August 23, 2012

September 2012 APAC News Vol. 5, No. 7

Chancellor Increases CAPE Awards to Six from Four

Chancellor Paula Allen-Meares, with APAC Chair Michael Moss. The Chancellor
decided to increase the number of CAPE Awards conferred from four to six.
TO ACKNOWLEDGE the contributions “of UIC's excellent Academic Professional staff in helping to move UIC forward during a prolonged period of unprecedented institutional challenges, I have decided to fund an increase in the number of Chancellor's Academic Professional Excellence (CAPE) Awards from the traditional maximum of four, to six,” said Chancellor Paula Allen-Meares.

THE TWO additional awards will be given to nominees from the existing pool of exemplary Academic Professionals who were nominated for a CAPE Award.

THE CAPE Award, established in 1988, recognizes the demonstrated excellence of Academic Professional staff, encourages their professional development, and indicates the institution's high regard for the contributions of this key segment of the academic community.

THE AWARD provides a $1,000 permanent increase to the individual's salary, along with a $2,000 one-time cash award.

THE AWARDS will be presented at the UIC Employee Recognition Award Program ceremony and reception Thursday, Nov. 1, at 11 a.m. at the UIC Forum.

FOR MORE information, contact William S. Bike, Chair, 2012 CAPE Selection Committee,, (312) 996-8495. 

New Limitations on the Re-employment of Retirees

AT THE close of the Spring legislative session, the Illinois General Assembly passed a bill calling for new restrictions on the re-employment of retirees. Governor Patrick Quinn is expected to sign this bill, House Bill 4996. While rehired retirees are a small proportion of the University’s workforce, HB 4996 is expected to have a significant impact on University hiring policies and procedures, employing departments, and on retirees who may wish to return to work.

HB 4996 will limit the re-employment of individuals receiving an annuity from the State Universities Retirement System (SURS) to 18 paid weeks and 40% of pre-retirement salary. When service and compensation exceed those limits, the University will be required to pay SURS a contribution equal to the amount of the individual’s annual annuity. Re-employed annuitants paid from Federal, trust, foundation, or corporate funds, or from a State grant in which they have been named the principal investigator, will be exempted from these restrictions.

A UNIVERSITY-WIDE work group has been formed to review policies, processes, systems, and reports that may need to be revised to comply with HB 4996. This group will work with University colleges and departments, as well as with SURS, to identify effective and efficient ways to achieve compliance.

IF YOU have questions or concerns about the impact of HB 4996, contact UIC Human Resources at or email for assistance.

Retirement Numbers Shoot Up

Lucy Marquez of the College of Dentistry was one of
many retirees who left the University this year.
IT’S NOT your imagination. There really have been many more retirements from UIC this year than in previous years.

ACCORDING TO figures provided at the most recent University of Illinois Board of Trustees meeting, there have been 1,107 retirements in 2012 to date. In 2011, there were 726; in 2010, 550; and in 2009, only 91.

No Pension Changes Passed During Special Session

(Photo courtesy International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers)
Governor Quinn showed his support for International Association of Machinists
and Aerospace Workers in Joliet recently (above), but he also has been
criticized by State employees unions for pushing pension changes.
DURING THE Illinois House of Representatives' special session to expel State Representative Derrick Smith, Governor Patrick Quinn wanted the House to vote on pension changes for State employees, including those at UIC. No agreement was reached, and no changes were enacted.

THE HOUSE decided not to address University and teacher pensions, and debated only a provision that would have scaled back legislators’ pensions. But even that failed to come to a vote due to lack of support.

HAD A bill passed the House, it would have been weeks before it was even addressed by the Senate, as that body was not in session.

EXPERTS NOW speculate that nothing will be done about changing Illinois State and University employee pensions until after the Tuesday, Nov. 6 election.

Berger Joins SURS Board of Trustees

Jacqueline Berger, new SURS Trustee.
THE STATE Universities Retirement System (SURS) Board of Trustees has added APAC member Jacqueline M. Berger, Director of Communications for the Vice Chancellor for Research, to the board. She is filling the vacancy created by the retirement of Fred Giertz.

BERGER ALSO is one of three APAC representatives to the University Senate.

THE SURS Board of Trustees comprises 11 members: four elected participating (active) SURS members, two elected annuitant (retired) SURS members, four members appointed by the Governor, and the chairperson, also appointed by the Governor and who serves as the chair of the Illinois State Board of Higher Education.

