Felicia Casados was perfectly suited to lead New Mexico State University’s Grants campus. “I grew up a rural person and when one grows up rural, I don’t think rural ever leaves your soul or spirit,” says Casados, who retired as president of NMSU Grants in October. When she arrived in Grants 10 years ago, people were concerned she’d have a hard time living in a small town. But compared to her home in El Guique, north of FELICIA CASADOS Española, Grants is a metropolis. • Hired as president of NMSU Grants in May 2005 “I’d like to think that I understood Cibola County and • Was previously dean of planning and special projects at its villages and tribal communities a little better because I grew up rural,” she says. “I know about the desire to have Northern New Mexico Community College opportunities.” • Secured a $7 million GO bond from voters to support During her leadership, NMSU Grants established a the campus partnership with Cibola General Hospital, providing an • Retired from NMSU in October 2015 opportunity for students to obtain a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree while living and working in Grants. “The hospital board of trustees is contributing $80,000 a year to support the delivery of NMSU’s nursing program on our Grants campus,” Casados says. “This is a win-win situation, as it develops local nurses to serve their families and community in the various medical settings.” Establishing the NMSU Grants Fund for Excellence, a collection of endowment funds, is among the other accomplishments that Casados worked on to propel the campus and community. “In six years, the funds have grown to more than $400,000,” she says. “This is a legacy gift for our college’s future.” Another gift for the future is the voters’ approval of a $7 million general obligation bond that will fund the construction of a new 19,300-square-foot facility, which will house teacher and health care education classrooms, along with a child development center. “This was one of my last personal goals for our campus,” Casados says of the first local GO bond attempted by the campus in its 47-year history. “Since we accomplished its passage, I was ready to retire. I know that I have left my campus better than I found it.” Harry Sheski, formerly the vice president for academic affairs at Felicia Casados displays a painting NMSU Grants, now serves as interim presented to her by the NMSU Grants campus staff when she retired. The president of the campus. landscape by Grants resident Mike Lewis Jane Moorman features a sunrise view of Mount Taylor, which watches over Grants and has a special place in Casados’ heart.
Spring 2016 | New Mexico State University | Panorama
Casados’ hardy rural roots fed solid accomplishments in Grants
Published on Apr 27, 2016
Panorama is NMSU's Alumni and Friends magazine. To read the current issue, visit https://panorama.nmsu.edu. To view the Fall 2016 issue as a...