Tuesday, September 22, 2020

UIS to offer accelerated eight-week courses for prospective and current students starting Oct. 19


The University of Illinois Springfield will offer 27 new accelerated eight-week courses for prospective and current students. Most will begin Monday, Oct. 19 and end on Saturday, Dec. 5. Others, like athletic training, will start on Nov. 2 and end on Jan. 15, 2021. 

“We know this has been a challenging year for many people,” said UIS Interim Chancellor Karen Whitney. “Many students may not have been ready to start classes in August due to the COVID-19 pandemic but are ready to start now. This is also a great opportunity for current students to add to their course load and potentially earn their degree in a shorter period of time.” 

Accelerated courses will be offered in accountancy, athletic training, business, communication, educational leadership, human development counseling, management, mathematical sciences, philosophy, teacher education and theatre. A full list of courses is available at uis.edu/accelerated

Prospective students should apply by the end of the day on Friday, Oct. 16 at uis.edu/apply. Current UIS students can sign up by Oct. 25 using the instructions found at uis.edu/registration/courseschedule/accelerated/. All courses are eligible for financial assistance. 

For more information, prospective students are encouraged to contact the UIS Office of Admission at 217-206-4847 or admissions@uis.edu. Current UIS students should direct questions to the Office of Record and Registration at 217-206-6174 or registrar@uis.edu.

Monday, September 14, 2020

UIS ranked the top public regional university in Illinois by U.S. News & World Report

The University of Illinois Springfield has been ranked the top public regional university in Illinois and the fourth best public university in the Midwest regional category for a second year in a row by U.S. News & World Report in 2021 Best Colleges rankings released today.

UIS was also ranked fifth best by U.S. News & World Report when it comes to students graduating with the least amount of debt in the Midwest regional category.

“Even though our students and alumni tell us we are No. 1, these rankings confirm the high quality education students receive at UIS,” said UIS Interim Chancellor Karen Whitney. “This prestigious ranking shows our prospective and current students, our alumni and friends that the UIS college experience is outstanding. Our inspiring faculty and hard-working staff working with each and every student is the UIS difference.”

According to U.S. News & World Report, some of the factors it looked at in determining UIS’ overall ranking include retention and graduation rates, faculty resources (such as class size and faculty salary), academic reputation, financial resources available to students, how well students performed academically in high school (including ACT/SAT and high school percentile rank) and alumni giving.

UIS also appeared on U.S. News and World Report’s “A-plus Schools for B Students” list for the Midwest regional category, due to UIS’ overall performance in the rankings and average freshman retention rate.

“We here at UIS are thrilled with the news that we have retained the No. 1 spot for public regional university in Illinois,” said Natalie Herring, UIS associate provost for enrollment management. “What this means for our right-sized community, is that we are doing a good job challenging high-achieving students and supporting future stars of great potential.”

Since 2006, UIS has been ranked consistently among the top 15 best public regional universities in the Midwest by U.S. News & World Report. The full report and additional data can be found at usnews.com/best-colleges.

UIS is one of three universities in the world-class University of Illinois System and provides students with a high-quality liberal arts education, exceptional public affairs opportunities and outstanding professional preparation programs.

For more information on the UIS rankings, contact Derek Schnapp, director of public relations, at 217-206-6716 or dschn3@uis.edu.

Wednesday, September 09, 2020

University of Illinois Springfield sees positive trends, despite slight decrease in overall enrollment

After the first 10 days of classes, University of Illinois Springfield Fall 2020 census numbers show the total number of students enrolled in classes stands at 4,146 compared to 4,275 students in Fall 2019 (a 3 percent decrease from last year). However, the total number of credit hours taken by students remains steady at 43,130 (down only 1.2 percent from last fall).

UIS reported a 6 percent increase in the number of students taking classes online amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The total number of students taking classes online is 1,540, compared to 1,451 students last fall. This number doesn’t reflect the number of students taking hybrid and remote classes. UIS online students reside in nine foreign countries and one territory (Guam), 46 states and 82 Illinois counties.

“With the concern of COVID-19 and some students talking about taking a gap year, these numbers are better than we had expected,” said Interim Chancellor Karen Whitney. “The bottom line is that we are and will continue to be a place that provides a uniquely student-centered educational experience both in and out of the physical classroom. We are national leaders in online learning, and we have once again proven this year that we can expertly provide classes in a remote learning format. In fact, we’re teaching other schools how to more effectively teach online.”

Total undergraduate enrollment stands at 2,654 students compared to 2,674 in fall 2019. The number of graduate students decreased from 1,601 in 2019 to 1,492 in 2020. Overall, the UIS student body has a higher percentage of Illinois residents this semester. A total of 3,243 students are Illinois residents, making up 78.2 percent of the student body, compared to 76.6 percent of the population in fall 2019.

UIS continues to be a diverse campus, seeing a more than 6 percent increase this semester in the number of students who self-identify as Hispanic (371 compared to 348 last fall). Hispanic students make up nearly 9 percent of the student body. The total number of African American students enrolled this semester stands at 535, comprising nearly 13 percent of the student body. Asian students make up more than 4 percent of the student body (183 students). International students account for more than 6 percent (255) of students enrolled, down from 373 students in fall 2019.

UIS is one of three universities in the world-class University of Illinois System and provides students with a high-quality liberal arts education, exceptional public affairs opportunities and outstanding professional preparation programs.

For more information, contact Derek Schnapp, UIS director of public relations, at 217-206-6716 or dschn3@uis.edu.

