encourage NMSU researchers to periodically visit the site and if they are interested in any of the opportunities to please inform us by sending email to 



Pivot Funding Opportunity Database


By Hamid Mansouri Rad, Ph.D., Senior Proposal Development Specialist, RAS


This is a reminder that in order to assist NMSU faculty and staff in locating external funding opportunities, the OVPRGS has purchased a subscription to ProQuest’s Pivot available at  

To create an account with Pivot for the first time

  1. Click on the Sign up link.
    1. On the next page, click on Use email address/create password.
    2. Enter your name.
    3. Enter your NMSU email address.
    4. Create a password.
    5. Choose New Mexico State University from the Affiliated Member Institution drop down menu.
    6. Check the consent checkbox.
    7. Check the reCaptcha check box.
    8. Press the Create my account button.

 To request a one-on-one or group Pivot training, send email to



Graduate School

New graduate program development wisdom from the Council of Graduate Schools (CGS)


By Carol Flinchbaugh, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Management and Interim Associate Dean, Graduate School


The Council of Graduate Schools (CGS) annual meeting was held last week. One session that I found valuable to NMSU focused on the "wins" and "losses" of new graduate program development across three different universities: Georgia Institute of Technology, Marquette University, and North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University. The Vice Provosts (VP) of graduate programs at each of these schools shared information that could inform graduate program development at NMSU. I’ll share the “nuggets” that I found most beneficial.

The Vice Provost at NC A&T, the largest Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) articulated how they developed graduate certificate programs, largely in data science, that link to full Master’s degrees. These graduate certificates were designed for students who were denied acceptance to other graduate programs; the only admissions requirements were an undergraduate degree and a 2.0 GPA. This gives students, largely underrepresented minorities, an opportunity to demonstrate that they can succeed in graduate coursework. Moreover, students enrolled in graduate certificate programs are eligible for financial aid.

Marquette University (MU) has worked with various industry partners to develop degree programs that focus on what local market driven needs. For example, they have partnered with General Electric (G.E. Edison) where GE employees (also MU students) get course credits for required engineering courses taught in-house by GE engineers. In turn, GE employees enroll at MU for their remaining Master’s degree coursework. Importantly, the VP shared that establishing business partnerships for degrees was not always sufficient to grow student enrollment numbers. The VP surmised that limited enrollment might stem from the lack of understanding about the meaning of a ‘graduate certificate.’ In turn, all three VPs acknowledged that graduate schools should relabel ‘graduate certificates’ as “Associate Master’s” degrees to better reflect the degree’s value. The MU VP reminded the audience that awarding degrees is the only thing that universities can do (as compared to Google, Amazon, and others entering the training and development space). As such, universities must remind the state and federal legislatures that regulation about professional licensing is often what drives graduate education.

The VP at Georgia Tech (GT) provided a graphic that models their online graduate programs curriculum. This graphic depicts how the same courses can be used in multiple degree programs. The courses are scalable and allow a student to add-on to existing degrees.




AFRL Scholars Program Call for Applications


By Chong-Hwey Fee, Proposal Development Specialist, RAS


Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) Summer 2022 internships are available at multiple AFRL sites across the US, in a wide range of technical areas. Students interested in spending an exciting summer working on hands-on projects at any of AFRL’s supported sites, be sure to submit an application before the deadline! For more information visit the AFRL Scholars website

Application deadline: Jan 10, 2022

To learn more, please register for the AFRL Scholars program webinar to be held on December 15, 2021 at 11AM – noon MST.


Department of Energy CSGF (Computational Science Graduate Fellowship)


By Chong-Hwey Fee, Proposal Development Specialist, RAS


The annual DOE CSGF (Computational Science Graduate Fellowship) application process is currently open. The DOE CSGF accepts students engaged in traditional, application-focused computational science research and those pursuing applied mathematics, statistics or computer science research enabling the use of emerging high-performance computing (HPC) systems without a specific application. Together, they will meet the DOE's growing needs to build and efficiently operate the latest, most powerful HPC systems and apply those systems to problems of national importance.

During the fellowship period, fellows are required to be enrolled as full-time graduate students at an accredited U.S. college or university and conduct research in areas of interest to the DOE. To learn more about eligibility requirements and benefits, please vist the CSGF website

Application deadline: January 12, 2022


Need Guidance on Securing External Funding? Contact Me!


If you are an NMSU graduate student or post-doctoral scholar needing guidance on securing external funding, please contact me at Please also visit the list of current funding opportunities that I maintain on SharePoint and let me know if you have any questions.

Chong-Hwey Fee

Chong-Hwey Fee, Proposal
Development Specialist, RAS
Questions and comments regarding NMSU’s Research Digest should be directed to Hamid Mansouri Rad, Ph.D. at, (575) 646-6429.