Northern Illinois University - Learning Today, Leading Tomorrow

September 12, 2013

BAKER REPORT: Changing with the times

President BakerThe numbers are in. On Wednesday, we announced the university’s 10-day fall enrollment count.  We reported a modest increase in new freshmen and graduate school enrollment this fall, which is gratifying as the nation is in the midst of a national downturn in college enrollment trends. Yet it is clear that we have significant work ahead.

Since arriving at NIU, I’ve spent time talking to our many stakeholders — students, faculty, staff, alumni and community members — and am working toward a communiversity-wide discussion about the many opportunities available to us to reach the goal of 100 percent of NIU students finding success in graduate school or in the workforce within six months of graduation. I am thankful for the energy, enthusiasm and the many ideas and insights provided so far during these fruitful discussions.

This highly competitive higher education landscape, combined with the forecast of a decline in Midwest high school graduates through 2020, requires NIU to make bold, creative and entrepreneurial changes in the way we teach and serve our students. For NIU to thrive, we must provide students with engagement opportunities that enhance their academic experience and prepare them for personal and career success upon graduation.

While the challenges we face are significant, they are not unique to NIU. Colleges and universities, public and private, throughout the nation are grappling to come to terms with what will be the 2.0 “reboot” of higher education in the future. What is important to NIU is that it is our responsibility to overcome these challenges for our university and to deliver a world-class education that prepares our students for success in their future pursuits. 

DeKalb Mayor Rey and I just landed this afternoon in Moscow, Idaho, home of my former school, the University of Idaho. We have two days of meetings set up with local leaders in Moscow to hear firsthand how university and community officials have worked together to create a vibrant community, on and off campus, that is welcoming to University of Idaho students and enjoyed by the residents of Moscow. And of course, we will conclude our visit in the Kibbie Dome as the NIU Huskies take on the Idaho Vandals.

Go Huskies!

Doug

Top Stories

NEWS

Latest NewsNIU up 12 spots in latest ‘Best Colleges’ list
Northern Illinois University advanced 12 places to No. 177 among “Best National Universities” and moved into the top 100 among national public universities, according to U.S. News & World Report.

NIU to roll out red carpet for Thai princess
Northern Illinois University is gearing up for a historic visit from Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn of Thailand, who will be honored for her many good works.

NIU sees modest gain in new freshmen, graduate students
Northern Illinois University experienced modest growth in new freshman and graduate school enrollment following the first 10 days of classes, according to NIU’s Office of Institutional Research.

NIU music faculty to open JJC concert series
NIU School of Music faculty Mark Ponzo and JeongSoo Kim will open Joliet Junior College’s free, seven-concert Musica Viva concert series Sept. 15.


STUDENT LIFE

Student LifeStudy abroad provides ‘priceless’ opportunity
The NIU Study Abroad Office will hold its 21st annual Study Abroad Fair from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 18, in the Duke Ellington Ballroom of the Holmes Student Center.

Fall USOAR deadline set for Friday, Oct. 4
Undergraduate Special Opportunities in Artistry and Research (USOAR) is now accepting proposals from current undergraduates interested in conducting an independent artistry or research project in 2014.

NIU climbs in Washington Monthly rankings
NIU has placed 57th on a newly created Washington Monthly list: “America’s Best-Bang-for-the-Buck Colleges.”

Accreditation self-study report needs feedback
Take some time in the month of September to review the draft HLC self-study report and provide your insights and comments.


SPORTS

SportsFootball fans can ‘win-win’ with their Huskies
With season tickets for the 2013 Northern Illinois home football schedule already selling at a record pace, NIU announced a new ticket sales plan in honor of the Huskies’ 21-game winning streak at Huskie Stadium.

Volleyball’s Sarah Angelos earns MAC honor
Northern Illinois senior Sarah Angelos has been named the Mid-American Conference West Division’s Offensive Player of the Week.

NIU Football to face Idaho
NIU, which visits Idaho Saturday, has won 22 of its last 25 games dating back to Oct. 1, 2011 and is 35-8 since the start of the 2010 season.


ALUMNI

Alumni‘Golden’ opportunity to make a difference
Boasting impressive job-placement rates and rewarding careers, 50-year-old public administration program at NIU looks to expand.

NIU grad named CFO at Ingersoll Rand
Susan K. Carter will join Ingersoll Rand as senior vice president and chief financial officer, effective September 27.

Obama to appoint NIU alum to key post
Hon. Patricia M. Martin, who received her juris doctor from the Northern Illinois University College of Law, is to be appointed by President Barack Obama as a member of the Commission to Eliminate Child Abuse and Neglect Fatalities.

NIU Today is distributed by NIU Media & Public Relations.

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