Northern Illinois University

Northern Today

Grainger gift supports NIU’s new facility management program

January 22, 2008

by Joe King

Grainger, a leading supplier of facility maintenance products based in Lake Forest, Ill., last week contributed $15,000 to NIU to assist in the creation of professional development opportunities for facility managers across the region.

Officials from Grainger recently presented a check for $15,000 to Northern Illinois University to assist in the development of a new professional development series for facility managers that the university is creating in partnership with the Chicago Chapter of the Illinois Facilities Management Association. Pictured are (from left): Ryan Pomeroy (Grainger), Rich Warfield (Grainger), Donna Mann (NIU), Mary Collins (NIU), Esther Diamond (IFMA) and Hector Echevarria (Grainger).

The program, to be known as the Certified Facility Manager Exam Review and Seminar Series, is being created through a partnership between NIU Outreach and the Chicago Chapter of International Facility Management Association.

“We are grateful to Grainger for its support of this program, and we look forward to working with the Chicago Chapter of IFMA to create a curriculum that will enhance career advancement opportunities and increase the earning potential for professional facility managers,” said Donna Mann, assistant director of non-credit programs for NIU Outreach.

The Grainger gift will be used to help market the program and to offset the cost of textbooks and course materials for students. The gift reflects an ongoing commitment to technical education by Grainger. The company has invested more than $370,000 in such programs over the last two years.

NIU Outreach has a history of successfully partnering with business organizations to offer professional development and certification prep courses. The Society for Human Resource Management has ranked NIU’s HR Management Certification Prep among the top 20 in the nation, while the Institute of Internal Auditors selected NIU as the first university in the world to offer its new instructor-led Certified Internal Auditor Review program.

NIU Outreach plans to start offering the Certified Facility Manager Exam Review and Seminar Series later this year. The seminars can be taken individually or as a series to aid in preparation for the CF Management exam.

“This is a one-of-a-kind program that will offer something for facility managers at all levels, from entry level professionals seeking to learn more about the functional areas of the business, to those preparing to sit for the CFM exam,” said Esther Diamond, president of the Chicago Chapter of IFMA.