Rockford Today Latest News

FOND DU LAC, Wis. – The Regents men’s basketball team dropped its second straight road NACC game on Saturday 70-58 to the Marian University Sabres.
headlines-featured FOND DU LAC, Wis. – The women’s basketball team fell 84-66 on the road to the first place Marian University Sabres on Saturday.
headlines-featured ROCKFORD, Ill. – Rockford University senior linebacker Seth Swinehart (Rockford, Ill./East) has been chosen to participate in the sixth annual Tazón de Estrellas (Bowl of the Stars) later this month.
headlines-featured ROCKFORD, Ill. – The Rockford University men’s basketball team fell 94-72 on the road Thursday night to the Aurora University Spartans.

Rockford Today Latest News

ROCKFORD, Ill. – The Rockford University football team had seven of its players voted All-Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference for their performances in the 2014 season.
headlines-featured Jacksonville, Ill.- The Rockford University Regents continued its non-conference season at the Bill Merris Tournament Saturday afternoon. The Regents faced off against the 1-2 Buena Vista Beavers, who lost to Illinois Wesleyan in the opening round of the Bill Merris Tournament.
headlines-featured Jacksonville, Ill.- The Rockford University men’s basketball team returned to the court Friday night for the opening game in the Bill Merris Tournament. The Regents faced the host team the Illinois College Blueboys.
headlines-featured DUBUQUE, Iowa – The Rockford University men’s basketball team dropped a heartbreaker on Tuesday evening 88-85 at Loras College.

Rockford Today Latest News

LISLE, Ill. – It was a difficult day for the Rockford University football team on the road Saturday against the Benedictine University Eagles.
headlines-featured Rockford, Ill.- Saturday afternoon was the final home game for the Rockford University Regents football team. It was an afternoon of celebration as Rockford honored 15 seniors before the game and the also honored retiring head coach Vic Wallace.
headlines-featured AURORA, Ill. – On Saturday the Rockford University cross country teams finished the NACC portion of their schedule when they ran in the 2014 Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference Championships.
headlines-featured RIVER FOREST, Ill. – The Regents men’s soccer team concluded its season on Wednesday afternoon on the road against the Concordia University Chicago Cougars.

Rockford Today Latest News

Rockford, Ill.- For ninety-four minutes it appeared as though the Rockford University men’s soccer team would finish their final home match of the season as they finished their first home match of the season; with an over-time tie.
headlines-featured MEQUON, Wis. – The Rockford University football team hit the road on Saturday to play the defending NACC Champion Concordia University Wisconsin Falcons.
headlines-featured LISLE, Ill. – The Rockford University volleyball team concluded its 5-match road trip on Saturday morning against the Benedictine University Eagles.
headlines-featured MILWAUKEE, Wis. – The Rockford University volleyball team snapped its 8-game losing streak on Wednesday night with an impressive win on the road against the Wisconsin Lutheran College Warriors.

Rockford Today Latest News

Winifred Creamer

Winifred Creamer

The University Libraries offer financial grants to NIU faculty and graduate students to help defray the cost of publishing in open access journals that require an article publication fee.

Two NIU researchers’ articles have been able to receive wider exposure as a result of being published in open access journals.

Winifred Creamer of the Department of Anthropology recently co-authored a publication titled “Evidence for maize (Zea mays) in the Late Archaic (3000-1800 B.C.) in the Norte Chico region of Peru” that was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS). PNAS uses a service called Altmetric to record the various ways in which an article is being viewed or used.

As of August, Creamer’s paper had been viewed and/or downloaded 3,467 times and had garnered local and national media from news agencies such as NPR, BBC News and Der Spiegel.

Altmetric also tracks social media activity and downloads to online reference managers such as Mendeley. Among social media, the paper was mentioned on three blogs, 24 tweets and by three Facebook users, and was downloaded and saved by 34 Mendeley users.

Based on the attention the article received, Altmetric currently ranks Creamer’s paper in the top 5 percent of all articles.

Creamer chose to publish in an open access journal “because it would make my work available to a larger audience. I’m especially conscious of this because I work in South America, where many of my colleagues cannot afford to subscribe to the top international journals.”

She also said her knowledge of the University Libraries’ Open Access Publishing Fund factored in to her decision.

Karen Samonds

Karen Samonds

Another recipient of grant funding was Karen Samonds of the Department of Biological Sciences, who co-authored an article titled “Imperfect Isolation: Factors and Filters Shaping Madagascar’s Extant Vertebrate Fauna” that was published in the open access journal PLOS ONE.

Similar to PNAS, PLOS ONE offers article-level metrics for every article it publishes.

As of Oct. 4, Samonds’ article had been viewed 3,106 times and downloaded 541 times. Citations by other authors range between four and six while 32 individuals saved the article on Mendeley. The article was mentioned in two tweets and 61 times on Facebook. With these numbers the article compared favorably to others in its subject area on PLOS ONE.

The University Libraries’ Open Access website includes more information about the Open Access Publishing Fund and the benefits of open access publishing. During the week of Oct. 20, the University Libraries will host the second annual NIU Open Access Symposium to help attendees learn more about various aspects of open access publishing and the use of open access articles, educational resources, and research data sets.

A schedule and descriptions of symposium sessions is available online. For more information, contact Sharon L. Nelson at (815) 753-2021 or or Karl Pettitt at (815) 753-9495 or

NIU Today » Latest News


NIU W.I.N. – What’s Important Now
Three things you should know about Northern Illinois University, higher education and the world around you.


NIU in the News

NIU recognizes distinguished alumni, faculty and staff
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 10/11/14)

Renowned climate scientist to speak at NIU
(DeKalb County Online, 10/12/14)

Real-life ‘Bones’ to speak at NIU
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 10/11/14)

Former NIU Officer Wants Assault Victim to Testify
(WIFR-TV, 10/10/14)

Northern Illinois University: Interfacing eyewear? Smart sneakers? Robo-gloves? Brain 2.0?
(Daily Kos, 10/11/14)

The Hobbit: Family Seeks Help For One More Movie With Terminally Ill Dad
(Inquisitr, 10/12/14)

Parade kicks off NIU homecoming weekend
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 10/10/14)

Officials Discuss Total Retiree Advantage Illinois Program In Seminar At NIU
(Northern Public Radio, 10/13/14)

Proposal creates DeKalb County enterprise zone to boost business, industrial development
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 10/10/14)

On the right track
(Malaysia New Straits Time, 10/12/14)

Information session for Illinois retirees planned
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 10/12/14)

Pass/Fail: NIU cleans, redesigns Web homepage; Post-game traffic rush could improve
(Northern Star, 10/12/14)


NIU alumni in the News

Glenbard South teacher helps faculty members bring technology into classroom
(Elburn Herald, 10/9/14)

UW-Fox Valley names business, geography professors
(Post Crescent, 10/12/14)

Blogging her way to success
(Quad City Times, 10/12/14)


Sports News

College Football: Central Michigan runs over Northern Illinois
(Rockford Register Star, 10/11/14)

NIU volleyball beats Chippewas
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 10/11/14)

Carifio: Huskie offense shows its capable of so much more
(HuskieWire, 10/9/14)

NIU’s winning streaks come to an abrupt end
(Chicago Tribune, 10/11/14)

Minn. coach shows grit beyond the game
(CNN, 10/11/14)

Not time to push the panic button
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 10/11/14)

Tough turf at NIU awaits WVU men’s soccer team
(DPost, 10/10/14)

