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  • Hailey Hollinshead


    Hailey Hollinshead | All In for Science

    Hailey Hollinshead’s passion for science and medical research has grown at the University of Illinois Springfield. She happily admits to being one of those rare people who love chemistry.

    She says: "Women becoming a larger part of the scientific profession? Count me in. Becoming part of academic conversations where discoveries change the world overnight? That sounds exhilarating. Making a difference while immersing myself in work that I love? I'm all in."

    She plans to attend medical school following graduation and become a dermatologist.

    This past year, Hailey was the recipient of the William and Mary Schnirring Liberal Arts and Sciences Scholarship and was honored with the Student Laureate Award from the Lincoln Academy of Illinois.

    Scholarships are a Reaching Stellar priority…

    Because scholarships affirm the aspirations, energy and diversity of our student body.

  • Elise Simmons

    The Public Good

    Elise Simmons | Meeting A Need for Illinois

    Providing teachers for Illinois has suddenly become a lot more important. According to a report released by the Illinois Association of Regional Superintendents of Schools,* 85% of Illinois districts report some level of teacher shortage and 19% said they have had to cut programs or classes because of the shortage.

    Elise Simmons, who is majoring in elementary education, will help to meet this need. In addition to her time with excellent UIS professors, Elise also furthers her preparation for teaching by working as an AVID tutor in a local middle school (AVID prepares students for college) and as a 5th-grade teacher's assistant at Butler Elementary School. She also volunteers with Generation Healthy Kids, a program that teaches kids about healthy cooking and the importance of physical activity. So she is contributing to the Public Good now and will in the future as well. Read her story here.

    The Public Good is a Reaching Stellar priority….

    Because we are all on this journey together.

    *Illinois Educator Teacher Shortage Crisis 2018 (Version 2019.2),

  • Payton Raso

    Academic Excellence

    Payton Raso and the "Jailhouse Snitch Bill"

    Payton Raso majored in Political Science and History at UIS. During his time working with the Illinois Innocence Project, Payton played an active role in the passage of Senate Bill 1830 regarding the testimony of jailhouse informants. It is considered the strongest bills of its kind in the United States.

    Payton graduated from UIS magna cum laude in May 2019. He will be attending the University of Iowa Law School in the fall. For now, he's keeping his future options open but whatever he does in his career, his education was immeasurably enhanced by his experience with the Illinois Innocence Project and his perspective on the criminal justice has been forever changed. Read his story here.

    Academic Excellence is a Reaching Stellar priority…

    Because learning empowers the future.

  • Chancellor Koch

    UIS Center for Lincoln Studies

    The UIS Center for Lincoln Studies

    The UIS Center for Lincoln Studies will be announced during the next academic year, but plans are progressing nicely. In April, at the annual Celebration of Philanthropy on April 17, 2019, Chancellor Susan J. Koch made this announcement:

    "Just this past week, thanks in part to UI System President Tim Killeen’s Distinguished Faculty Hiring initiative, we sealed the deal to hire our second renowned Lincoln Scholar.  He will join Dr. Michael Burlingame in the Department of History this Fall as we move toward the formal announcement of the new UIS Center for Lincoln Studies."

    Stay tuned for further updates about this important addition to the Center!

    The UIS Center for Lincoln Studies is a Reaching Stellar Campaign priority…

    Because Lincoln still instructs, inspires and elevates all of us.

  • Baseball field

    Facilities and Technology

    Another Stellar Year for Baseball

    The UIS Prairie Stars athletes are having another amazing season in baseball. The men's overall record is 33-11-1, and as of April 30, 2019, they have a 13-game winning streak.

    Thanks to generous donors, the UIS Baseball Field also looks good. The field has undergone extreme renovations over the past years to become what it is today. Most recently, the field turf was installed, giving UIS one of the premier playing surfaces in the Great Lakes Valley Conference. The scoreboard was sponsored by the Bank of Springfield.

    The future for the field is even brighter, with more enhancements coming, such as power, a press box, restrooms, concessions, locker rooms and coaches' offices. For information on how you can support these enhancements, please contact Roy Brown, Deputy Athletics Director.

    Go Prairie Stars!

    Facilities & Technology are a Reaching Stellar Campaign priority…

    Because we are building tomorrow's University today.



  • Scholarships

    Scholarships | More Than Just Financial

    Scholarship donors sometimes form a very special relationship with recipients, giving students extra encouragement, special experiences, and even friendship. Dr. Rose Marie Roach did so with Joye Williams who finished her master's degree in Legal Studies last year.

    "Rose Marie Roach is an amazing woman, my benefactor, idol, confidant, and friend," Joye said.

    Rose Marie helped to make Joye's commencement last year very special. As Joye describes it: "When it looked as though my 92-year-old mother would be unable to attend my graduation, Rose (also over 90) told me, 'I’ll be there and make enough noise for both of us.' Fortunately, both were in attendance, and true to form, they were among the loudest people in the audience. I told them, 'Thank God I have a Legal Studies degree. I should be able to get two over-ninety-year-old women out of jail for disorderly conduct!' It was one of the best days of my life."

    Scholarships are a Reaching Stellar priority …

    because they affirm the aspirations, energy and diversity of our student body.

  • Public Policy graduates

    Academic Excellence

    New Public Policy Major at UIS

    A strong commitment to preparing professionals for public service has identified UIS from its earliest days, and excellent academic programs strengthen that commitment. Public Policy, one such program, explores the full policy-making process. This includes applying and evaluating policies—especially important here in the state capital of Illinois. Public Policy is part of the UIS Political Science Department.

