Thursday, April 22, 2010

Springfield Police donate bicycles to UIS Diversity Center checkout program



The Springfield Police Department donated six unclaimed bicycles to the University of Illinois Springfield’s Diversity Center Go-Green Bike Checkout Program during a ceremony on Thursday, April 22.

The concept of the program is to loan bikes, free of charge, to the University community. A user completes an agreement checkout form, agrees to the terms and conditions of use, and can borrow the bike for five days.

“Many of our students are international students, so they come to UIS and their not able to bring their own bikes,” said Jeannie Capranica, Diversity Center program manager.

Students, who often don’t have cars, use the bikes to travel off campus to shop at the grocery store and other locations. Diane Sahagun is a sophomore Communication major, who often uses a loaner bike to get around. She’s glad to see more bikes being added to the mix, because often there’s a long waiting list.

“I think it will help students a lot and it will make a difference,” said Sahagun.

The Diversity Center currently has seven bikes that it uses for the program, but maintenance has been an issue. The bikes being donated by the Springfield Police Department are safety tested and ready for use.

Springfield Police Chief Robert Williams is a UIS graduate himself. His department decided to donate to the Diversity Center because he knows the bikes will go to good use.

“It just gives us an opportunity to reach into the community and do a very worth wild service,” said Williams.

Williams says many of the bicycles that were donated are either stolen or have sat unclaimed in the evidence room for a long period of time.

The Diversity Center is currently looking to expand its bike fleet. If you have a bicycle you’d like to donate to the program or to make a donation to the fund contact Jeannie Capranica at 217/206-6333.

Visit the Diversity Center website for more information on the checkout program

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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Supporters lobby for state funding during U of I Day at the Capitol



Hundreds of students, faculty and alumni members spent the day lobbying lawmakers for state funding during University of Illinois Day at the Capitol on Wednesday, April 21.

The annual event was organized by the U of I Alumni Association as a way for people to demonstrate their support for all three University of Illinois campuses.

“We are almost a half a billion dollars that the state is indebted to the university. Today is really about engaging the legislators and getting them to understand how bad the problems (are),” said Derek Felix, UIS student representative on the U of I Board of Trustees.

The day began with a lunch briefing and review of key messages. Throughout the afternoon, participants met with legislators and staff.

“What we’re trying to get them to understand is in dollars spent at the University of Illinois by the state returns back to the state usually 13 times every dollar that’s put in it,” said Edward McMillan, University of Illinois trustee.

The lobbying group from UIS was made up of both students and faculty. They met with local representatives like Senator Larry Bomke of Springfield to share their stories about how the financial problems are affecting them.

“We will get paid. It’s just a matter of when. I hope it’s a lot sooner than later,” said Felix.

McMillan says it’s important to have students meeting with their lawmakers directly. He’s especially glad to have a campus full of politically minded students right in the capital city.

“We’re very blessed to have this campus at Springfield to be part of the University of Illinois system,” said McMillan.

At the end of the day, alumni, students, legislators, UIAA leaders and University officials held a reception at the State Library.

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Good as Gold Ceremony honors student and community volunteers



In honor of National Volunteer Week (April 18-24), the University of Illinois Springfield and the Junior League of Springfield hosted the Springfield Good as Gold Ceremony, a recognition event to acknowledge community members and organizations for their volunteer efforts.

The ceremony took place on Tuesday evening, April 20, in the lobby of the Sangamon Auditorium on the UIS campus. More than 40 people were recognized during the event for their achievements and efforts.

UIS honored one staff member and one student who have demonstrated an exceptional commitment to service and volunteerism with the UIS Star Staff and UIS Star Student award. Alicia Wiley, a graduate student who helped organize a winter shoe/sock drive to benefit the children she met through Contact Ministries was the recipient of the UIS Star Student Award. Kara McElwrath, training specialist in Information Technology Services, received the UIS Star Staff Award for going “above and beyond” to help her students in her Technology for Teaching (TEP 305) course.

UIS students were also recognized for their involvement in many volunteer projects over the past year, including involvement in an Americorps program where students volunteered in the Springfield Public Schools AVID tutoring program and helped out at other agencies, such as the Animal Protective League. Students are also involved in mentoring programs at Jefferson Middle School and Harvard Park Elementary School. The students were honored with Outstanding Community Service Awards.

The Junior League recognized Linda Galecki with its new Golden Literacy Award, which is part of the group’s commitment to addressing literacy in the Springfield. Galecki worked to keep the library at Sandberg Elementary open when it lost its funding. For the past 8 years Galecki has organized and trained volunteers, re-shelved books, and made the library an inviting and educational place for the children at the school.

Jordan Bartolazzi, was awarded the Youth Volunteer Award for volunteering over 200 hours for such causes as the Mini O’Beirne Crisis Nursery, mentoring and tutoring middle and high school students, collecting food for pantries, and collecting coats for the homeless. Bartolazzi also single-handedly organized a basketball tournament for Haiti aid relief which collected over $2,500.

Nancy Zimmers, Merle Shiffman
and Cheryl Meyer from the SIU School of Medicine Enos Steering Committee were presented with the Organization Agent of Service Award. It’s given to an organization for its overall commitment, service and dedication to improving the Springfield community.

Each year the Junior League awards one of its members the Above and Beyond the Call of Duty Award (fondly known as the ABCD Award). Julie Waldrop, was honored with the ABCD Award for serving on 6 committees this year, impacting the community through each of her placements.

Five nominees for the Distinguished Volunteer Award were acknowledged during the event with a short presentation. The nominees included Daniel Cadigan, Helen Davsko, Les Eastep, Ann Pitsenberg and Rachael Thomson.

The winner of the Distinguished Volunteer Award was Les Eastep, for his work with SPARC. As a board member since 1991 he’s brought his experience and passion for others to the lives of thousands of people, creating events and serving on boards and committees where he is a problem solver and creative thinker. He held an annual chili supper fundraiser for SPARC, which resulted in a 52% increase in net income from the previous year.

Thirty-four local volunteers were also honored with the Heart of Gold Award. Recipients included: Carolyn Bodewes, Paul Cary, Shi Lynn Coleman, Reba Crawford, Theresa Davis, Doris Decker, Patricia Fowler, Mark Frakes, Gene Gyure, Kathleen Handy, Anita Hayes, William Kempiners, Raegan Koebler, Jennifer Pinkerton-Krueger, Eric Mayland, Marcia Milliken, Sister Trudy O’Connor, Kudus Ogunseye, Hyun Ah Oh, Christine Phillips, Kelly Ramsey, Helen Renfrow, Diamond Ross, Barbara Rowe, Barbara Salim, Farah Salim, Linda Udey, Ralph Woehrmann. The committee members of Springfield Parents for Students with Disabilities: Lisa Brunson, Mike Nellessen, Dr. Holly Novak, Katie Pavelko, Margarite Simon, and Mary Wyman were also honored with the Heart of Gold Award.