Northern Illinois facing tough test from Central Michigan
(Cleveland Plain Dealer, 10/10/14)

On Campus: Cary-Grove grad Kyle Norberg makes successful switch to RB for North Dakota
(Northwest Herald, 10/10/14)

Saturday’s matchup: Central Michigan at Northern Illinois
(Chicago Tribune, 10/10/14)

NIU’s winning streaks come to an abrupt end
(RedEye Chicago, 10/13/14)


Higher Ed News

Goals for Enrollment and Tuition Revenue Elude Many Colleges
(Chronicle of Higher Education, 10/13/14)

What reauthorizing the Higher Education Act means for students
(USA Today, 10/12/14)

For Colleges, Boosting Enrollment Isn’t All About the Money
(WGBH, 10/10/14)

Lumina Looks to Expand Use of Framework to Track Student Learning
(Chronicle of Higher Education, 10/9/14)

Colleges Are Reporting More Sexual Assaults, And That’s A Great Sign
(Huffington Post, 10/12/14)


Around the State

Governor Quinn Dedicates University of Illinois Electrical and Computer Engineering Building
(SmartGrid, 10/13/14)

New Computer at U of I
(Alton Daily News, 10/13/14)

Removing The Pension Protection Clause
(Northern Public Radio, 10/13/14)

Alpha Tau Omega fraternity’s UI chapter to remain open despite university suspension
(Daily Journal, 10/10/14)

UIS a true asset for the capital city
(State Journal-Register, 10/10/14)

Steven Salaita, University of Illinois Professor Denied Job Offer, Speaks at DePaul
(The DePaulia, 10/12/14)

NIU Today » Latest News

Global dinnersThe NIU Dietetic Interns are hosting a series of “Around the World” themed dinners in the dining halls this semester.

All are invited. Meal plans, Huskie Bucks, flex dollars and are debit/credit are available as payment options.

The interns hope that these dinners will expose students to a taste of cuisines from around the world through ambiance, featured foods and activities.

Guests can expect fun games, entertainment and great food. Raffle prizes will be given away at each dining hall, as well as bigger, global raffle prize drawings with “Passport for Prizes” for students who attend all three dinners.

For more information, contact Rachel McBride at

“Celebrate Africa” featuring the Northern Black Choir
4 to 7:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 20, Stevenson Dining Hall

  • Ethiopian Sampler with Sourdough Flatbread made to order
  • Piri Piri Chicken
  • Masala Fries
  • North African Style Pizza

“A Night on the Mediterranean Sea” featuring the Huskie Hunks
4 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 21, Neptune Dining Hall

  • Gyros
  • Moussaka
  • Baklava
  • Crepe Station

“A Blend of Asia”
4 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 22, New Hall Dining Hall

  • Hoisin Potatoes
  • Shrimp Pad Thai (nut-free)
  • Asian Chicken Pizza
  • Lettuce Wrap Bar

NIU Today » Latest News

Michael Santacaterina

Michael Santacaterina

Behind Thomas Rawls’ 270 rushing yards and two touchdowns, Central Michigan knocked off the NIU football team 34-17 Saturday at Huskie Stadium in a Mid-American Conference West Division match-up.

The win by CMU (4-3, 2-1 MAC) snaps the Huskies’ (4-2, 1-1 MAC) 28-game winning streak at Huskie Stadium, while also ending NIU’s 24-game regular season winning streak against Mid-American Conference opponents.

“We’re very, very disappointed in the final result,” said NIU head coach Rod Carey.

“I give credit to Central Michigan. They came in here and really executed well in all three phases and made the plays that were crucial to the game. Our execution wasn’t good enough. We will move forward. I believe in these guys 100 percent. They played all the way to the end of the game, and this team’s resolve is going to be steady and we’re going to continue to work and get better.”

The Huskies opened the game with a five-play, 71-yard drive that culminated with a 20-yard strike from quarterback Drew Hare (O’Fallon, Mo./Fort Zumwalt West) to junior receiver Juwan Brescacin (Mississauga, Ontario/Culver Academy[Ind.]). CMU countered with a 10-play, 86-yard response that ended with Rawls finding the endzone from five yards out to knot the game at 7-7.

Taking advantage of the Chippewas’ ensuing kickoff landing out of bounds, NIU quickly moved back into CMU territory, but the Huskie drive stalled at the CMU 42. After the NIU punt, the Chippewas took advantage with another extended drive, moving out of the shadow of their own endzone courtesy of a 39-yard pass from quarterback Cooper Rush to Jesse Kroll. Another 18-yard completion put the CMU offense at the NIU 13, where Rawls rumbled for a 13-yard touchdown to give the visitors a lead they would never relinquish at 14-7.

On NIU’s next drive, a bad snap pushed the Huskies into a third-and-27 situation and an eventual three-and-out. Taking over at its own 42, CMU got into NIU territory, but Paris Logan’s (Columbia, Mo./Rock Bridge) pass breakup on third down halted the Chippewas. NIU was unable to take advantage of the stop and – despite two first downs – were forced to punt.

Juwan Brescacin

Juwan Brescacin

The CMU offense again found its rhythm, as completions of 10, 16, 15 and 16 yards set up the Chippewas at the NIU 16. Following a five-yard gain from Rawls, Rush found Jesse Kroll on a six-yard touchdown to put the Huskies in a 14-point hole entering the half.

Rawls jumpstarted the Chippewa offense out of the intermission with a 22-yard run. Two long completions from Rush to Titus Davis – the second one an acrobatic catch for 29 yards – helped put CMU at the NIU 15. Two Rawls runs set up a third-and-three at the NIU 8, but Logan again came through with a breakup, forcing CMU to settle for a 25-yard field goal from Brian Eavey and a 24-7 lead.

Logan, who had single coverage on CMU’s leading receiver most of the night, held Davis to four catches for 54 yards, 52 yards below his season average. The junior cornerback made seven tackles and broke up two passes.

NIU’s hurry-up attack on the ensuing drive seemed to get the Huskie offense in gear, as Hare’s 20-yard strike to Brescacin put NIU in business near midfield. However, a Cameron Stingily (Romeoville, Ill./Romeoville) rush on fourth-and three from the CMU 49 went for naught when the CMU defense snuffed out the run and got the ball back at the NIU 48.

Three plays later, though, Michael Santacaterina (Geneva, Ill./Geneva) stepped in front of a Rush pass and raced down the sidelines before getting pushed out at the CMU 25. A 10-yard Stingily run coupled with a personal foul on CMU set up the Huskies at the Chippewa 8, but two incompletions and a one-yard rush forced Tyler Wedel (McFarland, Wis./McFarland) to come on for a 24-yard chip shot.

Undeterred, CMU came back with an eight-play, 80-yard drive capped when Rush threw a dart to Ben McCord for a 13-yard touchdown. The drive, though, was all about Rawls, who started things with rushes for nine, three and 12 yards. Following an incompletion, Rawls ran for 27 yards to the NIU 29, which moved to the NIU 14 courtesy of a facemask penalty against the Huskies.

Three plays later, Rush found McCord in the endzone to put CMU up by 21.

Desroy Maxwell

Desroy Maxwell

Needing to stage a comeback, Hare lofted a pass deep downfield to Da’Ron Brown (Chicago Ill./Morgan Park), who leaped and came down with a 49-yard reception to put NIU in business in CMU territory. Two plays later, Hare hit Brescacin in the endzone from 14 yards out, getting NIU within 31-17.

From there, though, Rawls and the Chippewas’ rushing attack took over, grinding the clock down and adding a 23-yard field goal from Eavey to complete the scoring.

