Publish Date


Good afternoon, colleagues:

November is a month focused on gratitude, and as I reflect on my first few months as your chancellor, my appreciation for my new role grows and grows. UIS is a place where students come first, and to see that displayed in how you approach your work is so inspiring. I know these last few weeks of the semester will be busy, but let’s keep showing up each day dedicated to fulfilling our mission! Thank you for all you do to make UIS such a special university!

New Information

COVID-19 Booster Clinics

The Sangamon County Department of Public Health will provide free COVID-19 booster immunizations this week in Meeting Room H in the Public Affairs Center (lower level). Please bring your COVID-19 vaccination card with you. Times are: 1 to 4 p.m. Nov. 16 and 9 a.m. to noon Nov. 18. Both Moderna and Pfizer boosters will be available.

Brown Bag on Employee Volunteer Opportunities

Are you interested in working on a service project or community event? Come to a brown bag discussion from noon to 1 p.m. Nov. 22 in the south side of the Student Union Ballroom sponsored by Human Resources, the Volunteer & Civic Engagement Center and the Office of the Chancellor. A group of your fellow colleagues will be discussing possible ways UIS employees can become more engaged in the Springfield community. Bring your lunch and join the discussion. Dessert will be provided. 

Town Hall on Enrollment Management

A town hall will take place from 3 to 4 p.m. Nov. 30 in Brookens Auditorium or via Zoom to share information on our university’s approach to enrollment management and how our budget is tied to our enrollment goals. Presenters will be Vickie Cook, associate vice chancellor for enrollment and online, professional and engaged learning, and Arnold Henning, interim vice chancellor for finance and administration. Time will be allotted for questions.

International Education Week

This week is International Education Week, a time when we encourage all faculty and staff to recognize the unique contributions that those coming to UIS to study, teach and participate in our community make to enhance our experiences together. You can see IEW 2022 activities at UIS here.

Artwork Loan Program

Artwork in the UIS Art & Artifacts Collection—including two-dimensional, three-dimensional, decorative arts and miscellaneous objects—is being offered to faculty and staff through an intra-campus loan program for display in your office for a period of two years, after which time there may be the option to renew. You can view the collection at To borrow a work of art, email Director of Visual Arts Brytton Bjorngaard,, with the citation from the collection site for the work you are interested in. If it is still available, you will be sent a loan form to complete.

Job Description Training

Our colleagues in Human Resources are offering a training session from 9 to 10 a.m. tomorrow, Nov. 15, via Zoom on how to review and update Civil Service and Academic Professional job descriptions, which we are required to do by the end of this calendar year. An email was sent to all employees on Nov. 10 further explaining the requirement. During tomorrow’s training, HR will discuss best practices for creating job descriptions and answer any questions about uploading in JDXpert. The training will be recorded for those who cannot attend.

Winter Accelerated Courses

Winter intersession classes begin Dec. 12. These five-week accelerated classes are offered outside of our traditional full-semester dates to provide flexibility to students as they work toward the completion of a UIS program. Students can choose from classes in biology, communication, computer science, legal studies, and more. Information is at Registration is open through Nov. 28.

Information that Bears Repeating

Colonnade Lighting is Friday!

Our annual holiday tradition will continue this year with the lighting of the colonnade and accompanying refreshments. Save the date for 5:15 p.m. Friday, Nov. 18.

Sign up for a Listening Session

For the remainder of the academic year, I will be hosting listening sessions for any faculty or staff member who wants to share their thoughts about our university climate and culture. Please complete this online form to express your interest in participating in a listening session. A member of the Chancellor’s Office will work to schedule you prior to May 2023. I will be prioritizing sessions with College of Business and Management faculty and staff first.

Flu Shot Clinic is Wednesday

The Sangamon County Department of Public Health will be onsite 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Nov. 16 on the lower level of the Public Affairs Center to administer free flu shots to UIS employees. Please take advantage of this convenient opportunity to promote wellness this flu season.  

SECA Campaign Ends This Week

Our 2022 SECA Campaign ends Nov. 16. A gift of any amount will help those in need in Illinois and beyond. For information about the SECA campaign and to find a list of participating charities, visit To make a gift (payroll deduction or check/money order), the donor form can be accessed here. For questions, contact Erica Michael at

Celebrating our Star Power

  • Dr. Sibel Oktay, associate professor and director of the School of Politics and International Affairs, has been named a 2022-2023 Jefferson Science Fellow for the U.S. Department of State. As a Jefferson Science Fellow, Dr. Oktay will spend a year in the State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research as a research specialist on public opinion.
  • Our talented Student Affairs colleagues and programs, as well as campus partners, were honored recently with awards at the Association of College Unions International (ACUI) Region V Conference. Marie Watson, associate director of student life, received the Inspiring Vision Award for mid-level professionals. Additionally, UIS Creative Services received the first-place award in the graphics competition for the 2022 Fall Welcome Calendar. Jeff Williams, creative services graphics designer, designed the calendar with contributions from Mary Umbarger, coordinator of student organizations and leadership. The UIS Cares Program, sponsored by the Volunteer & Civic Engagement Center and the UIS Student Union, received the Igniting Innovation Award for College Programming. 

Such great news to share this week! I hope you are as proud as I am!

Have a wonderful and relaxing Thanksgiving break next week, and I hope to see many of you at the colonnade lighting this Friday.


Janet L. Gooch, PhD


University of Illinois Springfield

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