    Students complete internships in many settings, including the American Red Cross, Illinois Innocence Project, Cook-Witter, Inc., Senator Durbin's Springfield Office and more. Three award-winning student organizations enhance students' experience: Model United Nations, Model Illinois Government, and the Illinois Moot Court/Mock Trial Club.

    This year, the first four graduates in the Bachelors of Public Policy will complete their programs. Pictured from left: Tristan Akers, James Wheeler, Andrew Jarmer, and Jason Edwards. Congratulations!

    Academic Excellence is a Reaching Stellar Campaign priority…

    Because learning empowers the future (for all of us).


  • Larry Shiner

    The Public Good

    A Stellar Professor and Passionate Advocate

    The University of Illinois Foundation's William E. Winter Award for Outstanding Advocate Leadership recognizes individuals outside of the University structure who play active roles in securing private support for the University of Illinois.

    On April 17, 2019, Dr. Larry Shiner received the Winter award in recognition of his passionate advocacy of UIS. He has a special interest in the art, music and theater programs at UIS, all of which contribute to the Public Good in Central Illinois and beyond. He and his wife, Catherine Walters, generously support UIS financially, including the Suzanna Kay Shiner Scholarship Endowment Fund, created by Larry and Catherine in 2002 in memory of their daughter.

    You can learn more about Larry's advocacy in this video, shown during the award ceremony.

    The Public Good is a Reaching Stellar campaign priority because…

    We are all part of this journey together.

  • UIS Center for Lincoln Studies

    Lincoln Legacy Lecture | Save the Date

    Each year, Dr. Michael Burlingame, the Naomi B. Lynn Distinguished Chair of Lincoln Studies, invites nationally renowned Lincoln scholars to join him in presenting original lectures on a contemporary issue from the perspective of Abraham Lincoln and his era. These very popular Lincoln Legacy Lectures link us to a time when many of the biggest issues of democracy came to a head, issues that are still pertinent today. 

    We encourage you to Save the Date for the 2019 Lincoln Legacy Lecture with the topic of Lincoln, Immigration, & Citizenship. The event will be held at 7:00 p.m., on Tuesday, October 15, 2019, in the UIS Student Union.

    The UIS Center for Lincoln Studies is a Reaching Stellar priority because…

    Lincoln still has the power to instruct, inspire and elevate all of us.


  • Studio Theatre

    Facilities & Technology

    UIS Performing Arts Center Renovations

    Plans for the intimate UIS Studio Theatre located on the first floor of the Public Affairs Center include an all new seating system providing wider chairs and better sight lines along with a more intimate feel to the space overall. Upgrades will also occur to the lighting and sound system.  Finally, a new high-intensity projections system and movie screen are being added to allow feature films to be shown.  Renovations are underway with completion expected by Labor Day weekend.

    Bryan Rives, director of UIS Performing Arts Services says “It was important to us for the Studio Theatre to be a priority in our renovation plans as it is most used by our students including the UIS Theatre program which has now grown to providing a Theatre major degree. We always want our students to have access to modern facilities and equipment as they begin their careers.”

    Facilities & Technology is a Reaching Stellar priority...

    because UIS is building tomorrow's University today.


  • Malavika Mujumdar


    Malavika Mujumdar | A Literary Activist

    Malavika Mujumdar is an English and history major at UIS and plans to go to graduate school, either to pursue an MFA in creative writing or a master's degree in English literature. "Social change has always been a goal of literature," she says. "As a writer I hope to be an agent of that change."

    This year Malavika received the Rosie Richmond Scholarship, named in memory of an accomplished UIS grad, author and business woman. Rosie taught creative writing at UIS (then SSU) and co-founded a local women's writing group. Before her death from cancer in 1994, she asked that a scholarship be awarded annually to a female undergraduate student aspiring to be a writer.

    "I was happy and appreciative to be selected as the Rosie Richmond Scholarship," says Malavika. "It has lightened my financial burden so that I can focus more on learning."

    Scholarships are a Reaching Stellar priority…

    Because scholarships affirm the aspirations of UIS students.

  • Sean Crawford

    The Public Good

    NPR Illinois' Statewide has a State-Wide Reach

    When NPR Illinois staff travel to other locations in the state, according to Managing Director Randy Eccles, people frequently approach Sean Crawford with statements like, "We listen every week, Sean," or "Love your show, Sean!"

    These far-flung fans are talking about Statewide, hosted by Sean Crawford, a show that is heard on nine public radio stations in Illinois. The show airs reports and conversations from in and around Illinois. In addition to government issues, the show covers topics as diverse as cave exploration, electric vehicles, mortuary science, and baseball history. It is a production of NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS with help from other Illinois public radio stations. 

    Statewide is a great example of the Public Good to which UIS contributes, not only in Central Illinois but in this instance throughout the State of Illinois.

    The Public Good is an important Reaching Stellar priority…

    …because we are all on this journey together.

  • Darlene Steinkamp

    Academic Excellence

    UIS Helps Alleviate Nursing Shortage

    Illinois has a nursing shortage. To help meet this shortage, in 2014 the University of Illinois Chicago College of Nursing worked with UIS and Memorial Health System to launch a nursing program here in Springfield. Students take pre-nursing classes at UIS, and then apply to complete two more years at the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Nursing, Springfield Regional Campus, with classes held at UIS and clinical work at Memorial Hospital.