NIU finished with just 110 yards rushing on 33 carries. Hare completed 18-of-33 passes for 231 yards and two scores, and also threw his first interception of the season. In addition to Brescacin’s six catches for 76 yards, Da’Ron Brown caught four passes for 76 yards, including a 49-yard grab.

The Huskies cap their three-game homestand next Saturday when they welcome Miami (Ohio) to Huskie Stadium for a 4 p.m. kickoff.

For more information on NIU football and Huskie athletics, visit

NIU Today » Latest News

Rockford Today Latest News

2014-Clery-ReportNorthern Illinois University released its 2014-15 Annual Campus Safety and Security Report, in accordance with the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act, which requires that each post-secondary institution file a report annually by October 1.

NIU provides information regarding campus security, personal and fire safety, including topics such as crime prevention, emergency response procedures and crime reporting policies, in addition to crime and fire statistics for the most recent three calendar years.

The Annual Security Report containing security and safety information is available at, or by contacting the University Police Department and Public Safety Department at 815-753-9628 to receive a hard copy. The Annual Fire Safety Report is also available at or by contacting the Environmental Health & Safety Department at 815-753-0404 to receive a hard copy.

For the first time, statistics for stalking, domestic violence and dating violence are included in the annual security report, in accordance with the obligations set forth in the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act’s (VAWA) campus sexual violence provisions. Under VAWA, colleges and universities are required to:

  • Report domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking, beyond crime categories the Clery Act already mandates;
  • Adopt certain student discipline procedures, such as for notifying purported victims of their rights; and
  • Adopt certain institutional policies to address and prevent campus sexual violence, such as to train in particular respects pertinent institutional personnel.

In July, President Doug Baker announced the formation of a presidential task force to build upon the university’s previous work in sexual assault prevention and Clery Act reporting. The NIU presidential task force is to provide its recommendations to President Baker in October.

The Clery Act requires each and every college and university that participates in federal financial aid programs to keep and disclose information about crime on and near campus. Compliance is monitored by the United States Department of Education.

The law is named for Jeanne Clery, a 19-year-old Lehigh University freshman who was raped and murdered in her campus residence hall in 1986. The Clery Act, signed in 1990, was originally known as the Crime Awareness and Campus Security Act.

The Clery Act contains several requirements for colleges and universities.  In addition to the publication and distribution of the annual campus security report—which is required to provide crime statistics for the previous three years, policy statements regarding various safety and security measures, campus crime prevention program descriptions, and procedures to be followed in the investigation and prosecution of alleged sex offenses—the act requires maintenance of a public crime log of all reported crimes within the past 60 days, it requires institutions to provide timely warnings of crimes representing a threat to the safety of members of the university community, and it must keep the most recent three years of statistics for crimes that occur on campus, in residence halls, in non-campus buildings or on public property within or immediately adjacent to and accessible from the campus.

NIU Today » Latest News

Reintroduction of bison at Nachusa Grasslands boosts research opportunities for NIU faculty, students

Photo of a bisonNIU student Angela Burke hails from blue-collar Burbank, Ill.

With its prevalence of mom-and-pop restaurants and the regular roar of low-flying passenger jets from Chicago’s Midway Airport nearby, the southwest suburb certainly seems more city.

So, for a week in August, it must have seemed to Burke like she was on another planet – or perhaps living in a time warp – as she stepped out each morning onto the front porch of a little yellow farmhouse, a cup of coffee in hand.

A symphony of songbirds. A pink-haloed sunrise. A misty, endless prairie of tall grass, dotted with sunflowers, forbs and coneflowers in shades of pink, purple and yellow.

Welcome to the gloaming hours of dawn at Nachusa Grasslands preserve, near Dixon, Ill., just a 45-minute drive from the Northern Illinois University campus. It provides a stunning reminder of what the “Prairie State” looked like once upon a time.

“It was breathtaking and overwhelming,” says Burke, a 26-year-old graduate student in biology who spent six days and nights in a small researchers’ residence at the preserve. “It truly felt like I had been shot into the past.”

Angela Burke

Angela Burke

Burke, along with a host of other NIU student and faculty researchers, couldn’t be more excited about a new remnant of prairies past that will be added this week to the Nachusa Grasslands scenery: the magnificent bison, the largest mammal on the North American continent.

Quick note on bison vs. buffalo: Both are acceptable terms for the layman – after all, the legendary showman wasn’t dubbed Bison Bill. But the two main buffalo species actually reside in Africa and Asia. Bison is the correct scientific term for the North American species, which was last known to roam Illinois in the early 1800s.

While Illinois is officially known as the Prairie State, the sad irony is that 99.9 percent of its prairie has been lost to agriculture and development, says NIU professor Holly Jones, who holds a joint appointment with biological sciences and NIU’s Institute for the Study of the Environment, Sustainability, and Energy.

Nachusa Grasslands demonstrates how prairies can make a comeback. World-renowned for its restoration strategies, the preserve’s 3,500 acres also have become a living laboratory for NIU scientists and students.

And research efforts are ramping up with the reintroduction of the shaggy behemoths of the Great Plains, which once numbered in the tens of millions nationwide before becoming nearly extinct.

“Nachusa is reintroducing bison to help regain the ecosystem function lost in their absence,” Jones says. “Native grazers such as bison historically helped maintain prairie, but they were driven to near-extinction through hunting, agriculture and development.”

NIU Professor Holly Jones

NIU Professor Holly Jones in one of her laboratory’s study plots at Nachusa Grasslands.

Nachusa will welcome about 40 new bison from a genetic line saved by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1905, creating the first wild herd east of the Mississippi River. The hope is to grow the herd to 100 animals.

Experts believe the Nachusa bison will further restore the prairie’s biodiversity. For example, a landscape with a patchwork of both grazed and ungrazed areas provides habitat for more species of birds. Wallows created by bison tend to puddle during springtime and create breeding areas for amphibians. Insects feed off bison dung, expand their populations and become meals for birds and other small animals.

Scientists want to know more about this web of life.

“We know a lot about how vegetation does under prairie restoration and management with bison grazing, but we have very little information on how animals respond,” Jones says. “This is the first time bison have been reintroduced to restored prairie, so our research will for the first time document the effects of bison restoration on animal communities that are themselves responding to plant restoration.”

Jones’ NIU laboratory is already gearing up for studies on how the bison’s presence will effect populations of grassland birds, small mammals and deer. She has six students working on projects, including Burke, who this past August trapped and tagged voles, ground squirrels and several varieties of mice. Burke will return for additional trappings in mid-October and other times over the course of the school year.

“I took one of Dr. Jones’ classes as a student-at-large, and she was truly an inspiring teacher,” Burke says. “It led to me taking on her small-mammal project.

“I was drawn to this study because, being an Illinois native and knowing that prairies are the most threatened ecosystems globally, I feel like a piece of my own heritage has been lost,” Burke adds. “So with this project, I feel like I’ll be giving back to the state that I love.”


Senior Ryan Blackburn helped trap small mammals at Nachusa
as part of an Undergraduate Research Apprenticeship.

Meanwhile, other NIU professors are lending their research expertise to Nachusa and using the prairie to create hands-on learning experiences for scores of students.

“It’s a very interesting preserve to study right now,” says Nachusa project manager Bill Kleiman, who also happens to be an NIU alumnus. “This is new for us, for Illinois and the Midwest, and we want to study the effects of the bison on plants, insects, birds, animals and streams.”

