September 8, 2011
IDS572 Assignment 1 due 9/15/11
Review the article below and the information in the table that follows then answer the questions on page 7.
NIU president unveils grand vision
Facing dwindling state help, university plans to raise profile, boost enrollment
By Jack McCarthy, Special to the Tribune
7:17 PM CDT, September 5, 2011
Northern Illinois University has unveiled ambitious plans to increase enrollment by more than a quarter, raise its
academic profile and become more self-sufficient in the wake of diminished state funding.
NIU President John G. Peters told faculty, students and community leaders last week that the university is at a
crossroads and has little time to waste.
"For some time now, we have been forced to operate in survival mode," Peters said in a 40-minute State of the
University address. "We must take our destiny into our own hands.
"We cannot wait for the inevitable turnaround in the state's economy nor the prospect that the state will reinvest
in higher education in this decade. Therefore we must become more self-sufficient."
Peters' Vision 2020 blueprint calls for enrollment to grow from an estimated 23,000 this fall to 30,000 within
nine years. Tuition and fee revenue from that growth would help support academic and other initiatives.
Vision 2020 was a yearlong internal study of NIU's strengths and weaknesses, how it compares to other
institutions and the challenge posed by dwindling state support for higher education.
State lawmakers from the area said they are supportive of Peters' ideas.
"It's a very ambitious plan, and as a graduate of NIU, I'm very excited," said Christine Johnson, a Republican
state senator who represents the NIU and DeKalb area. "I like the fact that they are looking forward, they want
to be self-sustainable, they want to increase the amount of high-quality students and faculty."
Republican state Rep. Robert W. Pritchard, whose 70th district also includes NIU and much of DeKalb County,
said it's incumbent upon the state to adequately fund higher education.
"The state's got to step up and realize that higher education is the key to the intelligent workforce that attracts
business and makes us competitive in the world economy," he said. "We've got to get more funding. I think a
very popular way to do that would be through the Monetary Award Program, where we're giving money directly
to students to attend college."
Peters said he'll submit proposals to NIU's board of trustees this month.
Plans call for enrollment at the DeKalb campus to increase to 27,500 and to 3,000 at NIU's outreach campuses
in Naperville, Rockford and Hoffman Estates.
He also wants to attract more students from the top 10 percent of high school classes; offer more merit