Thursday, March 28, 2013

Chancellor opens international market for UIS alum's product

Readers of the recent issue of our UIS Alumni magazine (and regular followers of news on the UIS website) know all about the "Bacon Brownie," a delicious treat that has been developed by entrepreneurs and UIS grads Clay Evers and Drew Stevens.  The Bacon Brownie is now sold in convenience stores in Illinois (like the Quick-n-Easy outlets) and hopefully will be available in many more locations soon.  I took some Bacon Brownies with me to China this past week and presented one to each president of our partner universities.  This a a photo of me presenting Dr. Liu Yubin,  president of Dalian Nationalities University, with his very own Bacon Brownie.  The message? A UIS Business degree prepares you well for innovation and success!! The Bacon Brownie was a big hit and I like to think I'm doing my part to promote this innovative alumni product.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

A sure sign of Spring - golf!

The UIS Women's Golf Team was on the road over Spring break and student-athlete Abby Vorreyer turned in a record-setting performance!  The women participated in the Perry Park Invitational in Kentucky and Abby took first place in the field of over 140 competitors.  Her 36-hole score of 149 is a UIS school record!  Abby's teammate, Caitlin Osborn, also played very well for the Prairie Stars, finishing with a score of 154.  As soon as the snow melts,  I'm looking forward to swinging the clubs myself as well as to watching our Prairie Stars golfers perform a little closer to home.  Congratulations, Abby, Caitlin and Coach Marsaglia!! 

Monday, March 25, 2013

Frosty goes to college

Having moved to Illinois a couple of years ago from the upper peninsula of Michigan, where we had over 200 inches of snow per year, I've been missing the beauty of winter. Well, as of this morning, we've got our own "winter wonderland" on the UIS campus and I am not missing snow anymore! Some creative UIS students took full advantage of the last night's beautiful snowfall and built a snowman right in the heart of campus. Isn’t it nice to be reminded that sometimes what seems like an imposition is really fun in the making? The forecast is for higher temperatures, so I encourage as much snow sculpting as possible during the next 24 hours.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Greetings from Shanghai!

I am in China this week meeting with several university partners. It was a pleasure to start the visit by speaking at the "Invest in America" conference in Shanghai.  One of the organizers of this important international meeting is UIS alum, Brian Su. Education is truly global and we're looking forward to an increase in the flow of students and faculty between UIS and our Asian partners.

Photo Courtesy: Artisan Business Group

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

A must read book by one of our UIS alums

Readers of this blog are already aware of the  top notch Public Affairs Program at the Springfield campus of the University of Illinois. Writer Nina Burleigh was one of this year's inductees to the Bill Miller PAR Hall of Fame and I just finished reading her NYC bestseller, The Fatal Gift of Beauty.  The book is essentially an “autopsy” of the trial of Amanda Knox, the American college student who was convicted in December of 2009 in Perugia, Italy of the brutal and sensational murder of her British roommate Meredith Kirschner. What a great read! Anticipating plenty of time to read later this week during my long flight to China,  I'm looking forward to reading Mirage and Unholy Business, two other terrific non-fiction books by this very talented writer who honed her investigative reporting skills while earning her master's degree at UIS!

Friday, March 8, 2013

Happy International Women's Day!

Happy International Women's Day! I started my celebration of this special day today by having breakfast with a woman I greatly admire, Dr. Naomi Lynn,  Chancellor Emeritus of the University of Illinois at Springfield and the first Hispanic public university president in the United States!!  I extend my best wishes today to all the women in my life that I admire and appreciate -  UIS women students (many of whom serve in important leadership positions on our campus), UIS women faculty colleagues, our exceptional UIS women staff,  my fellow University of Illinois women Chancellors,  Dr. Phyllis Wise at UIUC and Dr. Paula Allen-Meares in Chicago, my three wonderful daughters (Kristina, Elizabeth and Rachel and daughter-in-law Rebecca),  my five beautiful granddaughters (Abigail, Sophia, Camilla, Natalie and Elsa), my much treasured women friends and so many women (and girls) who are making a difference in the world today in countless ways. In honor of all of you, I've made my annual donation to Women for Women International, an NGO that supports women in war–torn regions with aid, job skills training, education and small business assistance so they can rebuild their lives.  This year, International Women’s Day focuses on ending violence against women — an ongoing and tragic human rights violation that affects up to 7 in 10 women. Celebrations are underway today in all corners of the globe.  This link is to a special musical celebration created just for today.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Spring Break

UIS Spring Break starts at the end of this week.  For students and faculty heading away from campus, I wish you safe travels, opportunities to catch up on sleep (or that neglected assignment) and hopefully some springlike weather! 

I'll be spending most of my Spring Break in China this year, visiting our university partners, speaking at an education forum and promoting the continued internationalization of our campus. UIS is a great place for international students to earn their University of Illinois degrees, thanks to the individualized attention provided by our exceptional faculty and I look forward to sharing the UIS  story with Chinese colleagues.

Happy break, everyone!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

I am so proud of our students and their involvement in the community!

Throughout the school year UIS, students give freely of their time so that they can help others. The thing is, if you ask them, they don't think they are giving up anything. They appreciate opportunities to engage in the community and they are the ones getting a sense of return. Recently UIS was named to the President’ s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for a fifth consecutive year. It is one of the highest recognitions a university can receive for community engagement. With spring break approaching next week, you would think that would be the perfect time for students to give it a rest; but not UIS students. A group of 28 and a couple of staff members are heading to Everglades National Park in Florida to volunteer their time cleaning trails, removing unwanted species and threatening wildlife, and other tasks. Can I say it again? Leadership lived!  

P.S. I'm hoping nobody comes back with a python - I'm pretty sure we have a policy that prohibits that!