As I am writing, the chill factor for Carbondale, Illinois is 26 degrees! We have gone from dry weather, a few weeks ago, to long heavy rains. Jonathan and I were in the Student Center, this afternoon, and I noticed several students and staff dressed up in Halloween costumes. The atmosphere was joyful and light! A lot of laughing and photographs were being shared.
Although it is the coldest day of autumn…thus far…I felt the need to snap a few photos of campus woods on this first holiday of fall.
Our great campus has always been blessed with outstanding people who have an unflagging and unfailing dedication to the success of ‘their campus’…and yet often they are overlooked for a, ‘miracle worker,’ who has no particular love of SIUC or affiliation for Southern Illinois University @ Carbondale…and who stays for a short time and then moves on to greener pastures!
I witnessed chancellor Don Beggs, who had a two year appointment as the leader of our campus…passed over…when it was clear that he was a glowing success and that he was turning the great ship of SIUC around…and that he and his dear wife, Shirley, were loved by all members of the university community. Dr. Beggs had turned the enrollment slide around, and at that time we had 22 thousand students on our campus.
I saw it again when current interim chancellor John Dunn was our provost and had been elevated to interim chancellor. The campus was running well under interim chancellor Dunn’s leadership and he would have loved to have had the job on a permanent basis…but he was told that he could not apply!
We had around 19 thousand students when interim chancellor Dunn was our leader in the last decade.
There is a school of thought, that practical people engage in, and that is…if it is not broke…do not fix it!
Or, there is an old christian hymn regarding the crucifixion of Christ that has a line in it, ‘Some times it causes me to…tremble…tremble…tremble!’
So, the October event is upon us! All Hallo Eve! We enjoy the childlike wonder of the day and the promise of what this harbinger of holidays brings!
This is a day for fun…and thoughts of childhood and the mystery of becoming an adult!
It is a day to wish that our university leaders would think a bit pragmatically and examine what has gone wrong at our great campus and how to correct it.
Is it possible to have an effective leader or administrator or manager or supervisor….and to subsequently forget how effective that they are and…rather to embrace the politically expedient?
Everything that we do is not transactional….and our leaders decisions can have dire ramifications that affect all of us!