    Twelve nurses graduated from the program in 2018, the first graduates from the program. This year, 24 more nurses will graduate, and 65% say they plan to stay in Springfield.*

    Darlene Steinkamp is one of the students completing her nursing program this May. "It's really hard coursework," she says, "but at the end of the day, it's important to know all this because we are taking care of lives."

    Academic Excellence…learning that empowers the future.

    *See "Illinois lawmakers trying to find solution to nurse shortages," by Katie Bandish, NewsChannel20 (2/27/2019).

  • Chancellor Koch

    UIS Center for Lincoln Studies

    Chancellor Koch on Abraham Lincoln

    Each month, Chancellor Koch writes a column for a local newspaper, the Springfield Journal-Register. In February 2019, she wrote about UIS and Abraham Lincoln.* Here is an excerpt in which she writes about the UIS Center for Lincoln Studies:

    Lincoln Studies at UIS will take another important step forward in the coming year with the formal launch of the Center for Lincoln Studies – a priority of the current Reaching Stellar fundraising campaign. With planning underway for collaboration with the ALPLM, the Abraham Lincoln Association and other Lincoln-oriented organizations, the Center will provide new opportunities for learning about Lincoln and the impact of his contributions. The Center also aspires to advance research in Lincoln Studies and help prepare the next generation of Lincoln scholars.

    This new Center is an important priority for the Reaching Stellar Campaign…

    …because Lincoln still has the power to instruct, inspire and elevate all of us.



  • 2019 Alumni Gala

    Facilities & Technology

    Alumni Gala Sets Record for Attendance

    On Friday, February 22, alumni and friends gathered for the 2019 Alumni Gala at the UIS Student Union. Randall F. Dunn of Florida received the Alumni Achievement Award, and Dr. Larry Golden, Founding Director of the Illinois Innocence Project received the Alumni Distinguished Service Award.

    The Gala was previously held off campus, but now the Student Union can comfortably accommodate crowds. At this year's event, the Student Union ballroom had space for 275 people (the largest recorded attendance at the gala), two buffet tables, a bar inside the ballroom, and a bar in the pre-function area.

    Thank you so much, generous donors, for making this event and so many others at the Student Union possible.

    Facilities & Technology are a Reaching Stellar priority...

    Building tomorrow's university today.

  • Scholarship Luncheon


    Three New Scholarships for UIS Students

    • Lawrence E. Williams/Dr. Larry Golden Illinois Innocence Project Scholarship: Education can be a stepping stone to a new life, so Joye Williams created this scholarship for a previously convicted person who has been exonerated, had his or her record expunged, or has completed serving a sentence and wishes to attend UIS. As a second choice, the scholarship will go to a student working in the Illinois Innocence Project. Add your support to this scholarship at here.
    • The Allan and Penny Roth Scholarship in Cybersecurity will support an undergraduate student in Computer Science who has a concentration in Information Systems Security.

    • Floyd Scholarship for Public Administration: In recognition of the history and founding principles of the UIS (previously Sangamon State) and its location in the State Capital, this scholarship has been created for an upper-division undergraduate student with an academic focus in American public administration.

    Because scholarships affirm the aspirations of our students.

  • Betty Richardson

    Public Good

    SSU Grad Still Serving the Public Good at 80

    Betty Kehl Richardson graduated in the first class of bachelor's degree nurses at Sangamon State (now UIS). She earned many graduate degrees, including a Ph.D. in psychology and mental health. She has demonstrated an amazing heart for service in her life, and at 80, she's still going strong.

    A Red Cross volunteer, Betty was recently deployed to Chico, California, to work with the Paradise fire survivors. She's also a docent at her state history museum (Texas) and a Rotarian. When her son Mark died on 2017, she set up a memorial fund in his name which she uses to supply books, bookshelves and computers for a grade school in Reynosa, Mexico. In the picture, she is delivering pen pal letters from the Reynosa school to a school in Austin, her home. They will write letters in return.

    "There are so many things to do to be of service to others," she says. Looking at what Betty has accomplished for the Public Good in her life, no wonder UIS is still committed to developing a heart for the public good in students.

    The Public Good…because we are all on this journey together.

  • Sarah Lindholm

    Academic Excellence

    Sarah Lindholm, Outstanding Thesis Award

    On Thursday, February 7, Sarah Lindholm accepted the Outstanding Master's Thesis Project Award for her thesis entitled A Longitudinal Study on the Floristic Quality of the Emiquon Preserve's Tallgrass Prairie Reconstruction in Illinois. Sarah earned her BS and MA in Biology at UIS. Dr. Amy McEuen as her master's thesis chair.

    Sarah collected plant species data from the five management sites of restored native prairie at Emiquon Preserve in the summer of 2016. The preserve is owned by the Nature Conservancy and features a restored functional wetland complex and 148 ha of mesic tallgrass prairie restoration. After adding her work to previous data collected in 2008 and 2012, she applied standard quality metrics to judge the restoration through time and compare sites. Two showed positive progress over the nine-year period, while the other three, likely due to heavy flooding, did not fare as well and even decreased in quality. Her research will help the Nature Conservancy decide the next best steps for management and provide UIS with the data needed to continue a variety of long-term research on the tallgrass prairie.

