CNM Scholarships

BY Edgar Gonzalez, Staff reporter

In order to receive the most help everyone should fill out a FAFSA form which will indicate how much help you are able to receive, said Brian Melton at the CNM financial aid department.

If someone is unable to receive federal aid, there are still things you could do in order to receive aid for the year, he said

The school itself is able to give out scholarships from donors and although funds for these types of help are very limited it is very important to try and get these scholarships as soon as possible, he said.

Some of these include the PNM Renewable Technology Success Award, he said.

This award is for the school of applied technology students and awards $1000 for enrollment and books, he said.

Other types of scholarships include emergency scholarships like the RUST scholarship that can be awarded to students depending on the severity of the emergency situation, he said.

“If you get a cut on your finger you only need a band aid (little help), if you break your hand you need to go to the hospital (larger amount of help), and if you completely tear your arm off there is only very little help that they can give you.” Melton said.

These situations include paying for car repairs, and paying for necessities for a while until the student at hand is able to come up with an alternative solution, he said.

The situation that always comes first are living expenses such as rent because rent for the most part is a student’s greatest expense, he said.

This help is intended to make sure that students can continue to pursue their education goals, he said.

“These scholarships are available year round to students in order to further aid the students in their struggles,” he said.

There are other types of help such as the vet success programs in order to help veterans continue their education, Meltron said.

This program can help veterans by giving them materials that are needed for success at college like giving veterans laptops if needed, he said.

CNM also has counselors for vets and their families in order to deal with psychological issues they may face, he said.

There are also other veteran specific scholarships at CNM which include the Vietnam Veterans scholarship, he said.

Further information can be found at the schools website.

People with disabilities also have specific scholarships and emergency scholarships that can help them further their education, Melton said.

The emergency scholarships can give people in need with disabilities certain things needed to go about their day such as wheel chairs, he said.

“There are plenty more scholarships like this one but it varies from the needs of the student and how much funding there is,” he said.

In order to receive this help the person who is attempting to receive this scholarship needs see the DRC office in order to be classified as a special needs person, he said.

People who are returning to school or have attained a GED or both have several scholarships options as well like the Daniels Fund Boundless, he said.

“This is set up to help nontraditional students pursue their education goals and there is more information about this available at the CNM webpage,” he said.

Students can do an application on the CNM webpage called the General Scholarship which can actively enroll students to multiple scholarships at once, said Liberal Arts major, Jasmine Viramontes.

The school then decides which scholarships are more applicable to the student that has applied, she said.

I received two scholarships by doing the scholarship process this way and this application made the whole process of receiving scholarships way easier, she said.

This scholarship is applicable in all terms and it is recommended to apply every term in order to have the best chance of receiving the most scholarships, she said.

CNM Foundation Scholarships:

Amey P. Sanchez Scholarship Endowment

Minimum Criteria:

  • Students enrolled in Architectural/Engineering Drafting Technology

Ann and Peter Ziegler Scholarship Endowment

Minimum Criteria:

  • Female Liberal Art students with financial need planning to transfer to a four year institution

Barbara Silva Book and Tool Scholarship Endowment

Minimum Criteria:

  • Excellent CNM student who has completed at least two terms at CNM

CSI Construction Specification Institute Scholarship

Minimum Criteria

  • Student in Construction Technology or Architectural Engineering Drafting Technology

CVI Laser Photonics Scholarship

Minimum Criteria:

  • Assist students in the Photonics Program

For More Info go to

The ins and outs of student loans

By Stephanie Stuckey, Staff Reporter

There are currently five different loans available to students and their parents, said Lee Carrillo, senior director of Financial Aid & Scholarship Services at CNM.

They are the Subsidized Stafford Loan, the Unsubsidized Stafford Load, the Federal Perkins, the Federal Parent Loans for Undergrads (PLUS), and the Nursing Student Loan-for-Service, he said.

The requirements to receive a student loan, are that a person must be enrolled in 6 credit hours; congress establishes loan limits that may be prorated depending on your student classification, Carrillo said.

If a student is a first time borrower, they will need to complete the entrance counseling session, which is in person, he said.

The entrance counseling session is about 30 minutes to an hour long and students can expect to learn the do’s and do not’s of borrowing, as well as “the good, the bad, and the ugly” of the student loan process, he said.

