October 18, 2010

Dear Members of the University Community,

At our September 23rd Board of Trustees meeting, the Trustees called on me to move forward with a plan to re-structure the administration of the University of Illinois in order to reduce costs, streamline operations, create opportunities to generate new revenues, and better coordinate our shared teaching and research missions. This re-structuring builds on recommendations in the Administrative Review & Restructuring (ARR) Report, which was shared with you in June 2010.

The re-structuring plan the Board discussed in September requires adjusting the titles of existing University Officers and creating one new officer.  These changes require amending the Board’s University Statutes and The General Rules of the University.  Thus, the Board has asked the University Senates Conference (and through them, the campus senates) to review and consider the amendments.  I’m grateful to the University Senates Conference and the campus senates for encouraging your review.  I urge you to participate in their meetings and share your thoughts about the plan with them.

To aid in the discussion, we’ve prepared a “Frequently Asked Questions” (FAQ) document regarding the amendments.  You can find it at:

    http://www.uillinois.edu/arr/documents/Amendments.FAQ.pdf

Should there be additional questions or comments, please bring them to the attention of your senate representatives and feel free to send them directly to me at presmike@uillinois.edu.  The goal, with limited staff, is to update the FAQ a couple of times over the next month.

These are clearly very challenging times and candidly it’s unlikely that we will see relief soon.  Our Chancellors and the University Administration have done an outstanding job of trimming costs on our campuses and I recognize the hard work everyone is doing – often with fewer resources.  Yet we must do even more to confront what will certainly be additional cuts in our state support.  The Board believes, and I agree, that we can manage such cuts only by looking within and across our campuses for more efficiencies, greater cost savings, and new revenues.  This perspective guides the plan the Board is now considering and the amendments the plan requires, not to mention our ongoing efforts to implement the reforms spelled out in the ARR Report.  By taking a University-wide view, we can eliminate unnecessary redundancies and relieve the counter-productive burdens those redundancies pose, while protecting our core mission, to the extent possible, from the harm that can result from further reductions in our state appropriation.  Additionally, the research coordination and attention to clinical oversight that the plan involves present opportunities for substantial new revenues.

In closing, I again thank you for your hard work and commitment to our great university.  In the three months that I’ve had the honor to be your president, I’ve been impressed and humbled by your resolve to meet the unprecedented challenges of these difficult times and emerge even stronger as a world-class university.  I’m grateful to be a part of this outstanding community.

Sincerely,

Mike

 

Michael J. Hogan
President, University of Illinois
presmike@uillinois.edu