SIU board votes down $5.1M reallocation to Edwardsville campus

April 12, 2018

CARBONDALE, IL — The Southern Illinois University Board of Trustees has decided not to reallocate $5.1 million from the Carbondale campus to the Edwardsville campus.

The decision came Thursday morning during a meeting at the Carbondale campus.

Local 6’s Logan Gay was at the board meeting, and she reports four trustees voted against the reallocation. Three trustees voted yes, and one trustee abstained from the vote.

The board was met with a small group of protesters and dissenting voices from students and faculty during a discussion over the proposal the day before.  The funding change was being considered because SIUE’s enrollment rates have increased, while SIUC’s have decreased.

The reallocation proposal had the support of SIU System President Randy Dunn, but SIUC Chancellor Carlo Montemagno has said the funding shift could threaten the university’s financial stability.

Logan will bring us more about the meeting on Local 6 at Five.

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SIU board votes down $5.1M reallocation to Edwardsville campus

EIU to see big academic shakeup over 2 years

CHARLESTON — Eastern Illinois University will be seeing big changes structurally in the next two years.

Jay Gatrell, vice president for academic affairs, announced to a packed crowd of mostly EIU faculty Monday that there will be a major shift in academic organization.

Based on work done by the university president’s council and vitalization project work groups, EIU is realigning programs and colleges, a move that has not been seen at the university in 25 years.

Gatrell said this is a necessary move to set up a framework for growth in the university and hopefully set the groundwork for new programs to excite new student populations.

“If we are going to create new programs and retain students, we need to have programs and identities that make sense,” Gatrell said. “We need to have structures that support the development of new programs as well as our existing outstanding programs.”

The shift will take place over the next year or two and will result in no faculty losses, EIU officials said. Also, Gatrell said the shift is budget neutral.

EIU’s realignment outcomes will include:

• Creation of a College of Health and Human Services, which will be home to communication disorders and sciences, family and community services, health promotion, kinesiology/recreation administration and military science — as well as the dietetics and RN to bachelor of science in nursing programs.

• Renaming the Lumpkin College of Business and Applied Sciences to the Lumpkin College of Business and Technology, which will include the School of Business, the School of Technology and the hospitality department.

• Combining and renaming the College of Arts and Humanities and the College of Sciences to the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, which will be composed of a new School of Communication and Journalism and a new School of Fine and Performing Arts (music, art and design, and theater), along with the biology, chemistry, economics, geology/geography, English, foreign language, history, mathematics and computer science, philosophy, physics, political science, psychology and sociology/anthropology/criminal justice departments.

• Renaming the College of Education and Professional Studies to the College of Education, which will include the School of Extended Learning (bachelor of general studies program, lifelong learning, and noncredit programming); the Office of Education and Student Services; and the counseling and student development, educational leadership, special education, and the teaching, learning and foundation departments.

• Enhancing the focus for Pine Honors College and the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs to bolster research, study abroad, internships and community engagement.

Gatrell expects several programs to spring up from this move in the next two to five years as the new structure is implemented. 

The fusion of the arts and the sciences into one college raised concerns among the audience members. In the question-and-answer period following the announcement, many were anxious about the merger, claiming that the two distinct fields would not meld together fairly under one college and one central leadership.

Gatrell argued that having a unified voice under one banner for the arts and sciences will be a powerful framework for innovation. He noted that collaboration already takes place among the two groups.

As part of the announcement, Gatrell said there will be national dean searches during the 2018-19 and 2019-20 academic years for the four new main colleges.

“If we don’t do it now, it is probably not going to happen,” he said. “This is a unique time in the history of this institution. There is a lot of energy around these themes, these priorities, and I urge us as a community to be willing to move forward.”

EIU to see big academic shakeup over 2 years

Board learns that CLC is top sustainable college in Illinois, second in Midwest

The College of Lake County is the top environmentally sustainable two-year college in Illinois, second in the Midwest and sixth in the nation, the college’s Board of Trustees learned at its March 27 meeting.

The ratings come from the Philadelphia-based Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education, according to David Husemoller, CLC sustainability manager who presented at the meeting. “Students, faculty and staff play a key role in our sustainability efforts,” he said, noting that a new walking trail, scheduled for completion this summer, will contain signs promoting wellness and the college’s sustainable features, including a geothermal heating and cooling system, solar panels, LED lighting and a campus farm. Additionally, nearly 200 CLC courses contain sustainability-related content.

