UIS Student Affairs Newsletter
Friday, October 22, 2010

A Message from Dr. Tim Barnett

Dr. Tim BarnettA fall enrollment of 5,174 students at UIS--WOW! That is nearly 200 more students than we had last year.

Let’s keep our fingers crossed that such increases will continue. For UIS to become the one of the top five leading liberal arts schools in the country, our enrollment needs to continue upward.

Reasons for our topping 5,000 students, I believe,include more focus on follow-ups with potential students, and international students being given the opportunity to register for classes earlier. In addition, financial aid packets are getting out to students earlier, and student worker positions are being offered earlier. Articulation agreements with several community colleges have also helped in increased transfer enrollment, and there are concerted efforts to increase those articulation agreements in Illinois and overseas. It is critical that our student population be diverse and the academic programs meet the demands and needs of the students and the community. It means our services and programs continue to place “STUDENTS FIRST.”

UIS has made significant steps to increase enrollment numbers and more importantly, in the retention of students. UIS has gone from a 67% retention rate in 2007 to 76.4% in fall 2010. Just as important is our transfer student retention. Currently UIS has a 54% retention rate for transfer students. Our hope is to eventually take this number above 60%. Our retention rate is the result of numerous efforts provided throughout the campus, starting with new student orientation, tutoring programs, the UNI 101 courses, living learning communities, various student activities, and many other services and programs provided.

One last note on enrollment and retention efforts focuses on on-line programs and classes. Although not a part of Student Affairs, the on-line programs continue to grow because of the hard work of Ray Schroeder and the on-line coordinators. They continue to bring in significant numbers of new students, transfer and graduate students and work closely with current students to retain them. Without their efforts, our numbers would not be where they are today.

Our hope is that our recruiting efforts are more targeted, and the programs and services at UIS continue improving and focusing on students. We will continue to see increases in both our new students and in our retention numbers. Thanks to the Division of Student Affairs and the UIS community for your hard work!!

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Featured Story

Q&A with Interim Chancellor Harry Berman on the 40th anniversary of UIS

Q: What do you think has been the most significant change for UIS since 1970?

A: In 1970, this university was founded as Sangamon State University. I think the most significant change occurred in 1995, when SSU became the third campus of the University of Illinois. As the third campus, we offered something to students wanting to attend the University of Illinois that was not available at the other two campuses, namely the atmosphere of a liberal arts college, with small classes taught largely by full-time faculty. We benefitted by becoming part of a major national university, whose name was immediately recognizable around the world. The merger with the University of Illinois helped us recruit both faculty and students.

While the change from SSU to UIS was enormously important, it’s good to remember in this 40th anniversary year that much of the SSU legacy continues. We see this particularly in UIS’ commitment to provide access to education to adult and placebound learners. In the early days, we provided this access with evening and weekend classes, as well as radio, TV, and cassette (remember those?) courses. Now we achieve the same goal through our online degree programs, providing access to students throughout Illinois and the country. Twenty-five percent of UIS’ majors are in online degree programs. Most of them do not live within commuting distance of UIS.

Q: What do you see for the future of UIS?

A: UIS will continue to grow. We think it’s reasonable to plan for 5,500 students in Fall 2014. We will probably grow beyond that in the years that follow, but UIS’ niche and strength is to remain a relatively small public university. In the world of public higher education, any public university with fewer than 10,000 students would be considered a small public university.

We will become more global. I predict that the biggest difference between the UIS of today and the UIS of five years from now will be the number and geographic diversity of our international students.

We will continue to add new facilities. Remodeling of the Brookens Library building continues to be our top capital priority. We want the library to be the intellectual center of the campus. To house our residential students we will need to add a new residence hall, as well as new housing. Our faculty offices are full to the brim. We are going to need a new academic building with classrooms, faculty offices, and a medium-sized auditorium that can accommodate audiences of 300-500 people.

Q: Please briefly describe a highlight from your time here.

A: I have been fortunate to be involved in many, many wonderful events – the investitures of our endowed professors, lectures by brilliant scholars and public figures, amazing performances at the Sangamon Auditorium.

However, I want to single out one highlight that was not a big public event, but was very important to me. It was when I learned that UIS had been accepted into the Council of Public Liberal Arts Colleges (COPLAC) in June 2009. I had thought about the idea of UIS becoming a member of COPLAC in the late 1990s, but the time was not right to move forward. In the mid-2000s when we were working on strategic planning, it seemed the time was right to raise the idea again. After lots of discussion within in the campus and with COPLAC representatives we decided to apply for membership. We were formally admitted to membership in June 2009. We can now say that we are THE public liberal arts university in Illinois, one of only 25 public universities across the country that are members of that organization.

