UIC Dean of Students Retirement Announcement

Dear UIC Students, Professors and Staff:

I am writing to announce that after a 20-year career at the University of Illinois at Chicago, Linda Deanna will be retiring on June 30 as Associate Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs and Dean of Students.

During Linda’s time at UIC, she was responsible for several departments, programs and services including Counseling Center, Career Services, Student Employment, Student Aid, Service Student Legal, Student Veterans Affairs, Community Standards, Wellness Center, Student Development Services, Orientation, Commuter Student Resource Center, Student Leadership and Volunteer Services, Financial Aid, Testing Services , disability services and international services.

One of Linda’s greatest accomplishments has been making the Office of the Dean of Students an important resource for meeting student needs. She worked to ensure that the Office of the Dean of Students was recognized on campus as an integral part of student life and worked with key partners across the university to connect students to essential services. Linda’s thesis, titled “A Voice for Students: The Advocacy Role of Student Affairs Professionals in Higher Education,” describes how the work of student affairs professionals as advocates can contribute to student satisfaction and student success. She has worked tirelessly to ensure that the Office of the Dean of Studies is a place where students feel comfortable visiting and asking for help. Faculty and staff communicate daily with the office to resolve student issues and concerns.

About 10 years ago, after being inspired by a concept presented at a NASPA conference, Linda created the U&I Care program at UIC. The program was introduced on campus as a marketing idea focused on caring and supporting students. As more and more students came to the Office of the Dean of Students for help, Linda developed the U&I Care Plan, primarily for students in crisis or in a pre-driving hearing situation. A few years ago, the Office of the Dean of Students expanded the program, which now includes U&I Care Emergency Grants; U&I Care Facts, a collection of advice on topics of interest to students, such as health, wellness and relationships; and U&I Care Week, which offers programs focused on student wellness and support.

The Office of the Dean of Students created a new functional area during Linda’s tenure, student aid. Hundreds of requests are made each year by students, or faculty and staff on behalf of students in need of assistance. The student aid area handles inquiries relating to housing instability, food insecurity, financial and academic issues, personal issues, and health and safety concerns. The Office of the Dean of Student Life processes more than 400 cases per year related to these requests.

Linda’s career prior to joining UIC consisted of positions at Pepperdine University as a Mediator, Bowling Green State University as a Complex Coordinator, University of Wisconsin-Madison as a Student Affairs and at Loyola University Chicago as Dean of Students and Director of Residence Life.

Linda would like the new Associate Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs and Dean of Students to know that UIC is a wonderful place to work. There is a talented and supportive staff who work in the Office of the Dean of Students and care about students and a large group of colleagues across the university who are essential partners. UIC students are what she considers to be the best university students in the world; they are tenacious, grateful and willing to work hard to achieve their goals. They deserve to be served in the best possible way and defended for their needs.

The Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs has launched a nationwide search to identify Dean Deanna’s replacement. Linda agreed to stay until a new dean of students was appointed.

Join me in thanking Linda for her countless contributions to UIC and wishing her the best in her next adventure.

Truly,

J. Rex Tolliver
Vice-Chancellor for Student Affairs

For more information please contact:
UIC Student Affairs
[email protected]

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