Earlier this month, a large delegation from SIU Carbondale traveled to the Windy City for the Saluki Takeover Tour: Chicago. Representing many colleges and units, we had one goal in mind: building and enhancing partnerships, one of the pillars of our Imagine 2030 strategic plan.
To position SIU Carbondale as a first-choice institution, we must actively improve connections within the community, state, nation and world through key partnerships. It is vital that we build and maintain our relationships in Chicagoland, which is the top contributor of students to our campus and home to thousands of our alumni and dedicated supporters.
While our team was in Chicago, we did a lot of listening to inform our outreach efforts as we move forward and lay the foundation for potential agreements to benefit future Salukis. This trip provided us the opportunity to energize and engage Chicago-area alumni. Five events attracted a total of over 500 Salukis. We raised $750,000 from donors, with another $500,000 in submitted proposals.
We developed pipelines with Chicago-area community colleges and public schools to enhance enrollment of traditional and nontraditional students. We signed agreements with three Chicagoland community colleges to make it easier for place-bound students to earn their bachelor’s degrees from our university – improving access to higher education.
We had fantastic engagement on social media, received favorable coverage in Chicago-area news media and beyond, and built awareness of SIU with key legislators and Chicago community leaders.
The SIU Foundation, which organized and sponsored the tour, has an excellent recap of the week’s events on its website. I encourage you to read “Salukis plant flag in Chicago during Takeover Tour.”
Even as we celebrate the success of our first Takeover Tour of Chicago, we are already looking forward to 2022 and nurturing our relationships in the Windy City.