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Easter's 'state of the university' unlike predecessor's

URBANA — President Bob Easter's first "state of the university" report to campus senate leaders had a decidedly different tone from the last two by former University of Illinois President Michael Hogan.


Grainger Foundation pledges $100 million to UI

CHAMPAIGN — In what is being hailed as the largest gift to a public university this school year, the Grainger Foundation has pledged $100 million to the University of Illinois.


Renovation getting back on track at UI's Natural History Building

URBANA — To get an idea of how old the University of Illinois Natural History Building is, consider that the year it opened:

— Grover Cleveland was elected to a second term as president.

— The baseball postseason pitted the Boston Beaneaters against the Cleveland Spiders and their ace pitcher, Cy Young.

— Ellis Island became a reception center for new immigrants.


Antique specimens pose challenge for project

A wall-sized depiction of a plesiosaurus, a large carnivorous marine reptile from the Jurassic period, greets visitors to the Natural History Building.

It's not a true fossil, but the plaster cast is itself an antique, dating back more than a century, said Steven Marshak, geology professor and director of the UI's School of Earth, Society and the Environment.


Colleagues pay finals respects to UI microbiologist

URBANA — A who's who of University of Illinois academia turned out Saturday to pay tribute to the life work of one of their own whose discoveries upended the basic assumptions of how life evolved, all the while remaining a humble and accessible educator.


SEIU authorizes a strike

CHAMPAIGN — After eight months of bargaining and no agreement to show for it, members of a local union are one step closer to a strike.

The Service Employees International Union Local 73, which represents close to 800 building and food service workers at the University of Illinois, has approved a strike authorization, a move that gives a union committee power to call a strike.


Quinn visits trustees' meeting, backs UI Labs

In a rare appearance at a University of Illinois board meeting, Gov. Pat Quinn visited with trustees Thursday afternoon to voice support for a major new university-led institute called UI Labs.


Updated: Trustees raise UI tuition by smallest amount since 2000-01

Updated 10:14 p.m. Thursday.

CHICAGO — Families grateful for the relatively small tuition increase expected at the University of Illinois next fall may want to hold on to their wallets.


Willard, Vermilion airports up for improvements

SPRINGFIELD — Willard Airport and the Vermilion Regional Airport are in for improvements under the state's 2013 state-local airport improvement program.


Chicago-based UI Labs gaining backing

CHICAGO — City and state officials are endorsing the University of Illinois' plans for a multimillion-dollar research institute that backers say has the potential to drive economic growth in the region.