Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Friday webinar seeks public feedback on Community Health Needs Assessment

The Springfield Innovation Hub, the University of Illinois Springfield Center for State Policy and Leadership and the Community Health Roundtable are hosting a webinar at Noon Friday, Dec. 18 seeking feedback from the public for the Sangamon County Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA).

The webinar is part of the county’s CHNA and seeks input on the health needs of the community in order to foster wellness and improve medical services. A CHNA identifies key health needs and issues through systematic, comprehensive data collection and analysis.

During the webinar, there will be an overview of the process and the topics, followed by a series of breakout sessions by priority areas (mental & behavioral health, disparities in economics, housing, and food security, and homelessness & affordable housing). Participants will be encouraged to share their views.

Facilitators include Becky Gabany, system director of community engagement, Memorial Health System; Lingling Liu, equity, diversity and inclusion program coordinator, Memorial Health System; Kim Luz, HSHS St. John's Hospital division director of community outreach; Bill Dart, assistant director Sangamon County Department of Public Health; David Steward, emeritus professor, SIU School of Medicine; and Molly Lamb, executive director of the UIS Center for State Policy and Leadership.

Participants can watch the webinar on Zoom at or call 312-626-6799 to participate by phone (Meeting ID: 880 6077 8891, Passcode: 912085).

For more information, contact Bruce Sommer at 217-899-3186 or Past UIS webinars can be found online at

Tuesday, December 15, 2020

Businesses and organizations are invited take part in the virtual UIS Career Connections Expo

Businesses and organizations are encouraged to register now for the University of Illinois Springfield’s virtual Career Connections Expo. The Expo will be held from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday, March 4, 2021, using CareerEco’s virtual platform.

The annual event is being hosted by the University of Illinois Springfield and Lincoln Land Community College and is intended to bring students, alumni, community members and employers together to discuss career opportunities and build professional connections. 

Organizations who are recruiting candidates for job and internship opportunities are invited to participate in the virtual event. The Expo has an average attendance of more than 300 students, alumni and community members and more than 120 employer participants. 

Employers are encouraged to register as soon as possible, as space is limited, and registering early secures the best rate. Early bird pricing for employer participants is available now through Friday, Jan. 8, 2021. There is no cost for jobseekers to participate in the event. 

Employers and jobseekers can register for the Expo at

For more information, contact the UIS Career Development Center at 217-206-6508 or

Monday, December 14, 2020

UIS Observatory to hold a virtual Star Party for the great conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn

The University of Illinois Springfield Observatory is holding a virtual Star Party for the great conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn from 5-6:30 p.m. Monday, Dec. 21.

Participants can learn more and watch the virtual start party on Zoom by accessing the link at

The conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn is an infrequent event occurring when the apparent positions of the planets converge in the sky. Normally, just one planet is visible through the telescope at a time. During this great conjunction the apparent distance between Jupiter and Saturn will be less than six times the apparent diameter of Jupiter, the closest the two have been in more than 800 years. Over the course of a few nights, both will be visible simultaneously in the same telescope field of view with their closest approach on Dec. 21. Although they appear close together, Saturn will be at a distance of nearly 460 million miles behind Jupiter.  

In the days before and after the great conjunction, Jupiter and Saturn are visible as a bright pair low in the southwestern sky after sunset. A pair of binoculars should reveal some detail not visible to the naked eye.

The UIS Observatory great conjunction star party will virtually offer a live view of Jupiter and Saturn together until they set around 6:30 p.m. The event will also feature commentary and answers to live questions by John Martin, UIS associate professor of astronomy/physics. In the event of poor weather, we will share recorded pictures and video of the event.

Questions about Star Parties should be directed to 217-206-8342, or direct messaged to @UISObservatory on Twitter. For more information on star parties, follow @UISObservatory on Twitter or visit