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Beyond the Bell Tower
News for the
Dec. 16, 2016 • Vol. 32, No. 09
Seasons Greetings from WIU President Jack Thomas
WIU President Jack Thomas has released his annual holiday greeting to the Leatherneck family and its supporters.
WIU Designated Military Friendly 'Gold' Status School
While Western Illinois University has now been designated a "Military Friendly School" by "G.I. Jobs" Magazine (Victory Media) for eight consecutive years, this year, WIU has achieved "Gold" School Status in the "Large Public School" category (more than 10,000 students).
According to Victory Media, Military Friendly Awards showcase the most powerful and effective programs of more than 1,200 post-secondary schools and 200 companies.
WIU Art Major Designs Foundation Holiday Card
The holiday season has arrived, which finds many of us scrambling to put up decorations, cook family dinners, shop for the perfect presents and mail holiday cards. To complete the latter, the Western Illinois University Foundation enlisted the talents of studio art major Abbigale Matlick.
Matlick, a junior from Reynolds, IL, was selected to design the 2016 Foundation holiday card. She was given the task with only two specific directions: create a free-hand piece of art and make Sherman Hall the focus.
Watts Named Employee of the Year
The Western Illinois University Civil Service Employees Council (CSEC) has named Office of Public Safety Police Sergeant Derek Watts the 2016 Civil Service Employee of the Year.
Watts, who was named the Al and Elaine Goldfarb Civil Service Employee of the Month in May 2016, was awarded an engraved clock and a $500 stipend from the WIU Foundation.
WIU Division Updates
Office of the Provost/Vice President of Academic Affairs
- Fall 2016 Commencement will take place Dec. 17 in Western Hall.
- Grades will be posted/available on STARS Tuesday, Dec. 20.
- Interested in helping first-year students transition effectively to WIU? Apply to be a University 100 instructor. Please consider completing the 2017-2018 UNIV 100 application and submitting it by Feb. 3, 2017. Current instructors should submit a renewal application. For more information, contact Nancy Parsons or Stacey Macchi.
- It is never too early for departments to start analyzing FY18 software needs. As software contracts can be time-consuming, it is a good idea to submit online purchase requisitions as soon as possible. Watch for open dates in February 2017.
- Central Management Services (CMS), the State of Illinois' insurance administrator, has contracted with Morneau Shepell, a third-party administrator, to provide online insurance enrollment for all insurance eligible state employees. Registration is required to access insurance benefits (there are no insurance plan changes at this time). In October, employees received a mailing from CMS regarding online enrollment including their personalized Employee ID Number (EIN) to access the MyBenefits MarketPlace site, MyBenefits.illinois.gov. If you did not receive the mailing or need assistance with enrollment, call (844) 251-1777 or TTY toll free at (844) 251-1778.
- On Nov. 15, the Civil Service Merit Board and Joint Committee on Administrative Rules (JCAR) voted to establish a permanent furlough rule for civil service employees. However, due to the provisions set forth within the rule, University Administration has determined that it is not in the best interest of the University to implement furloughs for WIU civil service employees at this time. The existing furlough program for non-negotiated administrative and non-academic personnel continues as implemented.
- The University will be closed for holiday break Monday, Dec. 26-Monday, Jan. 2. The University will resume regular business hours Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2017. Classes begin Jan. 17.
- Facilities Management: The contractor perimeter fence has been erected at East Village, with demolition scheduled to begin, weather permitting, Tuesday, Dec. 20.
- With the assistance of extra-help carpenters, a new wood shake roof has been installed on one cabin at Horn Lodge Campus.
- The new greenhouse module at the University Farm is nearing completion.
- DCEO electrical upgrades continue at various campus facilities.
Advancement & Public Services
- Funds are currently being raised for site preparation, which will include walls, landscaping, plaques and other material as needed, for the Ray "Rock" Hanson Memorial Statue, which is tentatively set to be unveiled in Fall 2017.
Quad Cities & Planning
- The 2016-2017 Fact Book is available at wiu.edu/IRP/FactBook16.pdf.
- The December Strategic Plan Update is available at wiu.edu/university_planning.
- The Quad Cities Planning and Advisory Committee met Dec. 13 to discuss the results of the Quad Cities Mayor's Summit.
- The WIU-QC hosted the annual Graduation Reception Dec. 14 at the iWireless Center.
- A major donor holiday party for WQPT was recently hosted by Marie and Dale Ziegler. Nearly 100 people were in attendance, and seven of Marie's specially decorated trees were auctioned off in a silent auction.
- On Dec. 12, various Student Services staff members, including hall staff and UHDS central staff, volunteered their time to help give students a "break" from studying for final exams and served students late night breakfast as part of the annual "Breakfast at Night" event. Over 1,000 students in the Bayliss-Henninger, Corbin-Olson, and Thompson dining centers participated.
- Residence halls will close at 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 16 for winter break. Halls will reopen at noon Sunday, Jan. 15.
- Housing renewal for the 2017-2018 academic year begins Jan. 27.
- WAVE would like to thank everyone who supported the Salvation Army Angel Tree.
Vice President for Student Services November 2016 Awards
Graduate Assistant of the Month: Dylan Hast - Campus Recreation
Student Employee of the Month: Jerome Halsey - Beu Health Center
Act of Kindness Award Recipients: Anna Balek, Taryn Brees, Tara Buchannan, Amy Buwick, Billy Caplick, Ana Diaz, Crystall Dooley, Jesse Geer, Robert Gipson, Dylan Hast, Katie Kane, Milly MacDonell, Fern Monge, Mychele Montgomery, Jon Reed, Wayne Rittenhouse, CJ Rizzo, Hilda Rojas-Duarte, Amanda Shoemaker and Perm Tinsey.
Office of Study Abroad and Outreach Offers Adult Travel Options
The Office of Study Abroad and Outreach at Western Illinois University is now taking registrations for two adult learning travel programs: "New York City Community Theatre" and "New Orleans: Jazz, Cuisine and Alligators...Oh My!" The year 2017 marks the 15th offering of the NYC theatre trip at WIU, now led by Tammy Honesty (former WIU Theatre and Dance faculty) and Kim McDaniel and the second for NOLA, led by Professor John Cooper (director of Jazz Studies, WIU). Both experiences give you the opportunity to tour remarkable cities, visit famous landmarks, and take in wonderful entertainment, all while learning about these sites at a leisurely pace.
Registration forms can be found online at wiu.edu/sao/outreach/adult_learning_op/ and will be accepted through Jan. 31, 2017 or until the programs fill, whichever comes first. For more information or questions, please contact Study Abroad and Outreach at (309) 298-2504 or email StudyAbroad@wiu.edu.
BCA Offering Holiday Gift Certificates
BCA at Western Illinois University has taken the guesswork out of gift buying for the arts lovers on your holiday list.
The arts organization is offering gift certificates, for sale in any amount, to be used toward tickets to any upcoming BCA shows. The certificates can also be used for performances during the 2017-18 BCA season, the schedule for which will be announced in the spring.
For more information, or to see a calendar of upcoming shows, visit BCAbringsthestars.com. The purchase gift certificates, call (309) 298-3571 or email BCA@wiu.edu.
Civil Service Personnel Updates
View the latest changes in civil service personnel, provided by the Civil Service Employees Council.
Grants and Contracts & Professional Accomplishments
View the most recent listing of grant and contract recipients and professional accomplishments, provided by the Office of Sponsored Projects.