CNM Named a Military Friendly College Three Years in a Row
Matthew Fuentes, right, works with a student at the Veterans Resource Center.

CNM Named a Military Friendly College Three Years in a Row

The college is proud to provide high-quality education and resources for our veterans, active duty members, and their families
March 16, 2022

Here in New Mexico, CNM has always been known as a school that’s committed to helping veterans, active service members, and military families with education and the services necessary for them to create successful civilian careers. Now, CNM is being recognized nationally for our commitment to this community after being named a Military Friendly School three years in a row and earning the gold award designation for 2022.

Previously, CNM was designated as a Military Friendly School for 2020 and 2021 and also designated as a Military Friendly Spouse School for 2021. 

“The first time CNM ever got this award was such a pleasant surprise,” says Matthew Fuentes, Program Coordinator for the Veterans Resource Center. “This recognition felt great then and is even more amazing today.”

The Veterans Resource Center (VRC) at CNM is committed to providing students with high quality wrap-around support services to ensure there are no gaps that impede them from completing their college program. Many veteran and active military students and their families rely on the VRC to help them use their Veterans Affairs Education Benefits to pay for college. 

“Financial support for education is essential for student success,” says Matthew Fuentes. “We want students to focus on learning a new skill and not worry about how they’re going to pay for college or for their groceries.”

More broadly, the VRC also helps with everything from tutoring to guidance for how to transition from military to civilian life. College can be intimidating for new students and the VRC is always there to create a welcoming space. 

“Every day I see students and potential students come into the VRC unsure of themselves, their skills and their ability to handle challenges they are signing up for,” says Matthew. “These students know we’re always here to help them find a way forward and ensure they succeed.” 

Many of the staff members in the VRC are veterans themselves so they understand the experiences and challenges of their fellow service members who are now in school. 

“The transition away from the military requires teamwork, communication, and community. We all believe success comes from not only getting over the wall but in reaching back and helping others over the wall as well,” Matthew says.

If veterans need help outside of school, the VRC can connect them with local veteran-supported organizations to assist with housing, food, and mental health resources.  

To date, the VRC has served thousands of veteran and active military students and their families, and these students have gone on to a wide variety of successful careers. For example, some VRC students now work at the national labs, as congressional staffers, and hold senior management positions at nationally recognized companies.

“I have never met a veteran or family member who could not be academically successful and move on to bigger and better things. The success stories that come out of the VRC are too numerous to count,” Matthew says.

 Learn more about the VRC here