Money Ranks USF in Its Best Colleges in America 2022 Listing

Joliet, Ill. – With expanded scholarships and career-launching degree programs, the University of St. Francis (USF) found itself ranked in the top 20 percent of both Illinois and the U.S. in the most recent Money magazine list of best colleges released earlier this month.  

Money’s Best Colleges in America 2022 publication ranked USF 5th among the 26 Illinois colleges and universities included in the rankings, and 107th overall out of a total of 623 ranked colleges and universities.

“High school students and parents looking at college, and adults looking at graduate school are right to be cautious about investing time and money into an educational program. A college degree can be worth millions of dollars over the course of one’s career. USF has designed degree programs that help our graduates launch truly valuable, meaningful careers,” said Eric Wignall, vice president for admissions at USF.

“As an investment, the value of a degree from the University of St. Francis continues to climb. It’s really gratifying that Money again recognized USF for offering high quality, award-winning degree programs in their latest rankings,” Wignall added.

“Money’s rankings only include U.S. colleges that have sufficient reliable data for us to analyze. In order to make the list, a college’s graduation rate must be at or above the median for its institutional category (public, private or HBCU). Alternatively, it must fall within the top 25% of our “value-added” graduation analysis, meaning the graduation rate needs to be higher than would be expected for colleges that enroll similar students,” explained a spokesperson from Money.

Visit money.com/bestcolleges to view the entire 2022 listing.

Visit stfrancis.edu/nationally-ranked for more national accolades.

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The University of St. Francis, in Joliet, Ill., serves close to 4,000 students nationwide and offers undergraduate, graduate, doctoral and certificate programs in the arts and sciences, business, education, nursing and social work. There are over 52,000 USF alumni across the globe. For information, call 800-735-7500 or visit stfrancis.edu.

University of St. Francis: Bigger thinking. Brighter purpose.

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USF Receives State Grant to Support Certified Recovery Specialist Program

Joliet, Ill. – An Illinois grant that supports the state’s growing need for mental health and substance use recovery support specialists is being awarded to the University of St. Francis (USF). The Illinois Department of Human Services/Division of Mental Health selected USF for a grant of $90,000 to partially fund the Certified Recovery Support Specialist/Certified Peer Recovery Specialist (CRSS/CPRS) program.

“Illinois’ CRSS/CPRS program prepares students for entry-level positions as behavioral health workers, specifically in the areas of substance use and mental health recovery. With programs like this, people who are going through a mental health emergency will be treated by community outreach specialists with lived expertise—people who have been there,” said Elizabeth Davies, dean of the USF College of Arts & Sciences.

“Last year, Gov. Pritzker signed legislation that expanded access to mental health care and that measure included funding for expanded services including an enhanced 988 line. While everyone knows calling 911 will connect people to emergency services, 988 is the new emergency number for behavioral health crisis response. People are needed to assist people who call with substance use and mental health issues,” Davies explained.

The program at USF is one of several programs and certificates designed to educate and train health care staff. Once certified, specialists work in a variety of capacities, such as outpatient drug and alcohol treatment, crisis response teams, sobriety maintenance settings like sober houses, and mental health.

Training is specifically designed for people who have lived experience with mental health and substance use issues.

“The certificate is a one semester program that can be done in full time or part time formats. Students earn certification and 14 college credits that can be used toward a degree program at USF. The tuition for the program is fully funded by the grant, so it’s free to students in the program. Plus, the grant also offers assistance to remove barriers to education for students in the program,” said Larry Dunbar, a professor at USF and the coordinator of the university’s Substance Abuse Counseling Program.

“The program is based in recovery-oriented systems of care, a newer model of treatment for substance use and mental wellness. This model recognizes the value of people with lived experiences in substance use, mental illness, or the legal system in providing support to others going through these challenges. It’s a really exciting field, and the need for recovery support specialists is growing,” Dunbar said.

Students interested in the program can contact the university and find more information online at stfrancis.edu/crss. Enrollment is now open for the USF’s CRSS program, with classes beginning in the Fall of 2022.

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The University of St. Francis, in Joliet, Ill., serves close to 4,000 students nationwide and offers undergraduate, graduate, doctoral and certificate programs in the arts and sciences, business, education, nursing and social work. There are over 52,000 USF alumni across the globe. For information, call 800-735-7500 or visit stfrancis.edu.

