Thursday, February 25, 2010

UIS men prove they can compete

The men's basketball team has carried the banner for the University of Illinois Springfield in its first year in the Great Lakes Valley Conference and NCAA Division II.

While other UIS teams have struggled to get wins, Prairie Stars coach Kevin Gamble and his squad posted a respectable season after making the move from the lesser National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics.

The article was featured in a February 25, 2010, edition of the State Journal-Register.

Download a pdf of the article:

Labels: , ,

Political litmus test: Democratic states spilling most red ink

The five states in the worst financial condition - Illinois, New York, Connecticut, California, and New Jersey - are all among the bluest of blue states.

UIS' Kent Redfield was interviewed for a February 25, 2010, article in Forbes.

Download a pdf of the article:

Forbes%20-%20Political%20litmus%20test.pdf

Labels: , ,

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

UIS, civil service workers reach tentative agreement on furloughs

The University of Illinois Springfield has reached tentative agreement on unpaid leaves of absence with five of seven bargaining units representing campus civil service employees.

Most University of Illinois academic employees, including more than 460 at UIS, were ordered to take furlough days this spring as part of the university's response to a growing backlog of unpaid state appropriations to the U of I.

The article was featured in a February 24, 2010 edition of the State Journal-Register.

Download a pdf of the article:

UIS%2C%20civil%20service%20and%20furloughs.pdf

Labels: , ,

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

SMTD moves ahead with bus route overhaul

Life could be getting a little easier for University of Illinois Springfield students who don't have cars.

The Springfield Mass Transit District Board on Monday adopted an overhaul of the city's bus routes that includes a new route that runs directly from UIS and Lincoln Land Community College to the Wal-Mart on South Sixth Street.

Steven Black, a UIS student who is chair of a new group called Citizens for Accessible Safe Transportation, was interviewed for the article that was featured in the February 23, 2010, edition of the State Journal-Register.

Download a pdf of the article:

SMTD%20moves%20ahead.pdf

Labels: , ,

Health-care industry drives local job market

The health-care industry has been doing its best for months to boost the Springfield area's job prospects.

About 400 students and non-students attended the 12th annual Collegiate Career Fair last week on the campus of the University of Illinois Springfield. The fair gave them the opportunity to talk with nearly 100 prospective employers.

Rachel Hasenyager of the UIS Career Development Center was interviewed in the article that was featured in the February 23, 2010, edition of the State Journal-Register.

Download a pdf of the article:

Health-care%20Industry%20drives%20local%20job%20market.pdf

Labels: ,

Monday, February 22, 2010

SMTD board to consider route changes

The Springfield Mass Transit is poised to make some of the biggest changes in its bus routes since the district was formed more than four decades ago.

One new route, for example, goes to the Walmart on South Sixth Street, which currently is not served by an SMTD route. The same route includes the University of Illinois Springfield and Lincoln Land Community College.

The article was published in a February 22, 2010, edition of the State Journal-Register.

Download a pdf of the article:
SMTD%20board%20to%20consider%20route%20changes.pdf

Labels: , ,

Friday, February 19, 2010

UIS Prairie Stars hold off Lewis in Men's basketball

The University of Illinois Springfield Prairie Stars built a 17-point lead in the second half and held off a late rally to defeat the Lewis Flyers 75-74 in a Great Lakes Valley Conference men's basketball game Thursday.

The UIS victory over Lewis was reported in a February 19, 2010 edition of the State Journal-Register.

Download a pdf of the article:
UIS%20Prairie%20Stars%20hold%20off%20Lewis.pdf

Labels: , ,

Thursday, February 18, 2010

'Curious' collection: Springfield artist goes own way in UIS exhibit

One week before she is to open a solo exhibition at the University of Illinois Springfield, Felicia Olin is sitting in the living room of her Springfield home, surrounded by her work.

Some paintings are stacked against the fireplace mantel. Others are lined up beneath the television in the corner. More are on the landing of the stairs.

Liz Murphy Thomas, the director of the visual arts gallery and an assistant professor of art and digital media at UIS, said she tries to program a diverse array of exhibits each academic year at the gallery. That diversity includes local and national artists and both two- and three-dimensional work.

The article was published in a February 18, 2010, edition of the State Journal-Register.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100218-SJR-Curious-collection-UIS-exhibit.pdf

Labels: , , ,

Shimkus challenges climate-change research

The event was a rah-rah session for Sangamon County Republicans, but U.S. Rep. JOHN SHIMKUS, R-Collinsville, couldn’t let his time in front of a microphone pass without making clear his disdain for those who are sounding the climate-change alarm.