    Sarah now works as an environmental scientist and geographical information systems analyst at Northwater Consulting in Springfield. She is interested in pursuing a PhD in ecology. Great work, Sarah, and wonderful proof of the learning at UIS that empowers students' futures!


  • Abraham Lincoln in 1860

    UIS Center for Lincoln Studies

    Lincoln's Farewell Speech

    On February 11, 1861, Abraham Lincoln left his home in Springfield, Illinois, for Washington, D.C. on a special presidential train. His Farewell Address to the crowd was delivered extemporaneously. The following is the version Lincoln wrote down after the train pulled away.

    My friends -- No one, not in my situation, can appreciate my feeling of sadness at this parting. To this place, and the kindness of these people, I owe every thing. Here I have lived a quarter of a century, and have passed from a young to an old man. Here my children have been born, and one is buried. I now leave, not knowing when, or whether ever, I may return, with a task before me greater than that which rested upon Washington. Without the assistance of the Divine Being who ever attended him, I cannot succeed. With that assistance I cannot fail. Trusting in Him who can go with me, and remain with you and be every where for good, let us confidently hope that all will yet be well. To His care commending you, as I hope in your prayers you will commend me, I bid you an affectionate farewell.*

    These words reveal a man whose character can inspire UIS students as they study his life and works in the UIS Center for Lincoln Studies…

    …because Lincoln still has power to instruct, inspire and elevate all of us.



    Photo: Public Domain,

  • Nicole Watts

    Facilities and Technology

    UIS Online | 33rd best in country

    US News & World Report has ranked UIS' online bachelor's degree programs as 33rd best in the country out of more than 348 institutions. The master's in Management Information Systems was ranked 33 out of 150, and the online master's degree in education ranked 77 out of 299 degrees. US News & World Report assessed schools in four categories: engagement of students with each other and with instructors, service and technologies that allow students flexibility, faculty credentials and training, and expert opinion from high-ranking academic officials. More on the rankings here.

    UIS is known for creating a path for all learners regardless of location, experience, age, responsibilities, or goals. Online education has an important role in making the potential possible for our students.

    Facilities & Technology…because we are building tomorrow's University today.

  • Brooklyn Hermes


    Brooklyn Hermes | The Kindness of a Nurse

    As a child, Brooklyn Hermes endured serious illness and many surgeries. She remembers a special nurse who made her laugh during the worst times. "Her simple acts of kindness made me so happy," Brooklyn says. "My main goal in life right now is to be as influential to others as she was to me. This is the reason I want to be a nurse." Brooklyn currently works as a Patient Care Technician at Memorial Medical Center. "Working and attending school can be a challenge," she admits, "but I know I will succeed due to all the wonderful support and encouragement I have received, including my scholarships. I am so thankful."

    This year, Brooklyn received the Martha Scheibel Harrison Scholarship, the Karen Hasara Scholarship, the Marilyn Schnirring Kennedy Scholarship, and the Gary E. and Janice M. Spears Endowed Scholarship.

    Scholarships…because they affirm the aspirations of students.

  • Child Protection Training Academy

    The Public Good

    Child Protection Training Academy

    The Child Protection Agency, brought to UIS by Dr. Betsy Goulet, provides training to new investigators in the Department of Child and Family Services (DCFS). Trainees go through a simulated investigation with actors playing the parents and answering questions about the alleged abuse (pictured). Investigators also practice giving testimony in a mock courtroom, staffed by community volunteers. Susan Evans, director of the Academy, said, "Investigators who have completed this training overwhelmingly express a desire for more hours in the simulation labs, practicing the skills they need to be confident and competent in the field" (quoted from a WAND TV interview). The Academy has provided training to 566 new investigators so far.

    You're invited to the Academy's Third Anniversary Celebration on Tuesday, February 19. For more information or to RSVP, please contact Taylor McCarthy.

    The Public Good…because we are all on this journey together.


  • Jamie Stevens

    Academic Excellence

    Jamie Stevens | Inspired to Dream Bigger

    Jamie Stevens, master's student in Human Development Counseling, wants to counsel clients with developmental disabilities, a woefully underserved population. She has a special interest in autism. During her first semester at UIS, Jamie shared with her professor, Dr. Leigh Steiner, how little research had been done on counseling clients with autism. Dr. Steiner agreed and then said something that Jamie will never forget—that Jamie herself might be the person to pursue that research. "I had never thought of myself as someone who could do something of such importance," Jamie says. "Her confidence in me inspired me to believe in myself and dream even bigger." Dr. Steiner continues to inspire and guide Jamie on her academic and professional journey.

    Your gifts contribute to the academic excellence that professors like Dr. Leigh Steiner bring to UIS, of great importance...

    Because excellent learning empowers the future.

  • Chancellor Koch

    UIS Center for Lincoln Studies

    Chancellor Koch Narrates Copland's "Lincoln Symphony"

    On October 18, 2018, UIS Chancellor Susan Koch provided narration for the Illinois Symphony Orchestra performance of Aaron Copland's "Lincoln Portrait," reading texts from Lincoln's State of the Union address, the Gettysburg Address, and selections from a Lincoln-Douglas debate. The concert opened the Symphony's season. The "Lincoln Portrait" was chosen to celebrate both Lincoln and Illinois.

    During this brief video from the Illinois Symphony's "Lincoln Portrait," Chancellor Koch says, "Abraham Lincoln, 16th president of the United States, is everlasting in the memory of his countrymen." The UIS Center for Lincoln Studies will celebrate the wisdom and legacy of this great Illinois statesman. Learn more about the Center here, and please consider adding your support to this great scholarly endeavor.