Visit the 40 Years website to see more.

View photos and videos from UIS' Homecoming Week.


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Stellar Student Service Tips

Lynne Price: Her First 40 Years at UIS

What person in Student Affairs has worked at UIS the longest? If you guessed Lynne Price you are right! Lynne came to UIS (then SSU) in September of 1970 when there were three buildings on campus, Cox House, the Student Center building and the Student Affairs building and lots of mud and dirt.

Lynne received her Associate Degree in Nursing Science from Belleville Area College (now S.W.I.C.), her Bachelor of Science Nursing Degree from Sangamon State University (yes, there was a R.N to B.S.N. program here), and her M.S. as a Nurse Practitioner from SIU-E. She also was a member of the U.S. Navy Reserves in the Nursing Corps for five years. She has two daughters and one grandson.

  • In the early years of SSU/UIS:
  • There were no parking fees
  • There were no dorms
  • There was one international student who was from Jordan. While he was here family members were killed in the Jordanian War and so he received support from his campus family
  • Lynne’s office was downtown in the Myer’s Building for the first two weeks of her job.
  • Classes were held downtown in the Methodist Church and other buildings during those weeks.
  • One of Lynne’s first duties was cutting out articles about SSU, Xeroxing them and collating them.
  • Students and faculty could smoke in classes and used the #10 vegetable cans as ashtrays.
  • Health Services is now located where the President Bob Spencer’s office was so they are now in ‘presidential suites.’
  • Health Services has been under a number of different bosses. While they are now a part of Student Affairs at one point there were part of Business and Administration
    Blood drives started on campus in 1972, flu vaccines started in 1971-72, and the health fairs began in the late 1970’s.
  • Lynne has seen changes in many areas since she has been here and she said some of the biggest changes are that students have began to be more aware of their health and of living health, SSU becoming part of the UI system, international students on campus, coming of computers, and seeing people in Student Affairs working with people in academic affairs and combining talents for the benefit of the students.

Lynne has had challenges over the years. She said one of them includes students researching what they thought was wrong with them and coming to her with all the evidence. In the early years they used the library to do this but now with the internet they have even more information to bring her.

When asked about her legacy, Lynne thought it was way too early to think about that but she did say she hoped that students and employees on campus view health services as a good place to come, a professional place where they can get good information about health and healthcare. One of her most important goals has always been to have standards for health care and to work with the students and support them. And, if anyone remembers anything about what she has done she hopes that it is that the student is important and it is our job to listen to them and help them through school.

In summing up Lynne’s 40 year gig at SSU/UIS she said, “I work with the best people in the world and I can’t think of any place else I would rather work or any other people I would rather work with. People always have something to teach you if you take the time to listen.”

All of us have been touched at some time by Lynne whether it was through a flu shot, some good information on health, a health quiz to try our luck at, or just being with her at a meeting. Congratulations on the first forty, Lynne, and we hope you are here for many more years!

Article from WICS about Lynne Price.

Top Five Longest-Serving Employees at UIS/SSU:
Lynne Price:  9/28/70
Barbara Ferrara:  5/1/76
Linda McCaffrey:  5/3/76
Harry Berman:  8/16/77
Candy Powers:  2/20/78

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Connecting for Success: 40th Anniversary Celebrations Connects Students and Community

On Monday, October 25, the UIS Career Development Center, in honor of the 40th anniversary of UIS, is hosing Connecting for Success. The event is designed to keep alumni and local business partners connected to UIS and its students. During the event students will learn how to begin building their career network, giving them access to business partners and alumni with real world experience and valuable career knowledge and connections. Alumni, recent graduates, and business partners will also have the opportunity to share their thoughts and recollections of their SSU/UIS connections and experiences. Their interviews will be filmed and recorded in the UIS TV studio. All UIS students, faculty, staff, alumni and community members are welcome to attend. Registration is encouraged. To learn more about the event and to register, visit www.uis.edu/careerservices/events/40th.html.

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A thank-you to Amanda Jillson

Amanda Jillson, Rec Sports assistant director and a member of the Student Affairs Newsletter Committee, stepped down from her work at UIS earlier this month in order to pursue a nursing degree.

