Trouble reading this? Click here.

RockeNews Header


Upcoming Alumni & Friends Events this month

Alumni Benefits

Popular Links

Recent Alumni & Friends Events Around the World

Visit WIU mobile, and enter Leatherneck Country right from your phone at!

WIU Mobile logo


Think Purple Stamps

Director's Column



In this Issue

WIU Advances to Elite Eight of 6th Fan Competition Be sure to keep voting!
Survey: Positive Reaction, Support for Think Purple
WIU Announces Changes to Move-In and Orientation
WIU Designated Tree Campus USA
SALC Hosted Student Engagement and Philanthropy Day
Viadero Named Director of New WIU Ph.D. Program
Western Wednesdays in Chicago and Washington D.C.
Join your WIU Alumni Association at these exciting events!


WIU Advances to Elite Eight of 6th Fan Competition Be sure to keep voting!

6th Fan VotingThanks to the constant support of Western Illinois University fans to help raise funds for the WIU general scholarship fund, the Leathernecks have advanced to the Elite Eight of the NCAA 6th Fan Competition.

The Fighting Leathernecks advanced late Sunday night following a 58/42 voting edge over New Mexico. Up next is Summit League rival South Dakota State.

Western Illinois has already earned $10,000 toward the University's general scholarship fund. The winner of the overall competition will win $100,000, which will be put toward the University's general scholarship fund, as well.

The institution with the most votes by March 2 will advance to the Final Four. Fans are encouraged to continue voting via Facebook, Twitter (by using the hashtags #6thFan and #WILL) and via

Read more.

Survey: Positive Reaction, Support for Think Purple

Western Illinois University MBA students, under the direction of Associate Dean of the College of Business and Technology and Marketing Professor John Drea, recently completed a survey of Western's alumni and friends to assess the effectiveness of the ongoing "Think Purple" marketing theme.

The research was conducted by Drea and a core group of students as part of the Marketing 576 class, with comments analyzed by MBA students Katie Buss, Conner Herkelman and Letisha Trepac. Drea's students Kripa Dalwadi, Dustin VanSloten and Jason Mills also were a part of the project. An e-mail with a survey link was sent to 29,723 alumni and friends in October 2013, with a total of 2,005 responses received (6.7 percent response rate).

"We appreciate the work that Dr. Drea and the students put into this survey and gathering the responses," President Jack Thomas noted. "We are pleased that many of the respondents had positive things to say about 'Think Purple' and that they associate this with Western. The comments, suggestions and feedback will help us further enhance our marketing plans for the future."

The "Think Purple" campaign, which began locally as a way to further engage community members and local businesses and organizations, is about branding and recognition for Western, according to Brad Bainter '79 '83, vice president for advancement and public services.

Read more.

WIU Announces Changes to Move-In and Orientation

Moving to the dormBeginning August 2014, new freshmen at Western Illinois University will have the opportunity to move in a day earlier than in years past. New freshmen can move into their residence hall rooms beginning at 8 a.m. Friday, Aug. 22.

New Student Convocation, which traditionally has been held on the Saturday of move-in weekend, will now be held at 6 p.m. Friday, Aug. 22 in Western Hall. Fall 2014 classes begin Monday, Aug. 25.

According to Vice President for Student Services Gary Biller, Western is making several changes to summer and fall orientation to give students more time to get settled before classes start.

"Approximately half of our new student population are the first in their family to go to college, which means we need to change our practices to be intentional about both students' and families' acclimation to campus life," he added.

Read more.

WIU Designated Tree Campus USA

For the second year, Western Illinois University has been designated a Tree Campus USA by the Arbor Day Foundation.

The national Tree Campus USA program was created in 2008 to honor colleges and universities for effective campus forest management and for engaging staff and students in conservation goals. Toyota helped launch the program and continues its financial support.

"Students are eager to volunteer in their communities and become better stewards of the environment," said John Rosenow, founder and chief executive of the Arbor Day Foundation. "Participating in Tree Campus USA sets a fine example for other colleges and universities, while helping to create a healthier planet for us all."

Read more.

SALC Hosted Student Engagement and Philanthropy Day

SALC Philanthropy DayThe Western Illinois University Student Alumni Leadership Council (SALC) joined nearly 100 educational institutions worldwide Thursday, Feb. 27 to participate in the second annual Student Engagement and Philanthropy Day. The initiative, organized by CASE Affiliated Student Advancement Programs, is designed to increase student understanding of philanthropy and grow engagement on campuses.

Institutions from the United States, England, Canada, Australia and other countries participated in the event through various activities, including "thank-a-thons," day-long social media campaigns and student video interviews on what giving means to them.

SALC, in collaboration with the WIU Annual Fund, hosted a Thank You Campaign where they recognized the continued support and participation WIU and the Alumni Association have received from local alumni, faculty, staff, community members and friends over the past year. WIU students gathered at the University Union concourse to send more than 1,700 handwritten thank-you notes to alumni in the Macomb area.

