State Authority over the University

The University of Illinois, as a public university, is under the ultimate authority of the Illinois General Assembly. Subject to constitutional and self-imposed restraints, the General Assembly exercises control by virtue of its authority to change the laws pertaining to the University and its power to appropriate funds for the maintenance and improvement of the University. Under existing state law, the University of Illinois is a public corporation, “The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.” The University has three campuses: the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC), where the University was established in 1867; the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC); and the University of Illinois at Springfield (UIS).

The Illinois Board of Higher Education (IBHE) is the statewide governance body for higher education and is empowered to:

  • analyze the budget requests of the state institutions of higher learning and recommend to the governor, General Assembly, and appropriate state budget agencies the amounts deemed proper;
  • approve all new units of instruction, research, and public service undertaken by the state institutions and their governing boards;
  • formulate and update a master plan of higher education to be submitted to the governor and the General Assembly and make any necessary surveys of higher education;
  • advise and counsel the governor upon request on matters pertaining to higher education; and
  • make recommendations to the General Assembly for the enactment of necessary legislation.

Read more about IBHE



System Organization and Governance

The Board of Trustees

Within the limits of authority fixed by the Illinois constitution and laws, the Board of Trustees exercises final authority over the University. For the proper use of funds appropriated by the General Assembly and for the proper administration and government of the University, the Board of Trustees is responsible to the people of Illinois.

As the governing body of the University, the Board of Trustees exercises jurisdiction in all matters except those for which it has delegated authority to the President of the University, other officers or agencies of the University.

The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois consists of thirteen members, eleven who have official votes. Nine are appointed by the Governor for terms of six years, and three student trustees (one from each campus) are elected by referenda on their campuses for one-year terms. One of these student trustees is appointed by the Governor to have an official vote. The Governor serves as an ex officio member.

The Board of Trustees sets their annual meeting schedule to begin in September each year and elects officers at the annual meeting held in January of each year. Meetings usually alternate among Chicago, Springfield and Urbana-Champaign. On occasion, a meeting may be held in another city in Illinois where University programs exist. All meetings are open to the public, except for limited closed sessions allowed by the Illinois Open Meetings Act. The Board of Trustees approves the University system budget, appointment of academic staff and administrators, selection of architects and construction of facilities, and policies of the institution.

President, Vice Presidents, and Other University Officers

The president is the chief executive officer of the University system and a member of the faculty of each college, school, institute, division, and academic unit therein. The president is elected by the Board of Trustees. The president is responsible for the enforcement of the rules and regulations of the University; shall make such recommendations to the board and to the senates as the president may deem desirable for the proper conduct and development of the University; and shall issue diplomas conferring degrees, but only on the recommendation of the appropriate senate and by authority of the Board of Trustees.

In addition to the president, the system officers are the vice presidents, including the vice president for academic affairs, the vice president for health affairs, the vice president for research, the vice president/chief financial officer & comptroller, the vice president and chancellor of each of the three universities, the university counsel, and the secretary of the University system, all of whom report directly to the president. Additional administrative officers may be designated by the president after consultation with the University Senates Conference.

University Senates Conference

The University Senates Conference is composed of members elected by each university senate from its own membership. The conference reviews all matters acted upon by each senate and determines whether senate actions that require implementation or further consideration by officials or other groups within the University system have been referred to the appropriate officials or groups. Should the conference find a matter acted upon by one of the senates to be of concern to the other, it refers the matter to the other senate. If the senates have acted differently on a subject, the conference attempts to promote agreement or consistency.

The conference may authorize its executive committee to act as an advisory group to the Board of Trustees (through the president), the president, other administrative officials, and the senates on matters of University-wide concern. A special concern of the University Senates Conference is to promote cooperative relations among the universities.



University Organization and Governance

Chancellor and Vice Chancellors

Under the direction of the president of the University of Illinois system, the chancellor of each of the three universities serves as the chief executive officer for the institution and vice president for the U of I system. The chancellors are appointed annually by the Board of Trustees on the recommendation of the president.

Reporting to the chancellor at the University of Illinois Springfield are the vice chancellor for academic affairs & provost, the vice chancellor for student affairs, the vice chancellor for finance and administration, and the vice chancellor for advancement. As chief academic officer under the chancellor, the provost serves as chief executive officer in the absence of the chancellor. The provost is appointed annually by the Board of Trustees on recommendation of the chancellor and the president (with the advice of the Campus Senate).


The University of Illinois Springfield is transitioning to a new organizational structure comprised of five divisions: The Chancellor’s Division, the Division of Academic Affairs, the Division of Student Affairs Division, the Division of Finance and Administration, and the Division of Advancement.

