Dr. Gibson Holds Virtual Open Office Hours Ahead of Spring Semester

January 20, 2022

Dr. Gloria J. Gibson, Northeastern Illinois University president, held a virtual open office hour in the afternoon of Tuesday Jan. 18, 2022.

From 3-4 p.m. Dr. Gibson fielded questions from a group of about nine students and staff who were returning for the start of the spring semester. 

Students raised questions concerning the financial aid department and wondered how busy it was since they had not heard anything back since sending out an email the previous evening.

Some staff and faculty members dropped in to say hello and comment on how their first classes had gone that morning and afternoon.

A question that may be relevant to taking classes this semester was in regard to the price of textbooks and if some professors didn’t take students’ financial hardships into consideration when assigning books at the beginning of a semester. 

Dr. Sharon L. Bethea, a professor in Counselor Education, who was in the virtual meeting as well, suggested an option that students often forget to take advantage of: Contact the library or visit its webpage and see if the textbook is available through it. Sometimes if it isn’t available immediately, it can be requested from other universities within Illinois.

There are other textbook rental sites like Chegg where students can rent a book for far cheaper than what it might cost to buy it outright. Additionally, Dr. Bethea commented that she heard of some students finding textbooks for free online, although she didn’t say how.

Another topic that a student brought up was NEIU’s requirement of vaccinated students needing to receive a booster shot in order to return to campus. 

Dr. Gibson said that if vaccinated students wish to return to campus, but don’t want to receive a booster shot, they might be able to have the requirement waived, but they would need to fill out the necessary paperwork. She also said that this requirement doesn’t apply to students who remain unvaccinated.

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