First time borrowers are also required to sign a master promissory note, which is a document containing a written promise to pay a stated sum to a specified person or agency at a specified date or on demand.

When a student signs a promissory note, they are agreeing to repay the loan according to the terms of the note; this note is a binding legal document.

Carrillo said that the counseling sessions are offered at Main Campus, Montoya Campus, and the West Side Campus.

Carrillo said students are discouraged to borrow money, unless absolutely necessary because the cost to attend CNM is so low.

Students need to keep in mind student loans should not be expected to supplement total income, he said.

If students do decide that they are going to get a student loan, the two most common are the Subsidized Stafford Loan and the Unsubsidized Loan, he said.

The difference between the two loans is that with the Subsidized Loan, the government will pay the interest on the loan as long as the student is enrolled in 6 credit hours or more.

The Unsubsidized Loan requires the student to pay the interest on the loan monthly or the loan will begin to accrue interest monthly, Carrillo said.

According to the, under financial aid the Federal Perkins Loan is available who are in the medical or educational field, the maximum annual award is limited to $2,000 per student, and is based on available funds.

The Federal Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS), is a loan specifically for the parents of dependent students and is meant to help parents pay for their children’s education per the CNM website.

There is also a loan available to nursing students only, it is the Nursing Student Loan-for-Service Loan.

The purpose of this loan is to increase the number of nurses in under-served rural areas in New Mexico.

Students need to keep in mind that they are borrowing money against future income and there are certain responsibilities that the students must adhere to, Carrillo said.

A student who takes out a student loan must repay the loan even if they do not complete their education, Carrillo said.

Repayment on loans begins 6 months after graduation or if the student drops below 6 credit hours and does not return to school, payment will be expected on the first day of the sixth month, he said.

Ramifications of not paying back student loans are that it will reflect badly on credit reports and wage garnishment can and will happen, Carrillo said.

According to Carrillo, wage garnishment is different than auto-pay in that the student is forced to make payments directly from their check.

Auto-pay is when the student willingly makes arrangements with the student loan servicing agency to take payments directly from the student’s bank account.

There are a few different payment options available to students if their payment is too high, Carrillo said:

-the basic set amount payment per month

-the graduated payment, which starts out low, then gradually gets higher each year

-the debt to income ratio, which is based on income earned and actual take home pay; this

can be as low as $25/month.

However, if a student falls into the lower payment bracket, they could possibly be paying back the student loan for a long time and interest accrues at a high rate due to not paying off any of the principle amount, Carrillo said.

At the entrance counseling, students will receive a list of twelve different loan servicing agencies that will be servicing their loans, he said.

Students are often unaware that these agencies are who they need to make their payments to and the loan statements get mixed-up with junk mail or thrown away, so it is very important for the student to be aware, pay attention, and follow through, he said.

“The out of sight, out of mind philosophy will not work with students loans, they will catch-up with you,” Carrillo stated.

Students will be discouraged from borrowing at CNM because they should really hold off on student loans until transferring to a four year institution because that is where they will really need it, he said.

Exit counseling is also available to students upon graduation as well, he said.

At exit counseling, students will be informed of what can be expected from them, in terms of their student loans after graduating, he said.

Student loan information can be found at under student resources.

Under student resources, select financial aid, and to the left of that page, select loans.

The CNM website is a great reference tool and students can access the information at any time, Carrillo said.

Looking to the future

By Shakir Farid Abdullah, Staff Reporter

Education is an economic imperative that every American family should be able to afford and not just a luxury, said Barack Obama, President of the United States of America, in his State of the Union Address on January 20 2015.

“The most daunting challenge can be the cost of college. At a time when Americans owe more in tuition debt than credit card debt, this Congress needs to stop the interest rates on student loans from doubling in July 2015,” said President Obama.

A great investment in education would be beneficial for our country, said Katrina Taylor, Instructor and Program Coordinator for the Department of Political Science at CNM.

“Eighty-two percent of Constitutions around the world say that education is a right. Our founding document is in the minority of countries that do not guarantee education to their citizens,” she said.

It is sad that the U.S. burdens its college students with such debt while students in other countries enjoy more support, she said.

