Zac Smith is a college instructor of computer science at New Mexico State University's Grants campus. Zac, an Albuquerque native, wants to earn his Ph.D. in computer science and eventually work as a software engineer while continuing to teach. He is helping bring Studio G to the Grants community college campus through the Next Generation Entrepreneurship program funded by the U.S. Economic Development Administration.

Zac Smith

1. What's your favorite thing about the Grants campus?

Our small campus means that students have access to faculty on a personal basis, and since we have had some really great grants, we provide access to opportunities that may not be available at larger institutions. For example, we take excellent learning field trips, and have professional grade technology in our STEM courses and computer science programs.

2. Why are you excited about Next Gen?

There is so much talent and creativity on our campus, and Next Gen provides our students and alumni the opportunity to harness these amazing resources. I have seen great ideas for developing new business in our community, and I am confident that together with Next Gen, their dreams can become reality.

3. What do you do with your free time?

Spend time with my wife, Esther; traveling, learning about anything, and writing code.

4. What do you consider your greatest achievement so far?

I don't have a greatest achievement, because each day I strive to move the bar a little further forward. Thus, the past only serves to help guide me in the future.

5. What's something people might be surprised to learn about you?

That I have a degree in legal science.

Arrowhead in Review

NM Fast Workshops

NM FAST hosted 2 workshops in January. Todd Bisio hosted a workshop in Las Vegas, NM focused on how individuals can secure funding to advance their innovative ideas with SBIR and STTR funding programs. Arrowhead's Dana Catron hosted an informational session at the Arrowhead Center about funding opportunities for individuals interested in serving as grant writers for projects supported by the University Center and NM FAST programs facilitated by Arrowhead Center. Both events were great successes, engaging a diverse population of New Mexico innovators, entrepreneurs, and writers.

Arrowhead Innovation Fund

The Arrowhead Innovation Fund (AIF) hosted its 2017 Kick-Off Reception in mid-January. The event was attended by the AIF board, the inventors of several promising NMSU commercial technologies, NMSU administration, and members of the local community. Chancellor Carruthers and Managing Director of the Arrowhead Innovation Fund, Estela Hernandez spoke about the Arrowhead Innovation Fund, and innovative commercial technology and products being developed by NMSU students and faculty at the Arrowhead Center. The event was a great success and served as a wonderful opportunity to share information about Arrowhead programs.

Arrowhead Center launches Ag Sprints Program to support innovation in agriculture

A new program by New Mexico State University's Arrowhead Center is offering help to those looking to develop innovative ideas related to agricultural technology.

The Arrowhead Technology Incubator is launching AgSprint, a five-month venture builder program designed to support innovation in agriculture, early this spring. AgSprint acts as a facilitator, connecting agricultural entrepreneurs to financing, demonstration and validation partners, academic faculty, corporate partners and more. "The ideal candidate would be someone who is very driven, seeking capital, industry connections and/or development partners, and is who is very passionate about contributing to efficiency and productivity in agriculture," said Zetdi Sloan, director of Arrowhead Technology Incubator.

Studio G expansion supports student entrepreneurship at community colleges

Students across the New Mexico State University system with an idea for a business now have access to an online entrepreneurship curriculum and network of expert advisers, thanks to Arrowhead Center's Next Generation Entrepreneurship program. Known as Next Gen, the program brings Studio G, Arrowhead's student and alumni business incubator, to NMSU's community college campuses throughout the state.

Arrowhead Center received a $368,760 grant in 2016 from the U.S. Economic Development Administration to expand Studio G to students at campuses in Alamogordo, Carlsbad and Grants, as well as students at Dona Ana Community College in Las Cruces.

Arrowhead crunches numbers for New Mexico businesses

Sure, mixing cow manure, food scrap and agricultural field waste together sounds like a great idea. But is there any money in it? As it turns out, yes.

But Bob Hockaday would not have known for sure his idea to churn the messy mix and harvest the result for fuel and fertilizer would work without the assistance of New Mexico State University's Arrowhead Center. Among the programs Arrowhead offers entrepreneurial ideas to bring to market is one supported in part by the U.S. Economic Development Administration University Center for Regional Commercialization.


Arrowhead is the nexus of innovation and entrepreneurial energy in southern New Mexico! Engage with us this year through our wide array of community outreach events and opportunities:

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