The ceremony was co-sponsored by Illinois Campus Compact. For more information about the event, please visit www.uis.edu/volunteer, email volunteer@uis.edu or call (217) 206-7716.

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Thursday, April 15, 2010

Campus radio station grows to give students more hands on experience



When The Prairie Star, the Internet based campus radio station of the University of Illinois Springfield signed on the air in February 2008 it was broadcasting from a small room in University Hall.

Now two years later, the station has grown. It is complete with an audio lab, on-air and production studios in the Student Affairs Building (SAB). The station was designed to serve as a learning environment for students in addition to helping connect the campus.

“We’re on 24 hours a day, 7 days a week streaming on the Internet. We’re not actually over the air because there are no frequencies available. We hope one of these days that changes,” said Jim Grubbs, station creator and association professor of communication.

The station operates with a classic rock format during the day, but at 3 p.m. the “plugs are pulled out” as they switch to an alternative rock format more popular with students. The Prairie Star also hopes to broadcast some UIS athletic events in the future in an effort to give students more opportunities.

“I think it’s going to continue to grow and not to toot our own horn (we) sound very professional,” said Kyle Alewelt, a junior communication major.

In most cases students who want to get involved with the station are required to take COM 313 “Introduction to Radio”, which is being offered for the first time this semester. Grubbs says he’s also open to letting students with prior college or professional radio experience get involved.

“As a Communication faculty member I see this as a learning facility. We have a lot of fun in the learning, but it is a learning facility,” said Grubbs.

The Introduction to Radio class teaches the basics of audio production and being on the air. It’s that experience students can take with them after graduation to use in the real world.

“It’s going to look good on the resume, especially here at UIS. It’s a great university and having that experience in the past also at my other radio stations and this one will just enhance my future in the radio business,” said Michael Watson, a junior history major enrolled in the class.

The station has a loyal group of listeners and because it’s an Internet radio station they can track how many people are listening and from where.

“We have had listeners from all around the world in over 50 different countries at this point. We seem to be a big in Europe late hours their time,” said Grubbs.

You can listen to the station online by visiting www.uis.edu/campusradio. For more information email campusradio@uis.edu.

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Friday, April 09, 2010

UIS students win award at National Model U.N. Conference in New York



Members of the University of Illinois Springfield Model United Nations Club were honored with one of the group’s highest global awards during a week-long conference in New York City.

Model United Nations is a conference that simulates an actual United Nations meeting. The UIS delegation consisted of 14 students and one faculty member. UIS was one of 17 institutions to win the Outstanding Delegation Award at this year's conference. Over 400 other international colleges and universities competed during the event, held March 29 through April 3.

“We’ve been participating for over 25 years in the National Model U.N. Conference and this is the top award we’ve got so far,” said Driss Elakrich, UIS head Model U.N. delegate and graduate student.

Students worked for close to two semesters learning about their assigned country, drafting resolutions, working on diplomacy and consensus building, and writing position papers on specific issues (climate change, arms control, poverty alleviation, global disease, the empowerment of women, etc.). This year UIS represented the country of Azerbaijan, which is situated south of Russia and north of Iran in the Caucasus.

“I learned that diplomacy is very, very hard. Building consensus with people, it can be impossible at times. It was also very interesting trying to work out differences with people where English was their second language,” said John Tienken, a freshman political science and global studies major.

Kelsey Quinn, a senior political science major and Priyanka Deo, a senior political science and sociology/anthropology major have both been to the conference before, but say they learn something new on every journey.

“It was amazing to get to see students I know from China, from Mexico coming together at these conferences,” said Quinn.

Deo plans to return to India to pursue her law degree after graduating from UIS in May, but hopes her experience with Model U.N. will help her in the future.

“I’d like to be a lawyer within the U.N., a tribunal lawyer, so I think this experience definitely makes me more comfortable about how the U.N. works and the politics behind it,” said Deo.

Deo has been invited to attend a Global Model U.N. Conference in Kuala Lampur, Malaysia later this year. Quinn attended a similar event in Switzerland this past summer based on her excellent performance.

Members of the UIS Model U.N. group include Caitlyn Barnes, Nicole Calcagno, Priyanka Deo, Justin Doup, Driss Elakrich, Alfred Komolafe, Margaret Martinotti, Gina Massie, Nana Mkheidze, James Schweke, Robyn Stolze, John Tienken, Kelsey Quinn, and Matthew K. Wright.

For more information contact Ali Nizamuddin, assistant professor of political science at 217/206-8424 or email aniza2@uis.edu.

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Thursday, March 25, 2010

"Under the Dome" gives high school students and teachers a look inside state government



More than two dozen high school students and teachers from central Illinois spent a day as statehouse insiders at the capitol on Wednesday, March 24.

The University of Illinois Springfield’s “Under the Dome” is the state’s premier immersion event for high school juniors interested in government, politics, and public service.

“Most students when they come here to the capitol only get to see what the public gets to see, but because UIS has so many alumni engaged in government we’re able to take these high school students behind the scenes,” said Ed Wojcicki, UIS associate chancellor for constituent relations.

Wojcicki estimates UIS has hundreds, if not thousands of alumni working in state government in Springfield. UIS has been preparing leaders in government and public service since its founding 40 years ago.

Students and teachers spent the day behind the scenes at the statehouse on one of the busiest days of the legislative session. They talked with lawmakers and lobbyists, analysts and journalists, and got to see up close how policy is made in Illinois.

“I’ve never been to the capitol. This is actually my first day and… I never realized it was so busy and all these people were here, but it’s actually pretty cool,” said Ellisa Marsh a junior at Springfield’s Southeast High School.

The “Under the Dome” experience has inspired Marsh to take a closer look at a career in state government and she's already decided she wants to do an internship. She gives credit to “Under the Dome” for sparking her interest in politics.

“It opens a lot of doors and gives you opportunities. I never really had an interest in government until actually today,” said Marsh.

Allison Weidhuner, a junior at Greenview High School agrees it was worth spending a day at the capitol. She says she never realized how many people work at the capitol and the type of work they do.

“It helps you understand the whole process and get to know your government,” she said.

Wojcicki hopes the students take the knowledge they’ve learned back to their schools and that it inspires them in whatever career they choose.

“I hope they go home excited about state government. I hope they go home saying you know what I saw something in downtown Springfield I’ve never seen before. That was really interesting. I didn’t know that’s what happens in government,” he said.

The university is planning a similar “Under the Dome” event for Chicago area high school juniors on April 21. For more information visit http://www.uis.edu/welcome/dome.html.

UIS government-related majors include Communication, Criminal Justice, Environmental Sciences, Environmental Studies, Global Studies, Legal Studies, Political Science, Public Administration, Public Affairs Reporting and Public Health.

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Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Chinese professors visit Springfield elementary school



Two professors from the Harbin University of Science and Technology in China, who are visiting the University of Illinois Springfield, in an educational partnership met with students at a Springfield elementary school on Tuesday, March 9.

