Education: New University of Illinois president has big plans for Rockford

University of Illinois President Timothy Killeen leads a town hall discussion about the university

ROCKFORD — The University of Illinois is crafting plans to enhance its Rockford campus to allow medical students to complete their first year of studies here.

That was part of the message University of Illinois President Timothy Killeen delivered during a visit to Rockford Wednesday, his third day on the job. He met with the Register Star Editorial Board and later hosted a town hall meeting at the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Rockford.

Presently, University of Illinois students must complete their first year of medical school at Champaign-Urbana before they can transfer to the College of Medicine at Rockford. Adding the first year of studies to Rockford could bring an additional 50 students a year to the campus at 1601 Parkview Ave. The move may be two or three years from fruition. Campus improvements must be tackled first, including the addition of an anatomy lab and classroom and office renovations.

Read more…http://www.rrstar.com/article/20150520/NEWS/150529866?template=printart

Safety: Rockford’s First ‘Strong Neighborhood House’ Opens

Rockford- More then a dozen shootings happened in Rockford within the past week. Police are still searching for suspects in regards to the recent rash of gunfire.

 

Rockford Police Chief Chet Epperson says, “We know people know what took place last weekend. And what we need is for people to step up. Call the police. Call Crimestoppers, to give us a call to solve these crimes. We know people witnessed these individuals shooting people.”

 

But witnesses can be afraid to speak up. That is one reason why Rockford police teaming up with SwedishAmerican Foundation to unveil the city’s first ever “Strong Neighborhood House at 1233 Revell Avenue”

Read More…http://www.mystateline.com/fulltext-news/d/story/rockfords-first-strong-neighborhood-house-opens/26699/zKgDByAQF0C044iUaiJZpw

Unity, Pride, Culture: City Market opens for the season – TODAY

Staff Report

The Rockford City Market opens for the year [TODAY] at 3:30 p.m. in the 100-200 blocks of Water Street and the surrounding area.

The market features local vendors and growers selling a variety of items including vegetables, fruits, cheeses, eggs, meat, flowers, herbs, baked goods, wine, prepared food, handmade products and more.

Most vendors for the market originate from within 150 miles of Rockford.

The City Market will also include live music performed by Fred & Ginger, an acoustic duo,  under the new covered pavilion.

Various free activities will be available for kids as well.

The market will be open 3:30-8:30 p.m. on Fridays (3:30-7:30 p.m. after Labor Day).

For more information on the Rockford City Market or to apply to be a vendor visit rockfordcitymarket.com.

Source: http://rockrivertimes.com/2015/05/21/city-market-opens-for-the-season/

 

Arts: 5 new sculptures to be installed in downtown Rockford

ROCKFORD (WREX) – Five new sculptures will be installed in downtown Rockford as part of a new Rockford Area Convention and Visitors Bureau initiative.

The five sculptures, created by Hans Van de Bovenkamp and Boaz Vaadia, will be on loan to the community for one year and installed throughout downtown Rockford.

The sculptures will be featured on East State and 3rd streets (Red Trunk, Elephant Heart), East State and North 2nd streets (Ah’av), South Main and Elm streets (Oracle), and Esplande along the west bank of the Rock River between Jefferson and State streets (Sagg Portal).

These world class pieces of art are part of the RACVB’s long-term goal of creating a program that installs sculptures each year on a rotating basis.

Elephant Heart is a stainless steel sculpture by Hans Van de Bovenkamp that will be installed downtown this month as part of a year-long public sculpture exhibition. PROVIDED PHOTO

Elephant Heart is a stainless steel sculpture by Hans Van de Bovenkamp that will be installed downtown this month as part of a year-long public sculpture exhibition. PROVIDED PHOTO

Ah'av, a sculpture by Boaz Vaadia made of bronze, basalt and bluestone, will be installed this month in downtown Rockford. PROVIDED PHOTO

Ah’av, a sculpture by Boaz Vaadia made of bronze, basalt and bluestone, will be installed this month in downtown Rockford. PROVIDED PHOTO

Oracle is a stainless steel sculpture by Hans Van de Bovenkamp that will be installed downtown this month as part of a year-long public sculpture exhibition. PROVIDED PHOTO

Oracle is a stainless steel sculpture by Hans Van de Bovenkamp that will be installed downtown this month as part of a year-long public sculpture exhibition. PROVIDED PHOTO

