An elevated view of the Student Union building and the University Commons

Friday, November 5, 2021

Northeastern is proud to celebrate the achievements of its students, alumni, faculty and staff. In this week's update, read about the 2021 Distinguished Alumnus Award recipient and the 2020 Brommel Distinguished Research Professor lecture. Plus, Stage Center Theatre opens its next show and the University continues to celebrate Native American and Indigenous Peoples Heritage Month. Stay up-to-date on everything happening at NEIU by reading the latest Noteworthy at Northeastern! 

Around the Commons

Miguel del Valle

Northeastern Illinois University honors Miguel del Valle with Distinguished Alumnus Award

Northeastern Illinois University honored the first Latino senator in the Illinois General Assembly and first Latino City Clerk of Chicago Miguel del Valle (B.A. ’74 Secondary Education-Spanish; M.A. ’77 Guidance and Counseling) with the Distinguished Alumnus Award during the annual Golden Gala and Alumni Awards. This year’s ceremony, emceed by internationally acclaimed comedian, public speaker and entrepreneur Mona Aburmishan, took place virtually Oct. 16. “Coming to Northeastern set me on a track that I knew, not only did I want to be on, but I knew I would be on for the rest of my life, and that was the track of being able to be of service to my community,” del Valle said. He continued, “Here we are, 50 years later, and we can look back and really see Northeastern evolve from a school where just a handful of Latino kids attended, at the time, felt unsupported, to the school today, being officially a Hispanic Serving Institution. I’m proud of that. I’m very proud of that.”

Brommel Distinguished Research Professor Lecture

Professor of English Chielozona Eze delivered his lecture, "The Radicalness of Desire: Zora Neale Hurston and the Black Woman’s Feminist Praxis," Oct. 14, 2021. Eze was selected as the 2020 Brommel Distinguished Research Professor award recipient in April 2020, but his presentation was postponed due to the ongoing pandemic. Eze’s lecture topic is also the focus of his next book, which is tentatively titled, “The Radicalness of Desire: Zora Neale Hurston, Black Women, and the Pursuit of Happiness.” 

“Water by the Spoonful”

The Department of Communication, Media and Theatre’s (CMT) Stage Center Theatre (SCT) presents, by special arrangement with Dramatists Play Service, Inc., New York, “Water by the Spoonful” Nov. 11-13, 17-19, directed by Associate Professor Adam Goldstein. Penned by Quiara Alegría Hudes, the Pulitzer and Tony award-winning playwright and screenwriter of the film "In the Heights,” "Water by the Spoonful" is the second in a trilogy of plays about Elliot, a Puerto Rican soldier from Philadelphia, as he returns to everyday life following his deployment to Iraq. The winner of the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, "Water by the Spoonful" paints an intimate portrait of both a family and the eclectic, yearning, members of an online addiction recovery community in an unflinchingly honest, beautiful, and touching look at the quest for redemption and connection as we live life day by day and spoonful by spoonful. Please view current COVID-19 protocols on the Stage Center Theatre webpage and reserve your tickets in advance. Only 45 people are allowed in the audience per performance and no same day walk-up tickets will be available. Questions about performances and COVID-19 procedures should be sent to both SCT Managing Director Sarah Fabian at and SCT Artistic Director Adam Goldstein at

And there’s more!

  • Show your Golden Eagle pride with a free NEIU lawn sign! Signs are available at the NEIU Welcome Desk on the Main Campus on a first come, first served basis. 

To do

Native American and Indigenous Peoples Heritage Month

The Angelina Pedroso Center for Diversity and Intercultural Affairs has planned a series of events in celebration of Native American and Indigenous Peoples Heritage Month, which began Nov. 1. Next week’s events include: 

For a complete list of events, please visit the Pedroso Center webpage. 

TRIO Student Support Services Leading and Learning Week

TRIO Student Support Services Programs invites all NEIU students to attend the Fall 2021 Leading and Learning Week, Nov. 8-12. Presentations will take place in person and virtually via Zoom. The theme this fall is "Grow in Your Life, Career and Financial Wellness." Workshops will be held on financial literacy, financial aid and scholarships, academic development, study skills and strategies, professional development, career readiness, work-life balance, and personal wellness and growth. View the schedule and sign up in advance to participate.

Blood Drive at El Centro

Roll up your sleeves at Northeastern Illinois University’s El Centro from 2-7 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 10 and help save lives! Northeastern has partnered with Versiti, Illinois State Senator Cristina Pacione Zayas and 35th Ward Alderman Carlos Ramirez-Rosa for a blood drive. One pint of blood can save up to three people! With the nation experiencing a rise in trauma cases, organ transplants and surgeries requiring blood, there is a great need for donors. Due to the continued impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Versiti’s mobile collections are down more than 20,000 units of blood this year. Please view the FAQ to learn more about blood donation, including eligibility and the donation process. The site will be adhering to COVID-19 protocols, so please sign up for the NEIU El Centro Blood Drive in advance and help us help our community in this important, lifesaving way! Every donor with a valid email address will receive a $10 e-gift card.

Coming next week

View the NEIU events calendar for additional information on all upcoming events. 

In the Media

Associate Professor of Political Science William Adler was interviewed on WGN's Political Report discussing President Biden’s legislative agenda in Congress.

Also in the media

COVID-19 update

During the week of Oct. 27, 2021, one student reported a positive COVID-19 test. The student was not on campus. Since March 2020, a total of 65 employees and 314 students have self-reported to the University that they tested positive for COVID-19. Employees and students who feel sick should stay home. If you test positive for COVID-19, students should immediately notify Student Health Services, and employees should notify their supervisors and the Office of Human Resources. Additionally, faculty and staff are required to report positive and presumptive student COVID-19 cases and exposures to Student Health Services. When someone who has been on campus tests positive, Northeastern works with the Chicago Department of Public Health to determine the appropriate response, which differs greatly depending on the situation. We continue to follow Chicago Department of Public Health and CDC guidelines as we ensure proper protocols and preventative measures are in place for the health and safety of our students and employees. 

Vaccine clinics

Northeastern has partnered with the Illinois Department of Public Health to provide on-campus COVID-19 vaccine clinics through Dec. 9. The clinics are free and open to everyone age 12 and older for first or second doses of the COVID-19 vaccine. Those under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian to be vaccinated. Pfizer, Moderna and Janssen (J&J) vaccines will be available. Boosters will be available to eligible recipients who completed their initial Pfizer series at least six months ago. Please bring your vaccination card. Advance sign-up is recommended.

Other COVID-19 updates

  • SHIELD Illinois COVID-19 testing is available for NEIU students, employees and community members on the Main Campus. Testing is also currently available for NEIU students and employees at the Jacob H. Carruthers Center for Inner City Studies and El Centro.
  • As part of Northeastern’s Vaccine Incentive Program (VIP), all students and employees who have completed and submitted their COVID-19 attestation or exemption forms can stop by Village Square to pick up a free NEIU keychain and a $5 gift certificate to Fooda or Café Descartes from 2-4 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday through Nov. 23. Prizes can also be claimed at Student Health Services 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. 
  • The VIP full tuition scholarship will be awarded on Nov. 11. A student name will be pulled from all of the COVID-19 attestation forms that were submitted. The winner will be notified via Nmail. 
  • COVID-19 attestation or exemption forms and COVID-19 Vaccination Requirements for Students and COVID-19 Vaccination Requirements for Employees can be found on the University website.

Stay up-to-date on everything regarding COVID-19 updates by visiting the Return to Campus website. 

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