DENNIS RUEZ JR. is assistant professor and chair of the Department of Environmental Studies at the University of Illinois Springfield.

“Most people do not understand the difference between climate and weather,” he said. “Ice fishing in Illinois does not necessarily mean cooling climate; similarly, a hot summer does not necessarily mean warming climate. Additionally, southern Illinois ponds can’t be used as a climate proxy for the entire planet.

Reuz's comments were featured in a February 18, 2010, Bernard Schoenburg column in the State Journal-Register.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100218-SJR-Bernard-Schoenburg-Shimkus.pdf

Labels: , ,

No more private sessions, Senate president vows

After criticism from open-government advocates, Senate President John Cullerton pledged to avoid convening the Senate in private again as he did Wednesday to hear a budget briefing from a nationwide legislative association.

One longtime legislative expert said he'd never seen a similar instance of barring public access in four decades of watching the Senate.

"When it's a briefing about fiscal matters, I don't think there's a valid reason that it shouldn't be open," said Charles N. Wheeler III, director of the University of Illinois at Springfield's Public Affairs Reporting program and a former Sun-Times Statehouse bureau chief.

Wheeler's comments were featured in a February 18, 2010, edition of the Chicago Sun-Times.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100218-SunTimes-No-more-private-sessions.pdf

Labels: , ,

Illinois-Springfield professor will address changing view of Lincoln

What turned out to be a mistaken assumption by a college professor back in 1984 led to revealing new information about Abraham Lincoln.

"I assumed everything that was important that Lincoln ever said or was said about him or his administration had long since been discovered by an army of Lincoln scholars and I could do my research by just consulting these published sources," said Michael Burlingame, who holds the Chancellor Naomi B. Lynn Distinguished Chair in Lincoln Studies at the University of Illinois at Springfield.

Conclusions drawn from resources, particularly about former slave and abolitionist Frederick Douglass and Lincoln, will be highlighted Monday in Pittsfield. Burlingame will be the featured speaker at a Lincoln symposium sponsored by the Abe Lincoln Project of Pike County and the Pittsfield Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission.

Burlingame's appearance was featured in a February 16, 2010, article in the Quincy Herald Whig.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100216-QHW-Lincoln-symposium.pdf

Labels: , , ,

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

UIS happy to host league tourneys

The University of Illinois Springfield is ineligible to compete in postseason play, but that isn’t keeping the school from hosting the Great Lakes Valley Conference men’s and women’s basketball tournaments March 6-7 at The Recreation and Athletic Center.

The university, which cannot compete because of its move this season to NCAA Division II from the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics’ American Midwest Conference, is eager to host the GLVC Final Four. This is only the second neutral site for the tournament.

“We think it will be great to bring those student-athletes as well as fans from Kansas City to Louisville, Ky., to Cincinnati, Indianapolis and possibly Milwaukee, Wis., to Springfield to see what we really have here at UIS,” UIS athletic director Rodger Jehlicka said.

The story was featured in a February 16, 2010, article in the State Journal-Register.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100215-SJR-UIS-happy-to-host-league.pdf

Labels: , ,

Burlingame picks Presidents Day reading list

Books about Abraham Lincoln by Knox College scholars occupy two of the top five spots in a “Presidents Day Reading List” in The Wall Street Journal.

The books were selected by historian and Lincoln biographer Michael Burlingame for a “Presidents Day Reading List — Best Five Books on Abraham Lincoln,” published Saturday in “The Wall Street Journal.” Lincoln’s birthday was Feb. 12, and Presidents Day was Monday.

Burlingame is professor of history at the University of Illinois-Springfield and author of a new biography, “Abraham Lincoln: A Life,” which recently won the 2010 Abraham Lincoln Prize. The prize, which includes the largest award in the field of history, is given annually for the best book on Lincoln and Lincoln’s era.

Burlingame's selections were featured in a February 16, 2010, article in the Galesburg Register-Mail.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100215-GRM-Knox-College-scholars.pdf

Labels: , ,

Legislators offer ideas to improve election process

Fresh off an election with seemingly little voter interest, state lawmakers are pushing several proposals to increase voter participation and make for a smoother election process.

Matt Van Vossen, president of the Student Government Association at the University of Illinois at Springfield, supports the measures. He said many students choose not to vote because they cannot reach the polling place in time.

