Wednesday, February 27, 2013

An exceptional example of "Leadership lived"

It's been a privilege today for UIS to host Junior Bridgeman as a featured speaker for Black History Month.  Mr. Bridgeman is a retired NBA basketball player (with a solid 12-year career mostly with the Milwaukee Bucks) who went on to found Bridgeman Foods, a multi-million dollar business that owns 160 Wendy's restaurants and over 100 Chili's restaurants across the country  It was inspiring to hear Mr. Bridgeman talk about his life story and about his career.  I was especially interested to listen to him talking about his upbringing in East Chicago, Indiana, where his family had three rules:  you attend church, you go to class, and when you join a team – you don't quit.  My thanks to the UIS Diversity Center and to our many student leaders who have done such a tremendous service for the university this year, organizing and promoting Black History Month events.  It has been a resounding success. That's what I call "Leadership lived".

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Cheesecake with the Chancellor

Thanks a million to all the UIS students who kept the Chancellor up way past her bedtime last night! We've had chocolate, chili with the Chancellor, chimichangas and now … Cheesecake with the Chancellor; but its not so much the food that matters. About 75 students took the time last night to sit down with me and have a great conversation about our university and about the student experience here.  Every time we have one of these events I am so impressed with the intelligence, activism and leadership of UIS students.  The input you all provide helps to guide campus decisions in both big things and small things.  Thanks especially to all the leaders of student organizations like Student Government, the International Student Organization, OLAS and the Black Student Union who encouraged their members to attend.  Now let's all go to the basketball games in TRAC tonight!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Something new in the Chancellor's Office

If you are on the UIS campus and stop by the Chancellor's Office this semester, you'll see something new!  Thanks to the assistance of Professor Mike Miller, who chairs the Department of Art, Music and Theatre, we have created a gallery in the Chancellor's reception area featuring the artwork of members of the UIS Art faculty including Mike Miller, Shane Harris, Dave Kube, and Jeff Robinson. I'm delighted to be able to share the work of these talented artists and teachers with all those who visit the Chancellor's Office every week. The visual arts are so important on a campus like ours that is committed to all aspects of the liberal arts and, thanks to the faculty in the Department of Art, Music and Theatre,  our programs in these areas are growing in both quality and quantity. Research has shown that art in the work environment fosters creativity, boosts employee morale and enhances productivity.  Thus, the added bonus of this new exhibition in the Chancellor's Office is that everyone who works here, including the Chancellor, benefits from (and enjoys) this artwork every day! Thank you Art faculty!

Friday, February 1, 2013

The UIS 2012 Employee of the Year – Leadership lived!

We celebrated our UIS Employee of the Year yesterday and I was delighted to announce that Randy Williams has earned this prestigious honor.   Randy is an exceptionally talented and creative food service administrator.  Whether planning a donor event in the Chancellor's home,  a spaghetti feed for 500 students or a reception for members of the Illinois legislature;  Randy and his terrific team of food service professionals always creates an enjoyable, high-quality event.  One of his nominators remarked that Randy  consistently brings to work a positive, winning, can-do attitude.  Congratulations, Randy, and thanks for all that you do to enhance the reputation of UIS.