Yufeng Jiang, Dean of the College of Foreign Languages at Harbin University and Fuming Chen, a faculty member in the College of Foreign Languages are spending time at UIS visiting classes and doing research. They’re also making an effort to learn more about the community.

“I’m very impressed by the way people think about education,” said Jiang.

Iles Elementary School, part of District 186, started teaching students introductory Chinese this year in an effort to become part of the International Baccalaureate Primary Years program.

“They have a global idea of what the future will be like and what potential students already have,” said Jaing, following a visit to the school.

The UIS Office of International Programs is working to strengthen its relationship with Harbin University. A visiting faculty member took part in an exchange program last year, which could open the door for much more.

“We’re looking at faculty exchange, student exchange and variety of programs with them,” said Jonathan GoldbergBelle, UIS Director of International Programs.

The Harbin faculty looks forward to strengthening their bond with UIS and learning new ways to share knowledge.

“It should be a two-way street, for example we have some support from the United States for education to teach English,” said Jaing.

UIS has been working with other universities in China for close to 20 years.

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Monday, March 08, 2010

President Ikenberry discusses budget and chancellor search



University of Illinois President Stanley Ikenberry spoke to UIS employees and answered their questions during a March 5, 2010 presentation in Brookens Auditorium.

Watch portions of Ikenberry’s comments on state funding, furloughs and the search for the next UIS chancellor in the video above.

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Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Technology Day draws crowds to learn about social technologies



Technology
within education has been growing by leaps and bounds, and now educators and institutions are even using social media tools within online learning and teaching.

The latest and greatest of this innovative technology was showcased during the 10th annual Technology Day at UIS on Wednesday, February 10 in the Public Affairs Center. The theme for this year’s event was “What Are You Learning Now? Teaching with Social Technologies.”

"It's appropriate that our campus would have Technology Day," said Provost Harry Berman. "Technology has become such a big part of our instruction. About half of our students take at least one online course and about half of our faculty teach online."

The keynote speaker for the event was Kyle Bowen, who is the director of informatics at Purdue University. Bowen spoke primarily about his role in the development of Hotseat, a new social networking-powered tool that enables students to collaborate via Twitter or Facebook both inside and outside of the classroom.

"Students use these during classroom time and are usually disruptive, but what they're doing at Purdue is trying to use these tools to get students engaged in classroom," explained Tulio Llosa, director of educational technology in the office of Information Technology Services at UIS. "They're changing the mode from a disruptive thing to an engagement thing so that students are asking questions, interacting with class and not falling asleep in the back row."

There were also more than 20 workshops and presentations throughout the afternoon with topics such as using social technology for marketing and recruitment at UIS, Lecture Capture (which is available for faculty to record their own lectures for student use), and training sessions for faculty on BlackBoard 9, which is an update from Blackboard 7 currently used at UIS.

A former UIS instructor also gave a presentation on free online tools that he is currently using to teach with. His presentation was done via Skype, a free online video service.

"We are a state-of-the-art facility in terms of having different technology available to our faculty," Llosa said. "During Technology Day, we try to show the world that we have these tools at UIS, what we're using these tools for and how we're making our classes more engaging for our students. We want to show people the exciting things we're doing here."

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Monday, February 01, 2010

Bob Lael is named 2009 Employee of the Year at UIS



Bob Lael, assistant manager of Human Resources at the University of Illinois Springfield, was named 2009 Employee of the Year at the 27th annual Employee of the Year Recognition Ceremony, held January 28 on the UIS campus.

Lael was selected from among 11 UIS staff members who had been employees of the month during the past year. He was employee of the month for May.

Materials nominating him at that time noted that “Bob always has time for everyone. No matter what time or how busy he is, he takes time to meet with current and prospective employees and students to answer questions regarding all of the various employee benefits and student insurance. He is an excellent example of what we should all strive to be here at UIS.”

Serving as master of ceremonies, Wesley Weisenburn, director of Human Resources, cited all 11 employees of the month for their “exemplary characteristics and attitudes. They serve as role models,” he said.

UIS Chancellor Richard Ringeisen made the official announcement and presentation. All 11 employees of the month also stood up to be recognized for their achievements.

As he accepted the award, Lael said, “I’m standing up here today not because of what I did, but because of what you all have helped me to do; each and every day, I rely on many others around me to give me the tools that I need to succeed in my job. I’m humbled, honored and very thankful for this award.”

Lael has been employed at UIS since 2005.

Other employees of the month for 2009 were Emily Welch Boles, computer assisted instructional specialist in the Office of Technology-Enhanced Learning; Tom Micklus, electrician foreman for Facilities & Services; Patricia Stoutamyer, office support specialist for the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; Kimberly Craig, assistant to the associate vice chancellor of undergraduate education for Academic Affairs; Pam Rodgers, microcomputer coordinator for Information Technology Services; Michelle Green, director of marketing; Laurie Koehne, building service worker for Facilities & Services; Terry Minder, assistant grounds gardener; Bobbie Fults, office support specialist for the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; and Patty Sullivan, graphic designer for Service Enterprises.

The UIS Employee of the Year receives gifts that include a check for $500.

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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Lincoln life mask donated to UIS by McGraw family



The Rick and Dona McGraw family of Springfield has donated one of only 15 bronze cast of an original Abraham Lincoln life mask to the University of Illinois Springfield.

The original plaster mold was taken of Lincoln’s face by sculptor Clark Mills on February 11, 1865, just two months before his assassination. The mask shows the great toll the Civil War had taken on Lincoln's health with his tired eyes and face full of wrinkles.

“It’s just an incredible piece of work. The first time I saw it I was really taken aback. It’s like seeing what Lincoln really looked like,” said UIS Chancellor Richard D. Ringeisen.

The McGraw family acquired the mask when they bought the McDonald’s restaurant in downtown Springfield. It was the only item the family saved from the restaurant when they decided to remodel the building.

“We kept him because my dad said he was the only thing worth keeping, so we kept him and he kind of moved around from one location to another,” said Dona McGraw.

The McGraw’s approached UIS Associate Chancellor for Development Vicki Megginson about donating the cast to the university. They saw UIS as a perfect fit, where the public could enjoy the mask.

“I think here, he will be special. We’re thrilled he now has a final home,” said McGraw.

McGraw jokes that the mask has been stored in the family’s home for years in locations such as the basement, a bedroom, and even looking out a window.

“He’s been around in our family for years,” said McGraw.

The family was encouraged that UIS was the right home for the Lincoln mask because of nationally recognized faculty experts, such as Dr. Michael Burlingame, Chancellor Naomi B. Lynn Distinguished Chair in Lincoln Studies.

The university is making plans to display the mask at Brookens Library.

More information on the life mask can be found online at: http://www.npg.si.edu/exh/travpres/lincs.htm

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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Year in Video 2009



The University of Illinois Springfield is taking a look back at the Year in Video 2009.

