Higher Education | WGLT

Higher Education

Lincoln Academy of Illinois

Four Bloomington Normal area college students have been named student Laureates of the Lincoln Academy.

The Lincoln Academy seeks to honor outstanding students who are dedicated to their schools and communities.

Lauren Koszyk of Bloomington attends Illinois State University. Rachel Hile-Broad attends the University of Chicago. Steven Drew of Downs goes to Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. And Kendra Baber of Normal attends the University of Illinois at Sprringfield.

Heartland Community College
Staff / WGLT

Community colleges in Illinois said they've cut frills, suspended travel, and even laid off teachers. Now they need state lawmakers to come through with funding.

That was the gist of a letter sent last week from the Illinois Council of Community College Presidents​ to the governor and legislative leaders.

Illinois Wesleyan University

Illinois Wesleyan University is losing its Provost.

Jonathan Green is taking the Presidency at Susquehanna University.

Watterson Towers residence hall at ISU

Public colleges and universities in Illinois may soon be able to furlough employees for up to three weeks.

The ongoing budget impasse has taken a toll on higher education. Regular state funding has dried up, replaced by a mere trickle of stop-gap money.


The president of Illinois State University says shared governance --the input of faculty, staff and students into the way ISU operates-- is strong.

The concept was called into question late last month when some 50 faculty members signed a letter opposing some ideas they say the Education Advisory Board touts that conflict with the tenets of a liberal arts education.

Staff / WGLT

Nearly fifty faculty members at Illinois State University have now signed an open letter objecting to the use of a consultant on academic affairs and enrollment issues. The letter was published in the Vidette student newspaper late last month with more than thirty signatures at first. Additional faculty have since signed on.

Ralph Weisheit / WGLT

Illinois State University leaders are concerned about an effort to grant a community college the authority to offer bachelor's degrees in nursing.

The measure pushed by State Senator Andy Manar is billed as a way to address a nursing shortage.

Illinois State University

Illinois State University has promoted from within to fill the Dean Position in the College of Applied Sciences and Technology.

Todd McLoda is the current Senior Associate Dean in that College.

Xavier Badosa / Creative Commons

Fans of musician Bob Dylan's win of the Nobel prize for literature include several members of the Illinois State University English Department.

Among them is Jan Susina, who says the decision recognizes that song writing can be poetry and is in Dylan's case.

Michael Hill / WGLT

With the precarious nature of state funding as a backdrop, Illinois State University President Larry Dietz said he is working to organize a coalition of local education administrators.

During Sound Ideas, Dietz said there are important areas besides funding totals that are of concern.

Heartland Community College
Staff / WGLT

Heartland Community College President Rob Widmer said HCC has received about thirty five cents on the dollar in promised state aid in the last two budget years.

The state share of HCC's budget is about ten percent of the total.

Resolute Support Media / Creative Commons

A battlefield is a noisy place. And that can have long term consequences for soldiers.

An ISU researcher is coordinating a huge study of military personnel and their hearing health after explosions with a group of military scientists in San Diego.

Creative Commons

A certain Supreme Court decision written 150 years ago still has relevance for us today.

Justice David Davis of Bloomington penned the opinion in Ex Parte Milligan a century and a half ago.


ISU President Larry Dietz says he does not forsee a need for layoffs or furloughs at the campus in Normal.

During his state of the university speech Dietz lamented that higher education is in the same position it was last year at this time, no budget, no appropriation, and a lack of certainty for some months more as the legislature and Governor refuses to act.

WIU AND SIUC Enrollments Fall

Sep 7, 2016
Adam Moss / Creative Commons

Western Illinois University says enrollment this fall has dropped by seven percent.

The announcement came Wednesday as some state universities brace for the possibility of enrollment declines due to Illinois' budget crisis and a lack of state university funding. 

Creative Commons

After more than a decade of discussion and false starts, Starbucks is coming to the Illinois State University campus.