Her work with the Student Affairs Newsletter was greatly appreciated. The Committee asked JT Timmons, Rec Sports director, to reflect on Amanda’s full-time position at UIS and the services she provided the campus:

Integrity and a genuine concern for the individual student and the University at large characterized Amanda Jillson’s time with Recreational Sports. For countless students over the last three years, she embodied UIS and all it means to be a Prairie Star. She continually encouraged and supported students in their academic and extracurricular experiences as they developed into young adults. Amanda taught student and campus leaders to be responsible, caring people who gave of their time, talents, and resources. By going beyond their daily responsibilities and expectations, she challenged students to use their words and actions to positively impact their personal relationships, neighborhoods, churches, and communities.

Amanda’s contributions to UIS and the Department of Recreational Sports are many and certainly will be visible for some time. She facilitated successful wellness initiatives and crafted the personal training program. She and her staff of volunteers pioneered a new UIS tradition, the Homecoming 5K Walk/Run.

On behalf of the entire Recreational Sports Team “Thank you Amanda, and good luck! You will be missed”

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Amanda Jillson says bye and thanks.

Throughout the last three years of working in the Division of Student Affairs I’ve learned…

From orientation to graduation, Student Affairs plays a major role in supporting its students.

Each department that make us a division provides students opportunities to encourage personal growth and success; with each year we are getting better and better. With the guidance of a new Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, we as a division have been encouraged to do more collaboration, programming and assessment with the intention to always put students first.

Collaboration is not something that happens over night. We have to work together to accomplish goals within our division. We are on the right track.

I have also learned what a great department I work for. Not to be biased but I believe that Rec Sports is the best department to work in within Student Affairs. We as a department work well together, and I am blessed to have had the opportunity to work here. I will miss my Rec Sports Team and miss JT Timmons’ “Timmonisms,” which are one-line points of guidance, if you will. Examples of Timmonisms: It is what it is. Deal with the absolutes. How much is a lot?

Thank you for the opportunity to grow as a professional and assist with putting students first.

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Careers Exposed: UIS Students Attend First Career Immersion
By Craig Pelka

On Thursday September 30th, a group of nine UIS students traveled to the Illinois Office of the Auditor General with the Career Development Center for its first Career Immersion. A Career Immersion was designed as an opportunity for students to receive a behind-the-scenes experience. While on site, students engage in networking with professionals and gather valuable career information from the source. Students met with Jim Dahlquist who is the Senior Manager of Training and Recruitment, current Graduate Public Service Internship (GPSI) Interns completing their internship in the office, and Directors of each of the three divisions; Financial/Compliance, Performance, and Information Systems. Of her experience, Prem Chandra, UIS Accounting Graduate Student, said “It was an amazing experience! I think we all came back saying ‘wow!’” The Auditor General himself, William Holland, spoke with students about his own career path and explained how students can get their “foot in the door.” Students were exposed to a wealth of information on the Office of the Auditor General including organizational structure, divisions of the office, and what new auditors actually do. Dahlquist stated that working as an auditor with the Office of the Auditor General provides many career benefits, including professional challenges, opportunity for advancement, generous employee benefits, and a chance to maintain a healthy work-life balance. Dahlquist also drove home the importance of networking as the best way to find career opportunities and told students to “network like it’s nobody’s business!” Dahlquist encouraged students to get to know their career center!

Students will be happy to hear that accounting majors are not the only ones who can be auditors! The Office of the Auditor General also encourages Public Administration, Business Administration, Political Science, and other majors to apply! The Illinois Office of the Auditor General currently has openings for auditors in both the Financial/Compliance and Performance divisions. For those interested in applying with the Office of the Auditor General, don’t worry about dealing with traditional application procedures typical of Illinois government… applicants can apply directly through the Career Development Center’s UIS CareerConnect system from their homepage at www.uis.edu/careerservices.

