NMSU’s Great Conversations covers wide range from green building to dangers in Juarez

September 24, 2009 by Justin Bannister NMSU NewsCenter

Looking for a great conversation on green living, the healthcare debate or even the National Parks Service? Look no further than New Mexico State University’s Great Conversations, a fundraising dinner for students in NMSU’s Honors College. This year’s event will take place from 6-9 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 8, at the New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum outdoor patio.

“It’s going to be a lot of fun. It really gives the community a chance to meet our professors and students while enjoying some stimulating and memorable conversations,” said Bill Eamon, dean of the Honors College.

He said the event helps fund scholarships for some of the best and brightest students at NMSU, a group sometimes overlooked when it comes to financial aid.

“This is a particularly interesting and topical program this year. So many of our conversations deal with important issues of today, from women in Muslim cultures to the situation in Juarez,” Eamon said.

“I think it’s a great opportunity to support NMSU while learning new things,” said Bob Pofahl, CEO of Picacho Mountain, a Las Cruces-based development company. “Higher education is one of the great engines for our economy and this event directly serves that area.”

Pofahl will lead a conversation of green building in Las Cruces, an area that he says makes sense both economically and socially. More than 25 different table conversations are planned, including global warming and world energy, building leaders for tomorrow, secrets of the Da Vinci Code, the enigma of Shakespeare and a conversation about the National Parks Service.

“I think everyone has some sort of connection to the national parks, but we may take them for granted,” said Dwight Pithcaithley, former chief historian for the National Parks Service and a table discussion leader for this year’s Great Conversations.

“This event is not only good for NMSU, it’s also good for the community. This is a university-based forum for important topics of our time,” he said.

This year, there will be no minimum seating requirements for tables, meaning everyone who attends the dinner is guaranteed the conversation they choose.

Tickets for the event cost $65 each. A donation of $50 allows an honors student to attend the dinner free of charge. For more information about table conversation topics, or to register for the event, visit http://honors.nmsu.edu/gc.

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