Friday, August 30, 2013

UIS student begin school year with Service-A-Thon



University of Illinois Springfield students gave back to the Springfield community during the annual Welcome Week Service-A-Thon on August 30, 2013.

Students worked various shifts throughout the day helping the American Red Cross Illinois Capital Area Chapter, Habitat for Humanity of Sangamon County, Hospital Sister’s Mission Outreach, and the St. John’s Breadline.

“We’re trying to give back to the community, we’re trying to connect students to the community on their first week of classes,” said Mark Dochterman, director of the UIS Volunteer and Civic Engagement Center.

UIS freshman Marissa Farris woke up early on a Friday morning to help fill American Red Cross comfort kits full of toothpaste, combs, and other items that are handed out following disasters.

“I enjoy volunteering because it just makes me feel good to know that I’m helping someone else, someone who’s in their time of need,” said Farris.

The Red Cross comfort kits will be distributed to 39 counties across central Illinois.

“Everybody needs to help their own community. If you’re part of the UIS community, you should help because it’s one thing to just stand back and look and it’s another thing to even put toothpaste in a Red Cross bag,” said Mihai Smarandescu, a UIS sophomore.

At the St. John’s Breadline, UIS volunteers helped prepare and serve food, carried trays, and helped distribute items to the homeless.

“These people are out here in need of food and I’m lucky enough to not have that problem, but when I can help like this it’s great,” said Alexa McClaughry, a UIS freshman.

Dochterman hopes the students also learn a few leadership lessons from the experience.

“These students have an opportunity to meet community members, to see the experiences of people other than college students, to be a part of Springfield,” said Dochterman.

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Thursday, August 29, 2013

UIS establishes new transfer agreements with nine Illinois community colleges

The University of Illinois Springfield has established new transfer agreements with nine community colleges in Illinois. The 2+2 Advising Guide Agreements establish a seamless transfer for community college credit hours into UIS, thus making it easier for students to earn their bachelor’s degree.

“These agreements provide students with a course checklist that they can use to achieve their degree in the most expedient manner,” said Raymond Barnett, UIS Admissions Transfer Coordinator.

The 18 new agreements cover academic subjects, such as computer science, environmental studies, political science, and social work.

The community college partners in these new agreements include Black Hawk College (Moline, Ill.), Danville Area Community College, Illinois Central College (Peoria, Ill.), Lake Land College (Mattoon, Ill.), Lewis and Clark Community College (Godfrey, Ill.), McHenry County College (Crystal Lake, Ill.), Prairie State College (Chicago Heights, Ill.), Rock Valley College (Rockford, Ill.), and William Rainey Harper College (Palatine, Ill.).

In addition to these agreements, UIS currently has 50 separate transfer agreement degree plans under review by 20 community colleges.

“We want to keep establishing connections with every interested party and further secure UIS’ status as the most transfer-friendly university in Illinois,” said Barnett.

For more information and questions about 2+2 agreements, contact Raymond Barnett at 217/206-6628 or email rbarn2@uis.edu.

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Involvement Expo connects students with on and off campus opportunities



The University of Illinois Springfield hosted its annual Welcome Week Involvement Expo in an effort to get students active on August 28, 2013. The expo featured over 140 student organizations, clubs, community groups, and businesses.

“We have over 70 students organizations regularly registered here at UIS, so it’s great to show them all that they can do and get involved with to enhance their classroom experience on campus,” said Beth Nahlik, UIS associate director of Student Life.

Freshman psychology major Cierra Hall didn’t know what she’d find at the Involvement Expo, but left with interest in several organizations.

“I came out here just to see what opportunities are available on campus and to see who I could meet and to just try and see what the campus offers,” said Hall.

Junior accountancy major Nicole Yoder is involved with the Christian Student Fellowship on campus and helped to recruit new members at the expo. She’s found campus involvement rewarding.

“I think that’s what makes your college experience good, is when you can get involved with different communities and organizations and then you meet a lot more people,” said Yoder.

