“MMUF is a network. And I think that over time, the reverberating effects of this network are going to be very, very substantial. As the numbers continue to grow...you begin to get a second- and a third-generation effect...I think that's going to be powerful.”

~ William G. Bowen, co-founder of MMUF and former president of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

Faculty Mentors


Kency CornejoKency Cornejo

Dr. Cornejo's research and pedagogy focus on art of Central America and its US-based diaspora, visual politics and activism in Latin America, and decolonizing methodologies in art. Specifically, she explores creative responses to femicide, immigration, prisons, captivity, transnationalism, gangs, and indigenous rights in Central America, as well as the role of visuality in colonization and decolonial methodologies in contemporary art. Dr. Cornejo is completing her book manuscript which analyzes the last twenty-five years of art and decoloniality in Central America, and she is beginning a second manuscript on forty years of political art in El Salvador. Dr. Cornejo was named a 2017 awardee of the Creative Capital | Andy Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Grant.

  • Educational History
    • Ph.D., Duke University
    • M.A., University of Texas Austin
    • B.A., University of California Los Angeles

Chris KoopsChris Koops

Dr. Koops' primary research area is variationist sociolinguistics, specifically sociophonetics. In this area, he is especially interested in language and dialect contact phenomena, such as the segmental and suprasegmental features of Spanish-influenced varieties of English as well as other ethnic varieties of North American English. Dr. Koops is also conducting research on contact varieties of Spanish in the Americas, including New Mexican and Peruvian Spanish. A second research focus of mine is the quantitative analysis of grammatical constructions and their discourse functions, including information structure constructions and discourse markers. In his work on Oklahoma Cherokee, Dr. Koops is applying phonetic methods to language revitalization in the context of the complex tone phonology of Cherokee.

  • Educational History
    • Ph.D., Linguistics, Rice University

Tim KrebsTim Krebs

Dr. Krebs is currently studying rhetoric in U.S.. mayoral campaigns, with the goal of understanding campaign strategy. Using a unique data set of candidates’ television advertisements, this work examines issue and trait speech, as well as the tone of ads aired by mayoral candidates in the U.S.. His urban policy research focuses on the effect that political, demographic and institutional variables have on policy outputs. Dr. Krebs's work has appeared in the American Journal of Political Science, Political Research Quarterly, American Politics Research, Social Science Quarterly, Urban Affairs Review, Journal of Urban Affairs, Public Administration Review, State and Local Government Review, and Legislative Studies Quarterly. He has also authored or co-authored book chapters on city councils, urban elections and campaigns, and the link between urban elections and policy responsiveness in edited volumes.

  • Educational History
    • Ph.D., Political Science, Loyola University Chicago
    • M.A., Political Science, Loyola University
    • B.A., Political Science, Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles

Ann MurphyAnn Murphy

Dr. Murphy's areas of specialization are Social and Political Philosophy, Gender Theory, and 20th Century Continental Philosophy. Her research interests lie principally with the themes of embodiment and violence. Dr. Murphy recently completed her first book manuscript, entitled Violence and the Philosophical Imaginary (SUNY 2012), which examines the proliferation of images of violence in philosophical writing on embodiment and identity, particularly in the tradition of Continental feminist theory.

  • Educational History
    • Ph.D., Philosophy, University of Memphis
    • B.A., Grinnell College

Dawn NordquistDawn Nordquist

Dawn has been an instructor at the University of New Mexico since 2006 and joined the Department of Linguistics full-time in 2015. She enjoys teaching introductory courses that engage students with the discipline and that support the mission of the department. Her research investigates frequent usage patterns that impact structure, with a particular interest in semantic prosody and collocations. She is currently examining narrative structure and developing curricula around the use of narrative in the classroom.

  • Educational History
    • Ph.D., Linguistics, University of New Mexico
    • BA, French, California State University, Sonoma

Jami Nelson-NunezJami Nelson-Nuñez

Jami Nelson-Nuñez is an assistant professor of political science at the University of New Mexico. She received her BA in International Affairs (1999) and MA (2009) and PhD (2014) in Political Science from the University of Colorado Boulder specializing in comparative politics, research methodology and policy. Her work focuses poverty in developing countries, with a particular emphasis on water and health, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and local governance in Latin America. Her research agenda explores the challenges of development and extending basic services to the poor in developing contexts. One focal point of her work is interactions between civil society groups and local governments in decentralized settings. She investigates the impact of NGOs on political behavior and government service provision and identifying obstacles to effective collaboration between NGOs and local governments.

  • Educational History
    • Ph.D., Political Science, University of Colorado Boulder
    • BA, International Affairs, University of Colorado Boulder

Michael RoccaMichael Rocca

Michael Rocca is currently an Associate Professor of political science at the University of New Mexico. Professor Rocca's subfield is American politics and his primary research and teaching interests relate to American national institutions, particularly the US Congress. Most of his work deals with the politics of congressional position taking and campaign contributions, respectively. Professor Rocca's work appears in The Journal of Politics, Political Research Quarterly, Legislative Studies Quarterly, American Politics Research, Social Sciences Quarterly, Congress and the Presidency and PS: Political Science and Politics. Professor Rocca is an award winning instructor who teaches graduate and undergraduate courses on American politics, the US Congress and the American presidency. He is currently the director of the Political Science Graduate Program.

  • Educational History
    • Ph.D., Political Science, University of California, Davis (American Politics, Camparative Politics, Methodology)
    • BA, Political Science, California Polytechnic State University

Irene VasquezIrene Vásquez

Dr. Vásquez specializes in the intersectional histories and politics of Mexican-descent populations in the Americas. Her research and teaching interests include U.S.. and transnational social and political movements. She co-authored a book on the Chicana and Chicano Movement titled, Making Aztlan: Ideology and Culture of the Chicana and Chicano Movement: Ideology, 1966-1977, published by the University of New Mexico Press. She has written several essays in English and Spanish on the historic and contemporary relations between African Americans and Latin American descent peoples in the Americas. Dr. Vásquez is currently working on publications centering on immigrant and human rights organizing in the U.S.. In addition, she has previously published essays on Indigenous peoples in what is today northern Mexico. Her current project is a history survey of Chicana women in the U.S.

  • Educational History
    • Ph.D., History, University of California, Los Angeles
    • BA, History, University of California, Los Angeles