“If early voting were to be made available on campuses, student voter turnout would increase,” Van Vossen said.

UIS spokesman Derek Schnapp said students who live on campus can vote at nearby Lincoln Land Community College. He said the school’s student government group offers carpools for students who need rides to polling places.

The article was featured in a February 14, 2010, article in the State Journal-Register.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100214-Legislators-offer-ideas.pdf

Labels: , ,

Monday, February 15, 2010

Burlingame wins 2010 Lincoln Prize

Michael Burlingame of the University of Illinois Springfield has won the 2010 Lincoln prize for his book, "Abraham Lincoln: A Life," published last year by John Hopkins University Press.

Burlingame, installed Thursday as holder of the Naomi Lynn Distinguished Chair of Lincoln Studies at UIS, will receive $50,000 and a replica of "Lincoln the Man," a bust by Augustus Saint-Gaudens. The prize, sponsored by Gettysburg College and the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, will be awarded April 27 at the Union League in New York.

The feature on Burilngame was in the February 13, 2010, article in the Chicago Tribune and the State Journal-Register.

Download a pdf of the article.

Burlingame%20wins%202010%20Lincoln%20Prize.pdf

Labels: , , ,

UIS men upset Quincy

The University of Illinois Springfield Prairie Stars, playing without leading scorer and rebounder Richard Oruche, beat a nationally ranked NCAA Division II opponent for the first time with a 69-64 victory over the No. 18 Quincy Hawks on Saturday at The Recreation and Athletic Center.

The UIS victory over Quincy was reported in a February 14, 2010, article of the State Journal-Register.

Download a pdf of the article:

UIS%20upsets%20Quincy.pdf

Labels: , ,

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Burlingame to be invested as new Lincoln Chair

While continuing his own original research on Abraham Lincoln, Michael Burlingame, the new holder of the Naomi B. Lynn Distinguished Chair in Lincoln Studies at the University of Illinois Springfield, said he expects his students to do the same.

Burlingame will be invested as the new Lincoln Chair in a ceremony at the Old State Capitol on Thursday evening, February 11.

Burlingame and his work were featured in a February 11, 2010, article in the State Journal-Register.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100211-SJR-Burlingame.pdf

Labels: , ,

Blagojevich wants all phone tapes played for jury

When his corruption trial begins in June, Rod Blagojevich, the former governor of Illinois,
wants jurors to be allowed to hear all of the audio recordings — some 500 hours’ worth — that federal authorities secretly made of his telephone conversations.

That prospect, political analysts say, was likely to cause queasiness for Illinois politicians, some of whom are thought to be heard on those audio recordings and might have hoped their comments would never become public.

Any association with Blagojevich could cast a candidate as part of the “corrupt Democratic machine,” said Kent Redfield, a professor emeritus of political science at UIS.

Redfield's comments on the subject were featured in a February 11, 2010, article in the New York Times.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100211-NYTimes-Blagotapes.pdf

Labels: , ,

UIS is early adopter of Google Wave for online learning

When a preview version of Google Wave became available last September, some higher ed users dove right in to try the real-time collaboration tool. The University of Illinois Springfield’s Center for Online Learning, Research and Service (COLRS) is an early adopter.

Last semester, students taking “Internet in American Life” built a wave with peers at the Institute of Technology Sligo (Ireland). Ray Schroeder, director of COLRS and a co-teacher of the course, hopes to create a matrix where faculty can post their interest in creating a wave with people at other institutions.

UIS' use of Google Wave for online learning and teaching was mentioned in a February 2010 article in University Business.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100211-UBusiness-googlewave.pdf

Labels: , , , ,

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Controversy surrounds Cohen's withdrawal from lt. governor race

The controversy surrounding Scott Lee Cohen's nomination and subsequent withdrawal from the race for Illinois lieutenant governor has renewed the debate over whether the position is needed at all.

Kent Redfield, a professor emeritus of political science at UIS, said changing the way the nominee is selected is the ideal way to prevent a Cohen-like scenario from unfolding again.

Under current law, lieutenant governor nominees are selected independently of the candidate for governor, yet they run on a joint ticket in the general election. Running as a team in the primary election, Redfield said, would prevent it from being "just luck if the two
know each other and get along."

