Publish Date


Good morning!

We’re almost halfway through the semester, and spring break is right around the corner. I’ve spent the past couple of weeks meeting the semi-finalists and finalists for some of our vacant administrative positions and am looking forward to all of these searches continuing toward a successful completion. Last Friday, I attended the UIS National Coalition Builders Institute workshop and really enjoyed the experience. It provided a great opportunity to reflect on my own personal identities and those of others and the impact identity has on equity, inclusion and belonging. Thank you to the staff who put on this great learning event. If you’d like to attend a future training, visit the UIS NCBI website.  

New Information

UIS Autism Workshops  

March 8 | Staff: 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. • Faculty: 2-4:30 p.m. | Student Union Ballroom 

Faculty and staff have an opportunity this week to hear from Taylor Sweeting, an expert in the field of autism, on what it’s like to be a student with autism and how educators and students can find common ground in and out of the classroom. Mr. Sweeting is a dynamic speaker who challenges us to question how we approach teaching neurodivergent students using traditional classroom practice. He will share what it’s like to be a college student with autism and how educators can make small changes that yield lasting success for students on the autism spectrum.

Women’s History Month

March is Women’s History Month, and this year’s theme is “Stronger Together.” Each year, UIS celebrates the cultural and global impact of women by engaging in conversations, performances and ceremonies that explore the impact women have had on the world. As part of Women’s History Month, I will be hosting a women’s leadership reception from 6 to 8 p.m. March 20 in the Student Union for students to hear from women of achievement in our community. Please watch for more details on this and other exciting programming throughout the month.

Faculty and Staff Campaign

Each year in March, the Faculty and Staff Campaign encourages employee support for UIS. The theme of the 2023 FASC is Storybook Stars: Choose Your Own Adventure! Employees may give to any area(s) of UIS that matters to them. A gift to any UIS fund, of any amount, from July 1, 2022, to June 30, 2023, counts as participating in this year’s campaign. For additional information, contact your area’s Ambassador or read more online.

March BOT at UIS 

The next UI System Board of Trustees Meeting is March 30 here at UIS. If you see our Board members on campus, please say hello! 

Commencement News

Save the date for Commencement, which will begin at 2 p.m. May 13. We are moving to one ceremony this year, and we will need more volunteers than ever to help our students and visitors have a wonderful experience. Watch for more information on how to help in the near future. 

Annual Ethics Training 

University Ethics and Compliance Office training for all employees is due by 5 p.m. March 31. Anyone who does not complete the course in its entirety will be considered noncompliant and disciplined in accordance with established policies and procedures. Access the training here:

Information that Bears Repeating

Executive Searches 

The searches for our vice chancellor and dean openings are all moving ahead. It’s getting busy with semi-finalist and finalist interviews on the calendar! Here is a quick snapshot of each search:

  • Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs/Provost: Applications are being accepted through March 24, and we have launched a website that provides an overview of the search. Dr. Vickie Cook and Dr. Ty Dooley are co-chairing the search.
  • Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs: Finalist interviews began on campus last week and will conclude March 15. Search committee chair is Dr. Vickie Cook.
  • Vice Chancellor for Finance & Administration: Semi-finalists interviews were in full swing last week. Search committee chair is Dr. Jeff Lorber.  
  • Dean of the College of Health, Science and Technology: Semi-finalist interviews have concluded. Search committee chair is Dr. Frances Chen.
  • Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences: Semi-finalist interviews are expected to occur the week of March 20. Search committee chair is Dr. Devin Hunter.

Spring Accelerated Courses 

There’s still time for students to sign up for Spring Accelerated Courses. Classes run March 20 to May 6. Students can learn more here: 

Celebrating our Star Power

Three UIS faculty, Shipra Gupta, Tih-Fen Ting and Magic Wade, were accepted into the COPLAC Beard Leadership Circle, which fosters strong leadership connections among peers and helps faculty progress in their professional goals. Congrats on this amazing accomplishment! 

Campus Recreation and Tennis hosted the Prairie Stars Pickleball Tournament Feb. 25-26. It brought 90 participants and many spectators from central Illinois, raising more than $1,500. 

Jill Ralph, administrative assistant for UIS Facilities & Services, is our February Employee of the Month. Jill is a self-starter who constantly looks for more efficient and accurate ways to accomplish the Facilities and Services mission. Congratulations, Jill!

Enjoy the first full week of March. Before we know it, the campus will start budding with life, as the promise of spring is on the horizon.


Janet L. Gooch, PhD


University of Illinois Springfield

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