Kleiman said three state universities and several from outside Illinois are involved in research at the preserve.

“We’ve been trying to line up researchers to gather baseline data and help us record what happens over time,” Kleiman says. “NIU features prominently among the scientists working here. In terms of numbers of researchers, it’s the biggest.”

Those NIU scientists include Melissa Lenczewski (water quality) in geology; David Goldblum (biodiversity), Lesley Rigg (vegetation dynamics) and Michael Konen (soil) in geography; and Richard King (reptiles), Wesley Swingley (soil microbiota) and Nicholas Barber (insects) in biological sciences.

Not only will society benefit from the work, but so do students who gain opportunities to learn alongside experts in the field.

“I’ve gained experience by learning how to collect samples and working with professors and other students, and I’m also gaining a better understanding of the prairie itself,” says Rachel Farrell of DeKalb. The 40-year-old, non-traditional student is a senior Environmental Studies major.

Professor Nicholas Barber (left) leads a field trip to Nachusa Grasslands.

Professor Nicholas Barber (left) leads a field trip to Nachusa Grasslands.

Farrell received an Undergraduate Research Assistantship to work with Professor Goldblum and has been visiting the grasslands regularly since May, monitoring soil respiration. She’s eager to see the benefits that will be derived from the addition of bison.

“The potential for what we can learn is huge,” she says. “And the idea we’re bringing this native animal back to this area is fantastic to me.”

While many students work one-on-one with NIU scientists, entire classes also visit the Nachusa Grasslands for engaged-learning experiences. Professor Barber took two ecology classes to the preserve just last week.

“It’s an invaluable resource for field trips, to be able to let students experience a high quality prairie ecosystem like this,” says Barber, whose laboratory has been conducting research at Nachusa for the past three years.

“We’ll be working out there for many years to come, so I see this as a way to recruit students,” he adds. “Nachusa gives us a glimpse of what the prairies looked like hundreds of years ago. Having the bison grazing there makes that view even more exciting.”

NIU Today » Latest News


NIU W.I.N. – What’s Important Now
Three things you should know about Northern Illinois University, higher education and the world around you.


NIU in the News

Wearable devices & human cyborgs; Rockford area expert weighs in on future of technology
(WREX-TV, 9/26/14)

Inflation Could Help You Next Year
(Morningstar, 9/27/14)

Student Spotlight: Senior explores illness with veterinary project
(Northern Star, 9/28/14)

NIU Lorado Taft Field Campus to host open house Oct. 13
(American Towns, 9/29/14)

CSA Sinfonia Concerto seeks competitors
(Rockford Register Star, 9/28/14)

Our view: Thumbs-up to Penguin Projecto
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 9/26/14)

Heidi Frostestad Kuehl Named Director of NIU Law Library
(American Towns, 9/25/14)

Construction + Accreditation + Innovation = Success
(DeKalb County Online, 9/25/14)

Golden age of Athens discussed at lecture
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 9/26/14)

Geneva economic development director leaving for job in DeKalb
(Suburban Life, 9/26/14)

Learn all things solar at DCM
(Naperville Sun, 9/26/14)

NIU Graduate and Professional School Fair
(DeKalb County Online, 9/29/14)


NIU alumni in the News

The Original Son of Anarchy
(Rolling Stone, 9/29/14)

Laotian family returns to region years after a local church sponsored their trip to America
(Kingsport Times News, 9/27/14)

SAllen accepted to Illinois Veterinary College
(Ottawa Times, 9/26/14)

Former Colts QB Harnish headed to Minnesota Vikings
(Fort Wayne News-Sentinel, 9/29/14)

Morningside welcomes new science, math faculty
(Sioux City Journal, 9/28/14)

Coca-Cola VP Pays Solidarity Visit to Ebola-Hit Liberia
(Front Page Africa, 9/29/14)

Vikings sign QB Chandler Harnish to practice squad
(, 9/29/14)


Sports News

NIU concludes SchedulePalooza Encore with series against USF
(HuskieWire, 9/27/14)

Area colleges notes: NIU football in good hands with QB Hare
(St. Louis Post Dispatch, 9/27/14)

Huskies add USF to future schedule
(WREX-TV, 9/26/14)

Strong Middle Play Fails To Lift Volleyball Past NIU
(, 9/28/14)

Northern Illinois Lines Up Another AAC Team for Home and Home Series
(Best College Sports News Network, 9/26/14)

USF adds series with Northern Illinois
(Oracle, 9/29/14)


Higher Ed News

STEM’s international college appeal
(University Business, 9/29/14)

The STEM paradoxes: Graduates’ lack of non-technical skills, and not enough women
(Washington Post, 9/26/14)

Agency Warns About Decline in Access to Education
(New York Times, 9/28/14)

(New America, 9/26/14)


Across the State

The college completion crisis
(Champaign News-Gazette, 9/28/14)

Records detail U. of I. sex-assault settlement
(FindLaw, 9/28/14)

SIU-Edwardsville sees record enrollment; Chancellor credits new programs, in-state tuition
(Daily Journal, 9/25/14)

Marine veteran uses soccer as therapy
(Northwest Herald, 9/27/14)

ISU rethinking enrollment ‘sweet spot’
(Bloomington Pantagraph, 9/28/14)

Pensions: Vexing Illinois Politicians Since 1917
(WUIS-FM, 9/29/14)

UIC Student Accused of Causing $ 25,000 Flood in Lab: Prosecutors
(DNAinfo Chicago, 9/25/14)

ISU mulls enrollment increases
(Decatur Herald & Review, 9/29/14)

SIU-Edwardsville sees record enrollment this year
(Southern Illinoisan, 9/28/14)

NIU Today » Latest News

Huskie BusBeginning today, all Huskie Bus Line routes will be moved back to the west side of the Holmes Student Center except routes 6 and 7. Those two routes will continue to maintain the route paths they use currently which begin on the east side of the HSC.

All other routes will once again utilize the HSC turnaround as they had in past semesters.

The 12 Huskie Line Bus Routes are similar to the spring 2014 routes and are as follows:

  • Route 1: Academic/Campus (1R/1L)
  • Route 2: Residence Halls (2L/2R)
  • Route 3: Greek Row
  • Route 4: Twombly/Greek Row
  • Route 5: Eco Park
  • Route 6: Southern DeKalb (Will not change)
  • Route 7: Sycamore Road (Will not change)
  • Route 8R: Evening Circle (Right)
  • Route 9L: Evening Circle (Left)
  • Route 10: Evening Circle North
  • Route 11: Weekend/Break
  • Route 12: Elburn Shuttle

The only significant change from the current routes is the on the 2L/2R route wherein the buses will now be making a stop outside the Computer Science/Psychology Building to better accommodate student schedules.

All other routes will operate the same way as in the past semesters, with exception of the new stops on the 2L/2R route.

For more information, call (815) 753-6900.

NIU Today » Latest News

Rockford Today Latest News


NIU W.I.N. – What’s Important Now
Three things you should know about Northern Illinois University, higher education and the world around you.


