CNM to Open Innovative Education Center Downtown

March 6, 2014 -- CNM will be launching a new approach to education at a center in Downtown Albuquerque designed to provide accelerated educational opportunities in key areas and wrap-around support for aspiring entrepreneurs.
July 16, 2015


It will provide a bold new educational approach to developing the workforce of tomorrow in a strategic location intended to add synergy to the City’s Downtown revitalization efforts.

The CNM STEMulus Center will be located in the First Plaza Galeria in the heart of Downtown – it's scheduled to open to the public in the fall. The STEMulus Center is strategically designed to support the region’s workforce and economic needs by compressing and accelerating education so that some of the key gaps in the region’s workforce are addressed sooner rather than later, which is paramount for the region’s economic prospects and quality of life.

It will also provide more non-traditional students exposure and access to CNM technology and labs, which is part of an effort to get more citizens engaged in the power of education.

The CNM STEMulus Center will also support the University of New Mexico-led Innovate ABQ effort.

The STEMulus Center will provide space for four strategic functions when it opens:

Accelerator – The Accelerator at the CNM STEMulus Center will provide wrap-around support services for aspiring entrepreneurs seeking to get their promising business ideas off the ground. It will provide mentoring by successful entrepreneurs; an individualized support system; business planning and implementation consulting; all in an effort to accelerate the time an entrepreneur’s idea gets to market.

Prototyping and Test Lab – CNM will provide community members considering business ventures the ability to use some of the college’s state-of-the-art technology to test their ideas or develop prototypes. CNM could allow a new restaurant concept to be tested using a commercial kitchen in the Galeria. Other examples of CNM equipment that could be used by community members to test ideas or develop prototypes would be welding labs; woodworking labs; machine-tool technology labs; 3-D printing and digital media technology; etc. Ideas that are tested and vetted at the Prototyping and Test Lab could begin at the Accelerator.

Bootcamps and Accelerated Learning – Bootcamps, workshops and accelerated learning opportunities will be offered to support businesses and government agencies in the area. If a business wants to provide “skill-up” opportunities for its employees in a certain skill that will improve performance for the business and the employee, CNM will develop the accelerated learning opportunity. CNM will offer the learning opportunities at a time convenient for the organization and its employees, such as at lunchtime, before work or after work. If a business needs more employees with an associate degree in business, CNM will be offering an accelerated associate degree in business. If other accelerated associate degree programs are in demand, CNM will consider providing more of these accelerated degree opportunities.

Coding and Cyber-Security Academies – There is a great need in the region for more individuals with coding skills for computer information systems, as well as the skills needed to work in cyber-security environments. At the STEMulus Center, individuals interested in these fields will be able to get training that directly relates to the needs of the organizations seeking employees. The learning will be project-based, in which the curriculum is directly influenced by employers who will interact with the students. These academies will be designed to lead directly to employment opportunities.

Businesses are encouraged to answer a two-question survey to let CNM know how the CNM STEMulus can serve them -- go to

Support for the CNM STEMulus Center

“I commend CNM for the bold vision it has put forth with the establishment of the CNM STEMulus Center in Downtown Albuquerque. This center will be a tremendous resource for workforce development and entrepreneurship in our region, and it will add the kind of creative energy we need to accelerate economic development in the core of our city. It will also provide terrific support for our Innovation Central efforts.”
– Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry

“I think the new CNM STEMulus Center and Innovate ABQ will complement each other extremely well and together they’ll generate more momentum for economic progress in our region. With these two ambitious and innovative efforts, CNM and UNM are both leveraging their unique expertise to increase the economic prospects for our region.”
– Robert G. Frank, UNM President

 “Our community college exists to serve the education and workforce training needs of our citizens and our region’s economy. In the post-recession era, community colleges have to be more agile and innovative than ever before to provide the kind of education that meets the current demands of an evolving workforce. CNM is launching the STEMulus Center in Downtown because our community needs us to offer a new approach to education, job training and entrepreneurship that can contribute to a more robust economic recovery for our region.”
– Katharine Winograd, CNM President