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Coming Out Day on the Quad
Photos by Renee Rathjen




Looking Forward - Upcoming Events

Tell Us Your Story
Monday, October 25,
5:30 pm - 8:00 pm
Sangamon Auditorium Lobby

40th Anniversary Celebration
Monday, October 25, 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Sangamon Auditorium Lobby

Red Ribbon Week
Tuesday, October 26, 11:00 am - 2:00 pm
PAC Concourse

Web Services - Brown Bag Session
Tuesday, November 2, 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

Healthy Eating Workshop followed by Luncheon
Speaker: Tracy Onal
Wednesday, November 10, 11:00 am - 1:00 pm

Civil Service Appreciation Day
Friday, November 12, 7:30 pm
Sangamon Auditorium

Holiday Party Planning & Decorating Committee
Tuesday, November 16, 10:00 am - 11:00 am

Thanksgiving Holiday Recess
November 22 - November 26

Employee Holiday Party
Friday, December 17, 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm
PAC Auditorium Lobby

If you have events you want included on the calendar for the next newsletter, email Debbie Landis, Kristen Chenoweth, Gwen Cribbett, Rachel Hasenyager, Kim Rutherford, Jeremy Wilburn, or Suzanne Woods

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News Briefs

October is National Careers in Student Affairs Month (CSAM)

NASPA has recently launched a section of their website that serves as a resource for both students and administrators to increase awareness and appreciation for the field of student affairs


Housing improvements planned for campus

Remodeling of apartments in Larkspur 220 Building is scheduled to start this fall.

Among other things, Housing Director John Ringle reports work on the eight apartments will include replacement of all kitchen cabinetry and appliances, the addition of dishwashers and garbage disposals, new flooring and carpeting, and new paint with a color accent wall in the living room.

In addition, more energy-efficient upgrades are planned, and wooden stairways, railings and deck walkways will be replaced with composite weather-resistant versions.

Over the course of the next one to two years, the oldest residential apartments -- courts constructed on the east side of campus, including Larkspur in 1992; Bluebell in 1990; Clover and Sunflower in 1980--will be completely remodeled and renovated in structured phases in a fashion very similar to the Phase One Larkspur project, John said.

“This encompasses 108 apartments housing approximately 325 students in both single and family housing.  We expect to achieve economies of scale in renovation costs with the larger project that are unachievable with the smaller project,” John said.

Clover Court Buildings 100 and 200 were largely remodeled in summer 2004. The work involved the removal of decks and stairways, and the units converted to townhouse-style renovated units.


Webinar Wednesdays: Preparing Students for Successful Career Launches

Preparing to launch a career is an exciting yet confusing time for anyone. For the months of October, November, and December, the Career Development Center (CDC) is hosting a free webinar series that will help our students navigate this process. Each Wednesday Webinar will showcase a different skill that will help students find jobs, internships, and other career opportunities. Topics will include social media, networking, resume writing, professionalism, and cracking into the hidden job market. Webinars are presented by 9 different career experts and authors.

The CDC has partnered with Talent Marks to provide the campus with these free webinars. Join the CDC in SAB 50 each Wednesday, from 2-3pm. All students, faculty, and staff are welcome to attend. For a full list of dates and topics, visit our website.

Staff Spotlight

Kerry Poynter, UIS director of the LGBTQ Resource Office

Kerry has a dozen years of experience working with LGBTQA students in higher education, including positions at Duke University, Columbia University, and New York University. He began his career in the Midwest at Western Michigan University, where he coordinated the LGBT Office as a graduate student and received his M.A. in Administration of College Student Affairs in Counselor Education & Counseling Psychology.

Among his experiences, he has conducted numerous trainings on LGBTQ and allied issues with faculty, staff, and students; assessed campus climates and services for LGBTQ people in fraternity/sorority life, residence life, health services, and human resources, empowered students through peer education; and has lead advocacy efforts for more inclusive policies for transgender students. His research and writing interests include the development of heterosexual allies of LGBTQ people and the use of technology in multicultural education and LGBTQ people of multiple cultural identities.

Kerry says he loves Sci Fi, including anything Star Wars, and describes himself as “ a bit of a tech geek.” Check out his free electronic music DJ mixes on iTunes or Zune.

What roles/responsibilities does an LGBTQ Resource Office have on a campus?

A: I think that like many of us in Student Affairs we do not always know what to expect from day to day. It is what keeps this job interesting. There are multiple roles and responsibilities in an LGBTQ Center/Office that require you to be quick on your feet or wearing a different hat from one hour to the next. At one point you are a mentor to LGBTQ students needing a positive role model, a counselor to a student needing to talk about their day to day activities when they walk in the door, an educator leading a class discussion or conducting a training, an advocate communicating policy change or on the behalf of someone being harassed, an advisor helping groups of students organize an event or run an effective meeting, or working with a colleague at another school to give back to this new profession in Student Affairs by sharing our experiences and practices in publication and conferences. In short, there is a supportive, educational, advocacy, and safe space function to this job that is accomplished in a myriad of ways.