The AASHE rankings mark the sixth time the college has been recognized or received a sustainability award in the last 18 months. In early March, the college was named a Bee Campus USA by Bee City USA, a North Carolina-based nonprofit. The 2017 awards include a STARS® Silver Award from AASHE, an Emerald Award from the Illinois Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council and a Stormwater Best Practices Award from the Lake County Stormwater Management Commission. In 2016, CLC received a Green Genome Award from the American Association of Community Colleges.

Incoming President Dr. Lori Suddick welcomed

The Board also welcomed incoming President Dr. Lori Suddick, who will begin May 1.She has served since 2009 as vice president of learning and chief academic officer for Northeast Wisconsin Technical College, a Green Bay, Wis.-based, multi-campus college serving about 8,000 students. Dr. Suddick has 18 years of experience working in two-year college leadership and faculty roles.

Collaboration with Waukegan

Following the Board’s February approval to restart the nearly $48 million expansion and renovation of the Lakeshore Campus, Waukegan Mayor Sam Cunningham thanked the board and Interim President Dr. Rich Haney. “I really appreciate what CLC has done for downtown Waukegan,” he said, noting the college’s perseverance amid state budget constraints. “Waukegan says thank you.” Board Chair Richard A. Anderson added, “The college is truly excited to be a part of a major construction project in downtown Waukegan, and we look forward to working with Mayor Cunningham on this and other efforts.”

In a related matter, the board voted to name the Community Center at the Lakeshore Campus in honor of Eleanor Murkey. At the campus, she was associate dean from 1975 to 1998 and dean from 1999 until her retirement in December 2008. Murkey was instrumental in community outreach as well as expanding the campus from a small storefront to its current size. The center will be called the Eleanor Murkey Community Center. “Eleanor has had such a positive impact on our students and CLC,” said Board Secretary Barb Oilschlager, who read the board resolution. Choking back tears, Murkey thanked the board and the college for the recognition and the college’s support in her 33 years at CLC.

Strategic planning

Sean O. Hogan, Ph.D., executive director of CLC’s Office of Institutional Effectiveness, Planning and Research, updated the Board on research findings related to its strategic plan. The effort, known as an environmental scan, includes identifying occupations that have strong job prospects, pay a living wage, and require a post-secondary credential. Through a survey of local employers and by using federal data, Dr. Hogan identified 50 careers with highest growth prospects. Some of these occupations include careers in allied health care, auto mechanics, firefighters, police officers and truck drivers, and information technology. CLC currently offers programs in all of these areas.

North Chicago real-estate development

To help clear the way for construction of a proposed hotel, movie theater and new home for the National Museum of the American Sailor in North Chicago, the board voted to dissolve a tax-increment financing district for a 30-acre parcel of land. In its place is a proposed tax abatement district, which is a greater incentive for the project’s developer, according to North Chicago Mayor Leon Rockingham, who addressed the board.

Lake County Major Crimes Task Force

In other news, the Board approved the College’s further participation in the Lake County Major Crimes Task Force. As a part of the task force, the CLC Police Department has provided units of local government with comprehensive investigative services for major crimes. The College has been active in the task force since 2012, working on more than 50 cases, according to CLC Police Chief Tom Guenther.

Board learns that CLC is top sustainable college in Illinois, second in Midwest

Quincy University hires a firm to help find their next president

Quincy UniversityQuincy University

Quincy University’s Board of Trustees hired a firm to help them find a new president.

Quincy University has retained the services of RH Perry & Associates to conduct the search for the 24th president of the university.

The university’s Presidential Search Committee has begun working with the firm, who will be on campus from March 21st  through the  23rd.

RH Perry’s search team will meet with students, faculty, staff, alumni, Friars and community members to discuss the qualities the Quincy University community is looking for in its next president.

“Our search committee vetted several companies to help in this process. I am confident that RH Perry can help us attract the best possible candidates that will lead the university for years to come,” said Mike McClain, presidential search committee chair.

According to Quincy University, RH Perry & Associates is headquartered in Asheville, North Carolina.

