Film Prize Junior New Mexico hosts inaugural festival

Student filmmakers representing

20 New Mexico counties are set to debut their films April 23 at Mitchell Theatres Dreamcatcher 10 in Española for Film Prize Junior New Mexico.

The free competition opened to middle and high schoolers in the state in 2021, and winners will receive media and equipment grants for their schools. Award categories including “Best Film” and “Best Comedy” will be announced April 24 at Moving Arts in Española. Admission is free. More details are at filmprizenm.com.

NNMC college readiness program seeking participants

A free six-week college readiness program for high school sophomores, juniors and seniors; high school equivalency recipients; and adults returning to college at Northern New Mexico College will run June 6 to July 14.

The program, called “Fast Track to Success,” will focus on skills needed for college-level English and math courses. All books, course supplies, lunches and light breakfasts will be provided by the school.

Proof of vaccination is required for the program. For more information and application materials, contact Kristy Alton at kristy.alton@nnmc.edu or 505-423-2321.

Student debt relief available for health care workers

New Mexico Higher Education Department’s Health Professional Loan Repayment Program is accepting applications from health professionals practicing in rural and underserved areas across New Mexico.



The loan repayment program received $1.6 million in funding during the February legislative session, and the money could help up to 60 health care workers in New Mexico who have accrued student debt getting degrees and certificates, according to a news release. In 2021, the average debt of program participants was $112,000.

The program covers health occupations including dental, medical and mental health fields including doctors, physician assistants, counselors and speech language pathologists. A full list of eligible professions is at hed.state.nm.us.

Loan repayment recipients must “commit to practicing in an area” designated by the health profession advisory committee as a “health professional shortage area” for a minimum of two years. As of

March, 28 out of the state’s 33 counties were designated as shortage areas. Four other counties are considered partial shortage areas.

Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents, New Mexico residents and licensed in the state as of July 1, 2022. Participants must also be working at least 40 hours per week, and preference is given to graduates from New Mexico colleges.

Loan repayment applications close

May 1. More information is available at

hed.nm.us or by contacting New Mexico Financial Aid Division at 1-800-279-9777 or fin.aid@state.nm.us.

The New Mexican

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