Thursday, September 29, 2016

UIS Illinois Innocence Project honors International Wrongful Conviction Day

WHAT: The Illinois Innocence Project (IIP), based at the University of Illinois Springfield, will host one of dozens of events throughout the world recognizing International Wrongful Conviction Day. The public is invited to a screening of the recently released documentary “Bloodsworth: An Innocent Man”.

WHEN: Tuesday, October 4, 2016, from 6 to 8 p.m.

WHERE: UIS Student Life Building, 2380 Theodore Dreiser Lane (Multipurpose Room)

DETAILS: In 1985, Kirk Bloodsworth was sentenced to die in a Maryland penitentiary for the brutal rape and murder of a 9-year-old girl. A crime he did not commit. The film chronicles Bloodsworth’s path to win his freedom in 1993, making him the first death row inmate exonerated by DNA evidence.

Bloodsworth was the featured speaker at the 2016 Illinois Innocence Project Defenders of the Innocent Event. IIP will honor him with the film screening as well as with a visual display on campus recognizing the 1,884 exonerations that have occurred in the United States and 175 from Illinois.

According to the Illinois Innocence Project, Illinois exonerees have lost a total of 1,831 years of their lives. An overwhelming majority of them are minorities.

International Wrongful Conviction Day began three years ago with the Association in Defense of the Wrongly Convicted. The day is designed to recognize the tremendous personal, social and legal costs associated with wrongful criminal convictions. To date, seven nations participate with events designed to inform and educate the international community on the causes, consequences and complications associated with wrongful criminal convictions.

For more information on the Illinois Innocence Project – Wrongful Conviction Day events, contact Lauren Myerscough-Mueller at 217/206-6051. You can also visit the website at

Monday, September 19, 2016

UIS Speaker Series presents a screening and discussion of "Public/Private Subversions"

WHAT: The University of Illinois Springfield Engaged Citizenship Common Experience (ECCE) Speaker Series presents “Public/Private Subversions” featuring documentary footage of art-activist Kyle Magee. The screening will be followed by a group discussion.

WHEN: Monday, October 3, 2016, at 6 p.m.

WHERE: UIS Brookens Auditorium, located on the lower level of Brookens Library

DETAILS: Kyle Magee was an Australian university art student before becoming a peculiar kind of art-activist; placing paper over advertising in broad daylight in populated urban spaces. He has done so for ten years as a protest against privatizing public spaces and the commercialization of media, and is regularly arrested for his activism.

“Public/Private Subversions” presents documentary footage of Magee’s activism and includes conversations with commuters, shoppers, children, policemen along with a message for the judiciary. He is committed to repeating his protest indefinitely and views his actions as practical interventions against outdoor advertising and unsolicited for-profit advertising.

The presentation and discussion of documentary footage of Magee’s activism will be moderated by Associate Professor of Political Science Richard Gilman-Opalsky, Ph.D., who hosts a series called Political Art and the Public Sphere, which encourages everyone to consider how “political art” raises provocative social and political questions.

For a list of other upcoming ECCE Speaker Series events and more information, visit All events are free and open to the public.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

UIS Lunch & Learn Series presents "Local Beans and Brew: Craft Beer and Chili"

WHAT: The University of Illinois Springfield’s Office of Advancement, Alumni SAGE Society, Chancellor’s Office and the Illinois State Historical Society presents “Local Beans and Brew: Craft Beer and Chili” as part of the Lunch and Learn Series.

WHEN: Friday, October 7, 2016, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

WHERE: Public Affairs Center (PAC) Conference Room C/D, located on the lower level of the PAC on the UIS campus.

DETAILS: Brent Schwoerer, the founder/owner and brewer of Engrained Brewing Company, will discuss the history of craft beer making and microbrewing. Executive Director of the Illinois State Historical Society William Furry will present on the history and culture of chili.

The cost for the hot buffet lunch and program is $23/per person. Reservations are requested, as seating is limited. 

Other upcoming Lunch & Learn events include “Women's Speak: The Emergence of Power and Influence of Women” on November 16. These lunch-time programs will stimulate thinking as they build upon the university's tradition of open and intelligent dialogue.

Visit to register online. For more information, contact the UIS Office of Advancement at 217/206-6058 or email

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

UIS to celebrate its 20th annual homecoming weekend

The University of Illinois Springfield invites students, faculty, staff, alumni and the local community to celebrate our 20th annual Homecoming Weekend on October 7 & 8. Highlights include the Homecoming Parade (Friday, Oct. 7 at 4:30 p.m.) followed by UIS Men’s and Women’s Soccer vs. Drury University. A free fireworks show will follow the game. To view a full list of Homecoming activities, visit

UIS Homecoming Parade 

WHAT: The parade is an annual tradition of Homecoming at UIS. Come out and enjoy the festivities, the UIS band and much more!

WHEN: Friday, October 7, 2016, at 4:30 p.m.