University of St. Francis: Bigger thinking. Brighter purpose.

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Department of Social Work to Host Licensure Exam Prep Online Workshop

Joliet, Ill. – The University of St. Francis (USF) Department of Social Work will host a two-session, eight-hour (total) LSW/LCSW licensure exam prep workshop on Saturday, May 14, and Saturday, May 21, from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. via Zoom (online).

This intensive, eight-hour, preparatory review workshop will be taught by USF social work instructors Kyung-Mee Choi, Ph.D., MSW; Laura Honegger, Ph.D., LCSW; Althia Gayle, Ed.D., LCSW, and; Audrey Davis Ed.D., MSW, LCSW, PEL. Relevant examination content will be covered, including:

  • social work practice theories;
  • therapeutic strategies and terminology;
  • assessment and diagnosis;
  • practice techniques;
  • professional ethics, and;
  • diversity sensitive practice.

This workshop includes eight hours of CEUs and will also include test-taking strategies, sample test questions, and a course manual review.

Workshop registration costs are as follows:

  • Community attendees without study package ($60)
  • Current USF field instructors/supervisors ($30)
  • USF Social Work Alumna/Alumni FREE

To register, visit https://secure.acceptiva.com/?cst=YQxK2D (registration is necessary). Participants in last year’s workshop are eligible for a discount and should contact Laura Honegger at lhonegger@stfrancis.edu for details.

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The University of St. Francis, in Joliet, Ill., serves close to 4,000 students nationwide and offers undergraduate, graduate, doctoral and certificate programs in the arts and sciences, business, education, nursing and social work. There are over 52,000 USF alumni across the globe. For information, call 800-735-7500 or visit stfrancis.edu.

University of St. Francis: Bigger thinking. Brighter purpose.

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USF Art & Design Department to Host Art Fair and Sale on April 13

Joliet, Ill. – The University of St. Francis (USF) Art and Design Department will host an Art Fair and Sale on Wednesday, April 13, 2022, from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. in the Marian Hall Abbey (604 Taylor Street, Joliet, IL 60435). The event, which is open to the community, will consist of student-produced artworks for sale, including drawings, paintings, stickers, clothing, jewelry, accessories, and other ephemera. Proceeds from the sale will be used to assist students with purchasing materials to support advanced studies in art and design over the summer.

This event is free and open to the general public. Attendees will be required to adhere to the university’s COVID-19 safety protocols, which include providing proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test dated within one week of the visit to campus. Face coverings are optional (but recommended).

For more information, please contact professor Michael “Chester” Alamo-Costello, MFA, at mcostello@stfrancis.edu. For more information on the USF Art and Design Department, visit stfrancis.edu/art-design.

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The University of St. Francis, in Joliet, Ill., serves close to 4,000 students nationwide and offers undergraduate, graduate, doctoral and certificate programs in the arts and sciences, business, education, nursing and social work. There are over 52,000 USF alumni across the globe. For information, call 800-735-7500 or visit stfrancis.edu.

University of St. Francis: Bigger thinking. Brighter purpose.

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WCSF 88.7-FM to Host Live Radio Fundraiser on April 8

WCSF fundraiser on April 8, 2022

Joliet, Ill. – WCSF 88.7-FM, the University of St. Francis’ (USF) radio station, is hosting a live radio fundraiser for Ukraine on Friday April 8, at three locations across the City of Joliet. Custom t-shirts and WCSF stickers and magnets will be for sale with all proceeds benefitting USF’s international students and Ukraine relief organizations. The fundraiser is in association with the USF Social Work, Art & Design and Communication & Media Arts departments and the USF Office of Institutional Diversity. The fundraiser locations include:

  • Disc Replay (1701 N. Larkin Ave., Crest Hill) from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
  • Audio Phil’s Records (17 E. Van Buren St 17 E., Joliet) from 12 p.m. – 1 p.m.
  • Uno Student Lounge (University of St. Francis – 500 Wilcox, Joliet) from 11 a.m. – 1.p.m.

WCSF DJs will be broadcasting live at all three locations. Stop by to purchase t-shirts, magnets, and stickers with proceeds going to USF students impacted by the war in Ukraine. Any remaining funds will be being donated to reputable non-profit organizations providing humanitarian aid in the region. This merchandise is being sold while supplies last!

