January 25th, 2006



Volume 24, Issue 1

WUIS receives $25,000 donation

By Mallory Medved - Copy Editor

WUIS 91.9 FM, the public radio station of the university, is coming a little bit closer to building its new recording facility, thanks to a gift from two of Springfield’s most prolific philanthropists.

Michelle and Guerry Suggs, longtime fans of public radio, have donated $25,000 to the station for WUIS’s new recording studio, scheduled to open in 2008.

The money will go to an extensive remodeling of the existing building. The radio station will take over the entire building, including office space formerly occupied by the economics department.

Starting within the next couple of months, construction will begin on a new entrance to the studio, with a reception area and space for artwork and displays.

“WUIS is going to be more of a presence on campus,” said Development Director Lisa Clemmons Stott.

Over the next two years, the building will be gutted and then rebuilt, with more offices for WUIS staff and more recording space for shows like “Bluegrass Breakdown,” “Classics with Karl Scroggins” and the award-winning “Illinois Edition.”

The remodeling project is expected to cost $45,000, including a new, 900-square-foot performing arts studio, recording space for up to 12 people and soundproofing throughout.

“It’s cheaper since we’re not building a brand-new facility,” said Stott.

Besides the Suggses, other radio fans in the community have pitched in to help finance the new studio. An anonymous donor gave $5,000. Others give what they can, whether it’s $100 or $1,000. Only $11,000 still needs to be raised for the project to be complete.

“I think of it as a piano; one $1,000 key here, one $1,000 key there, soon we’ll have enough for the whole instrument,” says Stott.

Stott says people are tuning in to WUIS who are fans of classical music, bluegrass, jazz, alternative country and the like, as well as local bands.

“They want good music not found on commercial radio,” she said.

WUIS hopes the new, larger studio will introduce a new generation to college radio. The new recording studio will be large enough to accommodate a studio audience, especially children on field trips.

Students on campus will also benefit from the new recording space. When the remodel is complete, the studio will be available for rent to aspiring student musicians for recording their own music.

Michelle and Guerry Suggs have been WUIS supporters since 1986, according to a press release on the university’s Web site. Guerry became a vice president of Bank of Springfield in 1976. Between the two of them, they have been involved in many local organizations, including the Illinois State Museum, the Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce and the Springfield Urban League. They have three children and five grandchildren.

Since 1975, WUIS has provided news and cultural programming to listeners in Springfield and across western Illinois. More information and a programming line-up can be found at


UIS acquires Fair Trade coffee

By Ashley Rook - General Assignment Reporter

Due to the efforts and commitment of several student organizations, the Fair Trade movement has gained momentum this year. However, the availability of Fair Trade coffee in Capitol Perks is only the start of measures that will make UIS a more socially conscious and environmentally friendly campus.

For the past two years, several UIS students have tried to raise awareness of Fair Trade by setting up information tables, having taste tests of Fair Trade products and collecting signatures from students to show support.  However, the initiative to bring Fair Trade coffee to UIS was officially brought to the attention of SGA by Students Allied for a Greener Earth (SAGE) members Vera Leopold and Mike Mikulski last October and quickly gained campus-wide attention and the support of students, faculty members and student groups such as United Students Against Sweatshops and College Democrats.

SGA played a pivotal part in making Fair Trade coffee a reality by speaking with administrators and drawing up a resolution on Fair Trade coffee. Students urged the administration to evaluate Fair Trade coffee pricing and through meetings with Steve Chrans, assistant vice-chancellor for student affairs, the SGA discovered that bringing the product to campus would be cost-effective for the university. 

By late November, Fair Trade coffee was available at Capitol Perks. The coffee, which is the same price as regular coffee, is purchased from the Bean Counter in Petersburg. 

“We are so excited about this because not only do you help global causes by buying Fair Trade coffee, you’re also supporting local business,” said Vera Leopold.

The overwhelming success of the resolution ensures that coffee will not be the only Fair Trade product offered at UIS.  Fair Trade decaf coffee, due to demand from faculty members, will arrive this semester and the SGA resolution recommends the implementation of a full line of Fair Trade coffee, including espresso and flavored coffee. 

Involved students are also in support of making other Fair Trade products such as bananas, sugar, tea and chocolate available and offering whole-bean coffee for campus offices.

In the resolution, SGA asks the administration to revisit the initiative at the end of the Spring 2006 semester to analyze its profits and losses in order to come up with the best strategic plan for Fair Trade at UIS and then work with the SGA president to make decisions that will benefit students in the area of Fair Trade coffee.

SGA has also formed an Ad-Hoc committee of the SGA that will focus on environmental issues in an attempt to address related issues. Comprised of various UIS students, the committee is eager to hear from the student body on issues of environmental concern.

“SGA supports all initiatives that can realistically benefit the students and we are eager to work towards a more environmentally friendly campus,” said SGA President Samantha Drews.  “SGA advocates for a campus that listens and acts on the concerns of the students and we are pleased to see such an immediate and cooperative response from the division of Student Affairs.”

Stars are 3-0 in conference

By Mark Brockett - Sports Reporter

For the first time in the short lived history of the UIS men’s basketball team, they can say they are the team to beat in their conference.
In what was a crucial week for the team in regards to separating themselves from the pack in the American Midwest Conference, the Stars came out and shined brightly.
In two home contests, the team had an all around solid effort against pesky conference rival Hannibal LaGrange winning 91-70; and went on with that momentum to play a near perfect game against the #12 team in the NAIA, Missouri Baptist, coming out victorious 88-74.
Head Coach Kevin Gamble has great optimism after their win over such a talented opponent in the AMC. “It was a big win since it put us in the driver’s seat in the conference,” said Gamble. “We’re ahead of everybody else now but we know we got a long way to go.”
Against Hannibal, the Stars jumped out to an early lead but saw that lead disintegrate throughout the course of the first half as it was 43-39 at the intermission. But, their pressure defense and the career game from Freshmen Kelvin Johnson, who tallied 31 points, seven rebounds, and six assists, proved to be too much for Hannibal to handle.
Collectively, the team shot 57 percent from the field and 54 percent from the three point line. Individually, the team also had help from their frontcourt starters Curtis Collins and Michael Griffin who both had 15 points. Rick McDonald also had 10 points.
Saturday night brought arguably the biggest test of the season with the Spartans of Missouri Baptist. The Stars jumped out to an early 14-3 lead by pounding the ball inside to Collins and keeping up with the fast paced offense of the Spartans. As the half progressed, Missouri Baptist was able to catch the Stars on the scoreboard and surpass them to take a 40-38 lead behind the team shooting a sizzling 62.5 percent from the field.
The second half saw the Stars tighten up their defense on the perimeter and kept the Spartans offense to one shot possessions by rebounding well, winning that stat category 42-27. They outscored the Spartans 40-24 in the second half and set themselves up to be the team to beat in the AMC.
“Defensively, we made some adjustments coming out into the second half with our pressure defense,” said Gamble. “We also had some guys knock down some big shots and helped us shoot about 60 percent in the second half so that was key too.”
Leading the way was Collins with a game high 28 points and 8 rebounds. Griffin had a double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds. Antonio Puckett also had 16 points in the win.
With these two victories, the Stars improve their season record to 11-8 and 3-0 in the AMC, the only team that has not lost in conference play. The team will play host to another conference foe, Williams Baptist, this Thursday, January 26th. Tip-off for that contest will be at 6pm.




WUIS receives $25,000

UIS acquires Fair Trade coffee

Stars are 3-0 in conference








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