Program aimed at improving communication

Tony Parra

Eastern New Mexico University officials are taking steps toward better communication between the university and local community.
“The leadership training program was started so that full-time ENMU professionals could be more aware of the community,” Trisha Maguire, ENMU leadership advisory council member, said. “We also want to make them aware of the leadership skills necessary to run a business.”
Besides Maguire, there are seven other advisory council members.
The program, which was implemented in September and will last nine months. The group meets once a month and faculty will receive a certificate upon completion.
Ronnie Birdsong, vice president of university relations and enrollment services, had the idea to create a leadership training program from her experiences with a similar program at West Texas University, Maguire noted.
“We talked about economic development and how it relates to the country,” Maguire said. “We have a meeting with local business owners and city officials, tomorrow. We want to learn what they can offer and learn the in and outs of their businesses.”
The leadership training professional members meet on the second Tuesday of every month. They will meet today and learn about businesses and agencies like the Roosevelt General Hospital and Portales/Roosevelt County Chamber of Commerce. Sometimes the meetings can take a whole work day, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., according to Maguire.
“I make it a priority,” said Rena Garrett, manager of the university post office and one of the participants in the leadership program. “I have to plan and work around it. I have someone else fill in with the day-to-day operations of the post office when I’m gone.”
Maguire is also a computer information systems instructor for ENMU.
Some of ENMU professional members are: Mike Maguire, athletic director and Zias’ volleyball coach; Jessie Luna, ENMU bookstore manager; Tim McGee, distance education supervisor; and Noel Bartl, director of development.
“I’m really enjoying it,” Garrett said. “I hope to learn a lot from businesses and city officials. It’s (leadership program) also good for us (professionals). It gives us a chance to get to know each other and communicate within the university.”