    ...because Lincoln still instructs, inspires and elevates us

  • Student Union

    Facilities & Technology

    Student Union Wins Award for Design

    The Student Union at UIS has received a design award from the American Institute of Architects. The building was designed by Workshop Architects of Milwaukee, Wisconsin & Dewberry of Peoria, Illinois. From the design jury comments:

    "The project offers a modern, fresh and spacious interactive space. The proposed program with flexible work spaces and overlapped activities seems very appropriate as a social catalyst for students on campus…. The building is a striking, inviting sculptural form. Its plan is well organized and the volumes within the building – for student government and the Starbucks pavilion, are nicely scaled and inviting.”

    Many thanks to the donors who helped to bring this "inviting" building to campus.

    Facilities & Technology: Building tomorrow's University today

  • Leanna Churchill


    A Student Who Wants to Share Stories that Inspire

    As a student at Williamsville High School, Leanna Churchill asked the athletic director if she could take pictures of the school’s sporting events allowed her to network with people in local journalism. Now a communication major at UIS, Leanna works as an intern at in Springfield. “I hope to one day share the stories that help to inspire others and report on events that will be remembered for a lifetime, especially in sports,” she said.

    This year, Leanna has been encouraged in her career by receiving the Dara Drew Memorial Scholarship, named in honor of a member of the Saga Communications (Capitol Radio) Group. To honor someone you know with a named scholarship, go to Scholarship Giving.

    Scholarships: Affirming the aspirations of our students

  • Rachel Otwell

    The Public Good

    NPR Investigative Project

    Rachel Otwell, a reporter for NPR Illinois 91.9 UIS, has been awarded a grant from ProPublica for a year-long investigative project that focuses on issues related to sexual harassment and abuse on college and university campuses in Illinois. The grant provides funding, research, editorial and engagement support. ProPublica has provided similar grants to 13 other newsrooms across the nation "to execute accountability stories that would not otherwise have been possible."

    "The issue of sexual violence on college campuses is one I’ve been interested in reporting on for a long time," Otwell said. "I look forward to doing my small part in helping survivors and others have their voices heard, in hopes of change." (Based on a news article from NPR Illinois.)

    For more information on supporting the Public Good that NPR Illinois brings to our community, go to NPR Illinois.

    The Public Good: Because we are all on this journey together

  • Kayla Thomas

    Academic Excellence

    Out of Her Comfort Zone
    A Guest Post

    Kayla Thomas, a senior English major, recently commented on her academic experience at UIS:

    "My classes have really made me think and grow as a person. This past semester, for example, I took a research course and connected "Sounds of Silence, by Simon and Garfunkel, to a rap song called "Alright," by Kendrick Lamar. I also read Beowulf and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, both of which I connected to my own life in ways I would not have thought possible. I was out of my comfort zone, which is never easy, but it has been so exceptionally rewarding as well. Thank you!"

    Your gifts to UIS, and especially to specific academic units like colleges or departments, allow UIS to continue reaching stellar in academic experiences for students.

    Academic Excellence: Because learning empowers the future

  • Chancellor at the Governor's Mansion

    UIS Center for Lincoln Studies

    The Chancellor Speaks

    On October 18, 2018, the Chancellor spoke about Lincoln at an event for donors and alumni interested in the UIS Center for Lincoln Studies. A portion of her comments appears below:

    "I was thrilled when the UIS Campaign Planning Committee named the forthcoming UIS Center for Lincoln Studies as one of the Reaching Stellar campaign priorities. That's because there is so much yet to be learned from the study of Abraham Lincoln and because such studies have the power to make us better people, better citizens, and more capable leaders.

    "I'm especially excited for what the UIS Center for Lincoln Studies will mean for our students. By providing access to a a University of Illinois education at UIS, both on campus and online, we attract students from throughout Illinois, the nation and even the world. A greater knowledge of Lincoln, his wisdom and his legacy will enhance students' understanding of themselves and enable them to contribute more in their careers and their communities, here and around the globe."

    Because Lincoln still instructs, inspires and elevates all of us

  • Siobhan Hoskins

    Facilities and Technology

    The Student Union | A Place to Study    

    As you probably know, students advocated hard for a Student Union. They gave many reasons for needing the building—a place designed specifically for students to hang out, eat, socialize, and catch up with each other. The Student Union is all of those for students, plus one more—a place to study. If you walk through the Student Union at any given time during the week, you're sure to find students studying in groups or on their own, often with a cup of coffee nearby. The many windows, ambient light, comfortable seating and camaraderie of other students also working on assignments make the Student Union a popular study destination, including Siobhan Hoskins, pictured at right. You can find a slide show of just a few of these students here.

    To the many alumni, UIS friends, employees, and students who helped bring this building to campus, here's one more reason for us to be grateful. Thank you!

    Because students need tomorrow's University today.

  • Alexus Venegas-Rodriguez

    The Public Good

    Alexus Venegas-Rodriguez | Habitat for Humanity
    Guest Post

    "Volunteering for Habitat for Humanity is one of the most memorable experiences I have had at UIS. Five of us signed up together. When we entered the van, we barely knew each other. That was not the case at the end of the day. We had the job of organizing newly donated furniture and supplies. The five of us worked together and learned how to efficiently comply with the needs of the organization and this community. We were not just organizing furniture. We were helping the other workers who spend every day helping people in need. It was a great opportunity to meet fantastic people from widely different backgrounds. Without volunteers, this wonderful organization would not have expanded to its current size. I gained some great friends through this experience while helping my community become its best."

