Office of the President
Presidential Initiatives for Western Illinois University
Academic Year 2016-2017
Following successful implementation of Higher Values in Higher Education, Western Illinois University will be the leader in educational quality, opportunity, and affordability among regional public universities.
Western Illinois University, a comprehensive regional university, will become one of the leading universities of its type in the nation serving a diverse student population in the Midwest.
WIU has been nationally ranked as a Best Midwestern University. After examining the current state of the institution and the various challenges that exist, I believe the vision above is appropriate and the following is a timeline for achieving that vision, which includes short-and-long term planning initiatives, and a list of action items that address the goals.
This is a shared vision that is embraced by the University community. As such, WIU will be a premier public university and a leader among its benchmark peer group.
- Distinguish WIU from other universities
- Review General Education
- Continue strategic review of academic programs
- Review Teacher Education
- Increase student participation and outcomes in Centennial Honors College
- Investigate opportunities for new graduate programs using the University feasibility guidelines
- Identify courses and programs where there is feasibility and demand for irregularly scheduled formats (e.g., weekend academy, online, hybrid)
- Continue to enhance marketing, including increased advertising
- Expand regional recruitment efforts
- Engage the President in recruitment activities
- Increase dual enrollment partnerships
- Continue to build the President’s Executive Corporate Cluster
- Diversify the campuses
- Expand the number of international agreements
- Increase international student recruitment
- Continue strategic enrollment planning
- Improve first-year retention rates
- Lead the University through continuing budget challenges
Alumni Relations and Development
- Continue to restructure the development area
- Increase external giving
- Increase funding for scholarships supporting retention and high achieving students
- Cultivate new and existing donors
- Host alumni events nationwide
- Achieve Master Plan goals and priorities
- Place Western Illinois University at the forefront of the statewide agenda for higher education
- Host annual legislative reception in Springfield
- Visit Legislators
- Provide testimony on budget and other issues affecting higher education
- Create and maintain relationships with embassies and foreign countries
- Continue to provide the university community with timely communications with regard to budget and other high university priorities.
- Use multiple formats for presidential communication and collaboration.
- Continue to Support Faculty Travel Awards
- Retention of Faculty and Staff
- Enhance Technology for Faculty and Staff
- Academic Task Force
- Student Cost Task Force
- Social Responsibility/Planning Task Force
- Maintain the University’s ongoing relationship with the Higher Learning Commission and other discipline-specific accrediting agencies
Dr. Jack Thomas, President
Sherman Hall 209
Telephone: (309) 298-1824