February 2020 | Alumni Newsletter

Alumni Update | February 2020

The global UIS Alumni family has more than 43,000 members with shared experiences and pride in the University of Illinois Springfield and its predecessor, Sangamon State University.

Meet Alumnus Justin Rose

Justin RoseJustin Rose, ’12 LAS, MA ’14 PAA, is the UIS Director of Diversity and Inclusion. He’s currently pursuing a doctoral degree while working full time. He sat down to tell us how to go beyond the basics and set goals that really matter. Watch his video now.




Meet Alumna Alimyon Allen

Alimyon AllenAlimyon Allen, ’14, MPA ’16 PAA, is a staff assistant for the office of United States Senator Richard J. Durbin. As a GPSI intern, she created legal documents for the Prisoner Review Board and administered grants for public health professionals. She says, “The University and my professors provided me with a variety of tools that I can utilize whether I work for a nonprofit, civic organizations, campaigns, or local and federal government.”




Chancellor Koch Announces Retirement

Chancellor Koch with StudentsSusan J. Koch, UIS chancellor since 2011, announced she will retire effective June 30. She is currently the longest-serving chancellor of the U of I System. “The past nine years have been among the most fulfilling of my career, and it has been a privilege to work with so many outstanding faculty, staff and students,” Koch said. “I love the university and the community my husband Dennis and I have called home for nearly a decade, and I am so proud of everything this young university has achieved.”

Sangamon Experience Grand Opening

Sangamon Experience Ribbon CuttingUIS held a grand opening for Sangamon Experience, a new on-campus exhibition telling the history of the Sangamon Region of central Illinois. A crowd of over 270 guests watched as Chancellor Koch and others cut the ribbon. The multifaceted initiative includes a 5,300-square-foot space featuring multimedia and interactive exhibits, historical maps and photographs, a small theater and interpretive text developed by teams of UIS students, faculty and community partners. See event photos and watch the ribbon cutting.

UIS Online Programs Ranked Top 10 Percent Nationally

Students at Student Union

Online bachelor’s degree programs have been ranked 33rd best in the country (out of 353 institutions) for a second year in a row by U.S. News and World Report. The 2020 ranking put UIS among the top 10 percent of best online bachelor’s degree programs in the United States.



UIS Perspectives: Mental Health

Chancellor Susan KochChancellor Susan J. Koch’s monthly column discusses college student mental health. “College is a challenging life stage that can include significant mental health challenges,” says Koch. Research published in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry reports 20 to 36 percent of college students exhibit “serious psychological distress” while only one-third receive treatment. A system-wide summit on the topic is planned for later this year.


Athletics Hall of Fame Now Accepting Nominations

Prairie Stars Hall of FameThe Athletics Hall of Fame was created in 2014 as a means to recognize and celebrate some of the top student-athletes, coaches, teams and supporters in Prairie Stars history. The Hall of Fame Committee will consider nominations in the categories of Male Student-Athletes, Female Student-Athletes, Coaches, Teams and Friends of Athletics. Nominations will be accepted until March 31.


Upcoming Events Calendar

Black History Month Activities – February 2020

Lunch & Learn: Mysteries of the Past – Tuesday, March 3

The Choir of Man – Wednesday, March 4

Josh Turner – Friday, March 13

Ceremony of Investiture for Lincoln Scholar – Thursday, March 19

Dallas, TX Network & Learn – Thursday, March 26

Lunch & Learn: Architecture of Place and Sound – Thursday, April 9

The Color Purple – Friday, April 10