April 4, 2016 Update

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Dear SIU student:

A number of you have asked about the impact of the state budget impasse on the university and, most importantly, on your future as an SIU student.

I write to assure that SIU is here to stay. We will be here to celebrate our 150th anniversary in 2019 and many more anniversaries beyond. We are committed to delivering your academic program and to providing the services and support you need to graduate.

As background, you may know that the state has not approved a budget for the fiscal year that began July 1, 2015. This means that Illinois public colleges and universities have not received anticipated state funding. In addition, the state has not funded Monetary Award Program (MAP) grants, although SIU filled this gap on behalf of the state this year as a commitment to our students.

While lack of a state appropriation creates significant challenges, we are working carefully to conserve and manage available resources as our legislators work to resolve the impasse. Will you see the impact of the state budget crisis at SIU? Yes, you almost certainly will. And you will hear a lot that may concern you as we make our case for funding to legislators and plan for various possible outcomes.

But you should know that we will be here for you next fall and will be fulfilling our education mission for many, many years to come. When we enroll a student in an academic program, we are committed to delivering it to completion within a reasonable time frame -- not only because we are required to do so for accreditation, but also because it is the right thing to do. We are also doing our best to minimize the impact of the budget impasse on student services and campus life. We are especially committed to core services such as advising and financial aid.

A number of students have also asked what they can do to help demonstrate the importance of funding for our university.  If you, your friends or your family would like to express your opinion or take some other action, you are welcome to contact your home legislators or the legislators who represent SIU. You may visit the SIU system advocacy website, siumatters.com, for more information and to find state legislators.

Meanwhile, I wish you great success for the spring semester. If you are graduating at the end of the semester, I offer my congratulations. If not, I look forward to welcoming you back in the summer or fall.

Brad Colwell

Interim Chancellor