Demonstrate the Power of Philanthropy: Participate in the SIU Day of Giving

SIU Class of 2020 group shot

On Wednesday, March, 1, 2017, the Southern Illinois University community will celebrate its inaugural SIU Day of Giving – a day for students, staff, faculty, alumni and friends to give back to the university.

SIU Day of Giving celebrates the university’s Founders Day, which is a time to mark the achievements of our great institution and look to the future. This year, the SIU Day of Giving is a particularly great opportunity for donors and potential donors to demonstrate the power of philanthropy.

The SIU Foundation is asking every person on campus, in the community, across the state and throughout the world to take one minute on March 1 to stop and reflect what SIU has done for you – and then give back.

“This is our effort of rallying our campus, our alumni and our community,” says Jim Salmo, SIU vice chancellor for development of alumni relations. “We want people to be involved in numerous ways, and giving is one way to show their support of SIU.

“Your donation, whether it is $10 or $1,000, will help support our staff and students campuswide. If you have a particular passion for a specific department or cause on the campus, let us know and we will direct your donation appropriately. Your generosity allows us to help our students become successful future leaders.”

Salmo suggests that alumni and friends of SIU put a reminder on their calendars or mobile devices and then spend five minutes or fewer online to change the life of a promising student.

“There is no such thing as a gift too small, and all gifts are deeply appreciated,” he adds.

The Foundation is encouraging everyone to share the word through social media networks by using the hashtag #SIUDAY. For more information, visit

We hope you will join in this exciting venture and help make this a Day of Giving to remember for SIU. Making your gift or pledge is fast and easy. Beginning in February 2017, be listening and watching for easy ways to give. If you would like to give now, you may also participate via traditional mail, phone or in person at our Foundation Office. You may reach us at 618/453-4900 or at 1235 Douglas Drive, Mail Code 6805, Carbondale, IL 62901-4308.

Thank you for your support. Your gift will make a difference in the lives of our students.

SIU Class of ’65 Gives Back: Restoring the Paul and Virginia Statue

Southern Illinois University Class of '65 donates to restore the Paul and Virigina Statue.

By Rebecca Renshaw

Certain landmarks on campus serve as vivid testaments to SIU’s history and traditions. The great Delyte Morris statue at Shryock Auditorium, and the statue of the Saluki that stands guard in front of the football stadium and SIU Arena, evoke nostalgia and enhance the landscape in which students live and learn.

Yet one SIU iconic landmark rises above all others: The Paul and Virginia statue.
The statue of two small children was donated by the Class of 1887 and originally was located in the front of the entrance to Old Main, on the east side of the building. It was moved to the Stone Center following the burning of Old Main in 1969. A duplicate was cast in bronze and placed in the original fountain location between Shryock and Davies Gym, where the statue has stood since the 1970s. The original is still at the garden of the Stone Center.

In 2015, Class of 1965 representatives Michael Hanes, Phillip Pfeffer and Patti Elmore proposed restoring the statues as a class gift to the university. The SIU Foundation helped them solicit contributions from their fellow class members to fund the project in time for their class year’s 50th anniversary. More than $20,000 has been donated so far.

“We’re trying to revive the idea of a 50-year anniversary class gift that would be everlasting,” Hanes said. “The idea of restoring the Paul and Virginia statue that generations of us connect with really appealed to us.”

With this project, they are hoping to restore both statues. The condition of the statues and the surrounding area have been of great concern for years. Issues include cracks in the bottom of the pools, as well as the crumbling stone walls that surround the fountains. SIU Physical Plant employees became involved in the project because they, like Hanes, Pfeffer and Elmore, recognized that repairs need to take place soon.

In recent months, the employees have been working hard to restore the statues, repair the stone walls and the fountain basin, install lighting systems and add a water recirculation system. Their goal is to have everything completed by Homecoming 2016.

Hanes said the members of the Class of 1965 are hopeful that, with the restoration, a time-honored tradition will again take root.

