New Mexico Highlands University

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New Mexico Highlands University
NMHUniversity seal.png
Motto Artes, Scientiae, Humanitates
Type Public
Established 1893
President Sam Minner
Students 3,765[1]
Location Las Vegas, New Mexico, USA
Campus Suburban
Colors Purple & White
Athletics NCAA Division II
Rocky Mountain Conference
Nickname Cowboys & Cowgirls
NMHUniversity wordmark.png

New Mexico Highlands University (NMHU) is a public university located in Las Vegas, New Mexico.


Ivan Hilton Science Center

The university was first established as New Mexico Normal School in 1893, with the prominent archaeologist Edgar Lee Hewett serving as its first president. The institution became New Mexico Normal University in 1902, and then New Mexico Highlands University in 1941, as it expanded its role beyond teacher education. Today, NMHU offers graduate and undergraduate programs in arts and sciences, business, education, and social work.

Located in Las Vegas, a city with a population of about 16,000, Highlands’ main campus is close to recreational and wilderness areas, and within an hour's drive of Santa Fe and 2 hours from Albuquerque.

The majority of the school's approximately 3,765 students are from New Mexico and are Latino. Highlands’ programs focus on its multi-ethnic student body, especially the Latino and American Indian cultures distinctive of New Mexico.


Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. NMHU also has specialty accreditations. The School of Education received full accreditation by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) in 2012. The School of Business is accredited by the Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP). The School of Social Work is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). The School of Social and Behavioral Sciences is accredited by the Master's in Psychology and Counseling Accreditation Council (MPCAC).[2]


Rodgers Hall, Administration Offices of NMHU

Undergraduate & Graduate Degrees[edit]

  • College of Arts and Sciences[3]
  • School of Business[4]
  • School of Education[5]
  • School of Social Work[6]

Student Life[edit]

There are approximately over 50 student organizations at NMHU. The Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity is the only NIC fraternity at NMHU.


NMHU's athletic teams are nicknamed the Cowboys and compete in the NCAA's Division II's Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference. Ten varsity athletics programs are offered included- women's soccer, cross-country, track, volleyball,men's and woman's basketball, wrestling, baseball and college football.

Branch Campuses[edit]

Donnelly Library

In the 1997-1998 academic year New Mexico Highlands University established an extended learning center in Rio Rancho which began offering upper division undergraduate and graduate courses in business, accounting, education, and social work. The center continues with classes in those areas and has added studies in criminal justice, public affairs administration, computer science and general and school counseling.

There are also many other branch campuses, including in Santa Fe, Farmington, Taos, Raton, Rio Rancho and Espanola.

In pop culture[edit]

The campus can be seen in the movie Red Dawn as the town of Las Vegas substituted for a fictional community of Calumet, Colorado. Also can be seen in the John Carpenter film "Vampires".

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ Enrollment
  2. ^
  3. ^ College of Arts and Sciences
  4. ^ School of Business
  5. ^ School of Education
  6. ^ School of Social Work
  7. ^ "Mark Cotney". Retrieved January 22, 2016. 
  8. ^ "Reggie Garrett". Retrieved January 22, 2016. 
  9. ^ "Keith Jardine MMA Bio". Sherdog. Retrieved 2014. 
  10. ^ "Keith Jardine UFC Bio". Retrieved 2014. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 35°35′46″N 105°13′15″W / 35.59611°N 105.22083°W / 35.59611; -105.22083