Corporations receive a better loan interest rate than students and the working class is being priced out of a college education, she said.

“This is very bad for our country and the world,” Taylor said.

There are such brilliant, creative, and innovative thinkers in our great country, and to truly be the “Land of Opportunity,” access to a higher education in America is essential, she said.

“So personally, I think the President is right on the money with this proposal,” she said.

Higher education has to be made a higher priority in the States’ budgets and the tuition tax credit extended– then middle class families can be saving thousands of dollars, Obama said.

College and universities have to do their part by working to keep costs down, he said.

“CNM has done its part to keep students costs down,” said Brad Moore, director of Communications and Media relations for CNM.

Considering the state’s economic conditions and the decline of state funding for higher education, CNM has always made efforts to keep tuition low while being a fiscally responsible steward of taxpayer money, he said.

Tuition at CNM is one-fifth the cost of state universities, he said.

Throughout its 50-year history, CNM has kept tuition rates low, he said.

“To put it in some perspective for the current budget situation, as to how CNM meets its obligations in producing a balanced budget every year, while keeping low tuition rates – the college will receive $1.5 million in state funding for the year ahead. Meanwhile, CNM’s fixed costs will rise by $5 million in the coming year,” Moore said.

Young people can get the chance to earn their way through college with the doubling of the number of work-study jobs in the next five years, Obama said.

CNM would welcome an increase in work-study jobs, because the program is great for students and the college, said Lee Carrillo, senior director of Financial Aid and Scholarship services.

“CNM highly values its student employees and the contributions they make to the CNM community,” he said.

However, all work-study jobs are funded by the federal government, state, and institutional college – as a result, CNM would need an increase in federal funding to add work-study positions, Carrillo said.

Students would be less financially burdened by tuition, and able to have more guidance and insight while achieving a higher education, Taylor said.

“This means my students will have better opportunities for success and will enjoy the benefits of living in a more educated society, of which there are many,” she said.

CNM providing opportunities for CNM’s refugee and immigrant students facing difficulties

By Shakir Farid Abdullah, Staff Reporter

CNM refugee and immigrant students
encounter new difficulties when trying to
have their degrees recognized or transferable
in America.

There are standards that have to be met for
evaluating credits to be transferable for students,
said Brad Moore, director of Communications
and Media Relations for CNM.

CNM always looks for ways to assist students
and verify credits that are transferable, he said.

Yosef Bader, nursing major, said that no
one will recognize his bachelor’s degree in
Chemistry from the Mutah University in Jordan
or give him a job.

“All of us are the same. The new immigrants
and refugees are facing the same situation,”
Bader said.

Beatrice Villegas, program director for
the Center of Refugee Settlement and Support
at Catholic Charities, said that this is a system’s

Whatever the United States education system
standards are at this time requires looking at
them from a macro level and figuring out what it
requires from refugees and immigrants seeking
transferable degrees, she said.

“Things cannot change immediately, but we
can extend our concerns to the governor and our
state representatives,” she said.

This will enable them to figure out ways
to provide resources, which will assist clients,
some of which who are CNM students, in
achieving transferable degrees and successful
employment, Villegas said.

Catholic Charities clients often become frustrated
with the difficulties they face, she said.

“We say, Look, we live in this system, let’s work
with what we can change, and focus on the little steps
in order to achieve the bigger goals in attaining higher
education, degrees and securing employment opportunities,”
she said.

Their hope is to build a solid connection between
CNM antheir education director Kris Degenhardt
at Catholic Charities in order to assist refugees and
immigrants to become successful in completing ESL
programs, Villegas said.

“Ours is at a very base level, and if our clients are
able to attend CNM’s ESL courses, then I believe we will
have a 50 percent increase in the success rate of our clients
finding employment, achieving a higher education,
degree, and a better quality of life in America,” she said.

CNM has many programs established to help curb
the difficulties for many of the students, Moore said.

CNM Connect is a program engineered to assist all
students find efficient ways to develop and build a solid
approach in achieving desired degrees, and be on the
path towards a productive and successful career, he said.

Advisors and achievement coaches at CNM Connect
has programs such as the Competency Based Education
program, Credit for Prior Learning program, and ESL
Nursing Assistance program which are established to
assist students, he said.