Quincy University hires a firm to help find their next president

NIU signs onto accountability funding bill

DeKALB – Northern Illinois University has signed onto legislation proposed by the University of Illinois System that would guarantee predictable state funding for the universities in exchange for measurable performance standards such as holding down student costs and enrolling Illinois undergraduates.
NIU Acting President Lisa Freeman said the proposed Investment, Performance, and Accountability Commitment (IPAC) is an innovative solution to ongoing financial challenges facing the state and its public universities. The measure would restore stable, dependable state funding for university operations over the next five years and ensure a tangible return by supporting Illinois students and programs that serve the needs of the state.
“This compact between NIU and the state of Illinois is aimed at both restoring financial stability and boosting confidence in the value of an Illinois public university education,” Freeman said.  “We take seriously our responsibility to be good stewards of public funds, and we welcome the opportunity to show, in a regular, transparent reporting system, how those investments are paying off.
“For example,” she said, “NIU has held tuition and fees essentially flat for five consecutive years. Our commitments to affordability and accessibility have benefited the state of Illinois because 95 percent of NIU students come from Illinois, and 85 percent of NIU graduates remain in Illinois to pursue careers or advanced study.”
Tim Killeen, president of the U of I System, said the proposed legislation was developed to ensure student success and academic quality, which have been threatened by more than a decade of state funding declines and a two-year budget impasse.
“I am delighted that NIU has joined us to support this groundbreaking bill, which would provide the resources our universities need to plan their future and fulfill their critical role as engines of progress,” Killeen said. “And, just as importantly, it sets high standards that hold our feet to the fire to repay the state’s investment.”
IPAC was introduced in the General Assembly in November 2016, and the measure would be the first in Illinois history to incorporate public university accountability standards into state statute. Killeen said the proposal is among the most comprehensive higher education compacts of its kind anywhere in the nation.
The U of I System proposed the shift to accountability-based funding and worked with legislators to draft legislation, sponsored by Rep. Michael Zalewski (D-Riverside), Sen. Bill Cunningham (D-Chicago), and a bipartisan coalition of co-sponsors from the U of I Caucus.
If passed, the IPAC legislation would also see the state adopt regulatory reforms to improve efficiency and would create a new state-financed fund to support investments in classroom and research facility improvements that help recruit and retain top faculty.
NIU’s Board of Trustees voted unanimously Thursday to sign onto IPAC, and the university is included in revised legislation that was introduced Thursday – House Bill 5845.
Under the proposal, the state would provide a fiscal year 2019 appropriation of $93 million for NIU. The proposed amount is below historical state appropriation levels, which peaked at $118 million in 2002.
In return, NIU would commit to meet the following performance standards during the five-year agreement, beginning in academic year 2018-19:
• The NIU Board of Trustees would not increase the base rate of in-state undergraduate tuition and mandatory fees by more than the rate of inflation. 
• Half of new freshmen would be from underserved populations, defined as Pell-eligible, first-generation, or graduates of Chicago Public Schools. 
• NIU would provide the equivalent of at least 20 percent of its annual state appropriation in financial aid for Illinois residents.
• NIU would maintain an overall retention rate in undergraduate programs greater than or equal to 75 percent, and at least a 50 percent six-year graduation rate for first-time freshmen in undergraduate programs. 
• NIU would increase accountability to the state by providing an annual report card on key indicators, published and updated on the university website. These indicators include:
• The number of first-time freshmen enrolled.
• The number of new transfer students enrolled.
• The number of minority undergraduate students enrolled.
• The number of undergraduate students enrolled in each college on campus.
• The total undergraduate enrollment.
• The number of undergraduate degrees issued.
• The number of graduate degrees issued.
• The number of law degrees issued.
• The total number of degrees issued.
• The number of science, technology, engineering and mathematics degrees issued.
• The direct appropriation per undergraduate degree.
• The direct appropriation as a percentage of total expenditures.
IPAC would lock in accountability-based standards in those same areas for the U of I System, which enrolled a record 83,000 students last fall across its universities in Chicago, Springfield and Urbana-Champaign. The system is requesting a $681 million appropriation for fiscal year 2019, the first year of the proposed five-year agreement.
“This proposal would provide NIU and the U of I System with much-needed, stable funding from the state legislature,” Cunningham said. “But it would also create accountability. The funding would be tied to performance – and that is the kind of approach that is necessary given the state’s difficult budget situation.”
While IPAC would specify annual funding for the U of I System and NIU during the five years of the agreement, appropriations would have to be approved each year by the legislature and governor. If the state failed to provide the funding specified under IPAC during its annual appropriations process, the universities would not be bound by performance standards for the following year. Likewise, if the universities failed to meet any of the goals, the legislature could revisit the agreement and adjust funding for the following year.
“I was pleased to hear NIU has joined with the University of Illinois System to work toward a stable funding mechanism for higher education,” Zalewski said. “This is an important step in the process of ensuring that each Illinois student has a path toward success by staying in his or her home state. I look forward to working with Senator Cunningham and my colleagues on this revised legislation in the coming months.” 

