New NIU President Douglas D. Baker emailed this welcome message today to students, employees and annuitants.
Today, I am excited to begin my time as Northern Illinois University’s 12th president and am proud to join the DeKalb community. I would like to extend my personal thanks to President Emeritus John Peters and his wife, Barbara, for their guidance and support in making Dana’s and my transition to NIU seamless.
Over the past several months, I’ve been traveling back and forth to campus and meeting with faculty, staff, students and administrators to set priorities as my presidency begins, and I’d like to share with you some of these goals.
First and foremost is that NIU become a model for student career success. Everything we do as a university should contribute to this idea.
In the coming days I will be forming primarily external task forces related to the guiding expectations related to defining and achieving student career success. These task forces will focus on six priorities:
- Growing a vibrant and diverse student population;
- Strategically growing our academic and research capabilities;
- Responsibly managing our fiscal resources;
- Ethically inspired leadership;
- Growing community partnerships; and
- Engaging alumni and involving them actively with our students.
NIU offers tremendous engaged learning opportunities to our students, and we have an opportunity to grow in these areas. I remain committed to the ideals that comprise the framework for NIU’s Vision 2020 initiative, and I look forward to working with you as we live by our NIU brand, learning today and leading tomorrow.
Douglas D. Baker