National Science Foundation Awards UNM IT $150K Grant

August 12, 2015 - Staff

national science foundation logo

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded UNM Information Technologies a $150,000 grant for Fall 2015 to advance the educational and research capacities of smaller colleges and universities throughout New Mexico, and in bordering areas of Arizona and Texas.

The proposal, titled "CC*DNI Region: New Mexico Research and Economic Development Collaboration," facilitates the adoption of advanced technologies and delivery of onsite technical cyberinfrastructure (CI) expertise and assistance. Using a series of regional workshops and other outreach methods to connect researchers to technology support on their own campuses, the project will also help connect campuses with peer institutions, promote research networking, and eventually increase high-speed broadband service throughout the region.

UNM Chief Information Officer and Principal Investigator for the grant, Gil Gonzales, commented that "This award recognizes the role of UNM as the flagship higher education institution to use technology to advance research, education and economic development statewide. Our partnerships with New Mexico State University, Co-Principal Investigator, and New Mexico Tech, are key in this state-wide endeavor."

Schools targeted for broadband workshops include New Mexico Highlands, Northern New Mexico, Western New Mexico, and Eastern New Mexico universities.

Anticipated benefits of the grant and collaboration include:

  • Improving campus cyberinfrastructure and technical support throughout New Mexico
  • Expanding access to Albuquerque GigaPoP (the UNM operated, high-bandwidth network aggregation point that provides an on-ramp to high speed national networks).
  • Building opportunities to capitalize on statewide scientific resources (including the Data Observation Network of Earth and UNM's Center for Advanced Research Computing) to promote regional economic development and entrepreneurialsm.
  • Promoting the development of a regional Campus CI Community that focuses increased attention on key research areas, networking and technology.
  • Advancing partnerships between higher education campuses, state and city governments, and tribal entities to bring broadband into underserved areas.

This 2015 National Science Foundation grant builds on a previous 2014 NSF grant that laid the foundation for creating a dedicated regional research network at UNM. 

map showing current high speed broadband access and networks in and adjoining new mexico

Current high speed broadband access and networks in, and adjoining New Mexico.
Map courtesy of UNM Information Technologies. (Click image for large view.)