For more information on student organizations on campus, visit the Student Life website.

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Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Twenty three new faculty members join UIS for fall 2013

Twenty three new faculty members have joined the University of Illinois Springfield for Fall Semester 2013. Eleven will teach in programs within the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences; five in the College of Education and Human Services; five in the College of Business and Management; and two in the College of Public Affairs and Administration.

Deborah Baudler, assistant professor of clinical laboratory science in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, holds an M.S. in clinical laboratory science from the University of North Dakota – Grand Forks. She has been a medical technologist for 34 years, is a specialist in blood bank certification, and has a strong interest in teaching tomorrow’s laboratory professionals. She also enjoys traveling, gardening, and is “a huge Green Bay Packer’s fan.”

Brytton Bjorngaard, assistant professor of art in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, holds an M.F.A. in graphic design from Iowa State University. Her research and professional interests include wayfinding, healthcare design, educational design for disabilities, and typography. She also enjoys photography, traveling, sewing, baking, and hula hooping.

Ronda J. Brown, assistant professor of teacher education in the College of Education and Human Services, holds an Ed.D. in education (elementary and early childhood education) from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her research and professional interests include studying career switchers going into teaching and interviewing Illinois authors for the Illinois Reading Council Journal. Outside of teaching, she enjoys working out, travel, and spending time with family.

Mario Cardozo, visiting assistant professor of environmental studies in the College of Public Affairs and Administration, holds a Ph.D. in geography from the University of Texas at Austin. His personal and professional interests include human-environmental interactions, environmental remote sensing, conservation, and smallholder livelihoods. He enjoys swimming, films, music, and backgammon.

Kevin Currie-Knight, a post-doc in liberal and integrative studies/liberty studies in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, is expected to earn a Ph.D. in education (specialization of curriculum inquiry) from the University of Delaware in 2013. His research and professional interests include philosophy politics and the history of education. He enjoys exercise, jazz music, and non-academic reading.

Ed Etter, assistant professor of accountancy in the College of Business and Management, holds a Ph.D. in accounting from Ohio State University. Etter’s research and professional interests include: accounting education, international accounting, and fraud examination. He also enjoys travel, reading, camping, and spending time with family.

Frank Fuchs, visiting computer science instructor in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, holds a B.A. in business management from the University of Illinois Springfield. He is especially interested in encouraging students to pursue a successful career using digital forensics and cyber security techniques. His personal interest is helping his family and children develop their careers and life interests.

François Giraud-Carrier, assistant professor of management in the College of Business and Management, is expected to obtain a Ph.D. in operations management from the University of Utah in 2013. Giraud-Carrier’s research and professional interests include sustainable operations, supply chain management, and management information systems. He also enjoys reading, writing, hiking, and spending time with the kids.

Shipra Gupta, assistant professor of business administration in the College of Business and Management, is expected to obtain a Ph.D. in marketing from the University Nebraska-Lincoln in 2013. Gupta’s research and professional interest include marketing consumer behavior, retailing, fashion marketing, sustainability, public policy issues, cross-cultural or international marketing. She also enjoys traveling, watching movies, cooking Indian specialties, painting, and spending time with my family.

Jill Horne, instructor of mathematical sciences in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, holds an M.S. in mathematics from Illinois State University. She is passionate about providing meaningful mathematics lessons to students that spur their curiosity and build the classroom community. She enjoys cooking, playing board games with her family, exercising, and entertaining her dog, Newton.

Elham S. Khorsani, assistant professor of computer science in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, holds a Ph.D. in computer science from Southern Illinois University Carbondale. His research interests include soft computing and computing with words. He also enjoys hiking, movies, and books.

Liang Kong, assistant professor of mathematical sciences in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, holds and Ph.D. in applied mathematics from Auburn University. His research and professional interests include differential equations, dynamical systems, and mathematical biology. He also enjoys swimming, tennis, and being an Auburn football fan.

