Higher Education

Southeast Missouri State University's Board of Regents approved a contract extension for President Carlos Vargas.

The new three-year rolling contract runs through June 30th, 2021. The package does not include a salary increase or additional compensation.

Illinois lawmakers have reached an agreement on a new budget hours before the May 31st deadline.

State Senator Heather Steans, a Chicago Democrat, says the package is similar to what Governor Bruce Rauner proposed. She says the final product is a result of compromise.  

The founder of a faith-based college in southern Illinois says a lack of cooperation from the U.S. Department of Education contributed to the school's permanent closure.

Morthland College officials announced the institution's closure last week, citing a lack of funding.

Higher Education and money
WSIU / WSIU

SIU President Randy Dunn says an increase in funding for higher education included in the proposed state budget is a welcome addition for colleges and universities.

Illinois is one step closer to having a budget for next year — the state Senate approved a spending plan late Wednesday night.

It follows years of bitter partisan fighting over state taxes and spending. But the mood around this year’s budget is remarkably different.

State Senator Chapin Rose had what he thought was a no-brainer bill. All he wanted to do was help public universities connect with promising high school juniors by sharing basic data like standardized test scores. But just hours before presenting his bill in committee, he ran into FERPA — the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.

It’s a federal law; there’s no easy way around it.

Facing significant budget challenges, the Southeast Missouri State University Board of Regents will consider another major academic reorganization proposal.

A central Illinois lawmaker is working with Attorney General Lisa Madigan to protect student loan borrowers from losing professional licenses as they work to pay off their debt.

Alabama colleges are luring more Illinois high school seniors away from in-state universities partly through financial perks.

The Chicago Tribune reports that more than 1,600 Illinois students enrolled at the University of Alabama last fall, up from about 150 students a decade ago.

Images
SEMO

Some Southeast Missouri State University students will be able to bring their dogs, cats and small caged animals to campus starting in the fall.        

The university in Cape Girardeau announced a one-year pilot program Friday.

U of I Graduate Workers Strike Hinges On Tuition Waivers

Mar 7, 2018

Hundreds of classes have been canceled and dozens more relocated as a strike by graduate employees at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign continues into a second week. On Tuesday night, graduate workers occupied the office of university president Tim Killeen. Strikers have a variety of demands, but one of the most contentious points focuses on the future of tuition waivers — and whether some graduate workers will have to pay tuition while employed in academic positions on campus.


Wednesday marked day three of the graduate workers strike at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

Gus Wood, co-president of the Graduate Employee Organization, or GEO, says the strike is gaining momentum and numbers.

U of I Logo
University of Illinois

The union representing graduate employees at the University of Illinois’ Urbana campus is going on strike.

A panel of state senators today heard budget requests from agencies representing colleges and universities, and lawmakers took the opportunity to ask why neighboring states are able to lure so many Illinois students away.

 

The answer is pretty simple: Other Big 10 schools offer financial considerations that Illinois' flagship campus can't match.

SIU's System CEO says Governor Bruce Rauner's proposal to shift pension and health insurance costs to universities still needs some clarification.
 
President Randy Dunn says the Governor's call to shift employee pension and health insurance costs from the state to universities is not insignificant. But he says the financial blow will be easier to absorb with the replacement funds Rauner included in the spending plan for next year.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with SIU President Randy Dunn about the effects of the first year of the Trump Administration.

Southeast Missouri State University is eliminating some jobs.

University President Carlos Vargas Tuesday announced the need to eliminate 35 to 40 vacant and currently filled staff positions over the next five months due to a nine percent reduction in state appropriations for FY18.

Teachers and some staff at Western Illinois University will begin the new year without a new contract.  They're in mediation with the administration and are working under terms of the previous contract, which expired over the summer.

While the sometimes heated discussion about an academic reorganization proposal continues at SIU-Carbondale, Southeast Missouri State University is moving ahead with its own restructuring plan.

The Cape Girardeau School's Board of Regents approved academic department restructurings Friday on a smaller scale.

The Northern Illinois University student newspaper will begin receiving student fees in order to save the student-operated Northern Star. According to an editorial published this week, the newspaper received student fees prior to 1996 but opted out due to its financial position at that time.

The $600,000 severance agreement with former President Doug Baker was approved again Thursday morning by the Northern Illinois University Board of Trustees.

The re-vote came as the result of a lawsuit brought by DeKalb resident Misty Haji-Sheikh, who contended the trustees didn’t give the Presidential Transition Agreement proper public notice the first time in violation of the Open Meetings Act. A DeKalb County Circuit Court judge agreed and declared the original approval null and void.

Images
Brad Palmer, WSIU Radio

Governor Bruce Rauner joined Japan's Consul General to the Midwest at Rend Lake College for a workforce and education roundtable.

They were joined Wednesday by educational leaders, employers and economic development officials from southern Illinois.

When Al Bowman was president of Illinois State University, he liked the freedom and flexibility that he had to run his campus. Now that tables have turned.

People
Twitter/College Democrats of IL

A member of the Illini Democrats opened the candidates forum Monday night, with a line sure to please the party faithful:

Illinois' public colleges and universities have weathered the two year budget impasse and are once again expecting routine state aid payments. As the schools look ahead, they're working to secure their financial footing and publicly rebound from the ordeal.

Al Bowman, a former president of Illinois State University, has been tapped to lead the Illinois Board of Higher Education. His appointment comes as higher education institutions have seen their budgets slashed and enrollment decline, so it’s hard to know whether to congratulate him.

“You know, I’ve been getting that from people,” Bowman laughs.

He is going into his new job eyes wide open. Illinois ranked number two in the nation for net loss of college students.

People
SIU

SIU President Randy Dunn says there are challenges ahead – but he has big plans for the system.

Chapin Rose, the Republican state senator from Mahoment, says he's filing a measure designed to launch major changes in higher education.

The WIU administration blames the uncertainty caused by the two year state budget impasse for this year's drop in enrollment.

Eastern Illinois Univeristy logo
eiu.edu

Eastern Illinois University data show that enrollment for the fall semester is down by about 5 percent but it's the school's lowest decline from fall-to-fall in six years.

Pages