Fall 2018 and Winter 2019, Community Learning Network (CLN) has teamed up with the Institute of American Indian Arts (I.A.I.A.) to provide a handful of free workshops for students and community members through the Continuing Education program. Participants are learning how to build, launch, and manage their own website in the "Make A Website" workshop as part of CLN's regional "1000 Websites in 1000 Days" campaign to get as many people online as possible and support local projects and micro-enterprise development. CLN is also offering hands-on Social Media Basics workshops that support participants in learning the basics of digital marketing and how to market using Facebook Pages, Ads, and Instagram. Participants cal also earn four different micro-credentials through the process. In the Fall of 2018, CLN also coordinated field trips to Creative Studios, to meet the Tech team and enjoy a behind-the-scenes tour of MeowWolf's sister company, Creative Studios.
CLN is also supporting local small business development and entrepreneurs by offering a hands-on workshop on Developing a Consultancy Learn more by visiting our website at www.nmtechworks.com/make-a-website or www.iaia.edu/continuing-education
The students from Stonehill College traveled to Santa Fe, New Mexico from Boston, Massachusetts for a week of service and learning. Their time consisted of working alongside humble individuals that devote their time and resources to serve their community. On their first full day, the students were able to visit the Santa Domingo pueblo for Feast Day. In the following days, they served free hot lunch at the Guadalupe church, learned how to clean seeds and corn, and sort produce at a local farm, helped take care of farm animals in Santa Cruz at Four Bridges Traveling Permaculture Institute, and enjoyed the natural beauty of New Mexico. On their last day, the students mentored middle school students at Turquoise Trail. They also enjoyed the lessons and wisdom from many local elders.
If you have participated in any of our previous learning immersion programs and would like to return as a fly-in intern, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We also welcome virtual interns who are available and eager to help long distance!
The Bicycle Master Plan is a tool that will be utilized by its member entities (City of Santa Fe, Santa Fe County, and Tesuque Pueblo) along with many other non-governmental stakeholders in making decisions that shape the rules, regulations and the built environment that directly affect transportation and bicycling in the Santa Fe area. It should only take a couple minutes but we thank you for your time and insights.
Since the MPO is seeking a broad range of community input, we also hope you would consider circulating this survey among any other organization and business, as well as staff, co-workers, family, or friends.
Thanks again for your input!
Meanwhile, hope the holidays proved nourishing and sending best wishes for a wonderful 2019.
We have a heap of exciting things brewing and look forward to sharing an amazing year! Stay tuned...
Emily Cole joins us from Durango, Colorado where she earned a bachelor's degree in International Business. She has been in Santa Fe for less than two weeks and has already had the opportunity to attend multiple community discussions, interact with local nonprofits and businesses, and help manage our websites. Emily's interests are working with nonprofits and local groups that engage the community in finding creative and sustainable solutions to existing issues. She also loves to travel, rock climb, and drink good coffee. To reach her in her new role in Economic Development and Outreach email her at email@example.com or call (405) 481-1518.
PayPal will match donations made online here on Giving Tuesday, November 27.
Donate to Community Learning Network and support the New Mexico TechWorks initiative including IT Education + "1,000 Websites in 1,000 Days" campaign. Help us provide Tech training for community members of all ages to learn to build, launch, and manage their own website and to use the Internet to grow their businesses...and ideas!
Visit our homepage and the Paypal Giving link on Giving Tues Nov 27 to make a donation that PayPal will match - www.communitylearningnetwork.org
We "Love Where We Live" and are living true to the recommendations of a local elder (which became a founding principle of our nonprofit organization): "Well being is nourished by being accountable to a people and a place.."
As a part of the Guadalupe Historic District, Community Learning Network (CLN) has been involved in a wide range of neighborhood revitalization and community-building efforts including repainting of the murals in Montano Park with Carlos Cervantes and heaps of volunteers, as well as co-hosting neighborhood activities. Now, we are also supporting the launch of the Guadalupe Street Association and are participating in and documenting the community meetings taking place, plus we even built a website for the project. Check out the progress online at www.guadalupestreetassociation.com
Community Learning Network (CLN) nd Santa Fe Community College are working together with the City of Santa Fe to document the Guadalupe Street reconstruction project in our neighborhood. Guadalupe Street is going on a "Road Diet" next summer and our CLN Interns, AmeriCorps Vista Summer Associates, and New Mexico Youth Ambassadors have been assisting with multi-media documentation of the project including filming interviews , taking photos, and building a project website to track the process and progress.
You can visit the website at https://www.guadalupestreet.com
or check out the blog at https://www.guadalupestreet.com/blog
An article you won't want to miss by the Santa Fe, New Mexican
"By Amy Linn Searchlight New Mexico, July 4, 2018Filmmaker Jesse Wood, a New Mexico native and University of New Mexico graduate, in 2016 landed a dream job as creative director at Los Angeles-based Donut Media. Courtesy photo
Leaving New Mexico wasn’t a maybe — it was a have-to for Jesse Wood, a Farmington kid who graduated from the University of New Mexico in 2014. Like thousands of other grads, he was smart, talented and committed to his career path.