Matthew McCaffrey, a post-doc in liberal and integrative studies/liberty studies in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, is expected to earn a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Angers in 2013. His research and professional interests include entrepreneurship, risk and uncertainty, moral hazard, and the history of economic thought. He enjoys military history and Chinese philosophy.

D’Lisa McKee, assistant professor of management in the College of Business and Management, is expected to obtain a Ph.D. in management (organizational behavior) from Mississippi State University in 2013. McKee’s research and professional interests include organizational behavior/human resource management with a focus on ethics, deviance, and normative behavior. She also enjoys photography, travel, and live music.

Elissa Thomann Mitchell, assistant professor of human services in the College of Education and Human Services, holds a Ph.D. in human development and family studies from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her research and professional interests include the wellbeing of at-risk children, youth, and families; relationships and social support networks; programs or interventions for vulnerable populations. She also enjoys reading, spending time with friends and family, cooking, traveling, and waterskiing.

Carolee Rigsbee, assistant professor of management in the College of Business and Management, is expected to obtain a Ph.D. in business administration in organization and management studies from the University of Texas at San Antonio in 2013. Rigsbee’s research and professional interests include strategic management in a supply chain context. She also enjoys family time, gardening, and riding horses.

Tiffani Saunders, assistant professor of sociology/anthropology in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, is expected to earn a Ph.D. in sociology from Indiana University in 2013. She has broad research and teaching interests in family, mental health, research methods, and the scholarship of teaching and learning. She also enjoys playing violin, teaching Jazzercise, reading, arts and crafts, and spending time with her son.

Thomas Sidener, visiting computer science instructor in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, holds an M.S. in computer science (network programming) from the University of Illinois Springfield. His research and professional interests include mobile application development (Android and IOS), database development and optimization, and software engineering. He also enjoys playing board games, playing the guitar and drums, and writing poetry.

David Stoesz, professor of social work in the College of Education and Human Services, holds a Ph.D. in social work – public policy from the University of Maryland. His research and professional interests include social policy, innovations in social programs, and research on economic inequality. He also enjoys downhill skiing, whitewater kayaking, weaving, making furniture, and cooking.

Megan Styles, assistant professor of environmental studies in the College of Public Affairs and Administration, holds a Ph.D. in anthropology from the University of Washington. Her research and professional interests include sustainable development, agriculture, environmental justice, and Africa. She enjoys running, traveling, backpacking, camping, and hiking.

J. Graham Thompson, visiting clinic instructor in human development counseling, holds a master’s degree and is a licensed marriage and family therapist. His research and professional interests include couple and family therapy and training younger therapists. Outside of work, he enjoys “wearing the Thompson blue kilt and playing the bagpipes, annoying the local cows.”

Traci Van Prooyen, assistant professor of teacher education in the College of Education and Human Services, holds an Ed.D. in curriculum and instruction from Illinois State University. Her research and professional interests include teacher education and dispositions of teachers. She also enjoys spending time with her children and family, reading, calligraphy, singing, and quilting.

Citlalin Xochime, instructor of English in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, is expected to earn a Ph.D. in rhetoric and professional communication from New Mexico State University in 2013. Her research and professional interests include rhetorical/professional communication, English (with emphasis in technical communication), writing center scholarship, new media, multimedia/multimodal design and theory, and technical writing. She has presented papers on theorizing the writing center, genres in writing center consultation, and rhetorical strategies.

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Chancellor’s Picnic helps kick off the 2013-14 academic year



University of Illinois Springfield Chancellor Susan J. Koch hosted her annual Welcome Week picnic on the quad on August 27, 2013.

The picnic gave the campus community a chance to celebrate the start of a new academic year, while enjoying free food, friendship, and great entertainment.

“What I like about it most is that it really gives me an opportunity to meet so many students,” said Koch. “They’re excited to be back, classes have met for a couple of days, everybody’s settling in and they’re all excited about the New Year.”

UIS student Natalie Noble came to the picnic hoping to meet new friends. She was excited when Chancellor Koch came and set down at her table.

