Community of Care - NIU - Division of Student Affairs & Enrollment Management

Community of Care

At Northern Illinois University (NIU), you are part of a diverse, caring community of students, faculty, and staff who takes seriously the responsibility of looking out for one another. Within NIU’s community of care, each struggle a student encounters is a concern for all of us. Equally, the success and growth each one of us experiences enhances our community and strengthens our Huskie family. Within our community of care, we expect you to support each other on the journey of living and learning, and to reach out in times of need.

We demonstrate our commitment to care through pledging each year to uphold the Northern PACT principles. These principles, which include being: PURPOSEFUL, JUST, CARING, OPEN, DISCIPLINED, and CELEBRATIVE, are the foundation of the values we honor at NIU. Find out more about the Northern PACT.

If you are a student, we anticipate your time at NIU will result in personal transformation and growth unlike any other you have experienced. While pursuing a degree, however, you will inevitably face challenges of university life inside and outside of the classroom. Know that there are many resources available for you, to help you find your way, stay on course to graduate, and overcome barriers you may face. When facing daily challenges, students should be mindful to not only care for others but to take care of themselves as well. One way to do this is through balancing the dimensions of wellness.

If you are a member of the faculty or staff, in addition to your professional duties, you may find yourself interacting with students who are struggling; or students who are demonstrating concerning behavior. Within our community of care, know that there are resources and people to assist you with exemplifying an ethic of care. Not only is caring evident when we recognize students as unique human beings with different learning needs and preferences, but also when we take the time to express to students that we are concerned for them. The phrase “students don’t care what we know until they know how much we care” is prevalent in contemporary educational literature and is salient to strengthening our community of care.

We know it takes effort, for faculty, staff, and students, to find the time to reach out for assistance when concerned about a student; but, that additional effort can make the difference in the success or failure of that student. Anyone who is concerned for a student may submit a report about the concerning behavior here.

We encourage our campus community to evidence care by following our bystander tips: Speak up. Get help. Just act. If you do not know how to get help, call the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs & Enrollment Management during university business hours at 815-753-1573 or via e-mail at