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Sullivan to serve third term on interstate education commission

New Mexico State University College of Engineering Assistant Dean Patricia A. Sullivan has been reappointed by New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez to serve a third term on the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education.


This is a head and shoulders photo of a woman sitting at a desk.
NMSU College of Engineering Assistant Dean Patricia A. Sullivan has been appointed to a third term of serving on the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education. (NMSU photo by Darren Phillips)

The Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education is a regional organization created by the Western Regional Education Compact, adopted in the 1950s by the western states. WICHE is governed by three gubernatorally-appointed commissioners from each of 15 member states, working to improve access to higher education and ensure student success. Sullivan's term will expire on Dec. 31, 2014.

As assistant dean, Sullivan is responsible for external relations, development, student career services and administration of the College of Engineering's scholarship awards. She has led the establishment the Engineering New Mexico Resource Network a program dedicated to enriching the state's economic competitiveness through the advancement of innovation, entrepreneurship and employee preparedness. In the eight years that she has served as assistant dean, the college's endowment has more than doubled to more than $27 million, endowed chairs and professorships have grown to 19, and scholarship awards have increased from $350,000 to $1.3 million.

Sullivan has worked at NMSU for 30 years. Previous to her current position, she was the assistant director of WERC: A Consortium for Environmental Education and Technology Development, which is based in the College of Engineering. She also held positions at the Border Research Institute as assistant program coordinator, program coordinator, assistant director and associate director.

Sullivan received a bachelor's degree in biology from NMSU with a minor in chemistry. She also holds a master's degree in public utility economics from NMSU and is an industrial engineering doctoral candidate. She is a past board member of the New Mexico Mortgage Finance Authority and currently serves on the Authority's Tax Allocation Committee. She also is a founding board member of the Enchantment Land Certified Development Co., an entity that enhances economic development opportunities in New Mexico by providing Small Business Administration 504 loan programs for new and expanding businesses across the state.