“A lot of students don’t get this opportunity for the chancellor to come and sit and talk with you about any concerns you may have,” said Noble.

Anurag Reddy, an international student from India, left the picnic with a full stomach and new friends.

“It’s a wonderful chance to meet so many new people, make new friends, and there’s a lot of food too,” said Reddy.

Chancellor Koch points out this is an exciting time for UIS, as enrollment continues to increase and the number of students living on campus grows.

“There’s just a lot more student life on campus and as we continue to grow, I think it just raises the level of anticipation and excitement for everyone,” said Koch. Overall, nearly 900 people attended this year’s picnic.

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Tuesday, August 27, 2013

UIS invites the community to read "Behind the Beautiful Forevers" as featured “one book”

The University of Illinois Springfield is sponsoring its first “One Book, One UIS” initiative this fall with Behind the Beautiful Forevers by Katherine Boo as the book that the community is invited to read.

The initiative is being coordinated by UIS Brookens Library and is supported by funds from Friends of Brookens Library, the Chancellor’s Office, the Diversity Center, and the ECCE (Engaged Citizenship Common Experience) Speakers Series.

“One Book, One UIS” will culminate with a lecture by Katherine Boo on Monday, October 7 at 7:00 p.m. in Sangamon Auditorium. The program will be free and open to the public, although tickets will be required and can be obtained through the UIS Sangamon Auditorium ticket office by calling 217/206-6160. A book signing will immediately follow the lecture.

The kick-off event for “One Book, One UIS” will be the screening of the film Salaam Bombay by acclaimed Indian director Mira Nair (Monsoon Wedding, The Namesake). The film, which chronicles the day to day lives of children living on the streets of Bombay, will be shown on September 6 at 7:00 p.m. in UIS Brookens Auditorium as the first offering in the UIS Foreign & Independent Film Series.

In addition to Boo’s lecture, a panel of UIS faculty members will look at the issues raised by the book from a variety of disciplinary perspectives, including women’s studies, communication, politics, and the global economy. The panel discussion will occur on two occasions: Wednesday, September 25 at 12:30 p.m. in the North Carnegie Room of the Lincoln Public Library (326 S 7th St., Springfield, Ill.) and Tuesday, October 8 at 7:00 p.m. in Brookens Auditorium on the UIS campus.

Students, faculty, staff and Friends of Brookens Library are invited to participate in one of three book discussions leading up to Boo’s lecture. At least seven faculty members have adopted the book for their courses during fall semester. Details of all “One Book, One UIS” events may be found at www.brookensonebook.com.

The Indian Student Association at UIS has been inspired by the “One Book, One UIS” initiative to raise money for a school in Mumbai. Details of that fundraising effort will be posted on the initiative’s website.

Behind the Beautiful Forevers won the National Book Award for Nonfiction in 2012, was shortlisted for the Pulitzer Prize, and appeared on a host of “best book” lists for 2012. The book is an account of the lives of the inhabitants of Annawadi, a Mumbai slum in the shadows of luxury hotels and the international airport. Katherine Boo followed the lives of several key residents of Annawadi as the global economic downturn in 2008 and 2009 added to the tensions that already existed over issues of religion, caste, and gender. Her portraits are compelling, sometimes heartbreaking, and offer insight into globalization at the personal level in one of the 21st century’s great, unequal cities.

Katherine Boo is a staff writer at The New Yorker and a former reporter and editor for The Washington Post. She learned to report at the alternative weekly, Washington City Paper, after which she worked as a writer and co-editor of The Washington Monthly magazine. Over the years, her reporting from disadvantaged communities has been awarded a Pulitzer Prize, a MacArthur “Genius” grant, and a National Magazine Award for Feature Writing. Boo has said about her work: “Very little journalism is world changing. But if change is to happen, it will be because people with power have a better sense of what’s happening to people who have none.”

For more information, contact Jane Treadwell, University Librarian & Dean, Library Instructional Services, at 217/206-6597 or jtrea1@uis.edu.

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