Western New Mexico University

Western New Mexico University (photo courtesy of wnmumustangs on flickr)

Western New Mexico University is a public university located in Silver City, New Mexico. The University is regionally accredited through the Higher Learning Commission, North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. The student to faculty ratio is low – 3:1 as of Fall 2009 – and reflects it’s small total enrollment: just under 4,000 students. Despite its size, the university has been operating since 1893 and is currently expanding its distance education programs. Currently, Bachelor’s and Master’s program are offered 100% online with attractive tuition prices.

Bachelor’s Degrees: Career and Technical Teacher Education, Criminal Justice, Rehabilitation Services, RN to BSN (Nursing)

Master’s Degrees: Educational Leadership, Interdisciplinary Studies


Admission requirements vary from program to program, but an online application is required, at minimum, for each. More information regarding individual program admission requirements can be found at the Western New Mexico University online program website.

Academic Advisor/Program Chair

Due to the small nature of Western New Mexico University, Program Chairs also act as Student Academic Advisors throughout one’s enrollment. This added benefit allows students the opportunity to communicate with an individual familiar with the degree program, its requirements, its post-graduation career opportunities, and further educational possibilities.


Quite possibly the best aspect about Western New Mexico University’s online programs – aside from the education itself – is the low cost of attendance. Definitely the most affordable I’ve seen, it quite possibly many be the lowest available to date. Credit hour costs is the same for resident and non-resident students up to 6 credit hours per term; after 6 credits, non-resident rates go into effect.

Undergraduate: $179.78 per credit hour up to 6 credits

(after that $521.43 per credit hour for non-residents)

Graduate: $190.28 per credit hour up to 6 credits

(after that $531.43 per credit hour for non-residents)


Like all colleges, class availability and offerings change each semester/quarter, but Western New Mexico University posts their class schedule on its website freely accessible to student anyone who visits the page; you do not have to be a student to view the course schedule. A sampling of classes for the Spring 2013 semester include Pre-Renaissance Art, Substance Abuse and Crime, and World Literature.

Student Services

The resources available to online students through a university can be crucial to a student’s success. Western New Mexico University’s Student Resources office provides online students with direct access to virtually every department on campus:

Canvas (online courses), Bookstore, Calendar, Campus Directory, Catalog, Class schedules, Disability Support Services, Financial Aid, HelpDesk (technical support), Library Resources, Mustang Express (university email), Payment, Register, Tuition and Fees, Virtual Campus, eTutoring (Smarthinking)

Ashley Benson is a distance education professional with five years of experience in the for-profit sector. She has worked coast-to-coast within the United States as an academic advisor, an adjunct teaching assistant and, most recently, a campus Registrar. Through formal education and industry experience, Ashley practices staying informed on the current events and changes within higher education and the students involved.

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