Competency Based Education, provides a program
tract where a student advances forward in the program at
his or her own speed, he said.

Credit for Prior Learning program’s goal, is to
increase student retention and reduce time for completion
of degree and it is an academic credit awarded towards
a Certificate of Associates Degree program, Moore said.

Those who can use this program, are those
who completed AP or CLEP exam, have military
transcripts, have license or certification, pass
challenge exams, and uses course substitution or
waivers to achieve their degrees quicker, Moore

The ESL Nursing Assistance Program, is a
new option funded by CNM’s Integrated Basic
Education Skills Training (I-BEST) Grant, he said.

It provides an extra class, where students can
build and strengthen their communication skills,
medical vocabulary, receive extra help with class
content, and test preparation, he said.

Bader said that this program will make it
possible for him to get a job soon.

“There is a higher cause here at CNM and we
know that refugees, immigrants, and any of the
lives of CNM students can improve if they can get
into CNM, take classes, and earn a degree, and
people here are very passionate about this,” he said.

The Center of Refugee Settlement and Support
at Catholic Charities is a non-profit agency of five
centers in the Albuquerque metropolitan area that
provides housing, community support, GED/ESL/
Civics courses, and assistance to immigrants, refugees,
and citizens in Albuquerque, Villegas said.

Job Connection Services

By Stephanie Stuckey, Staff Reporter

CNM continues to offer services to students who
have graduated through Job Connection Services
(JCS) and the Alumni Association.

CNM alumni have access to lifetime services with
Job Connection, said Amanda Rubio, student services
technician at Job Connection Services.

According to Rubio, Job Connection helps students
obtain certificates and degrees, which is a service
that begins before graduation.

Rubio said that students can call and speak to a
career advisor and get help over the phone.

“Sometimes a little pep talk is all that is needed,”
she said.

With 339 jobs currently listed on their website,
students who have recently graduated are likely to find
a great job, she said.

These jobs are entry level positions that correlate
with CNM programs, she said.

Job Connection also help students find and attain
paid job internships, she said.

Rubio said that JCS has data analysts that contact
graduates to see where they are working and to find
out how much money they are earning.

This is just one of many ways that JCS stays on
top of what fields are hiring at competitive rates in
order to have data to show other students going into
that same field that they can find a job and earn good
money too, she said.

Another way is by using outside resources to find
out what employers might be hiring, she said.

Job Connection Services is not a placement center,
but they do help find job leads and have access to outside
resources, she said.

Other services offered by Job Connection include
help with cover letters and resumes, and practice
interviews, one on one, with a career center advisor,
she said.

She also said that alum have access to free paper
copies and faxes.

Job Connection Services is so much more than just
technical help, she said.

Once students have registered with Job Connection
Services they can utilize the website from wherever
and whenever, she said.

Students’ success is so important to Job Connection
Services that they even have a clothing exchange to
help students attain the necessary attire to go into job
interviews with confidence, Rubio said.

These exchanges usually happen once a year, but
if a student poses a need before or after the exchange
happens then all the student needs to do is give Job
Connection Services a call and they are willing to help
to the best of their abilities, she said.

When classes are in session, Job Connection
Services will see about 30 to 50 students per day,
Rubio said.

JCS is open five days a week Monday through
Friday from 8am to 5pm and closed for winter break
and national holidays, she said.

There are computers at JCS for students to conduct
job searches and offer a hot cup of Joe while conducting
searches, she said.

According to Roberta Ricci, CNM Director of
Development, there is also an Alumni Association that
was created in 2008.

Throughout the years the Alumni Association has
honored and recognized alumni with the Association’s
Distinguished Alumni Award, Ricci said.

Every year, an alum is chosen and celebrated
for their accomplishments at the CNM Foundation’s
annual Donor Appreciation Dinner, Ricci said.

Ricci also says that the CNM Alumni Association
is launching its first ever Brick Program.

“Alumni, students, faculty, staff, friends, and
family can create a lasting legacy and a permanent way
to show support for CNM by purchasing a personalized
brick in the beautiful Alumni Courtyard on main
campus,” Ricci said.

A person’s name, or the name of a loved one, can
be forever etched into CNM’s history, she said.

