Board elects Boyle its chair in one unanimous ballot

By Craig Chamberlain

The UI Board of Trustees once again has a new chair, but for the first time
in three years the position was filled without open controversy, multiple
candidates or multiple ballots.

Kenneth R. Boyle, D-Chatham, was elected to the position on a unanimous
voice vote shortly after the start of the board's annual meeting last
Friday at the Urbana-Champaign campus. He was nominated by Trustee Gloria
Jackson Bacon, D-Chicago, who also had been mentioned prior to the meeting
as a possible candidate for the job.

Boyle, 56, succeeds Judith Calder, D-Glencoe, who served a single one-year
term as the chair and had not sought re-election. Boyle's term began
immediately after Friday's vote.

"I deeply appreciate this honor," Boyle told the board, and thanked the
trustees for their "efforts to put this together."

"I have no particular agenda or program," he said. "My only goal is to
bring unity and harmony to this process." 

Boyle, a senior partner of the Boyle, Klingler & McClain law office in
Springfield, retired as director of the State's Attorneys Appellate
Prosecutor's Office more than two years ago.

He was elected a trustee in the 1988 general election, and his six-year
term expires next January, following the November elections. He is one of
six Democrats on the nine-member elected board.

Boyle received a bachelor's degree in political science from the
Urbana-Champaign campus in 1960, graduating with highest distinction (summa
cum laude) and as a Phi Beta Kappa. Two years later he received his law
degree from the university's College of Law.

Boyle served in the Illinois House of Representatives from 1970 to 1976,
and was chair of the House Appropriations Committee. In the four years
after that, he was state's attorney of Macoupin County.

Three other board officers were re-elected to their positions at Friday's
meeting: Michele M. Thompson, secretary; Craig S. Bazzani, comptroller; and
Byron H. Higgins, university counsel. These officers are not members of the
board.

Trustees were told on Friday that change is coming to the master's of
business administration programs on both campuses. Responding to the
changing demands of business, and attempting to fashion niches that cater
to the strengths of each campus, both business schools have been taking a
hard look at their MBA programs.

"We have been in a continuous planning mode," said Howard Thomas, dean of
the College of Commerce and Business Administration on the Urbana-Champaign
campus. 

According to Thomas, U.S. business schools are out of step with what the
business world is looking for in MBA graduates. Business schools focus on
the teaching of quantitative analysis while businesses are looking for
better "people" skills and leadership, he said. The schools also favor an
individual orientation and field specialization, while businesses are
investing in the team concept and an integrated perspective.

And while business is going global, business schools are graduating MBAs
with a weak understanding of the international scene, Thomas said.

To position the UI program for addressing these concerns and others, Thomas
said his college will be changing the MBA curriculum, lowering the hours
required in core courses, offering more speaking and writing courses,
recruiting a more diverse student body - with the help of new need-based
grants - and strongly encouraging students to study abroad.

Plans also call for continued strong collaboration with the business school
on the Chicago campus, and for efforts to develop a better connection
between the college and the business community, through a Center for the
Study of Business Issues.

The College of Business Administration on the Chicago campus, in its
planning process, has been concerned with the same gap between what
businesses want and what business schools are teaching in management
education. The Chicago school, however, will play to its strengths through
a "multi-market learning model" that places new emphasis on part-time
offerings and on programs that support the Great Cities Initiative, said
Paul Uselding, the school's dean.

One aspect of this approach will be in developing special part-time course
offerings that can test the market, Uselding said. If the course is in
demand, the school can then offer it on a regular basis or maybe develop it
into a full curriculum.

Potential students are interested in "just-in-time learning," he said; they
do not want to invest time and effort in courses or degrees that may be
obsolete by they time they are dealing with the subject matter on the job.

In its connection with the Great Cities Initiative, the MBA program on the
Chicago campus will place new emphasis on the management of smaller and
entrepreneurial firms, and on health administration - through a link with
the medical school. As at the Urbana-Champaign campus, the school will
place new emphasis on international business.

UI President Stanley O. Ikenberry told the board that both business schools
also will be suggesting changes in tuition for MBA students, in proposals
scheduled to be brought before the board within the next few months. The
pricing structure for the program is substantially below the competition,
especially in Chicago, he said, and much of the increased revenue will be
used for financial aid.

In other business, during last Thursday's meeting, the board received a
report on the university's progress in meeting goals set by state
legislation in the awarding of contracts to businesses owned by women,
members of minority groups and persons with disabilities.

Craig S. Bazzani, vice president for business and finance, explained to the
board that the statutory goal set by the legislation calls for not less
than 12 percent of the total dollar value of state contracts to go to those
businesses.

At least 5 percent of contracts should be awarded to female-owned and
female-controlled firms, and at least 2 percent should go to firms
controlled by persons with disabilities or not-for-profit agencies for the
disabled, he said.

No specific percentage is assigned to minority-owned and controlled firms,
although they are recorded as part of the 12 percent.

Bazzani noted that the 12 percent is assessed against only $85 million of
the university's budget of over $1.6 billion. About half of the budget goes
for salaries and personnel costs, and other items are exempted, he said -
such as utility costs, retirement and postage.

That makes the university's goal a little over $10 million it should seek
to award in contracts to these firms, Bazzani said, and that goal was
exceeded in fiscal year 1993 by 50 percent, coming to $15.6 million.

Of that amount, 63.3 percent went to female, non-minority firms; 12.4
percent went to African-American firms; 7.9 percent went to Hispanic firms;
7.3 percent went to Asian-American firms; 0.4 percent went to Native
American firms, and 8.7 percent went to firms owned by persons with
disabilities.

Trustees received the report with both compliments and admonitions to
administrators not to be satisfied.

"I think our efforts, although commendable, should be viewed as a beginning
and not an end," said Calder. "I, personally, think it's not enough," she
said, and urged the university to set its own, higher standard.

Bacon also was complimentary, but questioned why the goals were assessed
against such a small portion of the total budget. "Is it possible to see
how we can ratchet it up?" she asked. "We have done wonderfully well, but
that doesn't mean that we are good," she said.


UIUC -- Inside Illinois -- 1994/01-20-94