“Any time students were heading to class for tests on campus, they would throw a penny in the fountain for luck,” he said. “It’s a nostalgic memory to see the fountain. It has a great deal of whimsy, and it makes our hearts glad to know that generations will continue to see the bronze pair bestowing good luck upon us as they stand quietly in the center of campus.”

Deadline for SIU Honorary Degrees & Distinguished Service Award Nominations

southern illinois university carboondale honorary degree

The deadline for honorary degrees and distinguished service award nominations is Monday, Oct. 24. Honorary degrees are presented to individuals who have made outstanding scholarly contributions or are of considerable renown in any field of activity. Distinguished Service Awards honor individuals who have contributed to Southern Illinois, the state, nation, world or the university.

Honorary Degrees
An Honorary Degree at Southern Illinois University Carbondale should be reserved for outstanding scholarly contribution or for a person of considerable renown in any field of activity. If given for other than scholarly contribution, the Honorary Degree should be awarded only to those persons who have uniquely contributed to human well-being or whose accomplishments have resulted in a marked benefit to society.

Distinguished Service Awards
The Distinguished Service Award should be reserved for persons who have contributed importantly to southern Illinois, to the nation, to the world, to the State, and/or to the University. No University employee shall be considered for a Distinguished Service Award in the year of his or her retirement; however, this does not preclude the consideration of an exceptionally qualified employee for an Award at a time either before or after the year of his retirement.

Nomination letters must include a two- or three-page resume, curriculum vita or biographic sketch that includes a description of the nominee’s unique contributions. All nominations, including with the nominee, are confidential. Further information about these awards is available at

For more information, or to submit a nomination, contact Gina Shiplett, Office of the Chancellor, at 453-2341 (phone), 453-5362 (fax) or email. Please indicate in the submission whether the nomination is for honorary degree or distinguished service award consideration.

Jeanne Hurley Simon Scholarship: Paying it Forward


By Rebecca Renshaw

We all know of power couples who have the influence to do big things in our world and make it a point to help those less fortunate.

SIU Carbondale takes pride and honor being associated with its own power couple: Paul and Jeanne Simon. Together, they forged a new landscape for the university, the state and the country.

When Paul Simon, an Illinois Democrat, left the United States Senate in 1997, Jeanne Simon joined him on SIU’s faculty as an adjunct professor of library affairs. Together, they helped found and shape the agenda of the SIU Public Policy Institute.

In 1993, Jeanne Simon had been named chair of the National Commission on Libraries and Information Science, a post to which President Bill Clinton reappointed her in 1997. In that position she promoted literacy programs and financing for libraries.

David Yepsen, director of what is now the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute, had this to say about the Jeanne Simon’s contributions: “She was a pioneering figure in her own right and was considered a true trailblazer. She was one of the few women law students at Northwestern University and one of the first female representatives in the General Assembly.”  Although Jeanne Simon passed away in 2000, Paul Simon continued their legacy until his passing in 2003.

A longtime Simon friend and former dean of SIU Library Affairs, Carolyn Wagner Snyder, sought a way to honor Jeanne Hurley Simon. Snyder helped establish the Jeanne Hurley Simon Memorial Scholarship to honor her life and legacy. In the last few months, Snyder and associate director, Delio Calzolari have worked tirelessly to raise commitments to endow the scholarship. Their small, but dedicated team has raised more than $60,000 so far.

The scholarship will honor Jeanne Simon’s legacy by providing financial assistance, mentorship and other opportunities to Illinois students interested in public service careers.

“In a very real way, this scholarship is an effort to keep Jeanne Simon’s mission alive by ‘paying it forward’ for other young women who want to pursue public service as Jeanne did,” Yepsen says.

The first student to benefit from the scholarship is Shantel Franklin, a first-generation college student from Chicago.

“Since my freshman year, I have witnessed the Paul Simon Institute go above and beyond to provide opportunities for students,” says Franklin, a political science major. “I am grateful to have been selected to be the inaugural recipient of this award honoring the remarkable life of Mrs. Jeanne Hurley Simon. I will benefit tremendously from the financial assistance of this scholarship.”