The donations are 100% tax deductible and is designated
for the CNM Foundation to upkeep college
programs and scholarship initiatives per Ricci and the
bricks cost $100 per brick, she said.

According to Ricci, alumni can become part of the
CNM Alumni Association by filling out an online application
membership is free, and once an alum becomes a
member, they will receive a monthly e-newsletter.

For more information about the CNM Alumni
Association, feel free to contact Roberta Ricci,
Director of Development, CNM Foundation, (505)
224-4641 or

The best way to register for Job Connection
Services is to go to, Rubio said.

Under the Jobs tab click Job Connection Services,
then click Look for Jobs under Students, Graduates,
and Staff, she said.

The student will then be directed to Suncat Career
Connection where an account will need to be created
and once this is done the previously mentioned benefits
will be accessible, Rubio said.

Hiring Freeze; Funding limits available work study positions at CNM

By Guadalupe Santos-Sanchez, Staff Reporter
There is a hiring freeze at CNM because the funding limit of 300 work positions that are offered were filled at the end of August, said Senior Director of Financial Aid, Lee Carrillo.
“Unfortunately, the allocations have gotten a little bit smaller and the pay has gone up, if you’re paying students more but you’re getting less money then things are going to get tighter as far as positions are concerned, and that’s kind of what we’ve ran into right now,” said Associate Director of Financial Aid, Joseph Ryan.
Students get paid the minimum wage in Albuquerque, which is $8.60, he said.
The hiring limit is because there is a certain amount of money that can be spent, Ryan said.
The award given to CNM is divided into an amount that allows for roughly 300 students to be hired as work studies, he said.
“I think we have a little bit higher than what the calculation might actually kick out, because we know some students don’t work all 40 hours every single two weeks, some students take a week off or only work 10 hours a week,” Ryan said.
There are funds coming in from the federal government, from the state government, and from CNM, Ryan said.
The specific amounts from each are 1.312 million from state, 690 thousand from federal, and 600 thousand from CNM for the 2014-2015 school year, Ryan said.
“The total state and federal funding includes a match that CNM has to make for those funds, 20% for state and 25% for federal,” he said.
In the totals above 20% of the state total is comprised of CNM funds and 25% of the federal total is comprised of CNM funds, he said.
New positions will not be available until the spring but for this term there is no waiting list, Carrillo said.
“There is no one waiting to be hired, we’re glad that we were able to provide these work-study positions to 300 of our students,” he said.
Eloy Chavez, Student Employee at Job Connection Services said that students constantly go into the office to ask for work study employment.
Some students get upset and do not understand, he said, but most realize that just like with jobs outside the school, jobs at CNM are hard to get.
“I continue to help them get their resume started and their application, everything, and when December 11 starts, hit the pavement,” he said.
This is because December 11 is when employment is going to open up again, he said.
Job postings will be available December 1, he said.
However, the employers will not be hiring until next semester, said Amanda Rubio, Supervisor of the Student Employees for Job Connection Services.
“For individuals without a job that’s a long time not to be working so it’s really hard on me to have to turn people down but also hard on me being where I can’t hire a student employee, I do have an open position and I’m not able to hire,” she said.
At Job Connection Services, they assist students and graduates with applying for jobs, Rubio said, and currently they have to turn down a lot of people primarily looking for student employment jobs.
She tells the students that there might still be something outside of CNM, she said, but they are not having any of it.
“They’re looking for a job here on campus for the convenience. They know a lot of employers out there won’t work with the school schedule, so they’re looking for the flexibility that you’re pretty much guaranteed to have with a student employee position,” she said.
Her colleagues and other employers also find themselves with job openings and inability to hire anybody, she said, they are dependent on student employees to get things done, and without them it hinders their job.
Most people think it is Job Connection Services who control student employment because they are the ones having to turn students down but it is dependent on the funds that financial aid has, she said.
“It’s all government funded, and there’s only so much funds to go around, so the students that do qualify for student employment should start looking right away to find a job, because if they procrastinate then their chances of finding a job will go down,” Chavez said.
FAFSA bases its work study qualifying methods largely on low-income criteria and that helps CNM identify who is eligible for work study, Carrillo said.
“Being qualified for work-study allows students to become eligible for work-study positions. Students are selected based largely on who has the greatest needs based on the low-income criteria,” Carrillo said.
Qualifying them does not mean that there is funds to pay them, he said.
“CNM needs to make sure there are enough students eligible for the positions in order to fill the maximum number of positions within the funding limits,” he said.
Work-study is a form of financial aid and it is a part-time job for students on campus, Ryan said, to help them cover the expenses that come with being a student.
Students work up to 20 hours a week and no more than 40 hours every two weeks, he said.