It led him straight out of the state.
By his junior year in UNM’s film and digital media department, he was making eye-popping videos about his passion in life: cars. By senior year, he was traveling the country making Hollywood-quality promo videos on the Formula Drift circuit, capturing gonzo drivers and fast cars skidding sideways.
He kept his eye out for the right job in New Mexico, but there wasn’t one. “I freelanced for a while,” Wood, now 26, says by phone from Ventura, north of Los Angeles. “But the film world was in L.A., and so were the automotive companies. L.A. was the epicenter.”
In 2016, the epicenter became home. He landed a dream job as creative director at Los Angeles-based Donut Media, creator of comedy-injected digital content for car lovers, including a new video daily. Its YouTube channel has nearly a million subscribers.
Heading for the hills
Between 2011 and 2016, in the years leading up to Wood’s departure, an unprecedented exodus of New Mexicans left the Land of Enchantment in search of new jobs and homes. Economists estimate that 42,000 more people exited the state than entered it.
The majority were college-educated, including 17,000 people with a bachelor’s degree. It was an alarming brain drain, and one of the highest rates of “out-migration” anywhere in the country, according to labor and census statistics.
“The data clearly indicate that out-migration is occurring at a disproportionate rate in better-educated younger adults and people with bachelor’s degrees,” says Jeff Mitchell, director of UNM’s Bureau of Business and Economic Research.
No state can afford to lose high-quality, educated workers, the key ingredient for a thriving economy. Impoverished New Mexico especially cannot afford to lose them. But state officials say there is no telling when the outflow will end.
“We’ve already seen five or six years of this story,” says Mitchell, who identifies it as one of the clearest signs that New Mexico has entered perilous and uncharted territory.
“The single biggest problem is that people think they’re going to find a quick solution,” he continues. “But successes won’t play out in the two to four years of an election cycle. In fact, the economy might get worse before it gets better.
“To take action anyway? That’s leadership. But who is the politician who says, ‘I’m going to take a stand and do what’s necessary even if it doesn’t benefit me politically?’ ”
The new postrecession world demands a STEM-skilled workforce for jobs in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. At minimum, workers need one or two years of education after high school, preferably from a technical or trade school that teaches mechanical, electrical or computer engineering skills (in high demand today). Other jobs require an associate, bachelor’s or advanced degree.
“You can’t be successful without a high-quality workforce — you just can’t,” says Scott Barnette, senior manager of development and operations at Continental Tire, who scours the globe to choose the right site for the company’s new projects. He recently chose Clinton, Miss., for a $1.4 billion tire plant slated to create 2,500 jobs.
In New Mexico, meanwhile, the dial is moving backward. For the first time in state history, the older generation is better educated than the younger generation, the New Mexico Higher Education Department reported in 2013.
When a state starts losing its qualified workforce, economies contract, unemployment rises and more people join the out-migration. It is a vicious circle.
Wood recalls getting a sense of the downward spiral when he was a teenager in Farmington. He and his classmates at Piedra Vista High School were well aware of New Mexico’s low ranking for child well-being: For decades, New Mexico has had one of the nation’s highest rates of childhood poverty, high school dropouts, substance abuse and teen suicide.
In June, the state dropped to 50th — dead last — in the Annie E. Casey Foundation child well-being rankings, where it had clutched a 49th-place rung since 2014. “Younger people feel that futility,” Wood offers as a reason that people leave.
Mitchell offers another. “In prior years, there was more of a sense that you could stay here and make something of yourself.” Today more than ever, New Mexico needs to nurture homegrown entrepreneurs, he says.
“They have a sense of the place,” Mitchell says. “Let them be a big fish in a small pond.”
Where the jobs are — and aren’t
Doug Rasmussen, a site-selection specialist at the St. Louis office of international corporate advising firm Duff & Phelps, has seen a lot of economic boom and bust during his 17-year career.
He’s seen jobs vanish and return. He’s directed clients in moves all around America. He’s also an optimist.
“No place is blue skies and roses always blooming. And no place is all negative,” Rasmussen says.
Site selection is a no-stone-unturned process that begins with a demographic study and expands to modeling, analytics and examining hundreds of data points.
“First you have to see if things are trending in a positive or negative direction,” he explains. “How young is the metro area and the state?”
Rasmussen travels to cities, looks at schools, and examines local and state government. He analyzes taxes, legal codes, environmental regulations, utility costs, bond ratings, infrastructure, mass transit, airport schedules, real estate and labor costs, cell towers and broadband, building sites and economic incentives.
“In the end, the executives are going to be living in these places,” Rasmussen says. “‘Can I see myself living here? My employees living here? Can I see my kids going to these schools?’ That’s what they’ll be asking themselves.”
New Mexico’s education system might well prompt them to answer “no.”
