About the Commission

Overview

The Presidential Commission on the Status of Minorities was established by the university president to assure that Northern Illinois University consistently and comprehensively will reflect, sponsor, mandate and totally support action designed to enhance the status of ethic minorities. The goal is to advise the president on the status of minority students, faculty and staff and make recommendations to improve the quality of life and opportunity for ethic minorities at NIU.

Meetings

Regular and special meetings will be held monthly. Special meetings may be called at the discretion of the chairperson, or at the request of one-third of the members on the commission. The commission shall keep minutes of all its proceedings.

The time and place of all meetings will be designated by the chair.

At least three days notice will be given to each member for both regular and special meetings of the commission. Notice of a meeting shall specify day, time, place and purpose of the meeting. Notice must be delivered personally (including telephone) to each member or mailed to his or her residence or business address.

Charge

The Presidential Commission on the Status of Minorities is charged with:

  • Annually review the personal process of NIU to determine its impact on the affirmative recruitment, employment and retention of minority administrators, faculty and staff.
  • Annually review admission and academic program policies to determine their effectiveness in the affirmative admission and retention of minority students.
  • Annually review campus committees, commissions and boards to insure the equitable representation of minority perspectives in university policies and practices.
  • Annually review the quality of life for minorities at NIU.
  • Prepare an annual report to the president describing the status of minorities and recommending activities to improve opportunities for minorities.
  • Develop and implement programs to ascertain concerns and interests of minority students at NIU and recommend activities to improve opportunities for students.
  • Develop and implement programs to ascertain concerns and interests of minority faculty and staff and recommend activities to improve opportunities for faculty and staff.
  • Assist Affirmative Action and Equity Compliance in achieving the goals of the university's affirmative action program.
  • Advise the president on activities to facilitate effective communication between minorities and Northern Illinois University communities.

History

In 1978 a group of minority faculty members began meeting informally with President William Monat to discuss the status and quality of life for minorities here at NIU. The group's focus was to provide opportunities for minorities seeking faculty and administrative positions. It became evident that a continuing dialogue with the president was necessary if these and other concerns were to be addressed over time. An advisory group was established which later became the Presidential Commission on the Status of Minorities (PCSM).

The PCSM is the oldest commission on the NIU campus. The commission has led the way in influencing and setting the tone for other existing commissions representing the rich diversity of NIU. The PCSM has always maintained a strong advocacy for all minorities represented on campus and in the surrounding community and region.

The commission's influence on work environment, climate, retention and recruitment of diverse faculty and students continues to be significant. The commission is always striving to assist in meeting its avowed goals of diversity and equal treatment for all.