As this newsletter arrives, we are just a couple of weeks from welcoming our new and returning students for the fall semester. And while much of the campus community is taking advantage of these final summer weeks to squeeze in last minute vacations or celebrations - the excitement and energy of the new academic year are already building. We are ready for new beginnings.
As you all know, the State of Illinois has not passed a new budget for the fiscal year that began on July 1. In the short term we will be able to meet our financial obligations. Unlike many agencies that are almost solely reliant on state funding, careful stewardship of other revenue sources gives us the flexibility to manage immediate cash flow challenges and continue normal operations.
Additionally, in an effort to better align our long-term budgetary strategies with our ambitious goals and aspirations, we have convened a new Campus Budget Advisory Task Force (CBATF). Comprised of faculty, staff and student representatives recommended by deans, the Academic Senate, and senior administrators, the CBATF will act as an advisory body together with the Council of Deans and through shared governance with the Senate to address our fiscal position.
Illinois is strengthened by a world-class faculty, top students from around the world, a strong, loyal and global alumni base and a hard-working and dedicated staff. Together we are responsible for carrying on the Illinois legacies of "firsts and bests." Our campus is continuing its efforts to honor our commitment to an Illinois education that is affordable and accessible. We are also making great progress on improving and enriching the undergraduate experience by introducing curricular innovations, increasing the number of students provided with undergraduate research experiences, and expanding the resources and facilities for students to learn and innovate.
We are unwavering in our support of our faculty - expanding our diversity, increasing the number of interdisciplinary research initiatives; supporting collaboration, and enhancing infrastructure and support for new funding and scholarship.
As a university, our service makes an impact throughout the state and across the country. From NSCA - one of the original NSF Supercomputer Centers - to our six renowned international and area studies centers to the Humanities Without Walls consortium to our statewide Extension network, Illinois is home to people and programs that change the world around us every single day.
Our collective focus must now remain firmly where it has been for nearly 150 years: pushing the edges of exploration and discovery, and educating the next generation of innovative and productive citizens of our state, nation and world.
I wish you a happy and restful remainder of summer.
Ilesanmi Adesida, Provost