Enrollment Services Updates Student Government

Dan Maurer, News Editor

The Student Government Association (SGA) met on Feb. 7, 2023. Top of the agenda was a report from Northeastern Illinois University’s (NEIU) Enrollment Services. Ryan Trout, Director of Undergraduate Admissions, gave the initial report, on behalf of the Vice President for Enrollment Management, Kimberley Buster-Williams.

Trout touted the accomplishments of his department, saying “By all measurements right now our freshmen applications are… over double of where we’re at, at this point last year.” He said he was very excited about their progress, but that he would not “count his chickens before they hatched.”

Timothy Sheahan, the Interim Director of Graduate Admissions, said his numbers are down, but “We get many applications June, July into August,” adding, “Spring we had exceeded our enrollment ahead of what we have done in prior years, which is a good sign.”

The Interim University Registrar, Rashida Walker, reported that a new degree audit program, Degree Works, is being built and should be live for Spring 2024 registration. The new system will be “considerably more interactive,” than the current system, and will allow students to see “what requirements have been fulfilled, what are in progress and, what remains to be completed,” for their current degree programs.

Edwin Medina, the President of SGA, made comments with regard to the quality of advising. “[Academic Advising] does not have proper staff trained to advise students, there are a lot of students that are not happy with it.” He added, “It is time to start implementing student voices in the evaluations and see how staff is performing.”

Jamie Ris, the Director of Academic Advising, spoke to the decentralized nature of advising at NEIU, saying, “My office has six advisors. And at the undergraduate level, there are about 130 people who do undergraduate advising. So, while I cannot supervise everyone, I can definitely enforce and definitely provide that feedback to others.”

Asked about responsiveness from staff and faculty, Medina echoed sentiments from students at the Faculty Senate meeting on Jan. 31, 2023, saying that it is “horrible,” He added, “It is something that is ingrained in the school, and we need to actually do something about it and change it.”

The SGA also swore in two new members. Dharmik Chhatbar stepped up from his previous position as Vice Chair of the Council of Clubs, becoming the Council’s Chair, as well as being sworn in as the Treasurer of the SGA. Mikulus Koudelka, a science major in his first year at NEIU, has been sworn in as a senator on the SGA.