In 2009, NMHU, in partnership with Mimi Roberts, Director of Media Projects at the New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA), submitted the first proposal for the AmeriCorps Cultural Technology Program (ACT). The proposal requested funding for internships in museums, non-profits and libraries for the purpose of cultivating a homegrown pool of multimedia specialists capable of working with cultural content and committed to serving their communities. The program was funded for seven years and had its final AmeriCorps Cultural Technology Interns in 2017. The program made a major impact on the lives of the students and on the institutions they served. Over seven years, accomplishments included:
- 76 ACT members provided on average two service assignments at New Mexico cultural institutions.
- Nearly 100% of ACT members reported satisfaction with their service and the opportunities they had to build their confidence to pursue jobs or graduate school in the field of technology and media arts.
- 49 CIs across NM received Capacity Building service from ACT members (more than half participated more than once).
- Nearly 300 technological products, systems, or enhancements were developed and installed by ACT members in NM cultural institutions.
- Cultural Institutions rated 100% satisfaction on the quality of the service they received from the ACT members.
- $871,834.00 of grant money was received from the AmeriCorps program over seven years.
- $523,000.00 in cash and in-kind match was contributed over seven years by NM cultural institutions, NMHU, and DCA (60% of total costs).
- Thousands of community members and visitors to NM are benefiting from the developments and improvements created by ACT members.
- Our most recent statistics show that ACT members were employed or attending graduate school at a statistically significant higher rate (75.6%) than those who had not completed an ACT internship (34.7%).