Melanie Colgan: Why I Am Running For School Board

Melanie Colgan (Instructor).jpg

Candidate for Los Alamos School Board

My name is Melanie Colgan and I am running for the Los Alamos School Board in the 4th District, which includes Barranca and North Mesas. I have lived in Los Alamos with my husband, James, and our five children, for 16 years. During this time, my family and I have been fortunate to know and work with amazing teachers, coaches, parents, and students. I want to continue to work with these outstanding people and improve our school district and community. 

I have a Bachelors of Science in Nursing (Auburn University) and a Masters of Science in Nursing Education (UNM). I have worked in Alabama, Colorado, and New Mexico as a Critical Care Nurse. Since 2016 I have been the program coordinator and instructor for the UNM Los Alamos Certified Nursing Assistant program. I am also an Assistant Nursing Professor at Northern New Mexico College. I feel my background in nursing and higher education will bring a unique perspective to the school board. As a local college professor, I know what knowledge and skills students need to succeed after they leave the Los Alamos school district. I also understand that not every student may attend a traditional four year university and plan to keep this in mind as I serve on the Board. 

I want to share my time and talents to help improve our excellent school district. For years, I have volunteered in our community. I am a past PTO President at Barranca Elementary School. During my term, I started the tradition of our school’s biggest fundraiser, the Bobcat Bonanza. The funds raised at this annual event benefit students and teachers alike. I firmly believe that our teachers need and should receive as much financial and professional support as possible, so our students can continue to thrive in the classroom. 

I have represented Barranca Elementary School on the Parent District Council. My husband and I actively volunteer in our children’s classrooms. I’m a member of Leadership Los Alamos Class of 2018. I am currently the secretary of the Barranca Mesa Pool Association. Since 2016, I have coached YMCA basketball and Los Alamos Little League Softball. I have served as a Girl Scout troop leader for many years. I am also a long time Sunday School teacher. I feel I really know and understand the issues of so many of our children, parents, and teachers because I have actively worked with them for so long. These issues are my issues too! 

I am running for the Los Alamos School Board because I know and understand many of the challenging issues that face our school district. The realities of a finite LAPS budget have been apparent to me ever since I served on the initial building planning committee of Barranca. As part of that committee, I learned a great deal about budgets and making difficult choices. Each time our building budget took a blow, I attended school board meetings to voice concerns and ensure all available funds were used to maximize the benefit to students, teachers, and staff at Barranca. 

I plan to work to secure support for the upcoming LA school bond. When on the LAPS bond committee in 2017, I worked to garner support for the bond, which passed easily. I hope to work for a similar outcome this Fall. 

I plan to use my professional, volunteer, and life experiences to benefit the Los Alamos School District. As a result of all these experiences, I believe I can represent different groups in the community and ensure that all have a voice in making educational and administrative decisions. As a school board member, I will be a conduit for the concerns and interests of teachers, parents, and students. I humbly ask for your vote in November.