The Present and Future of Western Illinois University
With more than a century of growth and development, and more than 100,000 living alumni, Western Illinois University maintains a strong sense of community and historic commitments to student access, affordability, and success. Western has consistently been recognized as a “Best Midwestern College” by the Princeton Review and is one of only 37 public universities recognized as a top-tier “Best Regional University” by U.S. News & World Report.
Western Illinois University is also accredited by the Higher Learning Commission—North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. The University’s teacher licensure programs are accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) and approved by the Illinois State Board of Education. The University also maintains a strong commitment to discipline-based accreditation and licensure, where appropriate to the discipline. In academic year 2015–2016, Western Illinois University maintained accreditation/licensure with 19 agencies, ranging from the American Speech–Language–Hearing Association to the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.
These external recognitions and peer-based accreditations showcase our high academic standards, quality instruction, proven opportunities for job and graduate school placement, outstanding academic and residential facilities, exciting extracurricular activities, and institutional commitments to sustainability and affordability.
These recognitions also reinforce the unique mission and niche of Western Illinois University in the state’s system of public higher education. Keeping focused on our vision, mission, and values is critical to continued student success and our progress, growth, and contributions to the state and beyond. Western Illinois University, along with all other 11 Illinois public universities, is currently being challenged by a declining number of Illinois high school graduates; decreasing state support (appropriations) for higher education; and increasing costs, maintenance, technological, infrastructure, and accountability needs.
Through continued successful implementation of Higher Values in Higher Education, the institutional planning, resource allocation, and accountability reporting process established in academic year 2002–2003, we will continue to build upon our strengths and take advantage of opportunities. Western Illinois University will continue to prepare our students and graduates to lead in the global community. We will do so in a manner that is distinctive and nationally recognized for successful implementation of our vision, mission, and values.