NIU in the News

Physics of Football at STEM Cafe Wednesday
(DeKalb County Online, 9/15/14)

Armchair quarterbacks can learn about the physics of football
(Daily Herald, 9/12/14)

Outdoor Recreation Sports Complex plans Sept. 19 grand opening
(DeKalb County Online, 9/15/14)

Lake Land College plans Transfer Day
(Journal Gazette and Times Courier, 9/14/14)

Olson: When does a professor cross the line?
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 9/12/14)


NIU alumni in the News

NIU fundraising group paid $ 17,000 to run ads challenging Illini
(Comcast SportsNet, 9/12/14)

TV Anchor Announces On-Air That He Has Months to Live
(The Hollywood Reporter, 9/14/14)

Behind the scenes
(Rochelle News-Leader, 9/11/14)

61108: Quality of life based on opportunities and choices
(Rockford Register Star, 9/14/14)

Northern Illinois trolls Fighting Illini in ad
(ESPN, 9/12/14)


Sports News

Northern Illinois holds off UNLV’s rally in 48-34 victory
(Las Vegas Sun, 9/13/14)

Line paves way for NIU victory
(HuskieWire, 9/13/14)

Inside former NFL receiver Don Beebe’s House of Speed
(Sports Illustrated, 9/13/14)

NIU holds off persistent UNLV
(HuskieWire, 9/13/14)

(St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 9/15/14)

Take 2: Hare the best choice at QB for now
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 9/13/14)

Illini hockey opens season with a victory over Northern Illinois
(Daily Illini, 9/15/14)

Hot Huskies look to keep cool at UNLV
(HuskieWire, 9/13/14)


Higher Ed News

How much will college cost in 25 years?
(USA Today, 9/13/14)

Audio: Rating Colleges on Low-Income Enrollments / The ‘Murky Middle’ and Retention
(Inside Higher Ed, 9/115/14)


Across the State

International students help boost SIU enrollment
(Sauk Valley Media, 9/15/14)

More accepted to U of I saying ‘no thanks’
(Southtown Star, 9/12/14)

Freshmen enrollment drops at U. of Illinois
(Southern Illinoisan, 9/13/14)

SIUE Receives NSF Grant for Digital East St. Louis
(PR Web, 9/15/14)

U. of I. did right, but maybe for wrong reasons
(Chicago Sun-Times, 9/14/14)

NIU Today » Latest News

Presidential Engagement Professor medallionNIU faculty, staff, students and community members are invited to nominate NIU professors with outstanding records of community engagement for the 2015 Presidential Engagement Professorships.

Nominations will be accepted now through Friday, Oct. 3.

Established in 2010, the Presidential Engagement Professorships recognize faculty members who exemplify the following criteria:

  • Commitment to fostering reciprocal partnerships in which problems, solutions, goals and measures of success are jointly defined;
  • The ability to engage external communities in conscious efforts to bring scholarship to bear on regional, national or international problems;
  • Enhancement of curricular content by incorporating opportunities to create, integrate, transfer and apply knowledge for the benefit of all partners;
  • Engagement of students in projects and initiatives of direct benefit to external audiences;
  • Creating a sense of civic responsibility in students; and
  • Enabling learning beyond the confines of the campus.

Each Presidential Engagement Professorship is accompanied by a $ 2,000 base salary increment; a $ 5,000 stipend (renewable annually during each year of a four-year award period) for activities related to the professor’s engagement activities; and release for one semester from teaching, research and service responsibilities for generation of new course materials, grant applications, scholarly work or new partnerships. Presidential Engagement Professors also receive a specially minted medallion to be worn with their academic regalia.

Anne Kaplan

Anne Kaplan

Letters of nomination are due Friday, Oct. 3, to Anne Kaplan, vice president for Outreach, Engagement and Regional Development, at or Lowden Hall 307.

Only full professors with tenure and at least six years of service at NIU are eligible for the award. Individuals who have received other presidential awards or the Board of Trustees Professorship are eligible; however, the four-year award periods may not overlap.

Following receipt of a nomination letter, the selection committee will invite each nominated professor to prepare a formal application that includes resume, references, an essay on engagement, and tangible evidence of outcomes related to outreach and engagement.

Complete instructions are available online. Application materials are due to Kaplan by Friday, Nov. 14. Recipients will be announced in spring 2015.

For more information, call (815) 753-1272.

NIU Today » Latest News

Drew Hare

Drew Hare

Northern Illinois University jumped out to a 21-5 halftime lead and survived a furious comeback to pull out a 48-34 win Saturday over the Rebels at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas.

Da’Ron Brown hauled in a 54-yard pass from Drew Hare with 8:55 left in the game to put the Huskies back in control after UNLV tied the score at 34. After a Marlon Moore interception prevented a tying UNLV score, the running of Cameron Stingily (17 carries, 102 yards, 2 TDs) sealed the victory.

In all, the Huskies amassed 618 yards of total offense, as Hare was 18-for-28 with three touchdowns passing in addition to 14 carries for 74 yards and a touchdown on the ground.NIU had 333 yards rushing on the day.

“We knew it was going to be a four-quarter battle,” said NIU head coach Rod Carey. “I’m proud of our guys. They fought through adversity. Give [UNLV] credit, they fought back and played a heck of a third-quarter. Give us credit, we made plays when we had to.”

NIU scored on its first two possessions of the second half when Hare scampered for 12 yards to make the score 28-5. Then, following a UNLV touchdown, Tyler Wedel capped a 47-yard drive with a 45-yard field goal to make the score 31-12.

With the score 31-12, UNLV capitalized on NIU miscues and penalties in putting together a 22-3 run.

The Rebels started the scoring with a 35-yard field goal after an eight play, 50-yard opening drive, but the Huskies answered with a 76 yard drive of their own that finished with a five-yard touchdown run by Stingily to make the score 7-3.

Cameron Stingily

Cameron Stingily

After a Huskie personal foul in the endzone resulted in a UNLV safety, tightening the score at 7-5, NIU went to work in the second quarter.

Keith Harris Jr. keyed a 14-play, 80-yard drive with 25 of his 65 rushing yards on the day, and Hare hit Harris for a 12-yard touchdown pass to make the score 14-5. Then, shortly before the end of the half, Hare completed four of five passes and ran for 15 yards on a 10 play, 80-yard touchdown drive capped by a 10-yard touchdown pass from Hare to Juwan Brescacin to make the score 21-5.

“I think [UNLV’s Davis] is as good as there is in the country at wide receiver,” Carey said. “He and Paris had been going at it all night and [Davis] had probably been getting the better of him for the most part. But then, there’s Paris. He made a great tip and Marlon made a great catch. Give our kids credit, they were focused when they need to be.”

For more information on NIU football and Huskie athletics, visit

NIU Today » Latest News

Joel Bouagnon

Joel Bouagnon

Couldn’t make it to Las Vegas for the big football game?

No worries.

NIU’s Ch 20.1 will broadcast an online video stream of Saturday’s pigskin contest between NIU and UNLV.

The game telecast  begins at 6 p.m. Central Time.

For more information on NIU football and Huskie athletics, visit

NIU Today » Latest News

Rockford Today Latest News

BELOIT, Wis. – The Rockford University volleyball team opened its season with a total of four matches at the Beloit College Buccaneer Blast Tournament on Friday and Saturday. The Regents went 1-1 each day with a 3-1 win over host Beloit College and a thrilling 5-set comeback win over fellow NACC member Alverno College.
headlines-featured JANESVILLE, Wis. – The Rockford Univesity golf team began its 2014 season with a trip into Wisconsin to compete in the Culvers Edgewood College Fall Classic. The Regents finished finished tenth with a total score of +74 over the two day tournament and was just four shots behind ninth place MSOE.
headlines-featured ROCKFORD, Ill. – The Rockford University men’s soccer team returned to the field Saturday afternoon after playing to a double overtime tie Friday afternoon in the season opener. Saturday’s game brought the Crown College Storm to Rockford to face the Regents. Once again the Regents would find themselves in overtime battling for a victory
headlines-featured ROCKFORD, Ill.- The Rockford University men’s soccer team took their home field Friday afternoon to face the Cornell College Rams to begin the 2014 season. Rockford was on the offensive all game and its defense played even better. The Rams and the Regents battled through two overtimes to end in a zero all tie.