Financial aid, a three-ring circus

By the Chronicle Editorial Board

Getting through the FASFA process and attempting to get Financial Aid can be somewhat of a circus for some students.

What students have to understand is that the Financial Aid Department deals with close to 30,000 students, and many are having the same issues as you are right now.

So if you are having issues with Financial Aid and it is frustrat­ing the hell out of you, seek advice from other students in their experiences and dealings with the financial aid department and see how other students dealt with their issues, because chances are it is not as bad as it seems.

Sometimes it can just be a form missed during filing or information that was overlooked, and can be remedied with a quick appointment with a financial aid advisor.

Also, many students do not actually know that they can qual­ify for grants and scholarships without applying for student loans, and can even become work-study qualified without getting all that financial aid has to offer.

Right now there are more than 100 student work-study positions offered throughout all the seven CNM campuses, which offer an array of positions, including here at The CNM Chronicle.

Due to the firing freeze we are hiring for more than 10 positions in an assortment of positions, including staff reporter, ad sales, and distribu­tion (Please see our hiring ad on Page 2).

There are many opportunities to thrive here at CNM, and it may take some patience to get through the process, but there are many ways of acquiring funds here and the school knows we need those extra funds and will help students in getting them, you just have to know who will actually help.

So, to the people wondering if you qualify for financial aid or work-study, make an appointment with a Financial Aid Adviser at 224-3090.

How to file a financial aid appeal

By Angela Le Quieu, Staff Reporter | Photo by Angela Le Quieu
For students who are on Financial Aid suspension, but who are close to graduation may have a few options to complete their degree program, which includes the Graduation Incentive Scholarship or an appeal to Financial Aid.

The Graduation Incentive Scholarship is available through the Academic Advisers Office and students who are within one semester of completing their degree and have no other financial aid or grants may qualify.

Students who are on financial aid suspension due to the satisfactory academic progress guidelines, which include reaching the maximum time frame, issues with their completion rate, or low grade point average, can fill out an appeal form explaining what extenuating circumstances have caused them issues through the Financial Aid office.

Student who fill out an appeal before the end of the spring term should know that the appeal will not go through until at least 10 days after the grades from this term have been posted, and it is recommended that students who are in the appeals process set up a payment plan through the Cashier’s Office in order to hold their registered classes.

If a financial aid appeal is not an option, students without any funding can seek a Graduation Incentive Scholarship which covers tuition and fees, but not books or other expenses.

In order to see if a student is qualified for the scholarship they must make an appointment with an Academic Adviser, who will be able to sign a student up for the scholarship, but money is limited, so the school cannot give the scholarship to everyone and acting fast is key to qualifying.

Senior Director for Financial Aid, Lee Carrillo said that colleges are not required by the Department of Education to provide an appeal opportunity, which handles the guidelines for satisfactory academic progress on which the financial suspensions are based.

“We choose to, because we want to give students an opportunity to succeed,” Carrillo said.

For more information on appeals call financial aid at 224-3090, or to inquire about the Graduation Incentive Scholarship call Academic Advisement at 224-4321.

8 steps students can take to make an appeal:
Step one: Pick up an Appeal Form and Financial Aid and Scholarship Services located in the Student Services Center on Main campus, Tom Wiley Hall on Montoya campus, or Student Services on Westside in WS II, room 106.

Step two: Students must have their FAFSA submitted for the current award year, be enrolled in an eligible major for the term, and enrolled by the first day of the term being appealed.

Step three: Fill out the information on the form.

Step four: Students need to complete the SAP Web Presentation which can be found at depts./fass/requirements/sappres.php. After going through the information, there is a short assessment that must be printed and attached to the Appeal Form. Each time a student makes an appeal they must complete this step.

Step five: Students need a typed letter that is a personal statement and it must also be attached to the Appeal Form.