NIU signs onto accountability funding bill

WIU president outlines future goals

Fueled by innovation and determination, Western Illinois University has advanced its campuses in Macomb and Moline despite “very challenging” financial times the past two years, university president Jack Thomas said Tuesday on the Quad-Cities campus. 

Thomas and other university leaders visited both campuses to provide the first update on the President’s Executive Institute and Western’s strategic plan. The institute was piloted in the fall of 2016 amid the state budget crisis to promote “new ways of thinking at WIU,” he told an audience of nearly 50 faculty and staff and Quad-City business and community leaders. 

He outlined four main goals of the institute: Stabilizing and growing enrollment; Recruiting and retaining a ”world-class, diverse faculty”; Continuing to improve student retention and graduation rates; and advancing the university’s national academic rankings.

According to Thomas, many of the 2017 accomplishments already are addressing those goals. Among the milestones have been providing hybrid educational opportunities such as a new dual-enrollment program at Cambridge High School; expanding partnerships in the community and with area businesses; and other new outreach programs. WIU’s Military Task Force is working to expand education opportunities for students in the military, including active or retired military.   

Joe Rives, Western’s vice president for Quad-Cities and planning, credited the institute with helping the university team identify “new ways in our new fiscal reality of working together with the external community.” He said the effort also supports Q2030, the Quad-Cities Chamber’s regional action plan. 

“A lot has been done already and it shows the strength, determination and grit of our students, faculty and staff,” said Rives, who co-chairs the institute with Becky Paulsen, Western’s director of business engagement and outreach.

Paulsen told the audience that the university also has deepened its relationships with area businesses, which are providing more internships and experiences for students. “Our students are being aggressively recruited,” she said. 

Thomas said Western leaders will testify Thursday before the Illinois Senate and hope to secure “adequate and predictable funding” for the university. “We’re pleased to start the year off with a budget. You can’t imagine how tough it has been the past two years.”

In the fall of 2018, Western students also will be able to complete several new majors all online in the areas of: accountancy, anthropology, economics, general studies, fire protection services, fire science, law enforcement and justice administration, as well as manufacturing. Thomas also announced plans to find more prominent locations for the College of Honors at both campuses.

WIU president outlines future goals

President Dunn and Board of Trustee Chair release statement supporting chancellor’s proposed reorganization

In response to university reorganization proposals, Southern Illinois University President Randy Dunn and Board of Trustees Chair Amy Sholar released a statement Wednesday regarding their position.

In the statement, Dunn and Sholar said that during the search for the chancellor, it was clear that SIU needed a leader who would change the university.

“We want the campus to understand we are supportive of Chancellor Montemagno in this important endeavor as we all desire to see the Carbondale campus find its footings once again in those areas where we were once strong,” the statement said. “Chancellor Montemagno has delivered an academic reorganization plan that would certainly change the way the campus operates as it introduces new ideas into what the future might be for SIUC.”

They acknowledged the debate the proposal has caused and said they “wholeheartedly” support every individual’s and group’s right to comment and provide analysis, data and research when offering their position on the changes the reorganization proposes.

“We are proud of the passion that has been ignited on all sides of the reorganization question because it shows a huge community cares about SIU and wants it to succeed,” the statement said.

Dunn and Sholar said in the end the plan is not a “be all end all” for the university. However, they also said, that any plan is meant to an end– in this case, to increase enrollment, the university’s fiscal health and the university’s service to the community.

The proposal is under its required review by faculty and a final decision has not been made yet.

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President Dunn and Board of Trustee Chair release statement supporting chancellor’s proposed reorganization