Rockford Today Latest News

NIU biologist Rangaswamy “Nathan” Meganathan works with Debarati Ghose, a graduate student in biology.

Rangaswamy “Nathan” Meganathan works with biology grad student Debarati Ghose.

First, the good news: Five NIU professors this summer snagged three prestigious grants that total nearly $ 1 million.

Now for the better news: the funding also provides cutting-edge research opportunities for NIU students, allowing them to work alongside top scientists in their disciplines.

“These are impressive research projects by an extraordinary group of faculty scientists here at NIU,” says Lesley Rigg, vice president of the Division of Research and Innovation Partnerships. “Not only are they pushing the frontier of knowledge is their research areas, but they’re also taking students along for the ride, essentially training the next generation of scientists.”

Chemistry professor Timothy Hagen is lead investigator on a project that will potentially involve dozens of student researchers. Hagen and NIU colleagues Rangaswamy “Nathan” Meganathan in biology and James Horn in chemistry won an Academic Research Enhancement Award of $ 356,000 over three years from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health.

The funding will be used to design and test new chemical compounds that may lead to improved drugs and other treatments for infectious disease.

NIU biologist Rangaswamy “Nathan” Meganathan and chemists Timothy Hagen and James Horn

Biologist Rangaswamy “Nathan” Meganathan and chemists Timothy Hagen and James Horn

“New drugs are desperately needed to combat the development of multi-drug resistant bacteria and other infectious diseases, such as malaria,” Hagen says. “This research makes use of a unique enzyme pathway that is found only in certain types of infectious disease-causing agents, but not in human beings.”

Students will gain experience in such areas as medicinal chemistry, protein crystal structure analysis, drug design, enzymatic assays, biophysical characterization, analytical methods and antibacterial assays. Some will even get the opportunity to use the Advanced Photon Source at Argonne National Laboratory to obtain high resolution images of protein crystal structures.

Two Research Rookies worked on the project before it was even funded, Hagen says.

“Currently we have five graduate students involved in the project and about eight undergraduates,” he adds. “The undergraduates are generally on a semester-by-semester basis through a senior-level research course (Chemistry 498), so this project has the potential of impacting dozens of students over the next three years.”

The two other recent grants were awarded to NIU scientists by the National Science Foundation (NSF).

Mark Frank

Mark Frank

Mark Frank, a professor in the Department of Geology and Environmental Geosciences, will receive $ 271,000 over three years to conduct research on the processes responsible for the formation of copper-rich and gold-rich portions of the Earth.

Experiments will be conducted at NIU, with high tech instruments to be used to determine the concentrations of copper and gold in various fluids and minerals over a wide range of temperatures and pressures.

“The data obtained will increase our understanding on the transportation of copper and gold in hydrothermal fluids and the precipitation mechanism responsible for the formation of these ore deposits,” Frank says. “The results of this research can provide direct economic benefits by improving exploration models for copper and gold ore deposits.”

Funds from the project also will be used to support and train two graduate students and one undergraduate in economic geology, experimental geology thermodynamics and data interpretation.

“The students will be involved in all aspects of the project,” Frank says. “I have a graduate student doing some preliminary work and will have an undergraduate and Ph.D. candidate working with me in the fall. The students get hands-on training for both academic and industrial worlds.”

Zhili Xiao

Zhili Xiao

Zhili Xiao, a Board of Trustees professor of physics who also is serving as interim associate dean for research and graduate studies, has brought in more than $ 2 million in support of research projects at NIU. His latest $ 328,000 NSF grant will support his nanoscience research over the next three years.

The project aims to advance understanding of artificial ices – fabricated substances that have the arrangement of their components following the ‘ice rule’ for the hydrogen atoms in crystalline water ice. Scientists are interested in the properties of these artificial ices, including the potential for revealing the mechanism of high temperature superconductivity.

For decades, scientists have been on a quest to develop room-temperature superconductors, which could revolutionize the energy industry and lead to a wide array of applications, such as magnetically levitated superfast trains, powerful supercomputers and devices that now only exist in the imaginations of science fiction writers.

Xiao’s research will provide a foundation for understanding and manipulating the new complex and collective effects that are expected in artificial ices. The NSF grant also will provide funding for training of two Ph.D. students.

“One of them has worked for me in the field of nanoscience for about two years and the second one joined my group this past spring,” Xiao says. “Both are certified users of Argonne’s Center for Nanoscale Materials.”

The students receive training on advanced nanofabrication tools, such as focused-ion-beam milling and electron-beam lithography. They fabricate superconductors with controlled shapes and dimensions and investigate their properties. The students also are trained in low-temperature physics and technologies and have the opportunities to participate in frontier research in materials sciences.

NIU Today » Latest News


NIU W.I.N. – What’s Important Now
Three things you should know about Northern Illinois University, higher education and the world around you.


NIU in the News

Students, professors among those working on high-profile experiment
(Columbus Republic, 8/17/14)

New Lenox resident receives Outstanding Woman Student Award from Northern Illinois University
(Joliet Herald-News, 8/17/14)

DeKalb County residents fund their dreams with donation websites
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 8/15/14)

Mentor of thousands of Chick Evans Scholarship caddies
(Chicago Sun-Times, 8/16/14)

Baker Report: Financial literacy a critical skill for managing debt, building lives
(DeKalb County Online, 8/15/14)

Letter: Numerous opportunities at Lifelong Learning Institute
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 8/15/14)

Russian trade wars to have little impact on Rock River Valley
(Rockford Register Star, 8/15/14)

Students working on experiment
(Belleville News Democrat, 8/17/14)


NIU alumni in the News

San Francisco 49ers Preseason 2014: 5 Players Who Stood Out In Week 2
(Rant Sports, 8/17/14)

Danville native promoted to colonel
(Danville Commercial-News, 8/17/14)

Dixon resident joins Kidder staff
(Sterling Daily Gazette, 8/16/14)

Behind the scenes with Dr. Jim Beal: Computer system readiness is part of back to school preparations
(Ottawa Times, 8/15/14)

Dixon resident joins Kidder staff
(Hispanic Business, 8/16/14)


Sports News

Huskies Reveal New Uniforms
(WTVO-TV, 8/16/14)

Northern Illinois Huskies are a brand apart — MAC Football 2014
(Cleveland Plain Dealer, 8/15/14)

Big time college sports will be shaped by O’Bannon case
(Pensacola News Journal, 8/16/14)

Top MAC Football Players of 2014: No. 8 Tyler Loos, NIU OL
(Hustle Belt, 8/17/14)


Higher Education News

Law students file lawsuit over failed software
(Justice News Flash, 8/16/14)

Professors Boycott U Of I For Academic Freedom
(WICD-TV, 8/15/14)

4-year degrees from 2-year colleges not in the state’s best interests
(Ottawa Times, 8/15/14)

SIUE seeks ways to ‘be a model’ in region for race relations after Ferguson
(Belleville News Democrat, 8/15/14)

Volunteers welcome SIUE’s largest freshman class
(Advantage News, 8/16/14)

NIU Today » Latest News

Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn

Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn

Governor Pat Quinn signed legislation to prohibit smoking on the campuses of all state-supported colleges and universities Sunday morning. The smoking ban takes effect July 1, 2015 and applies to both indoor and outdoor spaces on campuses.