Q: Approximately what percentage of college students in the U.S. identify with being LGBTQ?

A: This is always a challenging question to answer. As we know, most schools do not include a check box in the demographic category during the application process that would track numbers. However, I am an advocate for asking prospective students to voluntarily indicate their sexual orientation and gender identity somewhere in the application process. This is not for any preferential admission standard but would allow the university to be able to target resources to these students and explain life on campus for LGBTQ people. Many students are more often considering how gay friendly a school is while they make a decision about which to attend.

Another issue is that so often any survey or study to document percentages of the population are often flawed by relying solely on individuals identify with labels such as “gay, lesbian, bisexual, or homosexual. These labels may offend some students that do not identify with a community of people that these labels will seem to define for them. Additionally, these labels may seem too explicit for their stage of sexual awareness. I am reminded of the annual residence life survey at UCLA that was required of all students. UCLA began to also include a question about sexual attraction to men, women, or both. What they found was their response rate for non-heterosexual students jumped from 4% to 8.3%.

Q: What is the LGBTQ Resource Office’s phone number? E-mail address?

A: The office or Kerry can be contacted in a number of ways:
Phone: 217-206-8316
Email: lgbtq@uis.edu
AIM Chat: “lgbtqdirector” during business hours
Kerry is usually available on the office Facebook page to chat as well: “lgbtq resources at UIS”


Debra Landis to speak at national conference

Debra Landis, UIS Student Publications adviser, will be among workshop presenters at the annual College Media Advisers conference next week in Louisville, Ky.

She’ll speak on marketing and promotions of student newspapers as well as what today’s student journalists can learn from 19th and 20th century journalism greats Nellie Bly, Joseph Pulitzer and Katharine Graham. Bly and Pulitzer worked for the New York World and collaborated on several projects, including Bly going undercover to expose horrendous conditions at a New York City insane asylum and a round-the-world trip Bly took and which she reported on for the New York World. Graham’s tenure as publisher of the Washington Post included the Watergate years.

An article Debra wrote about Bly is scheduled for a winter edition of College Media Review, a publication of the College Media Advisers organization.


Lori Pinney is Shining Star

Admissions and Records Office Support Specialist Lori Pinney was presented with the “Shining Star” traveling trophy for August on Sept. 8 for her dedicated service as the Admissions and Records receptionist.

Anyone who has been to the Admissions and Records office knows Lori is the first smiling face most of our new students and applicants see when they and their families enter the building, helping to ease the nerves of many new students.

Jamie McGill, who nominated Lori for the award, says, “Lori is one of the most upbeat, positive people I have ever met. She is the first voice/face that new “customers” come in contact with, and I believe she represents UIS extremely well. Even in the face of hardship in her own life, she has a smile for everyone, including co-workers. She is thoughtful of everyone, and goes way over and above in every aspect of her job, and with her friends and fellow employees.


Lori Giordano is October EOM

Interim Director of Admissions Lori Giordano was completely caught off guard when her friends and co-workers surprised her with the news.

Giordano was recognized as October 2010 Employee of the Month during a ceremony on October 15, 2010 in University Hall.

“This is very much a surprise and of course I couldn’t do it without everyone here. They know I love them all,” said Giordano.

Read More about Lori >>


Gale Kilbury is September EOM

Career Counselor Gale Kilbury thought she was on her way to a meeting when co-workers, friends and family ambushed her with the news she’d been named Employee of the Month for September 2010.

Kilbury had pen and paper in hand, ready for her meeting, when she walked into Conference Room G in the Public Affairs Center. A celebration was held in her honor featuring cake and other sweet treats.

“It’s a great job. I love it,” said Kilbury.

Read More about Gale >>

Click here to nominate someone for Employee of the Month.

Cause For Celebration

Rick and Toni Lane, Oct. 15


3th - Lori Pinney
4th - Lori Atkinson
8th - Raymond Barnett
21th - Brian Clevenger
28th - Kim Rutherford

8th - Chrisa Potthast-Leezer
10th - Amanda Bly
12th - Gwen Cribbett
13th - Sherri Richardson
19th - Denny Frueh
27th - Lynn Otterson
29th - Kathy Jensen

If you have a special date coming up, email Suzie Woods so we can get you added!


Student Affairs website: