by Hakim Be

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A Statewide General Education Steering Committee has been established to consider several initiatives in higher education institutions across the state of New Mexico. Part of the committee’s work is to institutionalize a set of course numbers to facilitate course transfer. Another part of the committee’s work is to explore establishing a new set of Core/General outcomes, essential skills and content areas. For more information on this statewide effort please visit provost.nmsu.edu/state-wide-gen-ed/

UNM faculty have raised significant concerns about the timeline and process of this ambitious initiative. Broad and diverse faculty consultation has been lacking throughout the process. Specific concerns have been raised by faculty teaching in Ethnic, Interdisciplinary and Humanities programs about the impact this initiative may have on courses taught by these programs and that form part of the current UNM Core curriculum. A drastic revision of the UNM Core curriculum, which leaves these above-mentioned programs may interfere with student and community centered programs currently in place. While the decision making process for this initiative has not been made transparent, representative or inclusive, the committee is moving forward to set a deadline for response by faculty representing institutions involved in this initiative.

October 20, 2016, is the deadline for all input related to the statewide revision to the Core/General Education curriculum. A coalition of students, community members, staff members and faculty members have launched a campaign named “We are Core!” to respond to this initiative.

Here is the link to provide feedback to the institution charged with gathering input.

If you wish to express concerns or raise questions about the process, please write to

Statewide committee members

Dan Howard, Chair, Provost, New Mexico State University, dahoward@ad.nmsu.edu

Greg Heileman, Vice Provost, heileman@unm.edu

Pamela Cheek, pcheek@unm.edu

Ganesh Balakrishnan, Associate Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering, gunny@unm.edu

Delia Brennan, ASUNM Senator, deliab@unm.edu

Regina Carlow, Associate Dean for Student Affairs, rcarlow@unm.edu

Chuck Paine, Professor, Director of Writing, cpaine@unm.edu


“Along time ago, I learned about a budget’s significance to public policy. I was taught that you can tell how much a town, city, state or country values something by how much they put in their budget for it. For instance, in this country we value our military more than our schools to the tune of $702 Billion.* Same thing goes for what we say is ‘essential’ and what we say is ‘elective’ in our education system. Our core requirements are clear indicator of both our academic priorities and who we serve. It says who we are, and perhaps even more importantly…it says who we are not.”

- Hakim Bellamy, Adjunct Faculty UNM Chicana Chicano Studies
*2011 Figures from Federal Office of Management and Budget, FY2013 Historical Tables

/‘kɔ:/ (aka “Core”)

Short for corazón (/core-rah-sawn/)
or courage (/core ij/)
or Karim (/core eem/)
and Courtney (/coret ni)
who has yet to learn,
or live,
the real world, workplace competency
of her future coworkers’ name…

and noble”
at his core.

What’s left
after everything else is taken away.

Can mean
at the center.
Can mean foundation.
Could mean soul, seed or embryo.
Could be brain, spinal cord
and heart

the fifth week of “pregnant,”
third week after conception.
Forever dispelling our misconceptions,
first trimester, “here first”…

is the only place to grow
from here.

Core means middle,
like the passage from student
to teacher, from captivity
to democracy, from the America
we were, to the America
we are perpetually teaching
ourselves to be.

It sometimes means in between
right and left lungs
a container for our shared values
and beliefs.

And when it beats,
culture is how we breathe.

It’s been said
that the human heart
has an infinite capacity
for love.

And in this heartland-of-a-country
we’re still praying
that there’s infinite capacity for “US”

at its core.

© Hakim Bellamy October 5th, 2016


released October 5, 2016
Hakim Bellamy



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Hakim Be Albuquerque, New Mexico

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