Writer: Megan Hansen
The New Mexico State University Alumni Association will honor its fall 2019 Outstanding Graduates at a luncheon today at the Danny Villanueva Victory Club in the NMSU Stan Fulton Athletic Center.
The NMSU Alumni Association’s Outstanding Graduate Award is a prestigious distinction for its recipients and is presented every semester to a graduating student from each academic college, and to a masters and doctoral candidate from the Graduate School. Honorees are selected by the deans or leaders of their colleges or programs, and are recognized for their academic achievements, active leadership and service to the university and the community.
The fall 2019 recipient from the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences is Autumn Pearson of La Luz, New Mexico. She is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in environmental sciences, with minors in chemistry and international studies. Pearson will continue her education at NMSU where she has been accepted into the accelerated master’s program in water science management.
Galen Ivey of Tornillo, Texas, is the awardee from the College of Arts and Sciences and he is earning his bachelor of creative media in digital filmmaking and a minor in theatre arts. Ivey worked on many films for the Creative Media Institute, including “Walking with Herb” and “Tarrant County Jail,” volunteered on several student film productions and is the founder of Minions’ Photography.
Tori Makk of Las Cruces is the outstanding graduate from the College of Business and she graduates with a bachelor’s degree in finance. She demonstrated leadership in her roles with several campus organizations, including ASNMSU, the Financial Management Association and the College Republicans. After graduation, Makk will begin a career at the Arthur J. Gallagher global insurance and consulting firm.
The outstanding graduate from the College of Education is Felicia Gutierrez of Alamogordo, New Mexico. She is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in elementary education, and her teaching field is language arts with a Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages endorsement. Gutierrez was involved in several education service organizations, bringing literacy efforts into the local public schools.
The awardee from the College of Engineering is Mikaela Hicks of Hobbs, New Mexico. Hicks is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in geomatics, and was awarded several scholarships from the College of Engineering. She also held surveying internships, served in leadership roles for several surveying organizations and worked as the marketing coordinator for a civil engineering and surveying company while pursuing her degree.
Lindsay Stutzman of El Paso, Texas is the outstanding graduate from the College of Health and Social Services. She is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in nursing and a minor in public health. Stutzman was a peer tutor in pharmacology and health and illness subjects for nursing students and served as a peer educator for NMSU’s Wellness, Alcohol and Violence Education program.
The outstanding graduates from the Graduate School are Tyler Wallin and Margarita Ruiz Guerrero.
Tyler Wallin, of Mascoutah, Illinois, is graduating with a master’s degree in fish, wildlife and conservation ecology. His research focuses on the management of species facing threats of extinction, and he will begin a career with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service upon graduation. Wallin received several academic awards throughout his degree program and applied his expertise to service opportunities at NMSU and in the community.
Margarita Ruiz Guerrero of Xalapa, Veracruz, Mexico, is graduating with a doctorate of philosophy in curriculum and instruction with a focus on early childhood education. Guerrero’s research has resulted in several publications and she held leadership and service roles in the Critical Multicultural Educators Graduate Student Organization. She recently began a tenure track position as an assistant professor of early childhood education at Western Washington University.
“Not only have these exceptional eight students maintained academic excellence throughout their degree programs, they have also demonstrated uncommon leadership and bold service within the Aggie community and beyond. We are immensely proud of their achievements and happy to honor them through this award and celebration,” said Leslie Cervantes, associate vice president of alumni and donor relations at NMSU.
To learn more about each of this semester’s honorees, please visit https://support.nmsu.edu/connect/outstanding-graduates/.