Only 71 percent of high school students graduated on time, the nation’s second worst rate. The rate of bachelor’s degrees for 25- to 34-year-olds — 22 percent — is also the second-lowest, according to the U.S. census. In No. 1 Massachusetts, the rate is 51 percent.
Youth unemployment is another serious problem. As of April, more than 20 percent of teens age 16 to 19 were jobless, labor statistics show.
“Every year we watch the young talent pack up and move away to places with jobs and better-paying jobs,” says Katherine Freeman, president and CEO of United Way of Santa Fe County.
She routinely observes professionals hesitating before moving here. “They look long and hard at education and state policies,” she says. They see troubled middle schools and high schools, but can’t afford private school tuition. “Coming here is a sacrifice.”
Today, according to the Bureau of Business and Economic Research, job hunters increasingly opt for states such as Texas (fastest population growth in the Southwest); or Nevada (home of the newly opened Tesla battery Gigafactory in Sparks, a project for which New Mexico was in the running but lost in 2014). The Gigafactory is expected to create 6,500 jobs.
New Mexico has the fourth-highest unemployment rate in the country, while its neighbors and the rest of the nation are in a boom. In May, the state had 5.1 percent unemployment, a large improvement over the 6.5 percent unemployment it has struggled with since 2014.
But it was no match for the 3 percent unemployment in Utah or the 4 percent in Texas, where the business climate is so alluring that two cities — Dallas and Austin — are in the running to become Amazon’s second headquarters. Amazon HQ2 is expected to create 50,000 high-paying jobs and $5 billion in capital investment; the average annual salary will be $100,000, the company says.
How did Amazon narrow down its list of 238 applicant cities to a final 20? “Educational attainment” was a key driver.
The company said in its request for proposal that it “preferred” a location with a highly educated labor pool and enough people with STEM training to fill the thousands of jobs. Other requirements included top-tier universities and community colleges; high enrollment, grades and retention rates in higher education; top-quality K-12 schools; and plentiful K-12 STEM programs, the RFP says.
Supporting our people
Amazon’s HQ2 is such a fantastical project that only the rarest of regions could hope to win it. But New Mexico can be a hard sell for more modest projects as well.
Among the red flags: The state’s population growth from 2010-16 was the weakest in the Southwest, according to government data.
And site-selection consultants worldwide scour every metric about education, from early childhood programs to the availability of adult education. States that support adult education are likely to have more available workers and healthier families, research shows.
A quick Google search will show consultants that the New Mexico Adult Education Division served 12,755 students in 2017, the lowest number in decades. The New Mexico Department of Game and Fish served more people than that — 12,780 — in its fishing skills classes around the state.
Consultants can quickly download a 2016 economic report for the Legislature titled, pointedly, “New Mexico Job Horizon: No Country for Young Men (or Women).”
Waiting for jobs that do not yet exist may have a poetic ring to it, but Wood has plans for his life. He spends his days shooting viral videos like “Two Grannies, One Lamborghini” (6.6 million views and counting).
“I love it here,” Wood says, adding, “I love New Mexico, too. But for the better or the worse, the big pond is L.A.”
Searchlight New Mexico is a nonprofit, nonpartisan news organization dedicated to investigative journalism."
By Mary Catherine O'Connor
Photo Credits: Alexis Rodriguez
Amidst the chaos of Santa Fe’s Pancakes on the Plaza on the Fourth of July, we decided to add our own crazy flare to the hustle and bustle. We decided that when it came to art-making, we needed to up our game and tell all of Santa Fe all about us!
So, we made some crazy calls, did some crazy planning and Hey-Presto!The world-famous Original RadHatter from San Diego flew in for a fun-filled, family-orientated morning of spectacular hat-making!
With the help of community volunteers, New Mexico Youth Ambassadors, and our wonderful Summer Vista Associates, we helped over 500 community members get festive in this hands-on art activity.
Using recycled paper bags and every decoration the mind can come up with, from glitter to flags and bows to pipe-cleaners, people from four to eighty-four created their own Rad Hats to celebrate Independence Day!
Red, white and blue blazed underneath our tent but soon streamers, veils, paper dollars and tiny flags began to crop up in a sea of little kids and excited adults.
Perched on the Plaza’s lawns beneath blue skies, six tables over laden with glue, hole-punchers, crepe-paper, paper plates and stickers became home to a host of busy little hands moulding the next Mona Lisa. Laughter and giggles permeated the air as parents and old friends started gathering around, a little touch of competitiveness creeping in to see who could make the best hat.
The Rad Hatter has been in business for over thirty years, a dab hand now at igniting the creative fires found in every child and lying dormant in every adult. Working with many huge organisations and events around the globe, we were lucky enough to bring the magic of the Rad Hatter to Santa Fe and light up faces on the Fourth of July.
Even Mayor Webber got involved!
But enough said, take a look at the photos if you don’t believe us.
Community Learning Network is a grassroots New Mexico-born and locally based 501(c)3 organization dedicated to building stronger communities through real-life learning.