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Illinois Wesleyan University

Sept. 21, 2020

News for and about the Illinois Wesleyan community

Campus News

CharleneCarruthers '07 Earns $250,000 Grant for Social Justice Research
Activist and academic Charlene Carruthers '07 has been named to the first cohort of Freedom Scholars by the Marguerite Casey Foundation and Group Health Foundation, in recognition of her influential writings on Black feminism and her extensive history as a community organizer.

voteCampus Organizations Promote Voter Registration
Tuesday, Sept. 22 is National Voter Registration Day, and several campus organizations are encouraging Illinois Wesleyan students to register ahead of the Nov. 3 election.

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Titan Athletics


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Titans In The News
The New Yorker

Richard Jenkins '69 reflects on his career, upcoming films, and the assertion that he may be the most famous person in Rhode Island.

The Pantagraph

Associate Professor of Psychology Ellen Furlong provides a glimpse inside the canine mind in her new audiobook, part of the Great Courses series produced by Audible.


President S. Georgia Nugent offered details on Illinois Wesleyan's response to the COVID-19 pandemic and efforts to address racism at a virtual Bloomington-Normal NAACP town hall.

(Minneapolis) Star Tribune

Movie and theatre critic Chris Hewitt '83 offered insight into his work and how it has changed during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Pantagraph

Karl Pierburg '98 takes lessons from playing football at Illinois Wesleyan into his role as vice president for data, analytics and technology for the Atlanta Falcons and AMB Sports and Entertainment.


Assistant Vice President for Advancement Carlo Robustelli praised the McLean County community as he announced his resignation from the County Board to take a job as vice president of advancement at Dickinson College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. Also reported by WJBC-Radio.

(New Lenox) Patch

Dr. Courtney Botica '11 leads the new practice, Forever Family Dental, now open in New Lenox.

The Pantagraph

Monica Bullington '11 was among 26 McLean County women nominated for a YWCA McLean County Woman of Distinction Award.



More Titans in the News

Want your event listed on the University Events Calendar and Campus App?

Submit the information using our online form; you can provide virtual event details in the description.



Tuesday, Sept. 22

2 p.m., Eckley Quadrangle – Tye Dyeing Masks and Titan Votes Initiative – Student Senate will host a Titan Votes/mask tie-dying event. Come out and learn about the sustainability reasons behind wearing a washable mask, while also tie-dying your own so you can fulfill your civic duty of wearing it.


4-5 p.m., Virtual – Hart Career Center Resume Workshop – Students, this is your crash course in all things you need to know to build your resume. If you need to update your resume, you are welcome to make edits while watching the presentation. Join us to learn what your resume needs for you to stand out to recruiters in order to land an interview. This workshop is presented by our new career advisor, Lisa DeWeert. Please register for the event in Handshake. This presentation will be held virtually: here is the Zoom meeting link to join the workshop.


6-7 p.m., Virtual – Virtual Career Fair Live Demo – Need help navigating the upcoming Virtual Career Fair on Sept. 28? Join the Hart Career Center for a Live Demo to learn step-by-step instructions on how to activate your Handshake account, register for the virtual fair, research employers attending the fair, sign up for group meetings and 1:1 sessions, and other tips to navigate the virtual fair experience. Please RSVP for the event here: This presentation will be held virtually and the Zoom meeting link will be sent to all who register.



Wednesday, Sept. 23


11:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m., Virtual – Hart Career Center Resume Workshop – Please register for this event in Handshake. This presentation will be held virtually: here is the Zoom meeting link to join the workshop.


12 p.m., Zoom – Reading to Understand (Academic Skills Series)Register here for this session. You can see the full schedule, topics, and recordings of past sessions here: Sponsored by the Action Research Center.



Thursday, Sept. 24


12 p.m., Zoom – Peer Tutoring 101 – This short, info-packed session will cover the basics of organizing and managing one-on-one and group tutoring sessions for all subjects. All campus tutors are invited to attend. Visit this link to register. Questions? Contact Bevin Choban: Sponsored by the Action Research Center.


1-4 p.m. Virtual Career Fair Prep Office Hours – Come to the Hart Career Center in person or virtually to get that extra last-minute help you need to feel prepared for success at the upcoming Virtual Career Fair. Don't forget to wear your mask and practice social distancing in the office. Sign up here.


6-7 p.m., Virtual – Titan Career Chat: Exploring Healthcare Careers – Presented by Nick Liberatore '14, Physical Therapist. Please email Michele Darnell at for details.


6:30 p.m., Virtual - RSVP Required – "Public Trust" Screening and Virtual Discussion – The film "Public Trust" explores how our public lands are facing unprecedented threats and investigates how we arrived at this precarious moment in time through the examination of three beloved public lands that are particularly at risk. RSVP here. Registration is required to view the film and participate in this important conversation. FILM: The film will begin at 6:30 p.m. Details for accessing the virtual screening and joining the discussion will be provided after you register. DISCUSSION: The film will be followed by an online conversation at 8:15 p.m. (30 minutes) where we will discuss the film and talk about how we can take action to protect our public lands. This event is open to the IWU Community. Sponsored by the IWU Environmental Studies Program, GREENetwork, and Sierra Student Coalition.



