Northern Illinois University

Northern Today

ITS begins migration to Monsanto building next week

July 2, 2007

by Joe King

Starting next week, Information Technology Services will be part of the first wave of university departments taking up residence in the former Monsanto building at Route 23 and Bethany Roads in DeKalb.

“This will be the first time that we have had all of these facets of ITS under one roof,” said Wally Czerniak, associate vice president for Information Technology Services. “People can expect better things from ITS as an organization because we are going to be able to tap into all of our strengths and work together in ways we have not been able to do before.”

The move will take place in stages, beginning July 9 and continuing through Aug. 4. The department will remain open for business throughout the process, though some response times could be a bit slower, said Sabrina Hammond, Help Desk assistant director.

In all, more than 100 ITS employees will be part of the move, including those in application development, programming, server support, Help Desk, most of computer operations and the senior management of the department.

That does not mean, however, that ITS will be without a physical presence on the main campus.

Document Services, Computer Operations, Lab Support, Telephone Customer Service, Switch-Board and Walk-In Services all will remain on campus, but not all in their current locations. ITS Walk-in Services already has relocated from Swen Parson Hall to the Telecom Security Building (Room 114), and Lab Support will move from Altgeld Hall to Swen Parson Hall.

Despite all of the moving around, the effect on ITS services should be all but unnoticeable to most people. “The impact on our service should be transparent,” Hammond said.

While ITS settles into its new quarters, several other university departments are preparing to move into the former Monsanto Building this fall.

Anchoring the new center will be four well-known university programs: The NIU Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic, the NIU Reading Clinic, the NIU Physical Therapy Clinic and the Tri-County Community Health Center.

All four centers serve children and families from the DeKalb/Sycamore area and beyond, and all four are struggling to meet increasing demand in very limited spaces. In addition to expanded program space, the four clinics also will be able to strengthen supervised experiential learning opportunities for NIU students in each of the academic programs.

NIU Press has had offices on the Monsanto property for about a year.

The university purchased the property in February 2005 for $4 million. NIU then received $8.4 million in federal appropriations to fund remodeling of the building, the purchase of existing furnishings and the purchase of specialized health care-related equipment for the building.