The t-shirt design was created by Communication & Media Arts student Jessica Scroppo. The t-shirts are being screen-printed by USF professor Paul Erschen and his students. The University of St. Francis Social Work Club is coordinating the fundraiser and the distribution of proceeds.

WCSF 88.7 FM is an FCC-licensed college radio station broadcasting from the University of St. Francis. The station can also be accessed from streaming devices by searching the link listen.streamon.fm/WCSF. For more information, visit the WCSF website at wcsfradio.com or call 815-740-3697.

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The University of St. Francis, in Joliet, Ill., serves close to 4,000 students nationwide and offers undergraduate, graduate, doctoral and certificate programs in the arts and sciences, business, education, nursing and social work. There are over 52,000 USF alumni across the globe. For information, call 800-735-7500 or visit stfrancis.edu.

University of St. Francis: Bigger thinking. Brighter purpose.

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Two USF Online Programs Recognized by The Princeton Review

Joliet, Ill. – The Princeton Review, a national ranking agency that provides admissions resources for college and graduate school-bound students, recently recognized two online programs offered at the University of St. Francis (USF). USF’s online Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership and its online Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) programs were included in The Princeton Review’s Best Online Doctor of Education Programs and Best Master of Science in Nursing Programs lists, respectively.

“It’s one thing when a school tells everyone how wonderful they are, but it’s something else when professional groups and publishers across the country speak out. USF faculty and instructors provide our students with nationally-recognized education and experiences every day, so this type of acknowledgement of their efforts and the university’s programs is both invaluable and validating,” said Eric Wignall, USF vice president of admissions.

Online Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership Program

The online Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership program at USF brings together practitioner-scholars to support doctoral candidates in learning and scholarship. The program is a combination of research, experiential learning, and shared knowledge about the key skills needed to lead, inspire, and educate. The program degree is designed for master’s prepared professionals from every career path.

“Our online programs are designed to provide students from all over the country exemplary learning experiences that equip them with the knowledge and skills necessary to advance their careers and contribute to the world in a meaningful way.  The courses challenge and support the students in the learning process and offer them an opportunity to interact with other professionals and exceptional faculty members. To have our online doctoral program recognized in this manner is an indication and a validation that we are realizing our mission to develop high quality leaders who can have a significant positive impact on their communities,” said John Gambro, Ed.D., dean of the USF College of Education.

Two program concentrations include Superintendent Endorsement and Leadership, Learning, and Stewardship. Visit stfrancis.edu/educational-leadership-edd for program information. Visit princetonreview.com and search the keywords “online Doctor of Education” to view The Princeton Review’s Best Online Doctor of Education Programs listing.

Online Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Program

Advanced practice nurses are often called on to assume leadership roles in the profession and in health care delivery. Graduates of the USF MSN program will incorporate their education and research into a practice that is reflective of the dynamic needs of a diverse population.

“Our Master of Science in Nursing programs offer knowledge, skills, and resources to enhance careers available to members of our community across Illinois and the Midwest by using online learning platforms. The competencies developed in our programs are evident by the care that is given back to the community by our graduates. However, we do not prepare our students just for a career. Our MSN students enhance their passion to actualize the core values of serving others as advanced practice nurses. Besides being well-trained, skilled, and confident in their areas as advanced nurse practitioners, they are compassion-rooted providers at all times, most especially during the most vulnerable times,” said USF Leach College of Nursing dean Yeijin Yeom, Ph.D., RN, CNE.

Program options include Family Nurse Practitioner, Nursing Administration, Nursing Education, Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner and R.N.-B.S.-MSN. Visit stfrancis.edu/msn for more information. Visit princetonreview.com and search the keywords “online Master of Science in Nursing” to view The Princeton Review’s Best Master of Science in Nursing Programs listing.

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The University of St. Francis, in Joliet, Ill., serves close to 4,000 students nationwide and offers undergraduate, graduate, doctoral and certificate programs in the arts and sciences, business, education, nursing and social work. There are over 52,000 USF alumni across the globe. For information, call 800-735-7500 or visit stfrancis.edu.

University of St. Francis: Bigger thinking. Brighter purpose.

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