There was once someone who said to a journalist, “follow the money.”
There is a reason for this. Money always leaves some type of trail. And that trail leads to bigger things found out.
I have written extensively about the military and corporate ties that my alma mater UNM has had, and most likely still has. (https://elloborojo.wordpress.com/category/university-of-new-mexico/) In a small item in the Albuquerque Journal in 2000 by reporter Scott Sandlin, it gives a lot of information about the growth of federal research money that went to UNM. (1)
Back in 2000, it was reported “UNM has suffered something of an inferiority complex,” according to Judy Jones, UNM’s vice president for institutional advancement. Because of that, Jones back in 2000 set up a new communications plan for the university, an advertising campaign playing on its strengths. This campaign was funded with $250,000 cash that was somehow found for it. One of those strengths it promoted was the growth of the amount of research money the university was bringing in at the time. Part of this was an ad campaign that touted that UNM increased its “growth in federally financed research and development expenditures since 1990,” according to the Albuquerque Journal article.
In 1990 UNM had $25.44 million in federal grant money. In 1998 that figure went to $84.3 million, an increase of 232 percent, the highest increase of any other university that year. We see where this trail leads. Now we can observe that much of this will go to military-linked projects or projects directed to making profits for businesses.
Lately I have also been working on an article about former UNM president Richard Peck. Peck ruled as CEO of UNM during this time, and he represented a case example of the modern CEO of the corporate university, albeit a more technocratic one. Stay tuned.
- Sandlin, Scott. “Ads Tout UNM’s Quality.” Albuquerque Journal. August 21, 2000. http://www.abqjournal.com/news/104635news08-21-00.htm (Accessed August 29, 2000).