    Each year, UIS students contribute thousands of hours of volunteer service to Springfield and the surrounding communities.

    Because we are all on this journey together.

  • Young Lincoln statue

    UIS Center for Lincoln Studies

    Happy Thanksgiving!

    With Thanksgiving coming soon, it's worth remembering that on October 3, 1863, Abraham Lincoln proclaimed the last Thursday in November as a national day of Thanksgiving. He did so after receiving a request from Sarah Josepha Hale, that the day of thanksgiving be celebrated on the same day throughout the United States "to become permanently an American custom and institution." Prior to this, states that celebrated Thanksgiving, mostly in New England and other northern states, chose their own day of celebration. Our country has celebrated Thanksgiving every year since Lincoln's proclamation.

    Best wishes for your own celebrations, and many, many thanks to the wonderful friends and alumni of UIS who have given and will give during this year of 2018.

    Because Lincoln still instructs, inspires and elevates us all

  • Bill Hoffman, Thomas Rivera and Dr. Ted Mims


    2018 Scholarship Luncheon

    On Wednesday, November 7, UIS hosted its 22nd Annual Scholarship Luncheon for more than 270 scholarship donors, recipients and special guests. Thomas Rivera, a computer science major who received the Ted Mims Scholarship, was able to meet donor Bill Hoffman at the luncheon. Bill Hoffman (at left in the picture) funded the scholarship named in honor of Dr. Ted Mims (far right). According to Bill, when he was in danger of abandoning his own degree program in computer science, Ted Mims said, "Look, you're so close to finishing. Knuckle down and get it done!" With his master's degree, Bill enjoyed a very successful career with Microsoft. He recently retired, but his gratitude to Ted has never gone away. Thank you, Bill, for the scholarship support you are providing to qualified UIS students.

    Because scholarships affirm the aspirations, energy and diversity of UIS students.

  • Janelly Mendia

    Academic Excellence

    Memorial Medical Center Foundation | Anatomical Models

    The Memorial Medical Center Foundation continues to support academic excellence at UIS. This fall the Foundation followed up an earlier grant to the Biology Department for anatomical models with a second grant. Students in anatomy and physiology labs are using the additional torsos, legs, arms and other 3-D models both for learning and testing. "The additional models are especially helpful because we have added so many exercise science students to the A & P classes," said UIS Biology Instructor David Holland, who co-wrote the grant proposal with Dr. Tracy Schatteman. The models will also be used in Dr. Schatteman's upper-level A & P course for pre-med students.

    At right: UIS student Janelly Mendia analyzes leg muscles.

    Academic Excellence: Because learning empowers the future.


  • UIS Performing Arts Center Lobby Renovation

    Facilities and Technology

    New Lobby for the UIS Performing Arts Center

    The new University of Illinois Springfield Performing Arts Center is bringing more than just a new name to UIS. A major facelift of the lobby area is also planned. According to Bryan Rives, new director of the UIS Performing Arts Services, the space will have "amenities patrons expect of a world-class performance facility." This includes a new grand staircase to the third-floor landing and a new ticket office.

    Over the years, 72,000 visitors have come to the performance venues now encompassed in the UIS Performing Arts Center, adding to the performing arts available in Central Illinois. “It was time for a refresh and to celebrate all of the accomplishments our organization has had over the years," said Rives.

    The Public Good: Because we are all on this journey together.

  • Katelyn Garner and her son


    Katelyn Garner | Reaching the Goal

    Computer science major Katelyn Garner lives in Taylorville, where she's raising her "amazing" 10-year-old son on her own while working in a pharmacy. Fortunately her major is available online so she can fit classes around her busy schedule. She chose computer science because she thinks technology, in combination with medicine, agriculture and the food industry, can address the root problems that affect the world's health. Raising a son on her own can be challenging financially, so she was thrilled—and relieved—to learn that she had received the Grace Brorström Oakley Scholarship for online students. More about Grace Brorström Oakley here.

    "I want to show my son that if we set a goal we do not stop until we reach that goal, but I was having a hard time figuring out how to take classes this fall," she said. "Receiving this scholarship lifted a major weight off my shoulders. 'Thank you' does not seem like enough!"

    Scholarships: Because they affirm the aspirations, energy and diversity of UIS students

  • Wrongful Conviction day

    The Public Good

    Illinois Innocence Project | Wrongful Conviction Day

    UIS students interning and volunteering with the Illinois Innocence Project have created a flag display to celebrate the 2018 Wrongful Conviction Day. The display recognizes the 2,266 innocent men and women who were convicted of crimes they did not commit and have been exonerated since 1989. “UIS blue” flags in the display represent 227 Illinois exonerees. The Illinois Innocence Project has contributed to 11 of those exonerations.

    Jayde Schlesinger, master's student in Public Administration and volunteer with the Project, said, "I am excited to go in to the Project every single day. It’s such a long process from someone first writing the Project to possibly being exonerated, but every day is a step closer to the outcome that we all want." Learn more about the Illinois Innocence Project here.

    Because we are all on this journey together.