DVD copies of this presentation are available free of charge, upon request by contacting Derek Schnapp, Director of Public Relations at 217/206-6716 or dschn3@uis.edu.

This video has been produced by the UIS Office of Campus Relations and Office of Web Services.

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Friday, December 18, 2009

UIS graduate students collect holiday gifts for needy children



The holidays will be a little brighter for 53 elementary students at Feitshans Academy in Springfield this year thanks to a group of UIS graduate students.

The Graduate Public Service Internship -Student Association collected toys as part of its annual “Giving Tree” project. UIS students, faculty and staff selected ornaments from the “Giving Tree” that contained a child’s name and age. The donors then purchased gifts to donate to the children.

“I would say every kid ended up with 2 or 3 different gifts. We had over 100 presents. We had one special donor who provided stockings for each one of the kids and they were all age appropriate,” said Lynsey Graham, GPSI-SA president and MBA student.

The graduate students gathered together to wrap all the presents that were collected before delivering them to the students at Feitschans Academy. All of the elementary students were nominated for a gift based on their need by the school.

“Every year we’ve done this it’s gotten bigger and bigger, more and more successful and more people are participating, so it really gives me hope in the future it’s going to grow where we can help even more people,” said Laura Weems, GPSI-SA member and communications graduate student.

The graduate students say they had fun shopping for the presents and it brought back childhood memories of their own.

“It was great to go pick something out and really put thought into what I liked at that age,” said Weems.

For more information on the Graduate Public Service – Student Association visit: http://students.uis.edu/organizations/gpsisa/index.html

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Monday, December 14, 2009

Social networking and online tools help UIS students connect with employers



The University of Illinois Springfield Career Development Center is helping students and employers connect in the virtual world through skills match and social networking sites.

“It allows you to connect with employers and recruiters that you wouldn’t be able to connect with. You can connect with people across the country to find different positions,” said Kristen Parsell, senior social work major.

Parsell only has a semester left before she graduates and has found job opportunities online through the center. She’s also considering getting her graduate degree and found an internship online.

The Career Development Center is using sites like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn to help students find jobs and give them tips of internships and employment. The Twitter site was recently named one of the ‘Top 15 College Career Centers You Should Follow on Twitter’ in a national ranking.

“It is really all about networking, so the more you can get out and get involved in local organizations or to get out there in the social networking area to get your name out in that arena will help you,” said Tammy Craig, director of the Career Development Center.

The Development Center is trying out a new system called Pro Net, which allows employers to directly communicate with students. Professionals are invited to take time to answer student questions, allow job shadowing and mentor the students. The hope is the connections built through the program will lead to internships and employment opportunities.

“It’s just another way to educate the student about what the industry is all about and once again help them start networking,” said Craig.

For more information on the Career Development Center’s online tools visit http://www.uis.edu/careerservices/.

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Wednesday, December 09, 2009

U of I Presidential Search Committee listens to public feedback



Members of the University of Illinois Presidential Search Committee held a public forum on the UIS campus on Tuesday, December 8, 2009, to hear what qualities students, faculty and community members want in the next U of I president.

The forum held in Brookens Auditorium was lead by U of I trustee Karen Hasara, who filled in for committee chair and trustee Pamela Strobel, who couldn’t attend due to adverse weather conditions.

“Between now and our next meeting in February we’re hoping to get a lot of good candidates,” said Hasara.

On the UIS campus the search committee is made up of two faculty members James Patrick Hall and Tih-Fen Ting, along with student member Charles Olivier.

“One of my main priorities in the search committee is to find someone that really understands the differences between all three campuses, because we all are unique and offer different things,” said Olivier.

The committee has met twice so far and is working on a white paper, which will officially list the qualifications and values the University is seeking in the next president.

“I’m looking for a leader, someone that can manage all the different constituencies and focus on the educational side, but also on the research side that the University of Illinois represents,” said Hall.

The search committee will identify and screen potential presidential candidates. The goal is to have a new president in place by July 1, 2010, or at the latest when the fall 2010 academic year begins.

“I think that a lot of people definitely want a president who actually will be very creative, a strategic thinker in how to bring us forward,” said Ting.

The overall search committee is made up of three members of the board of trustees; eight faculty members and three students from the University’s three campuses; one representative from the alumni association and one from the foundation; one administrative officer, one academic professional and one civil service representative.

Committee members encourage anyone who couldn’t attend one of the three public forums held on each U of I campus to send them feedback by e-mail at presidentsearch@uillinois.edu.

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Thursday, December 03, 2009

UIS Holiday Stars Project collects 3 tons of food for central Illinois



The University of Illinois Springfield collected a record 6,209 pounds of food for the Central Illinois Foodbank as part of the 2009 Holiday Stars Project. That’s an over 40 percent increase in donations from last year.

“It’s fun to be able to say we raised a ton more than last year because in this case we really mean it, literally. It’s heartwarming,” said Richard D. Ringeisen, UIS chancellor.

On December 3, 2009, student volunteers from UIS helped fill a truck from the Central Illinois Foodbank with donations.

“We’re hearing at the volunteer center every week from food pantries where the donations are down this year, so it’s wonderful donations are up here at UIS to help people in our area,” said Kelly Thompson, director of the UIS Volunteer and Civic Engagement Center.

Students kicked off the month-long food drive through a “Trick or Eat” competition on Halloween night, which collected more than 4,000 pounds of food alone. The effort continued on-campus during November as students, faculty, and staff were encouraged to participate.

“It feels amazing. There are no words to describe it. It’s just giving back to the community,” said Esther Ellison, junior social work major.

The Holiday Stars Project was first started in 2008 as a way to benefit the Central Illinois Foodbank, which assists families in 21 counties.

“This food that’s being donated today really is so awesome because it’s a variety of food, and at the Foodbank variety is really nice to get in because our food is donated,” said Gloria Shanahan, communications director for the Central Illinois Foodbank.

UIS plans to continue its effort to give back to the community next year through the Holiday Stars Project.

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Tuesday, December 01, 2009

iTunes U boosts UIS' visibility on the web



The University of Illinois Springfield’s listing in the iTunes Store, a popular software-based online digital media store, is paying off in boosting the campus’ presence on the web.

UIS was selected by Apple, Inc. to join the iTunes Store on August 18, 2009. UIS had been using an internal iTunes U account on campus since January 2007, with limited public access. The switch has made UIS content available to more than 200 million iTunes users worldwide.

“We are able to get our story out in a very inexpensive manner. iTunes provides a way to really have great social outreach and it’s a great recruiting tool,” said Munindra Khaund, multimedia education coordinator in the Department of Information Technology Services.

In the first three months UIS has been part of the iTunes store new downloads have increase by more than 75,000. Before the store the campus averaged only 3,000 downloads every three months.

“I think it’s a great market research story. It’s given us a really, really wide reach,” said Khaund.

One of the podcasts attracting the most attention is Professor Michael Cheney’s “The Beatles: Popular Music and Society”. Listens of Cheney’s series alone shot up by 60,000 downloads two months after membership in the iTunes Store began.

