November 18, 2012

November 2012 APAC News Vol. 5, No. 10

Pension Amendment Defeated

VOTERS REJECTED Constitutional Amendment #49 on the Nov. 6, ballot, which could have eliminated the State of Illinois’ Constitutional protection of the pension benefits of University and other public employees.

ALTHOUGH ABOUT 56% of Illinois voters who weighed in on the measure on their ballots cast a “yes” vote for the amendment, the law required either a yes vote from 3/5 (60%) of the people voting on it, or 50% plus one of the total number of votes cast in the election. The amendment received neither.

IF PASSED, the amendment would have required a 3/5 majority of a legislative body to increase benefits, but only a simple majority to reduce benefits that currently are protected from reduction by the State Constitution.

“ARTICLE XXX, Section 5 of our State Constitution (adopted in 1970) had as its purpose the safeguarding of the pensions of public employees,” said Ann Lousin, a faculty member at the John Marshall Law School and outspoken opponent of the amendment. She added that the change that was “proposed by this Amendment appears to be an attempt to circumvent or abolish those protections. For example, it is possible that a cost-of-living adjustment could be eliminated if this Amendment” passed.

SHE NOTED the amendment would have done “nothing for the State's pension-funding problem,” and, if approved, would have been “a catastrophe for Illinois.”

“THE OVERT and covert danger of this proposal may be over but we should expect more attacks on our pension benefits when the Illinois General Assembly reconvenes for the veto session in late November and early December, as well as in the opening days of the next regular legislative session in January,” said Merrill L. Gassman, President of UIC United, the UIC chapter of the State Universities Annuitants Association. “The legislature will be filled with a significant percentage of ‘lame ducks’ who have nothing to gain or lose by supporting ‘pension reform.’”

Six CAPE Awards Presented at Employee Recognition Awards Program and Ceremony

David Taeyaerts, Director, Campus Learning Environments, was congratulated
by Chancellor Paula Allen-Meares for receiving a CAPE Award.
THE ACADEMIC Professional Advisory Committee, through its Chancellor’s Academic Professional Excellence (CAPE) Awards Subcommittee, is directly charged by Chancellor Paula Allen-Meares with the task of coordinating the nomination process. The CAPE Subcommittee reviews all nominations submitted, and provides the Chancellor with recommendations to help inform her choice of recipients. However, each CAPE winner is personally selected by the Chancellor herself.

THIS YEAR, the Chancellor decided to award six CAPEs, instead of the customary four. The awards were presented at the Employee Recognition Awards Program and Ceremony on Nov. 1. William S. Bike, CAPE Awards Subcommittee Chair, read the citations.

RECIPIENTS WERE Monica L. Carney, Director of Human Resources, Office of the Dean, College of Pharmacy; Jackie L. Finch, Interim Associate Dean for Finance and Administration, Office of the Dean, School of Public Health; Mark R. Martell, Assistant Director, Office of Career Services; Sharon Ann Sanders, Assistant to the Head, Department of Public Administration; David Taeyaerts, Director, Campus Learning Environments; and Susan Teggatz, Director, Campus Housing.

ESTABLISHED in 1988, the CAPE Award 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.

Two From APAC Earn Awards of Merit

Provost Lon Kaufman (left) and Chancellor Paula Allen-Meares (right) congratulate
former APAC Member Catherine Foley-DiVittorio on her Award of Merit.
CURRENT APAC member Jacqueline M. Berger (below, center), and former longtime member Catherine Foley-DiVittorio (above, center), both earned Awards of Merit at the Employee Recognition Awards Program and Ceremony Nov. 1.
Current APAC member Jacqueline Berger (center) also earned an Award of Merit. She was congratulated by Vice Chancellor for Research Mitra Dutta (left) and Chancellor Allen-Meares.
BERGER IS Director of Communications, Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research. Foley-DiVittorio is Director of Human Resources for the College of Education.

THE AWARD of Merit recognizes outstanding Academic Professionals and support staff employees for sustained excellence in performance and commitment to their jobs.

President to Speak to Senate; All Invited

President Robert Easter.
PRESIDENT ROBERT Easter will address the University Senate on Thursday, Nov. 29, at 3:15 p.m. The Senate will meet in the Student Services Building, 1200 W. Harrison St. Senate meetings are open to the public, so all UIC employees and students are invited.

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.

NEXT MEETING is Dec. 12 in Room 5175 CMRB. For information, call (312) 996-0306.


Jennifer Anderson.
Jennifer Anderson First Graduate Assistant for APAC

By Lucia Gonzalez

JENNIFER ANDERSON is the first Graduate Assistant that APAC has ever hired. Her new position will allow her to help organize the monthly APAC meetings, as well as the APAC subcommittee meetings. She is also available to the APAC board members for special projects, website updates, and anything that can relieve them from some of the administrative duties resulting from their volunteer positions.