“Illinois’ college students shouldn’t be subject to unwanted cigarette smoke on the campuses they call home,” Governor Quinn said. “We want all schools to be healthy, clean and productive places of learning for Illinois’ bright young minds. This new law will improve the health of our students and encourage healthier lifestyles after college graduation.”

Northern Illinois University will be forming a community task force this fall to coordinate the implementation of the the Smoke Free Campus Act.

Senate Bill 2202, sponsored by State Senator Terry Link (D-Waukegan) and State Representative Ann Williams (D-Chicago), created the Smoke Free Campus Act that prohibits all smoking on state-supported college and university campuses in Illinois beginning July 1, 2015.

“Smoke free policies have been proven to result in lower smoking prevalence rates. That’s one of the many reasons the American Lung Association is proud to have worked alongside state legislators on the Smoke Free Campus Act,” American Lung Association of the Upper Midwest CEO Lew Bartfield said. “In addition, the new law will provide a healthy learning environment that promotes health and wellness for students, faculty, staff and visitors at all public colleges and universities in Illinois. The law not only minimizes toxic secondhand smoke exposure but also improves the campus environment by reducing smoking related litter.”

“Smoking remains the leading preventable cause of death,” Illinois Department of Public Health Director Dr. LaMar Hasbrouck said. “Smoke-free campuses make it more difficult for students and staff to smoke, thereby decreasing the number of people who smoke, and reducing the number of people who start.”

Exceptions to the law are made for smoking inside privately owned vehicles traveling through campus and certain activities allowed under the Federal American Indian Religious Freedom Act. A companion bill signed Sunday by Governor Quinn, House Bill 3961, allows smoking on campus inside parked, non-state-owned vehicles.

Other states with colleges and universities that have 100 percent smoke-free policies include: California, Florida, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and Wisconsin.

“A college education can put people ahead in life, but smoking can do just the opposite,” Senator Link said. “This new law will clear the air on campuses statewide and help produce healthier graduates.”

“This is a continuation of the efforts of Smoke Free Illinois to protect Illinoisans from the very significant danger of secondhand smoke,” Representative Williams said. “This initiative will extend important public health protections to those studying, working and living at our public college and university campuses.”

NIU Today » Latest News

Huskie Family Welcome logoFor years, NIU freshmen embraced their families with goodbye hugs Thursday night and launched their new lives as college students Friday morning.

Now both of those transformational moments will occur together during the evening of Friday, Aug. 22, with the introduction of the Huskie Family Welcome. Many people across campus have been involved in re-visioning the event, which will include a less-formal feel and highlight opportunities for student involvement both inside and outside the classroom

The 6:30 p.m. ceremony at the Convocation Center will greet new students and their loved ones with music and other performances as well as short remarks from NIU President Doug Baker and NIU Student Association President Joe Frascello.

Alex Gelman, director of the NIU School of Theatre and Dance, will serve as master of ceremonies.

Everyone, including NIU faculty and staff, is encouraged to attend.

“This will be a great opportunity for all of us to come together and welcome everyone to this next academic year,” said Melanie Tucker, assistant vice president for Student Affairs. “The collective experience of being in one place with our incoming class, who will be wearing their Northern PACT T-shirts showing their support for the principles of community – purposeful, just, caring, open, disciplined and celebrative – that they affirmed at Orientation, will be a powerful visual.”

Alexis Lamb

Alexis Lamb

Collaboration between students and facultya key emphasis of the NIU experience – provides the theme for the night.

  • Senior physics major Octavio Escalante-Aguirre will discuss his research project with Department of Physics professor Michael Eads.
  • Alexis Lamb, a music education and percussion performance major, will perform a berimbau duet with School of Music professor Greg Beyer.
  • Bernard Chestleigh, a senior in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Bachelor of General Studies program, will discuss his work on the NIU Forensics team with Judy Santacaterina, who directs that program. Chestleigh also will present a spoken word performance of the poem “Gorgeous” by Rives.

“NIU Forensics has been like a second family to me,” Chestleigh said. “Our adviser, Judy Santacanterina, has nurtured my growth as a performer and as a person.”

Other highlights of the evening include the NIU Steel Band, which will play the NIU Alma Mater, and Eric Weldy, vice president for the Division of Student Affairs & Enrollment Management, who will talk about some of the values the NIU community holds dear, particularly surrounding the Northern PACT pledge.

“By attending the Huskie Family Welcome, faculty, staff, and community members will be able to show their support for our new students and demonstrate to them, as well as their family members, that we are here to help their students achieve success, in the classroom and beyond,” Weldy said.

For more information, call (815) 753-1573 or email

NIU Today » Latest News

Communiversity Interest Grows at NIU

From NIU Today:

Jennifer Groce

NIU President Doug Baker’s call for stronger connections between the university and its host community has generated dozens of ideas from enthusiastic supporters of both town and gown.

In just 12 months, the number of active “communiversity” projects has more than doubled, with many more ideas waiting in the wings.

Rather than limiting new initiatives, Baker challenged top campus officials to create a new system for managing joint NIU/DeKalb projects. The resulting Communiversity Development Strategy puts primary responsibility for NIU/DeKalb projects into the Division of Outreach, Engagement, and Regional Development, with oversight from a joint city-university Community Development Committee.

“We have many exciting initiatives under way,” Baker said, “but they need to be managed in a way that leverages our scarce resources. A single coordinating entity that connects and aligns all our planning and development will ensure that we recognize synergies and serve everyone’s interests, and it helps achieve our goal of creating thriving communities.”

Among the initiatives to be managed under the communiversity flag are possible NIU connections to the DeKalb City Center plan; creation of a partnership to guide enhancement of the neighborhood to the northwest of NIU’s campus; and continued support of programs like those begun this summer at University Village.

Recently launched projects in which the city and NIU are collaborating include Phase Two of the DeKalb/NIU housing information project; the Advancing DeKalb County collective impact initiative; and NIU assistance with the City of DeKalb’s strategic plan.

“Doing communiversity projects well requires a central point of contact and a strong network of partners,” said Anne Kaplan, vice president for Outreach, Engagement, and Regional Development. “That primary contact person needs to have a handle on everything that’s going on so we can create synergies between people and projects.”

Planters containing flowers and small shrubs were placed in and around downtown DeKalb and throughout the NIU campus in June 2012 as a part of an initiative called Communiversity in Bloom.

To that end, former Center for Governmental Studies research associate Jennifer Groce has been appointed to the new position of director of communiversity initiatives.

“Jennifer has strong knowledge of the university and the community, as well as a lot of experience running programs involving multiple stakeholders and agendas,” Kaplan said.

“The director of communiversity initiatives at NIU will assure one point of contact for those projects transcending the two organizations – city and NIU,” said DeKalb Mayor John Rey. “The position will allow for efficient use of resources and engagement of constituents, with priority implementations on those projects of most impact to both organizations and Jennifer brings a strong set of skills to this role.”

Most recently, Groce helped organize NIU’s involvement in the Camp Power summer program, connecting more than 100 NIU students, faculty and staff to support the community collaborative program organized by numerous community agencies to assist children living in University Village.

She has also been working with the City of DeKalb on conversations with residents and stakeholders to strategize on neighborhood improvements on the northwest side of campus.

Groce was most recently a research associate specializing in community development at the Center for Governmental Studies. Prior to that, she was executive director of Re:New DeKalb, a role that included managing a $ 12 million downtown public improvement initiative.

