The newly-formed UNM Student Cabinet holds its first meeting Friday, Oct. 24. A wide range of topics are up for discussion including transparency, communication and student support services. President Robert G. Frank created the “think tank” type group to gather more input on campus issues.

Cabinet members and university administrators will engage in focus-group, breakout style discussions and then close the session with a reporting period to give the group a sense of the range and direction of participants’ opinions.

“I am pleased with the broad representation on the cabinet, and the diversity of ideas and insights that this group will provide,” Frank said. “Student input is vital to our success.”

Several designees of the two student governments, including ASUNM President Rachel Williams and GPSA President Texanna Martin, will serve on the Cabinet and participate in the meetings.

“The President’s Cabinet is going to be a great tool for the UNM administration to hear the voices of our diverse student population and the issues relevant to this campus,” Martin said “It will operate separately from the functions of student government and serve in a focus group model to facilitate student-administration discussion.”

Both ASUNM and GPSA will continue in their roles as elected student leaders providing advocacy and support services to their respective constituents.

“Involving such a wide cross-section of our campus, including student leaders and administrators, will enhance communications on all aspects of the student experience,” Frank said.

Additionally, several university administrators will be in attendance to hear directly from the students and facilitate follow-up on key issues that may arise.

“UNM is such a diverse community that it is important to consider different opinions and perspectives about issues on our campus,” explained Cheo Torres, vice president of Student Affairs. “The Student Cabinet will be a collection of voices, some of which don’t always have an opportunity to be heard.”