ANDERSON IS fascinated by the work that APAC does. “I am learning so much about the public higher ed system and I feel this education will be vastly useful for me in my future endeavors,” she explained. For example, Anderson is learning about the intricacies of State and University policy; every day, they become less foreign to her.

HER GOAL is to organize the new Graduate Assistant post to the point that APAC can run as efficiently as possible. She wants to establish an easy-to-follow protocol for the monthly tasks so that APAC board members can transition smoothly to utilizing her assistance.

“SINCE THIS is a new role,” Anderson said, “I hope APAC members will feel comfortable reaching out to me if they need help with something they are working on. I am at your service ten hours a week, so please, utilize me as needed.”

OUTSIDE OF her work APAC work, Anderson is in her first year of the Master’s of Public Health degree program, concentrating in Maternal and Child Health. She currently also works as a lactation consultant. Prior to that, she worked in non-profit administration.

ANDERSON’S WISH is to leverage her MPH degree and return to non-profit administration with a focus on maternal and infant nutrition. She currently is working with a team to establish a donor human milk bank in the Chicagoland area to serve local neonatal care units.

“I RUN the local chapter of my International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners professional association,” Anderson noted. “It is really quite comforting to see that many of our concerns overlap with those of APAC members, despite it being a very different industry.”

ANDERSON DOES not have a lot of spare time because she has two young children, work, and school. However, she particularly enjoys running and cooking. She has a passion for many food-related activities, such as gardening, trying new types of foods, herbs, spices, and learning more about cooking.



CCSPD Gives More Accessibility to People with Disabilities

By Lucia Gonzalez

THE MEMBERS of the Chancellor’s Committee on the Status of Persons with Disabilities (CCSPD)realize that there is a diverse community at UIC that includes individuals withboth visible and non-visible disabilities. Their mission is to include and empower these individuals at the University. Their work is fueled by the belief that people with disabilities are assets to the University and in no way are liabilities.

STAFF AND faculty at UIC are encouraged to become members of the CCSPD. Co-chair Lisa Cushing said, “We try to stay abreast of issues that directly or indirectly relate to us and advise the Chancellor to the best of our ability.”

THE CCSPDis constantly attempting to be a visible and welcoming presence on campus. Employees of the University are invited to attend any of the events and functions that are held or co-sponsored by the CCSPD.

FOR EXAMPLE, in April 2012 the CCSPD co-sponsored the Digital Accessibility Expo, which focused on improving the access to digital materials for everyone, including those with disabilities. During this expo, the UIC campus showcased current resources that it has available to promote accessible information technology and assistive technology.

TO LEARN more about CCSPD or its events, e-mail, or Cushing at or Mark Goedert at For more information,visit the CCSPD website at


UIC Offers Red Car Service, Off-Hour Paratransit Service

THE UIC Red Car/Off-Hour Paratransit Service is an escort service that provides transportation to University employees, students, visitors, and other authorized individuals between University facilities and from University facilities to points of public transportation, or to private residences within a designated area.

THE VEHICLE used for this purpose is popularly known as the "Red Car" and operates within the following general boundaries:
  • Halsted Street on the east
  • Western Avenue on the west
  • Eisenhower Expressway on the north
  • Roosevelt Road on the south
SERVICES ALSO are extended to include the Chemical Engineering Building and the Access Living location at 614 W. Roosevelt Road.

TO REQUEST service call (312) 996-6800.
  • Red Car Service hours of operation:  11 p.m. to 7 a.m.
  • Red Car Service operates seven days per week, including holidays.
  • In order to provide prompt and efficient service a one-hour lead-time is requested (but not mandatory) for customers requiring Paratransit Service.
  • Proof of residency may be requested when providing service to private residence.
  • UIC identification (i-Card) must be presented to driver when boarding.
GENERAL INQUIRIES may be submitted via e-mail to


College Illinois Returns

THE ILLINOIS Student Assistance Commission (ISAC)  has reopened the College Illinois! 529 Prepaid Tuition plan, a way for families to avoid tuition inflation and increasing student loan debt by prepaying for college. College Illinois! will offer Illinois families contracts at 2011 rates until Monday, Dec. 31, 2012. This extension is a result of Governor Patrick Quinn‘s action on House Bill 3923, which requires transparency in ISAC investment decision-making. For more information about ISAC’s College Illinois! Prepaid Tuition Program, visit or call (877) 877-3724.


THE UIC Staff Advisory Council, which represents Civil Service employees, has a new website at


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.

GOVERNOR QUINN wants pension deal during lame-duck session. See Progress Report, Nov. 12:

Vol. 5, No. 10, November 2012

ISSN 1946-1860
Editor: William S. Bike
Staff: Ivone De Jesus, Lucia Gonzalez, Monica M. Walk
Vice Chair: Ahlam Al-Kodmany
Chair: Michael Moss
Secretary: Kathleen Engstrom
Treasurer: Virginia Buglio
Web Chair: Jeff Alcantar