THE BOARD meets at least quarterly, and there are additional committee meetings throughout the year. Regular board meetings are scheduled in March, June, September, and December.

APAC Meetings Scheduled; All Invited

ALL APs are invited to the monthly APAC meeting at 12:30 p.m. on the second Wednesday of the month. Meetings are held either in Room 5175 of the College of Medicine Research Building, 909 S. Wolcott, or Room 2750 of University Hall on the East Campus.

SCHEDULED MEETINGS are Sept 12 in Room 2750 UH, Oct. 10 in Room 5175 CMRB, Nov. 14 in Room 2750 UH, Dec. 12 in Room 5175 CMRB. For information, call (312) 996-0306.

UIC United Hosts Fall Forum on Pensions and Revenue


Ralph Martire, Executive Director, Center for Tax and Budget Accountability,
will be a speaker at the UIC United Fall Forum.
UIC UNITED, the UIC chapter of the State Universities Annuitants Association (SUAA) will present its Fall Forum, “Pensions, Revenue, and the Rhetoric of ‘Reform’: Is the State of Illinois Capable of Dealing with its Momentous Fiscal Challenges?” on Wednesday, Sept. 5, in the Thompson Rooms, Student Center West (SCW), 828 S. Wolcott, 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

PARTICIPANTS WILL be Eric Zorn, moderator and discussant and Chicago Tribune columnist; Katherine “Kappy” Laing, Executive Director, U of I Office of Governmental Relations; Ralph Martire,  Executive Director, Center for Tax and Budget Accountability; and John Tillman, CEO, Illinois Policy Institute.

TO RSVP or for more information, contact Karen Scherman at or Debbie Matthews at

Office of Special Programs Events Scheduled

THE FOLLOWING is a schedule of campus events produced by the Department of Human Resources, Office of Special Programs:

CAMPUS CHARITABLE Fund Drive (CCFD), Wednesday, Oct. 3, through Wednesday, Dec.  5.

CCFD KICKOFF Breakfast and Charity Fair Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2012 Student Center East, Illinois Room, 9 to 11 a.m.

EMPLOYEE RECOGNITION Award Program, Thursday, Nov. 1, UIC Forum, 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.

RETIREMENT LUNCHEON, Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2013 (date pending), Student Center West, Thompson Rooms, 2nd floor, 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

RETIREMENT PLANNING Conference, Saturday, April  6, 2013, Student Center East, Illinois and Dearborn Rooms, 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

FOR MORE information, contact Rebecca Fortier at or (312) 413-2960.

APAC Profile

Colleen Piersen.
Job Analysis Project Got Colleen Piersen Involved with APAC
By Ivone DeJesus
COLLEEN PIERSEN is the Assistant Head for Administration in the Department of Medicinal Chemistry and Pharmacognosy--the fifth most active research unit on campus as measured by Fiscal Year expenditures. She also is a Research Assistant Professor, contributing to the unit's research programs and Director of Research Services for the College of Pharmacy.

AS ASSISTANT Head for Administration of a complex department, her responsibilities span finance, human resources, and academics with a strong emphasis on research administration and compliance. There is “never a dull or static moment” as Piersen interacts with a network of about 200 individuals. She enjoys the challenge of managing the department's resources and staffing to optimize research and academic performance, as well as mentoring junior faculty members, postdocs, and staff committed to progress in biomedical science. Being able to truly facilitate research is another reason that she enjoys her role at UIC. In broader perspective, the opportunity to be able to improve the quality of science education/literacy in the United States makes the hard work worthwhile.

HAVING BEEN at UIC since 2000, Piersen previously served as Program Coordinator and managed research activities for the UIC/National Institutes of Health Center for Botanical Dietary Supplements Research. Throughout the years, she attended APAC events and meetings but it wasn’t until this past spring that she became an elected member. She was prompted to become involved due to the UIC Job Analysis Project. Piersen stated that she perceived a “need to preserve and recognize the value to the University of valid AP positions.” 

IN THE upcoming year, she would like APAC to “continue to voice concerns and propose rational solutions to problems as they arise in the new job matrix” and “observe the introduction of new job families and their potentaial impact on the campus research enterprise.”

PIERSEN’S COMMITMENT to APAC is apparent, as she said, “as one of your representatives, I will attempt to convey the collective knowledge and concerns of APs on campus.”