Tips for step five: 1. Include college history and explanations for circumstances in which the student had issues. 2. Make sure to include resolutions to any extenuating conditions. 3. The people who review the appeals are looking for patterns, if there are multiple terms in which a student has had issues they must each be explained.

Step six: Gather supporting documents and attach those to the form, which can include statements from a physician, a death notice from a close relative, letters of support from a third party, or confirmation of circumstances.

Step seven: Visit the Academic Advisors Office and get a print out of a unofficial transcript, and also have a CAPP report run.

A signed copy with the students remaining credit hours must be attached to the form.

Step eight: The completed form with the entire attached document must be taken to the Financial Aid office.

Employment freeze affects work-study

By Jonathan Baca, Copy Editor

CNM has initiated a hiring freeze for all work-study employment positions, and all departments will be unable to hire any new stu­dent employees until July 1, when the new fiscal year begins, said Lee Carrillo, Director of Financial Aid and Scholarship Services.

The hiring freeze should not affect any current work-study employees, but any departments who lose any employees will not be able to replace them, and will have to make do until they can hire new employees in July, Carrillo said.

“It all comes down to one thing; we have limited fund­ing,” Carrillo said.

The school currently hires about 300 to 350 work-study employees per year, he said.

One change that will affect current employees is that pay periods will not go up from 20 to 30 weekly hours this summer as it has in the past, because there are no extra funds this year, Carrillo said.

This increase had been done in summers past, because there had been a sur­plus at the end of those years, and the school is required to spend the entire allocation before the end of the fiscal year. If there is any money left over at the start of the new year, the amount of money the State and Federal governments give would likely be adjusted, and the school would receive less the next year, he said.

This is the second year in a row that a hiring freeze has had to be implemented in order to ensure that enough money was left to continue paying existing student employees, he said.

Although the school could cut student employ­ees’ hours in order to keep from running out of funds, Carrillo said that the school has looked at the affect this would have, and would only do this as a last option.

“We look at all those things, and we hope it doesn’t come to that, which I don’t think it will,” Carrillo said.

The funds that go toward paychecks for all work-study employees come from a collective fund from Federal and State allocations, and from CNM itself, he said.

Director of Marketing and Communications, Brad Moore said that $600,000 comes from the Federal government, $1.2 million is given by the State, and the school kicks in an addi­tional $650,000, which is more than the 25 percent the school is required by law to contribute.

“We want to be able to hire and employ as many work-study students as pos­sible. The administration feels it is important for stu­dents to get an opportunity to have employment here, so the decision is made to add money to that fund,” Moore said.

At the start of each fiscal year, the school must esti­mate how many work-study employees it can hire based on the amount of money in the fund, the number of hours in a typical pay period, and the hourly wage, Carrillo said.

Although it was not legally required of them, the school did raise the hourly wage to $8.50 when Albuquerque voters raised the city’s minimum wage at the start of 2013. The school then gave work-study employees an additional ten cent raise in January, Carrillo said.

Carrillo said that the recent increases have changed the math significantly and con­tributed to the recent freezes, but that the school is still dedi­cated to hiring as many stu­dent employees as it can.

“Once we hit that pla­teau, we’ve got to freeze. And everybody who has a job can keep that job, but we just have to make sure that we make it to the end of the funding year with the allocations we have,” Carrillo said.

Carrillo said that budget­ing for the work-study fund can become a delicate balanc­ing act, since some employees work less than others, some quit or are fired, and some vacant positions stay open for long periods of time.

The Financial Aid depart­ment has to keep a constant eye on these ever-changing factors in an attempt to pre­dict how much money will be needed to last the entire year. This hiring freeze is the final tool in the toolbox that ensures the money will not run out, Carrillo said.

Moore said that the work-study program is very important to the school and to the employees them­selves, because the work they do is valuable to so many departments, and because the students get experience and important references for their future.

“It’s great to have stu­dent employees in the work environment because it helps keep us in tune with students and how their day to day lives really are. It’s highly valuable for regular CNM employees to have work-study employees around, to stay in touch with student life,” Moore said.

With talk in Washington about the possibility of raising the Federal minimum wage to $10 an hour or more, Carrillo said that the school would most likely be forced to hire significantly less work-study employees if the raise were to pass, unless they could secure more funding.