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ALR discusses immigration in October Zoom presentations


New Mexico State University’s Academy for Learning in Retirement (ALR) will host four Zoom presentations in October about immigration and the United States.

The programs will be presented by NMSU Department of History emeritus associate professor Jeffrey Brown, Ph.D., Department of Government professor Neil Harvey, Ph.D., Department of Finance emeritus professor Nancy Oretskin and Department of Government emeritus professor Christa Slaton, Ph.D. All four presenters have teaching or research experience that include the impacts of immigration, ALR said in a news release. 

Brown earned a Ph.D. at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign in 1979 and came to NMSU in 1984. His research has covered the pre-Civil War United States.

Harvey earned a Ph.D. in 1990 at the University of Essex in the United Kingdom, has carried out extensive research on rural social movements in Chiapas, Mexico and is author of many articles on the Zapatistas as well as the book "The Chiapas Rebellion: The Struggle for Land and Democracy.”

Oretskin established the U.S.-Mexico Conflict Resolution Center (CRC) with congressional funding sponsored by former U.S. Sen. Pete Domenici, R-N.M., and has practiced immigration law since 2010. Slaton earned a Ph.D. at the University of Hawaii-Manoa in 1990, has published three books and has specialized in teaching American national political intuitions, political parties, public opinion, women and politics and political participation.

“The United States is a nation inhabited to a great degree by immigrants and their descendants, but immigration is often controversial and has generated significant debates,” the news release said. “This series will review immigration history, laws and policies; explore the causes generating emigration from southern Mexico and Central America; assess current asylum policies and case histories; and discuss immigration and the politics of white nationalism.”

Programs begin at 10:30 a.m. on these dates with these presenters and topics:

  • Monday, Oct. 11: Brown, “Historic Overview: Immigration and Immigration Laws in the United States.”
  • Wednesday, Oct. 13: Harvey, “Root Causes of Migration from Central America and Southern Mexico: Addressing the Political Nature of Poverty, Crime and Ecological Crisis.”
  • Monday, Oct. 18: Oretskin, “Asylum: What it is and Who Can Win an Asylum Claim.”
  • Wednesday, Oct. 20: Slaton, “21st Century Immigration and the Rise of White Nationalism in the United States.”

Audience members may register at dacc.nmsu.edu/ALR. ALR will e-mail registrants a Zoom link the evening before each presentation. Programs begin at 10:30 a.m.; audience members may log in after 10 a.m. Registrants may also receive recorded broadcasts.

The fee is $5 for an individual presentation. 

ALR is a nonprofit started in 1992 by former NMSU President Gerald Thomas and retired deans Thomas Gale, Virginia Higbie, Flavia McCormick and others, including former professor and teacher Clarence Fielder.