The “Revealing Voices” series produced by Khaund and other campus partners was chosen by Apple as a noteworthy podcast helping to boost downloads by 7,000 in two weeks.

The podcasts are also paying off for students, who can log on and listen to them for free. Students have lectures, seminars, and student assignments right at their fingertips through the service.

“We’ve been able to capture faculty content knowledge and deliver it to students. The benefit of that being that the students are able to review, pause, rewind, and take better notes and help in their different learning styles,” said Khaund.

More information on podcasting at UIS is available at www.uis.edu/sightsandsounds/podcasts/. To access UIS on iTunes U, go to http://itunes.uis.edu/. All of the content is available free of charge.

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Monday, November 30, 2009

WUIS Public Radio launches new "Alternative" digital station



WUIS/Illinois Pubic Radio
has launched a new “alternative” digital radio station as part of a nearly $300,000 upgrade effort.

The new station called “Xponential Radio” signed onto the airwaves in mid-October and can be received by using an HD radio or listening online at www.wuis.org. The station is available on the second channel (HD-2) of the primary WUIS 91.9 FM digital signal.

“The advantage is we can offer more services to the region. We’ll be offering 3 radio stations eventually,” said Bill Wheelhouse, WUIS Public Radio General Manager.

Wheelhouse describes the “Xponential Radio” format as alternative music designed for public radio. The station’s playlist features music from artists like David Bowie, Lyle Lovett, and Elvis Costello. The primary WUIS (HD-1) channel will continue to carry NPR programming, classical music, and local news.

“With this second channel we also hope to serve UIS students more. Down the road we hope we could offer some UIS athletics on the HD-2 channel,” said Wheelhouse.

WUIS is the first radio station in Springfield to launch a secondary station designed for digital radio, but Wheelhouse feels it will catch on. He says dozens of new digital radio stations are already being started in larger markets like St. Louis and Chicago.

“We hope to see a lot of radio stations doing it to make it worth your while to buy a digital radio,” said Wheelhouse.

As part of the digital upgrade WUIS is replacing all of its studio equipment with state-of-the-art technology to improve audio quality. Wheelhouse says listeners are already noticing the difference when they tune in. The station is also putting the finishing touches on the Suggs Performance Studio, where it hopes to broadcast live music and political forums.

A federal grant paid for $137,000 in new equipment for the station. The rest of the money for the upgrades has come from listener donations and a loan taken out by the station.

For more information on the WUIS digital upgrade contact Bill Wheelhouse at 217/206-6402 or wwhee2@uis.edu. You can listen to both WUIS radio stations streaming online at www.wuis.org.

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Thursday, November 19, 2009

Students help the Central Illinois Foodbank while giving thanks



The University of Illinois Springfield Housing Residents Council (HRC) hosted its annual “Fall Feast” on Thursday, November 19, 2009 in the Lincoln Residence Hall great room.

Students who live in on-campus housing were treated to a Thanksgiving meal with all the trimmings for only a dollar donation to the Central Illinois Foodbank. The students were also encouraged to donate canned food as part of the UIS Holiday Stars Project.

“I think it’s really good and helps the community,” said Erin Clinch, UIS freshman education major. “It’s nice for people who can’t afford a good Thanksgiving dinner and it makes you feel good to help people out."

HRC raised nearly $200 last year from the “Fall Feast” on top of the canned food they collected. Organizers expected almost 300 students to go through the buffet line this year.

“You really can’t beat the goodness of giving a can for a Thanksgiving dinner with your UIS family because a lot of the times it’s hard to get back to see everyone from school,” said Margaret Martinotti, UIS junior and HRC Vice Chair for Programming.

The pre-Thanksgiving meal also served the dual purpose of allowing students to connect with one another before they leave campus for holiday break.

“I know my friends at other colleges don’t get as many activities as I do here,” said Clinch. “It’s really nice to just walk down from your dorm room and there’s dinner.”

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Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Nationally acclaimed "Intern Queen" visits UIS



The University of Illinois Springfield welcomed Lauren Berger, “The Intern Queen” to speak to students about opportunities and answer questions on November 11, 2009 in Brookens Auditorium.

Berger is called “The Intern Queen” because she completed 15 internships during her 4 years of college. She started her own intern company, Intern Queen Inc. in 2006, with the goal of raising internship awareness and connecting students with their future.

“Students are a little lazy sometimes. I was a little lazy as a student and it’s just a little bit of a hand holder and if I can be that person they look at and say wow the ‘Intern Queen’ really helped me with these jobs then I’ve done what I’ve set out to do,” said Berger.

The UIS Career Development Center along with the Student Government Association sponsored the event. The presentation included a panel discussion featuring local businesses and their internship opportunities for students.

“We get a lot of students who come in to do their resumes and other things and get coaching and some haven’t even thought of doing an internship,” said Rachel Hasenyager, Career Development Center Employee Relations Recruitment Coordinator.

Berger was recently named one of BusinessWeek’s Top 25 Entrepreneurs 25 and Under. “The Intern Queen” has been featured in Business Week, E! News Online, New York Post, Chicago Public Radio, Young Money, and Seventeen magazine.

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Friday, November 06, 2009

UIS Alumnus and Department of Defense Inspector General visits campus



The Honorable Gordon S. Heddell, Inspector General for the United States Department of Defense visited his alma mater on Thursday, November 5, 2009 to meet with students in the Capital Scholars Honors Program.

“I got absolutely a top notch graduate level education here,” said Heddell referring to his 1975 master’s degree in Legal Studies.

Heddell is visiting Springfield to accept the University of Illinois Alumni Achievement Award for outstanding success and national or international distinction in one’s business, profession or life’s work.

“I feel humbled that the University Alumni Association is honoring me with this achievement award. I’m not sure that I probably deserve it, but I’m humbled that they think enough of me and I’m honored to be back here,” said Heddell.

Heddell was sworn in as DoD Inspector General on July 14, 2009, one year after being appointed as Acting Inspector General. Heddell began his Government service in 1966 as an Army Chief Warrant Officer, Helicopter Pilot, serving in both Korea and Taiwan during the Vietnam-era conflict. Following his military tours of duty, Mr. Heddell served for 29 years in the U.S. Secret Service, where he directed investigations of threats made against the President, Vice President, and other high-ranking government officials in Washington, D.C.

It was Heddell’s career with the Secret Service that brought him to Springfield to work in the field office. He finished his master’s degree after hours and admits it wasn’t easy, but it paid off.

“I’m a better Inspector general and a better public servant because of the things I learned here,” said Heddell.

Heddell says he’s pleased with the growth of the UIS campus over the years and the physical improvements that have been made since his time.

“I’m very proud of what Chancellor Richard Ringeisen has done here. He’s an example of exceptional leadership. I’m proud of what he’s accomplished. I’m proud of the entire University of Illinois system,” said Heddell.