  • Lincoln Legacy Lecture Announcement

    UIS Center for Lincoln Studies

    2018 Lincoln Legacy Lecture Series

    The 2018 Lincoln Legacy Lecture, sponsored by the UIS Center for Lincoln Studies, will take place on Thursday October 18, 7:00 pm in the Student Union Ballroom.  The event is free and open to the public. 

    This year’s topic is Lincoln vs. Douglas: Slavery and Race in Illinois History

    Please join our moderator, Dr. Michael Burlingame, Chancellor Naomi B. Lynn Distinguished Chair in Lincoln Studies and our speakers, Dr. Graham Peck, Professor of History, St. Xavier University and Rodger Bridges, Former head of the Lincoln Legal Papers. 

    Because Lincoln still instructs, inspires and elevates all of us.


  • Bill and Frances Cosgrove


    The Bill and Frances Cosgrove Water Resource Management Scholarship Fund

    William ‘Bill’ Cosgrove, with Frances Cosgrove’s support, spent his career years working on various aspects of water management. The UIS Therkildsen Field Station at Emiquon provides a site where many disciplines could contribute to the research of the role of wetlands in water resource management. Bill and Frances hope this scholarship will help make use of the Station.

    Scholarships: Because they affirm the aspirations, energy and diversity of our students

  • Brookens Library renovation

    Facilities and Technology

    Brookens Library Renovation

    A major renovation project in Brookens Library will conclude in October. In her August column in the Springfield Journal-Register, Chancellor Koch wrote about the renovation:

    "University libraries are no longer the quiet repositories of books they were when Brookens opened its doors about 40 years ago. Library Dean Pattie Piotrowski and her team have worked closely with Facilities and Services to design a contemporary space that provides a more active 'learning commons' and that fosters collaboration using both physical and digital materials.

    "The renovation includes a more open layout, state-of-the-art LED lighting, modern and durable flooring, mobile furniture, and collaborative spaces that encourage group interaction and active learning. The project also adds a high-tech classroom for library instruction and workshops."

    If you love libraries and value UIS, please consider joining the Friends of the Library. They're a wonderful group of people.

    Facilities and Technology: Building tomorrow's University today


  • Ben Paoletti

    The Public Good

    Ben Paoletti | Leadership for Life Service Program

    At UIS, new students can choose to live on the Leadership for Life Service Wing, or L4L. As part of this service and leadership community, students take a class together and commit to 40 hours of service each semester.

    Ben Paoletti is one such student. A sophomore political science and philosophy major, Ben says, “My experience at UIS has really sparked my passion for volunteerism and civic engagement." This year Ben is a resident assistant on the Leadership for Life Service Wing. He's looking  forward to helping students get involved on campus, with community events, as well promote school spirit and civic engagement.

    Read more about Ben Paoletti and about funds that support the UIS Volunteer and Civic Engagement Center.

    The Public Good: Because we are all on this journey together.

  • Jeremy Hobson

    Academic Excellence

    Jeremy Hobson | Award-Winning Journalist at UIS     

    NPR Illinois will be hosting Jeremy Hobson, journalist and co-host of Here & Now, Jeremy Hobson in Springfield on Monday, September 10, 6 p.m. (find information to this free NPR Illinois event here). You are also welcome to attend a live broadcast of Here&Now at the NPR studios from 12 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. on Tuesday, September 11.

    Also on Tuesday, UIS communication and public affairs reporting students will have a chance to meet with Hobson, who will share insights with them from his wealth of experience in journalism, public affairs, and communication during a Q&A session. Opportunities like this, available because of community support for NPR Illinois, elevate the academic experience of students at UIS. Thank you to all NPR Illinois donors. You are welcome to join this session at the NPR studios at 1:30 p.m.

    Academic Excellence: Because learning empowers the future

  • Agnes M. Dzombak

    UIS Center for Lincoln Studies

    Agnes M. Dzombak | Books about Lincoln

    UIS is pleased to accept a special collection of books from the estate of Agnes M. Dzombak, a longtime Lincoln enthusiast. She collected the books during her lifetime, including eight books by Dr. Michael Burlingame, who holds the Chancellor Naomi B. Lynn Distinguished Chair in Lincoln Studies at UIS. Agnes Dzombak’s son, David Dzombak, Professor and Head of the College of Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University, arranged the gift. He said, “Michael Burlingame’s affiliation with UIS provides further confirmation that UIS will be a good home for the collection. Perhaps my mother had the opportunity to meet Dr. Burlingame sometime at the annual Lincoln Forum in Gettysburg, which she attended every year since its founding in 1995.”

    The Agnes M. Dzombak collection is an outstanding contribution in support of the new UIS Center for Lincoln Studies. It will be housed in Brookens Library.

    Because Abraham Lincoln still instructs, inspires and elevates all of us

  • Innovate Springfield

    Facilities & Technology

    Innovate Springfield becomes part of UIS

    On August 28, Chancellor Koch announced that Innovate Springfield, a downtown Springfield innovation and business incubator, is now part of the University of Illinois Springfield under an agreement that aims at expanding economic growth, entrepreneurship opportunities and social progress in the capital city. Innovate Springfield becomes the first hub of the Illinois Innovation Network (IIN). This new initiative, led by the U of I System, was announced last fall. It seeks to accelerate statewide job creation and economic development through groundbreaking research and innovation.