Redfield's comments were featured in a February 9, 2010, article in the Daily Herald.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100209-DailyHerald-Cohen.pdf

Labels: , ,

Monday, February 8, 2010

Electic list of winners partly due to low voter turnout

The list of victors from the Illinois primary election is electic. With such a hodgepodge of candidates moving into the general election, some say the most revealing mentality of the electorate may belong to the voters who didn't show at the polls.

Illinois political historian Charles N. Wheeler III, a professor at UIS, said the low turnout was ironic considering the disgust many Illinoisans directed at officeholders following Blagojevich's arrest in late 2008.

Wheeler's comments were featured in a February 7, 2010, article in the Daily Herald.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100207-DailyHerald-voterpicks.pdf

Labels: , ,

Brady already planning campaign against Quinn

Although the outcome of the Republican race for governor remains in flux, state Sen. Bill Brady headed out on the campaign trail Friday.

For now, Brady and Kirk Dillard are waiting for final ballots to roll in from absentee and provisional voters. If an official count in March shows the two still neck and neck, a recount process could be launched, forcing an even longer delay in determining who will represent the GOP in November, but that's not stopping Brady from plotting his run against Gov. Pat Quinn.

Chris Mooney, a professor of political science at UIS, said Brady is trying to define himself before Quinn gets a chance.

Mooney's comments were featured in a February 6, 2010, article in the Herald & Review.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100206-H%26R-Brady.pdf

Labels: , ,

Thursday, February 4, 2010

UIS sees record enrollment for spring semester

The University of Illinois Springfield has set a record for spring enrollment, following on the strength of a record-setting enrollment last fall.

The university said Wednesday that 4,862 students are enrolled this spring, an increase of 327 over last spring. Spring 2010 enrollment topped a record set in spring 2007, when 4,613 students were enrolled.

The 7.2 percent increase is primarily due to more continuing students.

The news was reported in the February 4, 2010, State Journal-Register.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100204-SJR-enrollment.pdf

Labels: ,

Illinois politics never dull

During the Illlinois primary election, by Wednesday evening, with 99 percent of precincts reporting, Bill Brady held a lead of only 406 votes out of 765,000 cast over Kirk Dillard for the Republicans.

Among the Democrats, current Gov. Pat Quinn was ahead of State Comptroller Dan Hynes by 8,090 votes.

The possibility of expensive, time-consuming recounts hovered over both parties.

“Whatever you say about Illinois politics, unfortunately it’s never dull,” said Kent Redfield, professor emeritus of political science at UIS.

Redfield's comments were featured in a Feburary 4, 2010, article in the New York Times about the state election.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100204-NYTimes-ILprimary.pdf

Labels: , ,

Election recount could be costly and delayed

If Illinois decides on doing its first ever statewide election recount, the process won't begin for at least a month. No recount can be started until the election results — including early and absentee ballots — are finalized March 5.

The monetary cost of a recount shouldn't mean much to candidates who have raised and spent far more during their primary campaigns. But the political price of a fierce intraparty battle could be enough to give candidates pause, said Ron Michaelson, former director of the state board of election and a political science professor at the University of Illinois-Springfield.

Michaelson's comments were featured in a Feburary 4, 2010, article in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Download a PDF of the article: 20100204-STLpostdispatch-recount.pdf

Labels: , ,

Waterfowl research going on at Emiquon Preserve

Recently, wildlife technicians Danielle DeVito and Curt Kleist, of the Illinois Natural History Survey of the Forbes Biological Station in Havana, have been studying the migration of water fowl at the Emiquon Preserve.

Their mallard research, based at the Therkildsen Field Station - a teaching and research facility owned by UIS - is part of a larger effort to transform Emiquon from farmlands to floodplain.

Their research and details about Emiquon were featured in a February 4, 2010, article in the Illinois Times.

Download a PDF of the article: 20100204-ILTimes-mallards.pdf

Labels: , , ,

UIS Prairie Stars names new men's head soccer coach

The University of Illinois Springfield Prairie Stars named a new men’s soccer coach. Chad Jones will take over for Joe Eck as head coach.

Jones is new to the head coaching ranks and UIS, but not to the Springfield area.

The news of Jones' new position was reported in a February 4, 2010, article in the State Journal-Register.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100204-SJR-soccercoach.pdf

Labels: , ,

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Democrats might have reasons to worry this fall

The polls are now open in President Obama's home state of Illinois, which holds the nation's first primary in what is expected to be a tumultuous election year across the U.S.

Whatever the outcome of Tuesday's voting, Democrats might have to worry this fall about this "blue state" — where Democrats hold all statewide offices and control both chambers of the General Assembly, says Kent Redfield, professor emeritus of political science at UIS.