WHERE: UIS Campus – The parade will start in parking lot C-north and end in parking lot F near The Recreation and Athletics Center (TRAC). The best place to view the parade is along Eliza Farnham Drive, near Founders Residence Hall.

DETAILS: Community members are encouraged to attend to watch the parade, enjoy, and learn more about the many student organizations, athletics teams and campus departments that participate in the parade.

UIS Prairie Stars Men’s and Women’s Soccer 

WHAT: The NCAA Division II men’s and women’s soccer teams will play Drury University during the annual homecoming game.

WHEN: Friday, October 7, 2016, – The women’s game begins at 5 p.m., followed by the men’s game at 7:30 p.m.

WHERE: Kiwanis Stadium at UIS

DETAILS: Admission to the games is $6 for adults and children are $3. UIS students, faculty and staff are free with a valid iCard. Following the men’s soccer game, there will be a free fireworks display.

UIS Prairie Stars Volleyball

WHAT: The NCAA Division II women’s volleyball team will play St. Joseph’s College on Friday and the University of Indianapolis on Saturday in two homecoming appearances.

WHEN: Friday, October 7, 2016, at 7 p.m.
            Saturday, October 8, 2016, at 2 p.m.

WHERE: The Recreation and Athletic Center (TRAC) at UIS

DETAILS: Admission to the games is $6 for adults and children are $3. UIS students, faculty and staff are free with a valid iCard.

Prairie Stars Athletics Hall of Fame Induction 

WHAT: UIS Athletics will induct its third class into the Prairie Stars Athletic Hall of Fame during a formal ceremony on campus.

WHEN: Saturday, October 8, 2016, reception at 6 p.m., ceremony at 7 p.m.

WHERE: The Recreation and Athletic Center (TRAC) at UIS

DETAILS: The 2016 class includes the 1993 men's soccer National Championship team, George Lidster (men's soccer), Audra (Roach) Wyant (volleyball), Manny Velasco (men's tennis), and Bob and Vickie Spencer (Friends of Prairie Stars).

Guests must preregister for the reception in TRAC. For $25, guests can enjoy beer & wine along with hors d'oeuvres. Child 10 and under are free. To register, contact Paul Kabbes at or 217/206-8547.

UIS to unveil new Shakespeare Garden, marking the 400th anniversary of the writer's death

WHAT: The University of Illinois Springfield will unveil a new Shakespeare Garden on campus, marking the 400th anniversary of the poet and playwright’s death in 1616. The themed garden will features plants often mentioned in William Shakespeare’s work.

WHEN: Thursday, September 29, 2016, at 1:30 p.m.

WHERE: UIS Campus between Brookens Library and the Police Station

DETAILS: William Shakespeare is widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language. The Bard often used plants and gardens as metaphors for life, with many important scenes taking place in garden settings. For example: “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” is a frequently referenced line spoken by Juliet to her lover, Romeo, in Shakespeare’s play “Romeo and Juliet”.

The Shakespeare Garden, made possible by an award from the University of Illinois’ Chester Fund, will include signs near each plant with the relevant quotation and reference to the appropriate play or poem, as well as a fountain, walkways, and benches.

The centerpiece of the Garden is a life-sized bronze sculpture of the Bard himself, titled “Shakespeare,” by renowned sculptor Gary Lee Price. The sculpture depicts Shakespeare relaxing on a garden bench – an open invitation for visitors to sit beside him for a chat or a photo.

Other Shakespeare events happening on campus include, the UIS Theatre production of “Macbeth”, which will be presented October 28 – 30 and November 3 – 6 in the UIS Studio Theatre. Tickets are available through the Sangamon Auditorium Ticket Office.

Monday, September 12, 2016

Jane Elliott, creator of the famous blue eyes/brown eyes exercise, to speak at UIS

Photo Courtesy: California State University, San Bernardino
WHAT: Activist and educator Jane Elliott, creator of the well-known blue eyes/brown eyes exercise, will present “Power, Perception and Prejudice” at the University of Illinois Springfield.

Friday, September 16, 2016
Students, Faculty & Staff: 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., PAC Studio Theatre
General Public: 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m., PAC Conference Rooms C/D
A book signing will follow the 5:30 p.m. event.

DETAILS: A passionate public speaker against discrimination, Jane Elliott is considered to be the forerunner of diversity training and has been recognized worldwide as an impactful and tireless advocate for equity among all people. A recipient of the National Mental Health Association Award for Excellence in Education, Elliott exposes prejudice and bigotry, which she calls “an irrational class system based upon purely arbitrary factors.”

In response to the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. over thirty years ago, Elliott devised the controversial and startling, blue eyes/brown eyes exercise. This, now famous, exercise labels participants as inferior or superior based solely upon the color of their eyes and exposes them to the experience of being a minority.

During the “Power, Perception and Prejudice” presentation, Elliott uses audience members and visual aids to help us to recognize, identify, and appreciate the differences on which power is assigned, and some of the ways in which we are conditioned to develop some of our perceptions.