UIS releases certified list of summer and fall 2019, spring 2020 graduates

More than 970 students earned degrees from the University of Illinois Springfield during Summer Semester 2019, Fall Semester of 2019 and Spring Semester 2020.

Commencement ceremonies were cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Below you'll find a printable list of graduates' names and degrees listed by the city of residence on file with UIS Records and Registration at the time of graduation.

Please note that those who were eligible to participate in a previous year’s commencement and eventually earned their degree in Summer 2019, Fall 2019 or Spring 2020 are not included.

Graduates Names (Excel) | Graduates Names (PDF)

Wednesday, September 02, 2020

UIS celebrates 50th anniversary by reflecting on a bold legacy and looking forward to a bright future

The University of Illinois Springfield (UIS) is celebrating its 50th anniversary during academic year 2020-21, as the public liberal arts university reflects on a bold legacy and looks forward to a bright future as an educational leader in central Illinois and beyond.

Billboards featuring UIS’ 50th anniversary logo and tagline “Bold Legacy. Bright Future.” are now up in Springfield. UIS also plans to celebrate the anniversary on its social media channels.

Reflecting on the anniversary, UIS Interim Chancellor Karen Whitney notes how UIS began as an upstart campus in a temporary building and is now ranked as the No. 1 public regional university in Illinois by U.S. News & World Report.

“UIS’ star is bright!” Whitney said. “Our unconventional start, our culture of thinking outside the box, our stamina and grit – these qualities continue to propel us forward, no matter the situation or the challenge. Hard work, determination and collaboration advances our mission to provide a uniquely student-centered educational experience both in and out of the classroom.”

Bold Legacy 

In 1960, a group of central Illinois citizens, united in their goal of bringing a four-year university to the capital city, formed the Springfield Committee for Higher Education. Theirs was not the first attempt to bring such an institution to Springfield, but it was successful. On June 10, 1969, Gov. Richard Ogilvie signed legislation creating Sangamon State University (SSU), which would later become UIS.

SSU was a child of its time. Conceived as an “upper-level” three-year institution, a “capstone” to the state’s community college system, SSU offered junior, senior and graduate courses.

On Sept. 28, 1970, 45 charter faculty members began teaching 811 students in temporary classrooms at Springfield’s First United Methodist Church. The first classes on UIS’ present day campus were not held until Oct. 5, 1970, due to construction delays.

Karen Hasara, who was the second person in line to register for classes and later would become a state senator and Springfield mayor, would say later many times that the establishment of SSU/UIS was the greatest thing to happen to Springfield in the last quarter of the 20th century.

“The community was very excited about having a university,” said Hasara, who was also the first UIS alumna on the University of Illinois Board of Trustees. “I always say that I think it was one of the best things that happened to Springfield. It brought in a lot of people who weren’t from here, and we needed that.”

For nearly 25 years, Sangamon State University thrived, awarding its first degrees in 1971, as campus grew with the addition of Brookens Library, the Public Affairs Center (housing Sangamon Auditorium) and on-campus housing. In 1991, SSU enrolled 4,192 students, breaking the 4,000 mark for the first time.

However, changes were ahead as the state decided to reorganize higher education in Illinois. On Feb. 28, 1995, Gov. Jim Edgar signed into law legislation that made Sangamon State University the third campus of the University of Illinois. Thus was born the University of Illinois Springfield on July 1, 1995.

UIS would continue to grow in the 1990s enrolling even more students and would become a nationwide leader in online learning.

On Aug. 22, 2001, a group of about 120 freshman students would change the campus forever. The newly approved Capital Scholars Honors Program brought high-achieving first-year students to campus for the first time. In 2005, the University of Illinois Board of Trustees approved a new general education curriculum, making UIS a full-fledged four-year university.

“Both going with the University of Illinois and gaining four-year status meant a different future for this institution,” said UIS Chancellor Emeritus Naomi Lynn, who led SSU and UIS from 1991 to 2001. “It changed its future, determined what was going to happen. It put us in a different category.”

UIS saw a large physical growth on campus in the 2000s with the addition of Lincoln and Founders residence halls, University Hall, the Colonnade and The Recreation and Athletic Center.

“Newcomers to Springfield just take it for granted that there’s a four-year institution out here on the south side of town,” said UIS Chancellor Emeritus Richard Ringeisen when he retired in 2010 after leading the university for nine years. “I’m absolutely confident that UIS has a great future.”

UIS continued to grow in the 2010s, becoming a full-fledged member of NCAA Division II athletics in 2010 and enrolling a record 5,431 students in fall 2014. Academic programs also been expanded with the addition of programs in information systems security, data analytics, theater, exercise science, and a new bachelor of science in nursing through a partnership with University of Illinois at Chicago and Memorial Health System. In 2018, UIS also cut the ribbon on a new $21.75-million Student Union that serves as the campus’ living room.

“The Student Union was important for many reasons, but fundamentally it was important because the university experience is really about relationships,” said UIS Chancellor Emeritus Susan Koch, who led from 2011 to 2020. “It’s about building community. It’s about togetherness. It’s about meeting people and having conversations. The Student Union has been all of that and more.”

50th Anniversary Events 

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, UIS has delayed planning in-person activities to celebrate the anniversary but plans to mark the anniversary on campus when it is safe to have larger gatherings.

The UIS Office of Advancement will host a virtual Lunch & Learn Series as part of the 50th Anniversary celebration. The first of six events is planned for Thursday, Oct. 8. Visit go.uis.edu/LunchFall20 for details.

For more on UIS’ history and future planned events celebrating the 50th anniversary, visit 50.uis.edu.