Read more.

Viadero Named Director of New WIU Ph.D. Program

Roger ViaderoWestern Illinois University Institute for Environmental Studies Director Roger Viadero has been named director of the school's new Ph.D. program in environmental science.

Sue Martinelli-Fernandez, dean of WIU's College of Arts and Sciences, said Viadero's history makes him a perfect fit for the position.

"Clearly, Dr. Viadero's credentials and experience are outstanding," Martinelli-Fernandez said. "I thank him for his hard work and for his leadership in bringing this excellent program to fruition."

The new program will begin taking students in Fall 2014 at WIU's Quad Cities Campus.

Read more.

Western Wednesdays in Chicago and Washington D.C.

Western WednesdaysChicago Western Wednesdays: We had a great time at our February Western Wednesdays event in Glen Ellyn (IL). If you missed us, be sure to join us for our next installment in Chicago in April. Your WIU Alumni Association began a tradition in 2011 with the first of many Western After Hours! Hundreds of alumni have joined us every month for great food, great conversation and a few beverages. We are continuing our tradition on a NEW bimonthly schedule and we'll be downtown in April and then rotating back out to the suburbs and downtown over the next year!

Emerald Loop Bar & Grill
Wednesday, April 2
216 N. Wabash, Chicago, IL
Social: 5:00-7:00 p.m.
(There is no charge for this event.)
Social, light appetizers (while they last) & cash bar - FREE
Pre-registration is preferred, however walk-ins are welcome. To pre-register, please call 309-298-1914 or email

Upcoming Chicago Western Wednesdays from 5 p.m. - 7 p.m.:
June 4 – Plainfield (IL) at Nevin’s Brewing Company
August 6 – downtown Chicago
October 1 – Libertyville (IL) Area

Washington Western Wednesdays: Announcing Washington Western Wednesdays...if you live in the Washington D.C. area or are traveling there on the last Wednesday of every other month, we hope you will join other WIU Alumni & Friends in the area for great food, great conversation and a few beverages! Watch your Western News, your mail, Facebook, Twitter and your email for updates on locations throughout the D.C. area!

Hard Times Cafe
Wednesday March 26
1404 King St., Alexandria, VA
Social: 6:00-8:00 p.m.
(There is no charge for this event.)

Upcoming Washington Western Wednesdays
May 28 - Downtown D.C.
July 30 - D.C. Area
September 24 - Downtown D.C.
November 19 - D.C. Area (3rd Wednesday due to Thanksgiving holiday)

Join your WIU Alumni Association at these exciting events!

Kiawah Island, SC Alumni and Friends Event
Thursday, March 13
Kiawah Island Resort
East Beach Conference Center
One Sanctuary Beach Dr., Kiawah Island, SC
Social: 5:00 p.m.
Dinner: 6:00 p.m.
Social, pasta station and cash bar: $20/person
Golf, social, pasta station and cash bar: $120/person

Atlanta Alumni & Friends Social

Friday, March 14
The Oceanaire Seafood Room with host President Jack Thomas
1100 Peachtree St., Atlanta, GA
Social:  6:00-8:00 p.m.
Social, scrumptious appetizers and cash bar: $20/person

Chicago Bulls vs. Indiana Pacers Social and Basketball Game in Chicago
Monday, March 24
Pregame Social: The Crossroads Bar & Grill
1120 W. Madison St., Chicago, IL
Social: 4:30-6:30 p.m.
Game: United Center
1901 W. Madison St., Chicago, IL
Tipoff: 7:00 p.m.
Social, appetizers, cash bar and Section 325 ticket: $80/person
Social, appetizers, cash bar and Section 308 ticket: $100/person
Social, appetizers, cash bar ONLY: $15/person

And then join us next month for this almost sold-out event!

Blackhawks vs. Blues Pregame Social & Hockey Game
Sunday, April 6
United Center
Blackhawks Super Suite
1901 W. Madison St., Chicago, IL
Pregame Social: 6:00 p.m.
Game: 7:00 p.m.
Social, game ticket & UNLIMITED food and drink: $300/person

To register for these events, contact the WIU Alumni Association by calling 309-298-1914 or using our Online Event Registration.

All ticket sales are final. Therefore, all tickets purchased through the WIU Alumni Association are non-refundable.


RockyCan you find this exact Rocky (in black and white) somewhere else in the eNewsletter? If you find him, email us at
and let us know where he was placed. One winner will be picked from all the entries emailed on the first day of the month and will get a WIU Prize Pack! Good luck!

****Congratulations to the February winner--Fawn Ashbrook Harris '85. She discovered Rocky on the Bachelor of General Studies page.****


Travel with WIU


You are receiving this newsletter because you are an alumnus or friend of Western Illinois University. Email us to unsubscribe.


Back to top

Western Illinois University Alumni Association
1 University Circle, Macomb, IL 61455