All presentations are free of charge.  

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

UIS Visual Arts Gallery presents “Reserved For Loitering” by artist Paul Shortt

The University of Illinois Springfield Visual Arts Gallery presents “Reserved For Loitering”, a multi-media exhibition from Washington, D.C.-based artist Paul Shortt. Loitering is defined as standing or waiting around idly without apparent purpose, but this project attempts to recontextualize the act of loitering.

The exhibit will open on Thursday, September 22 and run through Thursday, October 20. Shortt will present a UIS Engaged Citizen Common Experience (ECCE) Speaker Series lecture and workshop titled “How To Loiter” on September 22 from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. in Brookens Auditorium. Immediately following the lecture and workshop, an exhibition reception will take place at the UIS Visual Arts Gallery from 6:30 to 8 p.m.

The lecture and workshop will explore the issues surrounding loitering and how it affects public space and individuality. All events are free and open to the public.

Paul Shortt received his MFA in New Media Art from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and his BFA in Painting from the Kansas City Art Institute. He has been in numerous group shows in D.C., Chicago, Kansas City, and New York City. His works engage the public in physical interactions and conversation that examine everyday experiences and cultural norms often in humorous ways through video, sculpture, books and public art.

Shortt has spoken about his work at the Ullens Center for Contemporary Art in Beijing, China and the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art in Kansas City, Missouri. He has been written about in Hyperallergic, The Washington Post, Bmore Art and Review Magazine. In 2015, he launched a project called "Reserved For Loitering," which examines and reimagines loitering across the U.S. Shortt is currently based in Washington, D.C., and is the New Media Curator for Arlington Cultural Affairs.

The Visual Arts Gallery is centrally located on the UIS campus in the Health and Science Building, Room 201. Gallery hours are Monday through Thursday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. For more information, visit the UIS Visual Arts Gallery website at or contact the gallery at 217/206-6506 or

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Share your political memorabilia with the UIS History Harvest at the Old State Capitol

WHAT: The University of Illinois Springfield Department of History is inviting members of the public to bring and share any and all political memorabilia during a History Harvest at the Old State Capitol. Students will photograph, scan and record the stories behind the items in an effort to document the way that people in central Illinois have participated in elections.

WHEN: Saturday, October 22, 2016, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

WHERE: Old State Capitol, 1 SW Old State Capitol Plaza, Springfield, IL

DETAILS: UIS students are asking people to share campaign literature, brochures, letters, photographs, diaries, buttons and bumper stickers related to the democratic process. Digital copies of the items made during the event will be included in an online exhibit and catalog. Participants will also have an opportunity to tell the ‘harvesters’ the stories behind the objects.

History Harvest offers the opportunity to “put yourself in the historical record.” By collecting information on the memories of the local electorate, the project will provide a unique insight into how ordinary citizens in central Illinois have participated in and remembered the democratic process. Items from both the recent and distant past are welcome.

Students from UIS Assistant Professor of History Devin Hunter’s undergraduate public history class and UIS Assistant Professor of History Kenneth Owen’s graduate history and digital media class will lead the effort to digitize items for the online digital exhibit.

 For more information, visit or contact Devin Hunter at 217/206-7432 ( or Kenneth Owen at 217/206-7439 (

UIS Speaker Series to screen and discuss the film "14: Dred Scott, Wong Kim Ark & Vanessa Lopez"

WHAT: The University of Illinois Springfield Engaged Citizenship Common Experience (ECCE) Speaker Series presents a screening of the documentary film “14: Dred Scott, Wong Kim Ark & Vanessa Lopez”. A discussion moderated by film director Anne Galisky will follow the screening.

WHEN: Monday, September 19, 2016, at 4 p.m.

WHERE: UIS Brookens Auditorium, located on the lower level of Brookens Library

DETAILS: The film explores the recurring question about who has the right to be an American citizen and examines the citizenship clause of the 14th Amendment. The story is told through the lives of three ordinary and extraordinary American families who courageously challenged the powerful status quo. Descendants of Dred and Harriet Scott and Wong Kim Ark tell the stories of how their ancestors fought all the way to the Supreme Court and changed American History. Rosario Lopez and her daughter Vanessa are both activists in the immigrants' rights youth movement. It is the citizenship of millions of children like Vanessa Lopez, born in the United States to undocumented parents that is at stake now.

Galisky is co-founder of Graham Street Productions, which produced the documentary. Galisky also directed the feature-length documentary film, “Papers: Stories of Undocumented Youth”. She founded and operated Small World Builders, a building construction company, for fifteen years before directing films. She earned a master’s degree in history with her research on the Japanese Internment, included in the Internment Memorial at the Expo Center in Portland, Oregon.

This event is co-sponsored by the UIS Diversity Center, Gamma Phi Omega Sorority, Inc., the UIS Organization of Latin American Students and UIS Brookens Library. For a list of other upcoming ECCE Speaker Series events and more information, visit All events are free and open to the public.