Friday, Sept. 25


10 a.m.-12 p.m. and 2-4 p.m. Virtual Career Fair Prep Office Hours Sign up here.


6 p.m., Virtual – Virtual Titan Family Friday – Illinois Wesleyan and the Office of Student Involvement invites families to attend Titan Family Friday, a virtual campus-wide celebration in honor of parents, grandparents, all extended family, and support systems for students.



Sunday, Sept. 27


6 p.m., Virtual (Zoom) – Student Senate General Assembly MeetingMeeting Link



Monday, Sept. 28


10 a.m. - 2 p.m.Virtual Career Fair Prep Office HoursSign up here.


4-7 p.m., Virtual – Virtual Career/Internship Fair – Hart Career Center's annual Fall Career Fair will be held virtually in Handshake, our career services platform. A Virtual Fair is different than a traditional in-person fair because there is no waiting in lines – instead, you plan your day in advance. Log in to Handshake, register for the fair, and sign up for group video sessions and 1:1 meetings with companies looking to hire here: The Virtual Internship/Job Fair connects quality candidates with employers and organizations recruiting for pre-professional, professional, and educational experiences including internships, volunteer experiences, graduate and professional school opportunities, as well as part-time and full-time jobs. IWU students of all majors and school years are welcome to attend this event.

Campus Events
  • Alexa Baltes '14, a graduate of Notre Dame Law School, will clerk for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh during the 2021-22 term. Baltes is currently an associate at Consovoy McCarthy in Arlington, Virginia.

Physical Plant Organizational Changes


This past spring, the Physical Plant completed an administrative and operational review with a consulting firm out of Chicago, Hickling and Associates. This review identified many opportunities to improve efficiencies, and, ultimately, to reduce operating costs.


We implemented several of the recommended improvements in our Custodial Department early this summer. These changes, which were previously announced, included reorganizing our shifts and assignments, the reduction of positions, an improved cleaning program and introducing more efficient and more technological equipment into our operations.   


In August, we implemented the remaining recommendations for our maintenance and HVAC groups. In order to provide more efficient service, we have reorganized our maintenance department into one group, covering all of building maintenance and mechanical (HVAC) operations. Kenton Frost has been promoted to fill the new position of Manager of Maintenance Operations. Troy Steidinger and Dennis Delong have accepted roles as Supervisors of Building Maintenance and HVAC respectively. 


Additionally, we identified significant opportunities for improvement in work assignment, planning and centralized purchasing. Mary Anderson has accepted the position of Scheduler/Planner and will manage scheduling and purchasing for the Physical Plant, focusing primarily on Maintenance Operations.


While we have changed work responsibilities and work processes internally, Mary and Rory McGuire will continue to serve the campus community at our point of service number at extension 3066. Our goal is to continue to provide the same excellent customer service as always. Please do not hesitate to contact Jim Blumberg, Director of Physical Plant, with any questions.


It is our intent that these changes will improve our operations and ultimately allow the Physical Plant to better serve our students, our employees and the IWU community.  

Welcome New Employees

Julie Crouch started July 22 as Windows System Administrator in ITS, replacing Jason Sharpe.


Marc Tiritilli started Aug. 1 as Makerspace Manager & Instrument Specialist - DTE, Chemistry & Physics, a new position.


Jessica Sheetz '19 started Aug. 3 as Administrative Specialist III - Career Center, replacing Nicole Starcevich, who transferred to the Administrative Specialist III - CNS position when Karen Skolmoski left IWU.


TJ Bjorklund started Aug. 4 as League of Legends Head Coach/Esports Specialist, replacing Derek Micheau.


Maria Rocio Gama Antunez started Aug. 10 as a Custodian with Physical Plant, replacing Kristen Tolbert.


Andrew Nunley started Aug. 10 as Scene Shop Coordinator/Stage Carpenter, replacing Allison McCarthy.


Olivia Braun started Aug. 10 as Admissions Counselor, replacing Tallise Hardt.


Jessica Esparza '19 started Aug. 17 as Admissions Counselor, replacing Grace Hanzelin.


Amanda Kemp '03 started Aug. 17 as Nursing Interventions Lab - Simulation Expert, replacing Becky Altic.


Lorenzo Parola started Aug. 20 as Overwatch Head Coach/Esports Specialist, a new position.


Chad Grammer started Aug. 31 as HVAC Technician, replacing Derek Caughron.


Gabriela Montaigne started Aug. 31 as SBDC Business Advisor - Minority Owned Businesses, a new grant-funded position.


Lynn Sands Westhoff started Aug. 31 as SBDC Business Advisor - Rural McLean County Businesses, a new grant-funded position.


Julia Workman started Aug. 31 as SBDC Program Coordinator, a new grant-funded position.

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Campus Weekly is an electronic newsletter from Illinois Wesleyan's Office of Communications, edited by Ann Aubry, director of communications. To submit items of interest, email See an archive of past editions.
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