Heddell just returned from a trip to Iraq and Afghanistan where he meet with troops and top commanders in the region. Its Heddell’s role as Inspector General to make sure that taxpayer money is being spent wisely and to help troops get the equipment they need.

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Monday, November 02, 2009

UIS hosts International Advisers



The University of Illinois Springfield hosted five EducationUSA advisers from Azerbaijan, Peru, Philippines, Oman, and Russia as part of a U.S.-based training program on Monday, November 2, 2009.

EducationUSA advisers are posted at centers around the world to help foreign students learn about higher education in the United States. The group also shared information about admissions processes for students in their home countries.

"We get an inside perspective from the advisers face to face as to what's going on in their countries, what challenges their students face and what their academic interests are," said Dana Atwell, ESL Coordinator in the Office of International Programs.

The advisers spent time in Springfield participating in cultural events as well as informative meetings and workshops. They will visit college campuses around the country and also travel to Washington, D.C.

UIS worked with Study Illinois, a consortium of over fifty accredited institutions of higher learning to bring the group to Springfield. UIS also hosted the annual meeting for the organization during the visit by the international advisers.

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Monday, October 26, 2009

Springfield family helps shine light on UIS flags

The three flags outside the Public Affairs Center at the University of Illinois Springfield are now visible at night thanks to the help of a Springfield family.

It’s been UIS Building Services Superintendent Tim Ritzo’s dream to find someone who would donate the spot lights for the American, Illinois and UIS flags. This year a daughter and son-in-law, Kathy and Randy Germeraad, called and asked for ideas regarding a gift they might do in honor of her parents, Bill and Mary Schnirring, longtime owners of Springfield Electric.

“I suggested lighting the flag pole, since it honored the family business and our state and national heritage. They loved the idea,” said UIS Associate Chancellor for Development Vicki Megginson.

The family saw the opportunity as a “perfect fit” since their more than 75-year-old locally owned business deals with both lighting and electricity.

On Monday, October 26, 2009 a ceremony was held near the flag poles where a U.S. flag that was flown over the United State’s capitol was raised. The flag was secured by Tim Ritzo, who is a veteran himself.

UIS Chancellor Richard D. Ringeisen spoke about the importance of the lighting and helped unveil a plaque honoring the Schnirring’s donation.

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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

UIS joins National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Week effort



Students at the University of Illinois Springfield got a taste of what it’s like to drive drunk during National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Week on Wednesday, October 21, 2009.

Students put “beer goggles” on and drove around the quad in a golf cart to simulate the effect of getting behind the wheel intoxicated. The UIS Counseling Center sponsored the event and set up an obstacle course for the students to navigate around.

"The goggles scare you. Once you put them on you don't realize how bad it is to drink and drive because the goggles are for real. You can't see nothing. You're like a zombie," said UIS Sophomore Jeanell Randolph.

"The students that are going to drink and drive are unfortunately still probably going to drink and drive, but I think the other students gain an awareness of what it's actually like to drive intoxicated," said UIS Alcohol & Drug Prevention Coordinator Valerie Scarbrough.

Students also took part in a red ribbon sign-up drive where they pledged not to drink and drive. UIS has celebrates National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Week every year along with hundreds of other schools across the country.

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Friday, October 16, 2009

UIS students attend AmeriCorps opening ceremony



Students from the University of Illinois Springfield participated in the AmeriCorps open day ceremony at the Prairie Capital Convention Center on October 15, 2009.

“I think it’s great for everyone to come together and see the number of people we have in AmeriCorps in the state, just to see the impact it can have,” said Jordan Jeffers, UIS AmeriCorps VISTA.

Volunteers participated in games that helped them learn about each other and listened to speakers talk about service.

UIS has 16 students that have pledged to volunteer 300 hours a year, which amounts to 5 hours a week.

“I wanted to be part of AmeriCorps because I felt in high school that I wasn’t really involved in community service at all and this was a great opportunity on campus to do a lot of hours,” said UIS freshman John Tienken.

Students later marched to the capitol where they took an oath to serve as part of AmeriCorps.

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Thursday, October 15, 2009

UIS students rally at capitol to save MAP Funds



Hundreds of college students, including a group from the University of Illinois Springfield, rallied near the state capitol on Thursday, October 15, 2009 to urge lawmakers to fund the Monetary Award Program (MAP).

The students are asking lawmakers to restore $200-million dollars to make MAP grant funds available for the spring 2010 semester. If the funds aren’t restored it could make it hard for some students to pay for school and others fear they might have to drop out.

"The only way we can possibly get it reinstated in time for it to be effective for students to get it in the spring is right now," said UIS Student Government Senator Jaime Casinova.

The cuts to the MAP program would affect about 750 students at UIS who on average receive about $1,900 a semester from the program.

Governor Pat Quinn spoke at the rally telling students he’s working to restore the funds before lawmakers head home at the end of the week.

MAP grants are awarded to students based on financial need and more than 130,000 people across the state receive them every year.

After the rally UIS students met with lawmakers and delivered signed petitions from the campus community asking for the funds to be restored.

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Tuesday, October 06, 2009

UIS partners to teach fire safety



The University of Illinois Springfield Volunteer & Civic Engagement Center hosted a “Stop, Drop, and Roll” program for 55 children and their parents at Cox Children’s Center on the UIS campus.

UIS partnered with the Springfield Fire Department to teach kids not to fear firefighters during a rescue.

The State Farm Good “Neighbear” was also in attendance handing out fire helmets and coloring books to the children. The visit was part of a grant the volunteer center received from the State Farm Safe Neighbors – Fire and Auto Safety Fund to promote awareness during Fire Safety Week in October.

The center is also using the money to teach fire safety to RA’s in the dorm rooms. The on-campus and student population has grown considerably since UIS began accepting freshmen and sophomores in 2001. In addition, 60% of families living in family housing units have one or more family members living with them, including children.

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Monday, October 05, 2009

UIS Homecoming 2009



Students, faculty and community members came to the University of Illinois Springfield campus on Saturday, October 3, 2009 to celebrate Homecoming 2009.

The day started with the inaugural Yellow Brick Road 5K Run/Walk that took participants on a scenic trip around campus.

One of the highlights was the UIS Homecoming Parade featuring student organizations, political groups and others. It was followed by the Homecoming BBQ & Lawn Party where students enjoyed free food, drinks, and fun.

The night ended with the UIS Students vs. Alumni/Faculty/Staff Basketball game at the TRAC.

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Friday, October 02, 2009

Students volunteer during Homecoming activities



Students from the University of Illinois Springfield are giving back to the community during Homecoming 2009.

The Volunteer & Civic Engagement Center organized a service event for M.E.R.C.Y. Communities on Friday, October 2, 2009. The organization provides a supportive housing and service organization for abused, homeless, and at-risk single mothers and their children.

Students spent the afternoon cleaning, painting, and moving air conditioning units to prepare a housing center for new families.

“I volunteered today just to help out because I figure if no one volunteers to do it they’re going to have to get people either way to do it,” said UIS Freshman volunteer Rachelle DeBerry.

