Author: KGFisher

Challenge Grant Opportunity: Pitch in to End Predatory Lending, Improve Schools, & More!

It’s time for Think New Mexico’s annual online fundraising campaign!

This year, six extremely generous New Mexicans who believe strongly in our work have put together a pool of challenge grants totaling $100,000 – now we need your help to raise another $100,000 by Friday, October 29 at 11:59 p.m. in order to meet this ambitious challenge!

You can help us meet this challenge by donating online or mailing in a check (all checks post-marked by October 29 will count toward the match, and so do pledges – click here to email your pledge).

In addition, another supporter has offered a separate $25,000 challenge grant that must be matched with contributions from new donors, new Monthly Amigos (monthly donors), or returning donors who haven’t given to Think New Mexico in the past five years.

All of these contributions will be matched 2:1, meaning that every $1 from a new donor, new monthly donor, or donor who hasn’t given since 2016 will raise $3 to help support our work.

If we can successfully match these challenge grants, the dollars we raise will support Think New Mexico’s nonpartisan, results-oriented efforts to reduce the maximum annual interest rate for small loans from 175% to 36%; ensure that every New Mexico student receives financial literacy education before they graduate from high school; shift more of New Mexico’s education funding from central administration to the classroom where the actual learning takes place; repeal the state’s tax on Social Security income, and more.

Thank you for your support!

Help Ensure that Every New Mexico Student Has Access to Financial Literacy Education!

The New Mexico Public Education Department is updating its K-12 Social Studies standards, which detail the concepts that students will learn in classes like history and economics. This gives us an important opportunity to make sure that every New Mexico student has the opportunity to learn essential personal finance skills before they graduate from high school.

New Mexico is one of only five states that fails to include personal finance in its education standards. Personal finance standards teach students essential life skills like budgeting, checking and savings accounts, credit, interest, investment in stocks and bonds, and the costs of borrowing. The research shows that students who receive this education are more likely to save money, budget their spending, invest, and obtain more financial aid for college.

The department’s draft revision didn’t add any personal finance benchmarks, so Think New Mexico wrote our own based on the national best practices and the standards in place in other states like Colorado. (You can review our proposal here: Think New Mexico’s proposed additions are highlighted throughout the draft rule.)

We hope you’ll join us in urging the Public Education Department to adopt strong personal finance standards for New Mexico’s students! Please note that comments must be submitted by 5:00 p.m. on November 12.

Think New Mexico Receives 100 out of 100 Rating from Charity Navigator

Think New Mexico has received a score of 100 out of 100 on Charity Navigator’s new Encompass Rating System for small nonprofits. This score, which is based on Charity Navigator’s Finance and Accountability analysis, provides an assessment of a nonprofit’s financial health (stability, efficiency and sustainability) and its commitment to governance practices and policies. Charity Navigator is the world’s largest and most trusted nonprofit evaluator. Learn more on Charity Navigator’s website.

Think New Mexico Hires Its First Ever Education Reform Director!

We are delighted to announce that we have hired Abenicio Baldonado as Think New Mexico’s first ever Education Reform Director! As this Santa Fe New Mexican column explains, we created this new position because we believe that nothing is more critical to the success of our state than improving the quality of our public schools. Yet because Think New Mexico takes on new issues every year, we have not been able to give education reform the consistent, intense focus that it needs every day of the year. The Education Reform Director position is designed to fix that, and we could not have found a better fit for the position than Abenicio. He is a proud graduate of Robertson High School in Las Vegas, NM, earned his BA and Masters from Highlands University, served as a public school teacher and charter school board member, and spent the last three years as the Legislative Liaison for the Public Education Department. Read Abenicio’s bio on our staff page.

Think New Mexico Welcomes Our 2021 Leadership Interns!

We are delighted to be joined this summer by Amelia Bierle, who grew up in Carlsbad and is now earning her Masters in Public Policy from UNM; Sophie Hare, who was raised in Santa Fe and and is now a junior studying Public Policy and Spanish at the University of Chicago; Ciara “Key” Macfarland, who grew up in Albuquerque and is now a senior majoring in political science at Colorado College; and Vedder “Rise” Miller, who grew up in Santa Fe and just graduated from Duke University with a degree in Public Policy Studies and History!

Amelia and Rise are working with us during the first half of the summer, and Key and Sophie will be here during the latter half. Read more about this year’s Leadership Interns.

Amelia Bierle Sophie Hare Key Macfarland RiseMiller

Think New Mexico Launches New Initiative to End Predatory Lending & Strengthen Financial Literacy in New Mexico!

In a report released October 4, 2020, Think New Mexico recommends that the legislature and governor cut the state’s maximum annual interest rate on small loans from 175% to 36% and make a course in financial literacy or personal finance a high school graduation requirement. Learn more about our recommended reforms and ask your legislators and the governor to support them!

Welcome to our 2020 Leadership Interns!

Think New Mexico is delighted to have six stellar students working with us (remotely) this summer!

Our 2020 Leadership Interns include Rohan Angadi, a former Valedictorian and Student Body President of Clovis High School who is now a junior at Yale studying economics and mathematics; Daniel Estupiñan, who grew up in Sunland Park, served on the Gadsden School Board while he was an undergraduate student at NMSU, and is now earning his Masters from the Harvard Kennedy School; Chloe Larkin, a junior at Wellesley College who was active in New Mexico Youth and Government and was elected Youth Governor for New Mexico in 2018; Kate Monahan, a Santa Fean who just graduated from the University of Southern California and previously interned with Senator Tom Udall and Fix It America; Raffaele Moore, an Albuquerque native who is a rising junior at Brown University and previously interned for Senator Martin Heinrich and Mayor Tim Keller; and Ariane Talou, a junior at UCLA who has interned with Emerge New Mexico and served as a Fellow on Representative Ben Ray Lujan’s 2018 congressional campaign. Read more about this year’s Leadership Interns.

Rohan Angadi Daniel Estupinan Chloe Larkin Raffaele Moore Kate Monahan Ariane Talou
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