The coffee shop opens Monday in the Student Fitness Center.

Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

Illinois State University says not only did overall enrollment and freshmen enrollment rise this fall, so did minority student enrollment. African American enrollment and Latino student attendance increased ten and nine percent respectively.

Freshman Kharisma Thomas of Chicago talked about staff efforts to accommodate students.

Illinois State University

Early enrollment numbers have Illinois State University leaders smiling.

More than 21,000 students are on campus, an increase of about three hundred, based on first day enrollment numbers.


Summer is always a quieter time on college campuses. Most students go home for a summer job or take an internship elsewhere. Faculty and staff typically have less to do on campus. Some might even leave town for a vacation. 

For three months of the year, the local businesses and industries that profit from the needs and wants of the university community adjust.

Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

Republican Congressman Rodney Davis and Democratic State Treasurer Michael Frerichs are barnstorming across Illinois Universities in a bipartisan effort to improve college savings programs.

Among the ideas the two promote is allowing employers to take a tax credit for up to five thousand dollars per worker per year used to pay off student debt.

Michael Hill / WGLT

Illinois State University president Larry Dietz commented on an alleged rape that happened during an ISU Preview orientation program. Speaking at the Board of Trustees meeting earlier today, Dietz said this is the first time this has happened since the event was founded in 1966.

Illinois State University

A father and son are accused of drugging a prospective ISU student and sexually assaulting her in a university dormitory.

It allegedly happened during the orientation program called Preview. ISU Chief of Staff Jay Groves said the situation is unprecedented in the half century of successful summer offerings.

Illinois State University

The president of Illinois State University sees the future of higher education funding in Illinois based on performance rather than need. During Sound Ideas, Larry Dietz said most of the discussions on potential funding scenarios in a "post-stopgap world" involve rewarding schools that perform well.

"From a long-term planning perspective, there hasn't been much of a discussion based on a needs-based criteria. That's been more of political reaction to fiscal realities at some of the other institutions," Dietz said.

Creative Commons

For the last half century  the courts have moved to a jurisprudence of law and order instead of one of individual rights.

That's according to Michael Gizzi, an Illinois State University Professor of Criminal Justice Sciences, who spoke with GLT's Charlie Schlenker. Gizzi has co-authored a new book on the fourth amendment to the constitution, the portion of the bill of rights preventing unreasonable searches and seizures so people can be secure in their property and possessions.

Ralph Weisheit / WGLT

Illinois State University President Larry Dietz is telling the campus community 'thanks' to lawmakers for the stopgap spending bill, but things still aren't great.

In a campus wide e-mail Dietz notes ISU starts off the current fiscal year the same way it did last year with no budget. And spokesman Jay Groves says the stopgap measure is still an eleven million dollar cut.

WIU To Furlough Again

Jun 27, 2016
Adam Moss / Creative Commons

Some Western Illinois University employees will have to take more unpaid days off as the school tries to cope with a drastic decrease in state aid.

This spring, Western imposed furloughs on non-negotiated staff earning more-than 40-thousand dollars. They had to take those days off between April and June.


The new President of Illinois Wesleyan University in Bloomington says he is happily settled in the new job. Eric Jensen took over last November saying it felt right because the members of the community that he had a chance to meet were dedicated individuals and walking around campus felt like home.

Illinois State University

Think of this as Story Corps for Strangers. Illinois State University has what's called a Human Library. It exposes students to the experiences of people who have endured adversity and stereotypes and shown perseverance in the face of discrimination or social exclusion.

Larry Dietz at podium
Staff / WGLT

Illinois State University President Larry Dietz said he is really disappointed lawmakers have failed to approve a budget for the second consecutive year. The spring session of the General Assembly ended Tuesday night without any viable spending plan. Dietz said this has been bad news for eleven months.


Many businesses are figuring out how much new federal rules on overtime pay will cost them starting in December. The effect on Illinois State University could be in the two million dollar range.