Kaplan said Groce will continue to draw project support from the Center for Governmental Studies and will also interact with the Division of Operations and Community Relations Vice President Bill Nicklas.

“Between the city and the university, we have many people involved in projects aimed at improving quality of life,” Kaplan said. “It’s important for us to have one person connecting the dots so no opportunities are overlooked.”

For the second consecutive fall, NIU and the City of DeKalb have partnered to display window clings at DeKalb businesses featuring the NIU football program. From left: NIU Associate Vice President/Director of Athletics Sean Frazier, Huskie football legends George Bork and Bob Heimerdinger, NIU President Doug Baker and DeKalb Mayor John Rey unveil the first of the new clings July 22 at the Lincoln Inn in downtown DeKalb.

NIU Today » Latest News


NIU W.I.N. – What’s Important Now
Three things you should know about Northern Illinois University, higher education and the world around you.


NIU in the News

Face Time With Panidcha ‘Best’ Limsakun
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 8/3/14)

Elected officials often look to unpaid interns for help
(Sauk Valley Media, 7/30/14)

NIU receives radio information service grant
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 8/3/14)

Wintergreen Summer Music Festival presents its final weekend of ‘Amazonas’ events
(Daily Progress, 8/2/14)

Let’s advance NIU, neighborhood relations
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 7/31/14)

7 Kinky Upgrades for Your Sex Life
(Shape, 8/1/14)

Olson: Businesses big part of local identity
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 8/1/14)

Campaign to topple Tennessee Supreme Court justices faces tough odds
(Chattanooga Times Free Press, 8/3/14)


NIU alumni in the News

DAC hosts Connie Livingston-Dunn in coveted gallery window display
(Clarksville Business & Heritage, 8/3/14)

New coach plans changes for Roos
(Killeen Daily Herald, 8/3/14)

Bears training camp: Long practices for first time at Family Fest
(Kankakee Daily Journal, 8/3/14)

Rich Harvest excited about 2016 International Crown
(Daily Herald, 8/1/14)

Milton announces three city administrator finalists
(Milton Gazette, 8/4/14)

Jordan Lynch getting few reps at running back
(Chicago Sun-Times, 8/2/14)

Our view: Thumbs-up to ‘good apples’
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 8/2/14)

Finalists named for Milton city administrator
(Milton Courier, 8/1/14)

Jordan Lynch Days Until Chicago Bears Season Opener
(SI FanSided, 8/3/14)

‘Boss’ Leidner grabs hold of No. 1 quarterback spot at U
(Minneapolis Star Tribune, 8/3/14)

Enthusiasm builds for International Crown at NIU’s home golf course
(HuskieWire, 8/1/14)

Lynch soaks up Soldier Field
(CBS Chicago, 8/3/14)

Sons’ baseball success reminds of Waukegan’s glory days
(Lake County News Sun, 8/3/14)


Sports News

Terps to be first Big Ten team to play at NIU in 2021
(Comcast Sports Net, 8/1/14)

Maryland football schedules home-and-home series with Northern Illinois
(Baltimore Sun, 8/1/14)

Carifio: SchedulePalooza only the beginning
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 8/1/14)

Must-watch Twitter
(Sauk Valley Media, 8/1/14)

College Football: Northern Illinois hits 1st practice with chip on shoulder
(Galesburg Register-Mail, 8/3/14)

Terps, NIU plan home-and-home

NIU Football announces two more ‘Power Five Conference’ games
(Rochelle News-Leader, 8/3/14)

End of 2013 not sitting well with Stingily, NIU football
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 8/1/14)

Ryan Smoyer earns complete game shutout as Kalamazoo Growlers defeat Green Bay Bullfrogs, 2-0
(Kalamazoo Gazette, 8/1/14)

College football: Maryland football will return to DeKalb for NIU rematch
(Sauk Valley Media, 8/2/14)

Top MAC Football Players of 2014: No. 23 Dechane Durante, Northern Illinois Safety
(Hustle Belt, 8/2/14)

Northern Illinois Finishes Their “SchedulePalooza”
(Vavel, 8/1/14)

Northern Illinois quarterback battle in full swing
(Sauk Valley Media, 8/2/14)

Northern Illinois Football Schedules Home-and-Home Maryland in 2020 and 2021
(Hustle Belt, 8/1/14)

Saturday NIU football practice notes: Huskies begin camp Saturday
(DeKalb Daily Chronicle, 8/4/14)

Second International Crown, at Rich Harvest, should be bigger than the first
(Len Ziehm on Golf, 8/2/14)

Kalamazoo Growlers split double-header against the Lakeshore Chinooks
(Kalamazoo Gazette, 8/2/14)

Northern Illinois quarterback battle in full swing
(HuskieWire, 8/3/14)


Higher Education News

3 ways to bolster competency in higher education
(eCampusNews, 8/1/14)

Focus Intensifies on Falloff of Students En Route to College
(Diverse, 8/3/14)

NAU Focusing On ‘Competency Degrees’
(Payson Roundup, 8/1/14)

Governor launches campaign to bring adults back to college
(The Marietta Daily Journal, 8/3/14)

Amid Rising College Costs, A Defense Of The Liberal Arts
(Northern Public Radio, 8/3/14)


Around the State

U of I index of Illinois economy shows growth, but questions remain about sustainability
(Associated Press, 8/2/14)

Community Colleges work to offer baccalaureate programs
(The Southern Illinoisan, 8/3/14)

Quinn Says ISU Board Appointees Coming “Relatively Soon”
(WGLT, 8/4/14)

Graduate school head Susan Ford named interim provost at SIU-Carbondale
(Associated Press, 8/2/14)

U of I builds presence in China
(Free News Pos, 8/2/14)

ISU Developing ‘Smart Grid’ Technology
(WEEK-TV, 8/1/14)

Broadband network at Illinois State University complete
(WCBU, 8/1/14)

NIU Today » Latest News

Dan Libman. Photo by Dan Klefstad.

In the name of free speech and democracy, NIU English instructor Dan Libman is going bar hopping.

In anticipation of the November elections, Northern Public Radio (WNIJ and WNIU) decided to go beyond its usual in-depth coverage of the issues and candidates. So the radio station invited Libman, a Pushcart Prize-winning author, to visit places where voters are most likely to speak their minds: local taverns.

The first installment of the series aired July 7 on Morning Edition, and the second one will air at 6:30 and 8:30 a.m. Monday, Aug. 4. Future episodes will continue to air the first week of every month, and with each episode, Libman is producing an essay to be posted on the Northern Public Radio website.

This isn’t Libman’s first stint with Northern Public Radio. Listeners might remember him from last year’s Pedaling Lincoln Highway series.

NIU Today » Latest News

NIU Mobile AppJust in time for Welcome Days and the beginning of the 2014-15 academic year, the new version of the NIU mobile app (3.0) is now available on both Android and iOS platforms.

New features include:

  • A fresh look (reskinned for iOS7) with flat icons;
  • a directory module updated to allow department searches;
  • a new what2do@NIU module;
  • a new Welcome Days module; and
  • new fields added for campus buildings that soon will display accessibility and tornado shelter information when available.

The debut of the Welcome Days app includes links to events on the calendar as well as helpful links to DeKalb’s popular retail destinations, such as grocery stores, pharmacies, Target and Walmart.

The app is free to download and is available now in the Apple and Android app stores.

NIU Mobile is managed jointly by the Division of Marketing & Communications and Information Technology Services in partnership with Blackboard Mobile.

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NIU Today » Latest News