LAS CRUCES — The NMSU Board of Regents unanimously agreed to appoint Dr. Manuel Pacheco as the next interim president for the university Wednesday morning.
Pacheco had served as an interim in 2009 for about six months, and will be earning $360,000 thousand while a permanent president is found.
"As any new executive would do, we are going to try and look at the entire picture and then assess the needs and the priorities," Pacheco said after his appointment.
Board of Regents Chairman Mike Cheney said Pacheco's prior experience with the university played a huge role in his appointment.
"It was a very short time ago that he was here and that allows for the leadership to continue the momentum that we already have, instead of having to re-learn everything," Cheney said.
Pacheco plans to hit the ground running with several meeting scheduled for his first days with the university.
The 71-year-old New Mexico native will begin by evaluating the core values of the university and addressing the issues that present themselves.
A top priority will be working on relationship at the state and local level that impact the success of the university.
"High on my list is to establish ties with the local community, especially state leaders and business leaders in this area," Pacheco said.
Pacheco will also reach out to community colleges, and even though he said he is not too familiar with the nursing program losing accrediation at DACC, he said he will look into correcting those problems.
"They are not standards that are impossible to meet," Pacheco said. "We will be addressing that with the appropriate people at the appropriate time."
The former Univeristy of Arizona president is a strong supporter of athletics having experiened the benefits of a national basketball championship during his time in Arizona.
"I saw the effect that winning that championship had on the university in many respects including enrollment growth and donations to the university," Pacheco said.
During the meeting, Pacheco said he doesn't want the permanent president job because he enjoys being retired, but looks forawrd to serving as interim until a president is found.
Cheney said the process would take some time but they hope to name a president during the Spring semester.