By Cindy Foster

UNM West Renamed UNM Health Sciences Rio Rancho Campus

First, the programs changed and now the UNM West campus is receiving a new name reflecting the emphasis on health professional training, according to Jamie Silva-Steele, Sandoval Regional Medical Center CEO.

Going forward, the campus's name will be the UNM Health Sciences Rio Rancho Campus, she says.

"It has been an exciting and satisfying time during the past year as our new health professions programs developed and began operations. Now seems the right time to create a new campus name that reflects both our program orientation changes and the Rio Rancho partnerships that have created this new health education training," she says.

UNM began offering a 20-month College of Nursing program this fall, as well as a medical assistant program in collaboration with Central New Mexico Community College. The campus will also be home to a new community mental health clinic.

"We have long known that students who train locally are much more likely to stay and practice in their communities," Silva-Steele says.

"New Mexico is a diverse state and our healthcare needs reflect that. As they graduate, our students will be able to provide the kind of care their friends, families and neighbors need," she says.

Some construction to retrofit the building has already occurred and there are additional plans to connect the campus to SRMC through roadways and walking paths.

"Our commitment to Rio Rancho and Sandoval County is long term and we look forward to serving our students and patients for many years to come," she says.