SHE ALSO gives some “words of wisdom” to non-APAC members: “Academic Professionals play a vital role in coordinating and synthesizing various functions (Finance, HR, etc.), and the preservation of flexible AP positions or the substance thereof during the job analysis/conversion process is in the best interest of the University.”

WHILE HER work at UIC keeps her quite busy, she makes the time to be involved in volunteer activities such as being a Science Olympiad event coach at the junior high level and a Girl Scout troop leader. Her children’s school and sports activities as well as her enjoyment of travelling native landscape gardening also fill her free time. Piersen has three children -- two boys and one girl -- ages 14, 12, and 8 in high, middle, and elementary school this Fall. She is married to Russell McLaughlin, an anesthesiologist whom she met while they we were both training at Vanderbilt School of Medicine.


Oral healthcare is available for adults and children at the UIC College of Dentistry.
UIC DENTAL care is available right on campus.

THE UIC College of Dentistry offers a range of care for adults and children at its student teaching clinics, post-doctoral clinics, and faculty practice clinic. All clinics are fee for service, but fees generally are less than those charged by dentists in private practice. Student dentists are fully supervised by faculty dentists.

AFTER A complete evaluation of your dental needs, you will receive an estimate of the costs of treatment. Payment is required at the time of treatment for patients treated in the student clinics.

SCREENING FOR the college’s Comprehensive Care program is by appointment only. Call (312) 996-1265 Monday through Friday, from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Because of the high volume of calls received, it may be necessary to call several times to connect with scheduling personnel.

ADULTS (15 and above) may be seen for treatment for urgent problems by appointment only. To schedule an Urgent Care appointment call (312) 996-8636 between 8 and 9 a.m. Monday through Friday. Your appointment will be scheduled for the following clinic day. Because of the high volume of calls received, it may be necessary to call several times to connect with scheduling personnel.

IN THE Allen W. Anderson Faculty Dental Practice, general dentists and dental specialists from the college’s faculty (not students) provide an extensive range of state-of-the-art services for individuals of all ages in a setting similar to private practice. Fees for treatment in the Allen W. Anderson Faculty Dental Practice are comparable to those of a private dental office in the area. For the Allen W. Anderson Faculty Dental Practice, call (312) 413-2835.

SPECIALTY/ADVANCED clinics provide advanced treatment in the following areas: Comprehensive Dental Implant Center (CDIC), Endodontics, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Oral Medicine Clinic, Orthodontics, Pediatric Dentistry, IL Health Connect Pediatric Clinic (by referral only), Periodontics, and Prosthodontics and Implants.

FOR PEDIATRIC dental care, call (312) 996-7532.

ORTHODONTIC, ENDODONTIC, Periodontic, Prosthodontic, and Oral Surgery treatment is available in post-doctoral clinics. Treatment is provided by dentists and faculty who have chosen to specialize in one of the above areas. Call the main number at (312) 996-7555 and listen for the appropriate prompt. 


Editor’s Note: “The Continuing Crisis” is a section of APAC News which links to news pertinent to the state budget crisis and other financial matters as they affect the University and Academic Professionals. These news outlets are not affiliated with or endorsed by APAC.

FORMER JUDGE files suit against retiree insurance premiums. See State Journal-Register of July 9:

CHICAGO TRIBUNE takes U of I Trustees to task for paying large salaries to fired officials, July 9:,0,812902.story.

UIC, FACULTY union to begin collective bargaining. See UIC News, July 11:

RETIREMENT SPIKE in Illinois due to pension changes, said Inside Higher Ed July 16. See

PENSION CHANGES scare away potential public employees, said Progress Illinois July 16. See

SALARY INCREASES approved, says UIC News July 18. See

U.S. AUSTERITY empties student pockets, harms public universities, says Common Dreams July 19. See

EMPLOYEE RETIREMENTS on the rise, says UIC News, June 24:

UNIVERSITY DENIES it is attempting to break Urbana AP union, says News-Gazette of Aug. 2:

PSYCHOPATHS WANT to take our money, says Common Dreams, Aug. 3:

Vol. 5, No. 7, August 2012

ISSN 1946-1860
Editor: William S. Bike
Staff: Ivone De Jesus

Chair: Michael Moss
Vice Chair: Yair Rodriguez
Secretary: Kathleen Engstrom
Treasurer: Virginia Buglio
Web Chair: Jeff Alcantar