    “As the first statewide hub of the new Illinois Innovation Network, UIS faculty, students and local companies will work side-by-side and with experts across the state to develop solutions, promote entrepreneurship and empower inventors of the future,” Koch said. “It’s an ideal combination for all entities involved in this partnership.”

    Facilities & Technology: Building tomorrow's University today

  • Ahja Howard



    Ahja Howard | Scholarship Recipient, Campus Leaders

    Donors, your scholarships often help to create campus leaders like Ahja Howard. The recipient of the Sikich LLP Accountancy Scholarship, Ahja is majoring in Accountancy and Business Administration and plans to work for an accounting or business firm. Last year, she was president of the Student Activities Committee, responsible for planning UIS Homecoming and Springfest, a week-long event where student teams compete against each other. She is also a member of the Necessary Steps program, volunteered for a 4-H Mentoring Program and was inducted into the National Society of Leadership and Success. She says, “UIS taught me to put myself out there and challenge myself. I love UIS.”

    Could Ahja have achieved so much without scholarship support? Possibly—she’s an amazing young woman. But the scholarships definitely helped. Thank you, Sikich LLP, for the difference your scholarship makes for UIS students like Ahja.

    Scholarships: Affirming the aspirations, energy and diversity of UIS students

  • Michelle Norris

    The Public Good

    Michelle Norris | Fighting Against Human Trafficking

    A class assignment led Michelle Norris to Grounds of Grace, a Springfield organization that helps victims of human trafficking involved in forced labor, sexual slavery or commercial exploitation. This is a practice that happens throughout the country, not just in big cities. Soon after getting involved, Michelle heard about a task force on human trafficking. She thought she might sit in on the meetings just to learn more, but once there, she began taking on more and more tasks. Now she is leading meetings, recruiting members and handling other administrative duties. "UIS pushed me to want to make a difference in my community," she says. “I am deeply grateful to everyone who has invested in my education.”

    Michelle plans to become a victim specialist after earning a Master's Degree in Social Work from UIS.

    The Public Good…because we are all part of this journey together.

  • Dr. Leo Bin

    Academic Excellence

    The Investiture of Dr. Leo Bin | You are invited!

    On Wednesday, September 5, at 3:30 p.m., UIS will be hosting a very special event – the investiture of Dr. Leo Bin as the PNC Distinguished Professor in Banking and Finance. The named professorship honors Dr. Bin’s extraordinary teaching skills and provides financial resources for his research on financial analysis and international investment. Named professorships are crucial because they help to attract and retain excellent faculty, and as you know we pride ourselves on the influence our UIS professors have in students’ lives, learning and leadership.

    Special thanks to PNC Bank and the PNC Foundation: They have a long history of strengthening and enriching the lives of communities in which they live and work. We are both proud and grateful to have a professorship that bears their name.

    You are cordially invited to the investiture. Details and RSVP instructions here.

    Academic Excellence: Learning that empowers the future

  • Richard Raymond at Lincoln Home

    UIS Center for Lincoln Studies

    Richard Raymond | First Scholarship for UIS Center

    Richard Raymond, UIS alum, began his National Park Service career as a curator during the restoration of the Lincoln Home the late 1970s. Now he has created the first scholarship for the new UIS Center for Lincoln Studies.

    “Abraham Lincoln’s is a great American tale,” Richard says. “He rose from a log cabin to a pleasant home in Springfield on a street of doctors and lawyers. As President, overnight he had to deal with the issue of slavery, and after the war, instead of subduing the conquered, he planned for reconstruction as only a statesman would. Lincoln is certainly worthy of study and emulation.”

    Pictured at right: Dr. Devin Hunter—UIS History Professor, Michelle Levine—UIS student and Park Service intern, Richard Raymond—National Park Service RET, Chuck Schrage--UIS Alumni Relations at the Lincoln Home in Springfield. More about Richard.

    The UIS Center for Lincoln Studies—because Lincoln still instructs, inspires and elevates all of us

  • Michelle Ver Hagen

    Facilities & Technology

    Michelle Ver Hagen | On Campus Remotely

    When Michelle Ver Hagen presented her research at the UIS Student Technology, Arts & Research Symposium, technology carried her words more than 1,500 miles from her desk in Phoenix, Arizona, to the Public Affairs Center at UIS. Michelle is an online student, and thanks to UIS’ asynchronous streaming technology, listeners were able to her speak about “Diversity, Humor and Educating the Masses with Gene Luen Yang’s The Shadow Hero.” She plans a career in Academic Librarianship and hopes to increase minority representation and visibility in libraries. (Based on a story by Malavika Mujumdar and Amanda Dinardo, used with permission.)

    Facilities & Technology...Tomorrow's University Today.

  • William Wadas


    How far do scholarship recipients go?

    All the way to Antarctica, if you are William Wadas. William earned a Poli Sci degree from UIS in 2014, especially appreciating UIS’ interdisciplinary emphases. The donor-funded Joan and James Stukel Scholarship helped him financially.

    “One afternoon shortly after graduation,” William said, “I found myself watching a documentary about the lives of support staff at research stations in Antarctica. A few months later, I found myself boarding a C-17 transport jet en route to Earth’s most inhospitable environment.” He worked in Antarctica for 18 months. Today, he’s at the US Antarctic Program in Centennial, Colorado, helping to prepare candidates and newly hired staff to work at U.S. research sites throughout the Antarctica. Here’s a UIS Snapchat Takeover from William Wadas.

    Scholarships…affirming the aspirations, energy and diversity of UIS students