The University of Illinois Hiring Initiative

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The University of Illinois Hiring Initiative

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In a recent meeting with shareholders, University of Illinois President Tim Killeen announced a plan to hire an estimated nine hundred additional faculty members. This move is in response to an increase in enrollment across the three campuses in the system (UIC, UIUC, and UIS). Since 2014, the university system has seen a nine and a half percent increase in enrollment.

This has spurred the system to hire more faculty, but progress on that initiative was slow until recently. Due to the state budget impasse of the Rauner years, the university has struggled to secure the funding required to expand its programs. With the impasse over, President Killeen has asked the provost of each campus to assess and report the faculty needs of growing departments. Departments that are expected to receive more hires include but are not limited to: biological health science, engineering, business, and economics.

According to the official report released by the U of I system, UIS will be receiving new programs in biochemistry, exercise science, public administration, and public policy. These new faculty members could both replace retiring faculty in their departments or lead to the creation of new positions.

This increase in faculty has the potential to impact students’ educational experiences at UIS in a few ways. President Killeen noted that the enrollment boom “hurts the quality of education” students receive due to classroom overcrowding.

This is not as much of a concern at UIS due to its already small class sizes, but it could impact us in a different way. This faculty increase could potentially allow for new classes in expanding programs. It is important to note that this move will not increase tuition at the university.

For more information on this initiative, check the University of Illinois System website and look for the “initiatives” link. Information can be found under “Strategic Enrollment Management & Planning University Growth Plans.”

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