“Having the UIS students come out here is really a big help to us every year,” said M.E.R.C.Y. Communities Director of Marketing Brian Ganz.

For more information on volunteer opportunities call The Volunteer & Civic Engagement Center at 217/206-7716 or e-mail volunteer@uis.edu.

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Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Chancellor honors Civil Service employees




University of Illinois Springfield Chancellor Richard D. Ringeisen honored more than 300 Civil Service employees during the 3rd Annual CARE Awards. A luncheon ceremony was held on September 23, 2009 in the Sangamon Auditorium lobby.

“You’re really important people, front line people. You’re the people whose smile makes a difference in students and parents lives,” said Ringeisen.

Sharon Heflin, who works in the Office of Graduate Intern Programs, was honored with the 2009 Chancellor’s Award to Recognize Excellence in Civil Service. Heflin started as extra help in the GPSI office, and was hired into the Center for Legal Studies full time in October 2001. Then, in 2002 she was hired to work in the GPSI office again, and has been there ever since.

The person who nominated her for the award said about her, when you look up “ethical” in the dictionary, you see a picture of Sharon.

Other Civil Service employees nominated for the award include:
Carolyn Cerven, Account Technician II, OBFS
Deborah Dove, Admissions and Records Specialist II, Admissions
Bobbie Fults, Office Support Specialist, Computer Science
Normajean Niebur, Office Support Specialist, Criminal Justice
Marcia Rossi, Office Administrator, Library Administration
Dawn Tompkins, Staff Clerk, Experiential and Service Learning
Carol Wendling, Administrative Clerk, Academic Affairs

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Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Fall into Volunteer Fair teams students with community



The University of Illinois Springfield invited nearly 25 non-profit groups to campus on Tuesday, September 22, 2009 in an effort to get students to volunteer.

It was all part of the first ever "Fall into Volunteer Fair" organized by the Volunteer and Civic Engagement Center, UIS Housing and the Experiential and Service-Learning Programs.

"I think volunteering is a great way for students to find something to do during their free time on the weekends that gives them some type of extra meaning in their lives," said UIS senior and event organizer Andy Shaffer.

Representatives from Lincoln Memorial Gardens, Illinois State Museum, Boys and Girls Club, Planned Parenthood and Memorial Medical Center attended the event.

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Friday, September 18, 2009

Students share stories about studying abroad in Peru



A dedicated group of nine University of Illinois Springfield students spent 17 days this summer learning in Peru. It’s the first time UIS has sent a study abroad group to South America.

The students shared their experiences with the UIS campus during a presentation on September 17, 2009.

The students lived in the former imperial capital of Cusco for a week, they climbed Machu Picchu, a place of retreat for an Inca king and one of the new Seven World Wonders; they navigated Lake Titicaca located 12,500 feet above sea level and stayed with host families on Amantani Island, and also took 28 hours of immersion Spanish!

As part of the class activities and requisites, students in the Peru study abroad course kept a bilingual journal where they wrote (in Spanish) about culture and many learning activities of the day, and they wrote (in English) critical reflections about issues related to social responsibility, environmental practices, cultural practices, history, and political resistance.

Students say they’d love to have the chance to go back to the country and say next year’s study abroad trip is already being planned.

For more information on Study Abroad visit the Office of International Programs website or contact Veronica Espina at 217/206-8300 or vespi1@uis.edu.

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Thursday, September 17, 2009

Health Services works to prevent seasonal and H1N1 flu



University of Illinois Springfield Campus Health Services is now offering seasonal flu shots to students, faculty and staff. The shot does not protect against the H1N1 virus, but Health Services expects to have that vaccine on hand by mid-October.

The seasonal flu shot costs $15.00 for UIS students and is free to employees who have State of Illinois insurance. Non-insured staff can get the shot for $18.00 and employee’s significant others for $20.00.

Campus Health Services Director Lynne Price says the best way to prevent either flu is by washing your hands. She says people also need to cough or sneeze into their sleeves and stay home when they have a fever over 100.

Price says H1N1 is milder than the common flu, but it spreads more readily. She says about 97% of the flu cases happening now are H1N1 and only 3% appear to be seasonal.

Seasonal Flu Shot Clinic Dates:

Thursday, September 17, 2009
9am - 3pm

Tuesday, September 22, 2009
9am - 5pm and 6pm - 7:30pm

Wednesday, September 30, 2009
9am - 5pm

Monday, October 5, 2009
9am - 5pm

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

9am - 5pm and 6pm - 7:30pm

All shots will be given in Public Affairs Center (PAC) Conference Rooms C & D.

If you have questions call Campus Health Service at 206-6676

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Monday, September 14, 2009

UIS Hosts Campus Blood Drive



University of Illinois Springfield students, faculty and staff members rolled up their sleeves to help save lives Monday. The Clinical Lab Science Club sponsored a blood drive and bone marrow typing event at Lincoln Residence Hall.

The drive was put on by the Central Illinois Community Blood Center, which is the main source for blood for 19 hospitals in central and southwestern Illinois.

This is the first time the blood center has teamed up to offer bone marrow typing, which puts donors on a match registry for people in need.

Almost 50 people donated blood during the drive at LRH.

Future UIS Blood Drives:

Monday, November 16 , 2009
Public Affairs Center (Sponsor: Graduate Professional Union)

Wednesday, February 17, 2010
Public Affairs Center (Sponsor: Student Government Association)

Monday, April 19, 2010
Lincoln Residence Hall (Sponsor: Clinical Lab Science Club)

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Thursday, September 10, 2009

MAP Grant Cuts Felt on UIS Campus



State budget problems could mean less financial aid for students at the University of Illinois Springfield. The Illinois General Assembly cut all funding for the Monetary Award Program (MAP) for the Spring 2010 semester. The Fall 2009 semester is still being fully funded by the state.

The cuts to the MAP program would affect about 750 students at UIS who on average receive about $1,900 a semester from the program. The UIS office of Financial Assistance has sent out an e-mail to students warning them about the cuts.

Many students have traditionally used the MAP grant program to help them fund their college education. UIS Director of Financial Assistance Dr. Gerard Joseph says the university is talking to lawmakers in an effort to get them to restore MAP funds.

“We are hoping that students will not panic and get anxious and just drop out of school and not wait until we figure out where we stand in this situation,” said Joseph.

MAP grants are awarded to about 150,000 college students statewide every semester.

For more information about MAP grants visit the Financial Assistance office website at or call 206-6724.

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Thursday, September 03, 2009

Theatre Open House & Season Preview



UIS Theatre held an open house to show new and returning students what they have planned for the 2009-2010 season. Three productions featuring a mix of student and community actors will start in November.

The first show is Neil LaBute’s The Shape of Things set to run November 13-15 and 19-21, 2009. The play is set in a liberal arts college, in a conservative Midwestern town. In the production, four characters struggle to find their voice in matters of love and art.

