UNM Gets Grant of Over $50 Million From Army in 2003
Back in 2003 UNM was awarded a grant from the US Army. It was given to UNM along with New Mexico State University, with UNM being the project leader. This shows how the universities and military are more and more connected.
It was part of the Defense Threat Reduction Agency’s Education Institution Strategic Partnership, which gives funding to universities in exchange for the research it does for the agency. The grant is for $2-$8 million a year, and both partners would get about $50-$51 million over nine years, the length of the program.
The proposal that was submitted demonstrated that the universities were capable of supporting five mission within the DTRA, according to DTRA public affairs officer Lt. David Gai. UNM would work within the needs of the agency, and researchers from diverse fields such as English, engineering, medicine, and science could participate.
UNM also received an award for $302,056 through the program, used for travel and brainstorming meetings with the University and DOD.
The first two installments of the grant was given to UNM Extended University in the amount of $550,000. It would help update instructional techniques at the Defense Nuclear Weapons School at Kirtland Air Force Base. Basically teaching methods for its employees.
Pennsylvania State University and New Mexico Tech University also received similar grants.
Richard Howell, the projects co-principal investigator, said UNM had “on-the-ground experience” with the Defense Department, and it helped it get the grant.
Some of the research would be classified, and employees working there would need security clearance. It is coincidental that the new UNM president approved at this time was Louis Caldera, a former secretary of the Army. They noted that “virtually none” of the projects are classified, which means that there will be classified research.
Under terms of the grant, the universities would collaborate with Sandia and Los Alamos National Laboratories.
According to UNM vice president for research Terry Yeates, the university had $248 million brought in in 2002, 60 percent from the federal government.
The excuses given for the research were typical. They were being proactive and not reactive, it would be used for defense and not offense. Even the PIRG member quoted said that violence should not be used in university settings but on the other hand it is necessary work.
Without real opposition to giving away the universities for money, the war machine will continue.
Proctor, Jeff. “Army Awards UNM Grant.” Daily Lobo (UNM). April 18, 2003. P. 1, 3.
Proctor, Jeff. “UNM Selected To Combat Terrorism.” Daily Lobo (UNM). November 13, 2003. P. 1-2.