Learning On-Line 

A Student Perspective

By Devonny Grajeda

Staff Reporter

Salvador Zambrano, a former graduate student from CNM and CNM Chronicle employee started his CNM experience in 2018. 

He attended CNM in hopes of pursuing an associate degree in Nursing. 

Going into the last semester of his second year COVID-19 hit, which resulted in him taking long distance classes he said.

He remembers being at work in March of 2020 and his boss, the former Director for parking at CNM said employees would not be at work the next day. 

Since he knew he would have a three-day weekend he took the opportunity to go home which was in Roswell, NM he said. 

On his first day off he was informed that CNM had announced the school would be shutting down until further notice by order of then current CNM President Tracy Hartzler.

Mr. Zambrano then ended up staying in Roswell for the next four months due to COVID-19.

With all of these occurrences he had to convert his entire schooling to learning online.

“Doing all of my classes on-line is hard since I am more of a hands on kind of guy,” he said.

It can be challenging when it comes to self-teaching because most of the time the lectures were pre-recorded and if you had any questions for the instructor you had to send an email and wait for a response, he said.

Compared to in-person classes where a student can receive an answer immediately, he said. 

In the beginning of the transition from online to in-person classes’ teachers may have struggled a bit more then the students, he said

“Those poor teachers had to create plans from scratch for online teaching in such a short period of time, a matter of days really,” he said.

Mr. Zambrano said his history teacher at the time informed the class that he was not sure if he could convert the class to a on-line teaching format because he was not tech savvy. 

The instructor for the class had never even used blackboard and he was worried he would lose his job and be forced into retirement, he said. 

Mr. Zambrano said, “I was excited to be online because I didn’t have to attend physical classes, however eventually it became draining constantly teaching myself. Online classes and in-person classes are not the same, they truly are completely different environments.” 

Being able to see and interact with people was a huge difference between in-person and online classes, he said.

Through two years of online learning Mr. Zambrano said his grades took a big hit, before COVID-19 he was averaging A’s and B ’s and after COVID-19 he became a C student who could barely get by.

It was even more challenging for him because he was nearing end for his basic classes for a nursing major, classes like anatomy and physiology, pathophysiology, biology, and microbiology were all classes he felt needed to be in person.

It was hard dealing with this new reality and he began to struggle a lot because of it, and it showed in his grades, he said.

“I know depression was a big thing, I feel like a lot of students like myself struggled with it because you were isolated. You didn’t get to see your family or friends and most of the time you were staring at a computer screen. Unless you were an essential worker you didn’t get much social interaction,” he said. 

When it comes to online classes, personally he dislikes them, and he suggest people do their best to attend in-person classes said Mr. Zambrano.

To all online students he recommends they utilize all resources to help themselves get by, he said. 

CNM’s resources have increasingly become better over the years since COVID-19 started and I suggest using them, he said.

It Pays to CARE 

Story by 

Jonathan Wolfgang

Staff Reporter

CNM financial aid is offering $500 scholarships to all students taking at least one credit hour during the summer semester with disbursements beginning the first week of June, the funds are intended to alleviate pandemic induced obstacles, says Director of Enrolment Management and Operational Technology Rosenda Milnella. 

Funding for the scholarship comes from the Cares act and is indented to help students overcome any obstacles the pandemic might have thrown at them, she said. 

“We definitely want to see students persevere and graduate because it can be life changing”, she said.

Students must elect to use the disbursement towards tuition, otherwise they’ll receive the disbursement directly rather than covering outstanding tuition, she says.

An extension has been given for the cares act funding, hinting at the possibility for a fall disbursement as well. The department has yet to make determination because of the unanticipated extension, she says. 

Women’s Trade Summit

Story by

Devonny Grajeda

Staff Reporter

Official poster for the Women’s Trade Summit.

The women’s trade summit is an event that will help women look for a job and networking opportunities within the areas of HVAC, plumbing, carpentry, diesel mechanics, insulators, laborers, electricians, and more said Amy Ballard, Dean for the school of Applied Technologies.

The event will take place Friday, March 18th from 9am-3pm at the CNM main campus inside Smith Brasher hall.

This event can help women find mentorships as well as allow them an opportunity to ask questions directly to women who are working in trade fields right now, she said. 

There will be speakers such as presidents and representatives of companies, there will also be a panel consisting of women who work in different trades and they will be speaking on issues they have had to deal with inside their individual fields, she added.

This event is important for many reasons, the first reason being the ability to learn about the types of compensation, what kind of job availability there is, and what kind of opportunities can come from a career in trades for women, she said.

Then there is a need to let women know that there is incredible demand out for these positions out there right now she added.

Lastly, these jobs create great pathways to even better jobs, she said.

“For example, even if you start as a carpenter or plumber it’s not a far step to creating your own business or becoming a manager. Women may not realize that these jobs can be a launchpad to bigger and better things, there is a lot of money to be made these days, ” she said.

Companies are in need of highly skilled trade people she said. So much so that right now some companies have billboards advertising that they will offer up to a $10,000 sign on bonus for skilled HVAC employees. 

Getting involved in trades is not something that can be started tomorrow she said.

Education and training are required, but it will not be too long before a women can receive a high paying job she added.

“We would also like to see a stronger presence of women inside trades considering it is a male dominated field, the transition for women is happening in politics, medicine, science so there is no reason why trade fields can’t be the next frontier for women to become pivotal and pioneering“ she said.

Women can really empower themselves by hearing the stories of other women who also felt scared to take the leap into a male dominated field, but who are now successful and own their own businesses and love the trades, she said. 

“We hope the event will become a spring board for these speakers and mentors to help start something much greater for women in trades,” she said. 

The event will have vender booths from different companies such as Sandia Labs, Meta(FaceBook), and APD for those looking for jobs, she said.

If interested in attending this event you may sign up using the link provided below.

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/new-mexico-women-in-trades-summit-tickets-273089286407

CNM Food Pantry

Story by

Devonny Grajeda

Staff Reporter

Brittany Karnezis, the new Director of Student Life said, CNM has permanently opened a food pantry with the hope to help aid students by making sure they have weekly access to fresh produce and dry goods.

CNM acknowledges students’ needs outside of the classroom said Ms. Karnezis. CNM hopes the food pantry will provide a space where students have access to their holistic needs, she said. Through CNMs partnership with Roadrunner Food Bank and MoGro, CNM hopes to meet students’ needs head-on, she added.

The food pantry is located at the Main Campus Library inside the SRC building and is open on Wednesdays from 3-6 pm, said Ms. Karnezis. 

Ms. Karnezis said the pantry will accept new personal hygiene products such as toothbrushes/paste, floss, deodorant, soap, and feminine hygiene products. Anyone can donate toiletries; however, she said the food pantry does not accept food donations.

Ms. Karnezis says CNM knows students’ needs are significant, especially during this time of COVID-19. She added, “We provide the highest quality of education, but we realize students have needs that go far beyond the classroom doors.” By opening the food pantry, CNM hopes to support their student’s educational and personal needs, she said.