UIS “Student Directed Scenes,” which showcases the final projects of the students in the Fall ’09 “Directing for the Theatre” class will take place on December 8 and 9, 2009.

The last performance will be Milan Stitt’s The Runner Stumbles set to run April 23-25 and 29-May 1, 2010. The play is set in a remote northern Michigan parish in 1911 where a young nun mysteriously dies. The parish priest is charged with the crime.

Performances will take place starting at 7:30 p.m. on weekdays and 2:00 p.m. on Sundays in the Studio Theatre in the Public Affairs Center on the UIS campus.

For more information about the plays and auditions visit the UIS Theatre website at: http://www.uis.edu/theatre/

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Friday, August 28, 2009

UIS students volunteer during Service-A-Thon



Students from the University of Illinois Springfield rolled up their sleeves to help out the community through volunteering. It was all part of the Service-A-Thon organized by the Volunteer and Civic Engagement Center as part of Welcome Week 2009.

Volunteers spent time at Washington Park in Springfield clearing shrubs from a hiking trail in order to restore it to a more natural look. Students also went to the Midwest Mission Distribution Center to put together school kits to be shipped overseas. Other students put together cancer survivor packets at the American Cancer Society office in Springfield.

Students are encouraged to sign up in an effort to provide service to the community, meet new friends and learn skills.

For more information about volunteer service at UIS and future events visit www.uis.edu/volunteer/.

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Thursday, August 27, 2009

Welcome Week 2009 Activities



The University of Illinois Springfield greeted new and returning students with a variety of activities during Welcome Week 2009.

The Diversity Center held an open house in an effort to bring students of all races and backgrounds together. Students gathered to talk about what they have in common and what makes them unique.

The Involvement Expo on the UIS quad featured nearly 50 student organizations that help out in the community and promote education. Springfield-area businesses also joined in the expo to show students what they have to offer.

The 2009 "Foot in the Door" Fair was sponsored by the Career Development Center and brought 52 employers to campus. The goal of the fair was to bring students face-to-face with employers to discuss part-time jobs, internships and other opportunities.

The Office of Disability Services welcomed students during it's open house to show how they help students with special needs in the classroom. The office works with professors to make sure needs are met for students with chronic or temporary illness.

To also see slide show of welcome week activities click on the below link:

Welcome Week slide show

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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Chancellor's picnic welcomes back students



Clear blue skies helped welcome students back to campus during University of Illinois Springfield Chancellor Richard Ringeisen’s annual picnic. Students got to shake hands with the campus leader and enjoy a variety of food while listening to music.

“It shows a variety of the different types of students we have and it also gives the faculty and staff a chance to interact with the students,” said Ringeisen.

The celebration is part of Welcome Week 2009, which also includes an open house at the Diversity Center, Involvement Expo on the Quad and the Foot in the Door Job Fair.

To also see slide show of welcome week activities click on the below link:
Welcome Week slide show

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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

"Save a Life" Tour



Students at the University of Illinois Springfield got a hands on look at what it’s like to be drunk behind the wheel. The “Save a Life” simulator takes a driver from being sober to a .2 blood alcohol level.

This is the second year the “Save a Life” tour has made a stop at UIS. It was so popular in 2006 that Alcohol & Drug Prevention Coordinator Valerie Scarbrough decided to bring it back again.

“Most of all we’re encouraging kids 21 and younger not to drink, but if you are going to do it to do it safely,” said Scarbrough.

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Friday, August 14, 2009

Governor Quinn visits UIS Emiquon display at State Fair

Governor Pat Quinn visited the University of Illinois Springfield's Emiquon Field Station display at the state fair on Friday, August 14th. Emiquon advisory board member and "super volunteer" Michael Purnell greeted the governor.

Purnell was impressed with Governor Quinn's knowledge of the UIS presence in the Emiquon Project and the UIS online programs.

Dr. Keith Miller, along with Purnell, and Dr. Hilary Frost-Kumpf set up the display on the first day of the fair and was on hand to greet and talk with state fair visitors.

Click on the video to see and hear about the UIS Emiquon display and Governor Quinn's visit.



The UIS Emiquon Field Station will have a display at the Governor’s Innovation Tent from August 14th through August 23rd from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

WHERE: The Governor’s Innovation Tent is located near the intersection of Main Street and Brian Raney Avenue. (Come in Gate One, go straight, and the tent is on the right just pass Ethnic Village. There is a Governor’s Tent and a Governor’s Innovation Tent.)

ADDITIONAL INFO: The UIS display will contain information on the Emiquon Field Station and The Nature Conservancy. There will be a BioBingo game for kids, erosion/wetland demonstration, computer presentations and more. For additional information, contact Keith Miller at 217-206-7327 or kmill2@uis.edu. To learn more about Emiquon, visithttp://www.uis.edu/emiquon/

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Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Children at Cox collect school supplies for local district

By Courtney Westlake



A small group of children from the Cox Children's Center enjoyed the outdoors on Wednesday morning, July 29, as they read books and sang songs by the Colonnade. But, more importantly, the kids greeted and thanked several staff and faculty members who stopped by to donate school supplies that the kids were collecting in a big green wagon to give to local schools.

"We're collecting school supplies for the kids that need them," explained five-year-old Ryan. Some supplies collected included "paper, glue, pencils, colored pencils, markers, crayons," Ryan said.

Ryan and classmate Blake agreed that it feels good to help out other children and share supplies they collect.

"We need to give other kids stuff so they can go to school," Blake said.

The Cox Children's Center on UIS' campus - which cares for infants through children age five during the school year, and through age 14 during the summer - does a few service projects every year to stay involved with the local community, said Stacey Gilmore, director of the center.

"We want to help kids understand why it's important, at an early age, to get involved with the community and help others who might need our help," she said. "This is something kids can relate to. They're fortunate enough that they can go to school and have the supplies they need to succeed. It's our goal is to help others get that same early start."

Children of UIS students attend school in the Ball Chatham district, so the school supplies collected at the Cox Center will be donated to that school district, Gilmore said.

"It's important for us to help those families," she said.

On Wednesday, some of the children at Cox gathered at the Colonnade to make it convenient for anyone wanting to donate to bring supplies out to the kids, but the Children's Center will also be collecting supplies at the center until August 4. Collection boxes are set up in each classroom of the facility.

Some supplies that are needed include: #2 pencils, 24-count crayons, backpacks, red pens, large erasers, Fiskar-brand scissors, folders with pockets, 3X5 lined index cards, yellow highlighters, rulers, tissues, compasses, 3-subject spiral notebooks, pen/pencil carrying cases, Scotch tape and much more. For a complete list, contact the Cox Children's Center.

Gilmore said they are extremely proud of the children's efforts at Cox to help collect supplies to donate.

"A lot of these families are not very well off themselves, but it's amazing to me that they still will make it a point to bring in something, even if it's just a box of crayons, to help their children understand that this is important," she said. "So we are proud that they take that responsibility on."

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