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Illinois State magazine cover two people in a dark room facing each other but staring a their smartphones
Disconnected: The dark side of our addiction to cell phone usage? Strained relationships.

Volume 19 • Number 3 • Spring 2019

Unhappy couple ignoring each other using mobile phones. Boyfriend and girlfriend with smartphone addiction. Bad relationship concept

The Q-and-A with Aimee Miller-Ott: Are cellphones disconnecting us?

In this Q&A, Illinois State University Professor Aimee Miller-Ott talks about her study examining phone usage between helicopter parents and college students, the weird impasse we find ourselves in when a companion is on their phone, and how texting can lead to miscommunication, especially between couples and friends.

Marine scientist Jamie Baldwin Fergus with her children, Mack and Olivia.

Seeing it all: Marine scientist leaves ocean to focus on family

On a walk one day, Jamie Baldwin Fergus’ graduate school advisor asked her if it all ended tomorrow, would she be happy?

Nursing students learning how to operate a machine from a staff member.

Mennonite Milestone: Nursing college celebrates centennial

Mennonite College of Nursing marks its centennial year having achieved a level of excellence and energy that belies the struggle behind its founding.

Man wearing a suit looking away from the camera

Alum’s action plan

Andrew Purnell is known as the man who can solve all kinds of problems—from his major in mathematics to addressing local discrimination as an undergraduate, followed by establishing as an alumnus a group that has empowered Illinois State black students for 35 years.

Progressive Insurance CEO Tricia Griffith

Business alumna breaks barriers

Tricia (Thomas) Griffith’s accomplishments as chief executive officer of The Progressive Corporation are so impressive that she is the first woman named Fortune Magazine’s Businessperson of the Year.

Redbird Plaza

Illinois State garners 11 honors with ‘Great Colleges to Work For’

The 2018 “Great Colleges to Work For” designation from the Chronicle of Higher Education recognizes institutions that have created exceptional work environments. The University earned the distinction for the fourth year in a row.

Arial shot of the Quad

Two students are chosen as Fulbright scholars

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program award was given to Illinois State students Kylie Ashton Maurer and Sydney Velez for the 2018-2019 academic year.

State Farm Hall of Business

Approval advances for new business education degree

Business teacher education preparation at Illinois State will advance through a new academic program that has received approval from the University’s Board of Trustees.

Man wearing sunglasses

Where are they now? Gary Klass

During his 34 years as a faculty member in the Department of Politics and Government, Gary Klass made an impact both on ISU’s campus and across the community.

A man and woman smiling for a picture.

Rising to the challenge

When Mike Essington ’81 transferred to Illinois State in 1979, he was interested in a new major called computer science. Since personal computers weren’t around, students created and stored data on paper punch cards.

Person receiving an award

Five receive 2019 Alumni Awards

The Alumni Association will recognize five individuals and their outstanding achievements and contributions.

Redbirds are proud to utlize the Career Centerde the

Alumni get career support from Career Center

Whether a new graduate, an alum making a career change or one seeking to hire a Redbird, alumni seeking career assistance don’t have to go far, as their alma mater is ready to help!

two people waving from car in parade

Nominate alumni king and queen for Homecoming 2019 royalty

Illinois State will celebrate its many traditions October 21-27 during Homecoming 2019: Come One. Come All.


Alumni meeting set

Alumni are invited to the Alumni Association annual meeting at 9:30 a.m. on June 22 in the Alumni Center.

Barb O'Malley standing outside the Northern Trust Company Building

Tech support: Alumna creates fund to help women enter IT profession

Alumna creates fund to help women enter IT profession.

Man smiling

Pause for applause

We applaud these Illinois State alumni featured in the March 2019 issue.

A man and woman smiling for the picture

How we met: Jim Brinkmeyer and Joyce Cunningham

Joyce Cunningham recalls one very cold night on campus in 1969. A storm had dumped nearly eight inches of snow. She left Milner Library and headed for coffee at The Cage before trudging a mile home.

A family of five holding signs with their graduation years on the signs.

Redbird legacy: Duewer family is 5 for 5

Valerie (Quevillon) Duewer ’84 arrived at Illinois State wondering if she would enjoy attending with her older brother, Pat ’83. Decades later, she is grateful they were on campus together.

Ruth Baughman Oesch ’61

Nurse credits Mennonite College of Nursing (MCN) for career

Ruth (Baughman) Oesch ’61 credits her rewarding nursing career to the preparation she received as a student of Mennonite College of Nursing (MCN). She holds equal appreciation for the donor who provided the scholarship funds she needed to pursue her passion.