  1. The Chancellor’s Division is the chief executive office with responsibility for the overall administration of the university. Staff in the division coordinate public relations, marketing, community outreach, and event planning. Along with the chancellor’s immediate staff, the following offices also work within this division: Public Affairs, Campus Legal Counsel, Campus Relations, and Web Services. Read more about the Chancellor’s Division
  2. The Academic Affairs Division coordinates university operations and activities surrounding the implementation and achievement of the institution’s academic mission. Units include the four colleges (College of Business and Management, College of Education and Human Services, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, and College of Public Affairs and Administration) as well as Brookens Library and the Center for State Policy and Leadership. The division also includes Academic Human Resources; Graduate Assistantships; Graduate Education; Catalog; Research & Sponsored Programs (pre-award); Information Technology Services; Institutional Research; Performing Arts Services; Undergraduate Education; and the Center for Academic Success & Advising. The Enrollment Management units (Admissions, Financial Assistance, Records & Registration) are also a part of Academic Affairs. Link to the Academic Affairs website
  3. The Student Affairs Division coordinates student life including intramural athletics, student organizations, and cultural attractions. Support services add convenience, from housing to health care to computer labs. Units within the Student Affairs Division include Athletics, Career Center, Counseling Center, Cox Children’s Center, Disability Services, Food Service, Health Services, Housing & Residential Life, International Student Services, Journal Newspaper, LGBTQA Resource Office, Campus Recreation, Student Life, Volunteer & Civic Engagement Center, and the Women’s Center. Link to the Student Affairs website
  4. The Finance and Administration Division oversees UIS Police, Human Resources, Purchasing, Grants & Contracts Post-Award, and Facilities and Services.
  5. The Advancement Division nurtures relationships with alumni, friends and the university community to encourage support for UIS students, programs and the university environment. Advancement arranges for alumni programs and events, awards and recognition, networks and groups, and provides ways to connect with other UIS alumni. Link to the Advancement website

Campus Senate

The University Statutes provide for the establishment of a senate at each institution within the system. The Campus Senate is the representative, deliberative, and consultative voice of the university community on matters of educational policy. The Campus Senate may exercise legislative functions in matters of educational policy affecting the system as a whole or its own university only. No such senate action takes effect until it has been submitted to the University Senates Conference and either approved by the Board of Trustees or approved in a manner agreed to by the Board.

At UIS, the Campus Senate governance system consists of the Campus Senate and its various standing committees, and selected members of the Campus Senate who serve on the University Senates Conference.

All vice chancellors, associate chancellors, associate/assistant vice chancellors, directors, deans, and executive officers of comparable academic, administrative, and service units who are not members of the senate have floor privileges on matters of concern to their units when such matters are before the senate for debate.

The Senate may appoint such other standing committees as the Senate shall deem necessary and proper. The Senate may also enable any ad hoc committees it deems reasonable and proper, except that no ad hoc committee will be created which will duplicate the work of a standing committee.

Faculty Advisory Committee

University statutes call for the tenured and tenure-track faculty on each campus to elect a Faculty Advisory Committee (FAC). Any member of the Faculty Advisory Committee electorate is eligible for membership on the committee except those who hold an administrative appointment.

The committee provides for the orderly voicing of suggestions for the good of the University and affords added recourse for the consideration of grievances. It also furnishes a channel for direct and concerted communication between the faculty and the administrative officers of the University, its colleges, schools, institutes, divisions, and other administrative units on matters of interest or concern to the academic staff or any member of it. The chair of the Faculty Advisory Committee participates with the provost and the chair of the Campus Senate in the appointment of faculty members to serve on Faculty Grievance Hearing Panels.

Academic Professional Advisory Committee

The Academic Professional Advisory Committee (APAC) established by University Statutes, serves in an advisory role to the chancellor and provides representation of academic professionals in governance. The functions of APAC are:

  1. to provide for the orderly voicing of suggestions for the good of the University;
  2. to furnish a channel for direct and concerted communication with administrative officers of the University and its various units;
  3. to facilitate the professional development of academic professionals; and
  4. to afford added recourse for the consideration of grievances.

APAC is composed of 10 elected members plus appointed representatives from the chancellor, provost, UIS Human Resources Office, and Civil Service Advisory Council, for a total of 14. APAC holds regular monthly meetings, advises the chancellor on matters affecting academic professional staff, and reports to the chancellor and the academic professional staff at least once a year. The Committee plays an active role in administrative and governance processes on campus, as well as selecting representatives to the University Professional Personnel Advisory Committee.

Civil Service Advisory Council

The Civil Service Advisory Council (CSAC) comprises 15 members nominated and elected by civil service employees. The Council serves as an advisory group in the formation and implementation of policies and procedures relating to civil service employees. It meets monthly to study and make recommendations regarding campus conditions of employment, problems, and needs at the request of civil service employees, campus administration, or upon its own initiative

As necessary, CSAC provides representatives to the various committees that support and review campus activities. The Council appoints representatives to attend regular meetings of advisory groups, including the University of Illinois Employee Advisory Committee (UIEAC), State Universities Civil Service System Advisory Committee (SUCSAC), and State University Retirement System Member Advisory Committee (SURSMAC). The council also raises money for the staff scholarship fund.

Student Government Association

The Student Government Association is the officially recognized student organization of the University of Illinois Springfield which represents the students of UIS both in the internal and external community and acts as the instrument through which students are able to provide input into the internal policies of the University. The SGA has the authority to represent the student body through the election of Student Senators and officers.

The objective of the SGA is to promote a democratic form of student government; to provide students a forum for student issues; to offer the opportunity for leadership development in the individual, and to promote social, cultural, educational, and recreational activities for students.

Any person enrolled as a student for academic credit in any course offered under the auspices of the University of Illinois Springfield shall be automatically considered a member of the student body; except a person who is concurrently a member of the University of Illinois faculty, civil service, or administrative staff.