Redfield's comments were featured in a February 2010 article in the USA Today.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100202-USAToday-voters.pdf

Labels: , ,

Downstate Illinois Innocence Project takes on Slover case

Pinning hopes for a new trial for the Slovers on a fingerprint found on a bridge railing, the Downstate Illinois Innocence Project presented its case at a hearing Monday afternoon.

The project, based at UIS, has taken the case of Michael Slover, Jeannette Slover and Michael Slover Jr., who are all serving 60-year sentences for the murder of Karyn Hearn Slover.

The latest details about the case were reported on February 2, 2010, by the Decatur Herald & Review and WCIA-3.

Download a PDF of the Herald & Review's story:
20100202-HR-Slover.pdf

Download a PDF of the WCIA-3 report:
20100201-WCIA-Slover.pdf

Labels: , ,

Democratic control could lead to redistricting

The contested primary races for governor among Democrats and Republicans could lead to national attention -- and money -- in the fall. If Democrats continue to control the legislature and the governor's office, they could draw new legislative districts for Congress and the General Assembly that could further marginalize Republicans.

"The governor's race is going to be a tough race and clearly there's a lot at stake with redistricting," said Christopher Mooney, a political science professor at UIS. "The national GOP might bring money into the governor's race, though they almost never do. Democrats have a natural advantage, but Republicans have Blagojevich to run on. Both sides have strong themes they can run on."

Mooney's comments were featured in a February 2, 2010, article in the American Chronicle.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100202-AmChronicle-elections.pdf

Labels: , ,

TV ads won't necessarily help candidates

There are currently several high-profile political races going on in Illinois, and it may be difficult for any candidate to count on TV ads this weekend to put them over the top.

"There are candidates for a variety of offices on TV (and) plenty of commercials," said Christopher Mooney, a political science professor at the University of Illinois Springfield. "I've never seen this much clutter."

Mooney's comments were featured in the January 30, 2010, Chicago Tribune.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100130-ChiTrib-Mooney.pdf

Labels: , ,

Wheeler: Illinois is becoming more Hispanic and Asian

In the January edition of Illinois Issues magazine, Charlie Wheeler, director of the Public Affairs Reporting Program at UIS, wrote that Illinois is becoming more Hispanic and Asian. The GOP should be concerned, Wheeler wrote, because “voters in burgeoning ethnic communities — particularly Latinos — tend to vote Democratic.

Wheeler's editorial and comments were featured in a January 31, 2010, column by Bernard Schoenburg in the State Journal-Register.

Download a PDF of the column:
20100131-SJR-Wheeler.pdf

Labels: , ,

Republicans fight to get back control in Illinois

Six candidates are vying to fill the position of governor in a state that has generally rejected the national Republican Party’s hard-line positions. The GOP nominee will face the winner of a contentious Democratic primary battle between Gov. Pat Quinn, the former lieutenant governor who succeeded Blagojevich, and Comptroller Dan Hynes.

Debates between the contenders have put the state GOP’s internal conflict between conservatives and moderates on full display, especially regarding tax policy as Illinois struggles with a historic $12 billion budget deficit.

Kent Refield, professor emeritus of political science at UIS, weighed in on the primary elections in a January 31, 2010, article in the Decatur Herald & Review.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100131-H%26R-elections.pdf

Labels: , ,

Most Illinois gubernatorial campaigns in debt

Seven of the eight active candidates for governor go into Tuesday's election with a substantial campaign debt, somewhat ironic given the fact that most of them are hammering past and current state leaders about overspending.

In some cases, it's just wealthy candidates self-funding their campaigns and calling it a loan. But the big loans to other candidates are another story, according to Kent Redfield, professor emeritus of political science at UIS.

Redfield's comments were featured in a January 31, 2010, article in the Champaign News-Gazette.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100131-NewsGazette-campaignfunds.pdf

Labels: , ,

Global Experience Program in Japan invites public to participate

UIS is inviting the public to join degree-seeking students for two study-abroad weeks in Ashikaga, Japan, in June. The global experience has been a program UIS has held in Springfield’s sister city for ten years.

UIS’s Global Experience program will offer a short course on Japanese language and culture in Ashikaga.

Details of the trip and past participants' experiences were highlighted in a January 30, 2010, article in the State Journal-Register.

Download a PDF of the article:
20100130-SJR-Ashikaga.pdf

Labels: , ,