Sag Portal, # 6 is a stainless steel sculpture by Hans Van de Bovenkamp that will be installed this month across the street from Octane Interlounge, 124 N. Main St., as part of a year-long public sculpture exhibition. PROVIDED PHOTO

Sag Portal, # 6 is a stainless steel sculpture by Hans Van de Bovenkamp that will be installed this month across the street from Octane Interlounge, 124 N. Main St., as part of a year-long public sculpture exhibition. PROVIDED PHOTO

Red Trunk by Hans Van de Bovenkamp. PROVIDED PHOTO

Red Trunk by Hans Van de Bovenkamp. PROVIDED PHOTO

Source: http://www.wrex.com/story/29112802/2015/05/20/five-new-sculptures-to-be-installed-in-downtown-rockford

Education: The University of Illinois College of Medicine at Rockford plans to add five residency programs

Paulina Szczepaniak and Andrew Nowak work in a research lab Tuesday, May 19, 2015, at the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Rockford. Administrators at the school want to create more research opportunities for students as part of a strategic plan to expand the college

Paulina Szczepaniak and Andrew Nowak work in a research lab Tuesday, May 19, 2015, at the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Rockford. Administrators at the school want to create more research opportunities for students as part of a strategic plan to expand the college’s reach. MAX GERSH/RRSTAR.COM

 

ROCKFORD — The University of Illinois College of Medicine at Rockford is shaping plans to expand its reach and increase enrollment by adding five residency programs that would provide a pipeline of physicians for the region’s health care employers.

If all goes according to plan, the implications for the local economy are enormous. More than 12,000 people are employed by Rockford’s three health systems. Right now, the college operates a family medicine residency program in partnership with SwedishAmerican Health System that employs 21 resident physicians at any given time. The college aims to establish five more residency programs to address a regional and national demand for doctors in emergency medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, general surgery, internal medicine and psychiatry. Doing so could increase graduate enrollment at the college by 150 students a year, said Dr. Alex Stagnaro-Green, who became the school’s dean a year ago.

And because residency programs are often subsidized by Medicare, the addition of five more residency programs in Rockford could funnel some $15 million into the local economy.

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Planning: Rockford aldermen agree to sell former Amerock building

A major move at Rockford City Hall brings the idea of a downtown hotel closer to reality.

Monday night, City Council gave its nod of approval for development group Gorman & Co. to buy the old Amerock building.  The price is $250,000.  Developers still have to secure financing to renovate the building, which will cost an estimated $68 million.  According to CEO Gary Gorman, Gorman & Co. has already invested nearly $800,000 into this project in architectural, engineering and design costs.  Amerock is slated to become a 165-room Embassy Suites hotel and conference center.

“This project is going to happen.  We have to explore the risks, we have to explore the what-if scenarios, but our firm has bet a lot including our reputation that this project will get done and gets done in a way that exceeds the expectations of the City of Rockford,” says Gorman & Co. CEO Gary Gorman.

Preliminary construction on the building is scheduled to start next week.

Read More http://www.wrex.com/story/29109608/2015/05/20/rockford-aldermen-agree-to-sell-amerock-to-gorman-co

Economy & Jobs: Both Rockford Area Meijer Stores Open for Business

ROCKFORD/MACHESNEY PARK — Both Meijer stores in Rockford are now open after ribbon cutting ceremonies at both stores Tuesday. In Rockford, music played as students from Eisenhower Middle School were enthusiatic about the celebration.

Meijer executives say the celebration will stretch further than these walls and into pocket books.

“Well it’s giving people jobs,” shopper Jeff Maney agreed, “and it’s creating a sales tax revenue, which is going to help the city.”

Meijer says its two new stores have brought more than 500 jobs to the area.

“Coming to Rockford, if we can be part of some economic spark and some new job creation and some new opportunity, that feels great,” said Meijer Co-chairman Hank Meijer.

Rockford Mayor Larry Morrissey says job creation isn’t the only benefit of having the superstore in the community. “Really having that diversity of large and small entreprenuers moving our community forward is a great sign of success for our community and it’s a great thing moving forward.”

The ceremony also saw a check presentation to Eisenhower Middle School for $25,000. Just one of the ways Meijer Co-chairman Hank Meije, hopes to give to the community. “If we’re doing our job, being here is going to add to the quality of life in Rockford, we hope that we’ve got a combination of great products at great prices that people will just enjoy searching out.”

Another ‘Grand Opening’ is scheduled for Thursday, which caused some confusion over when the stores would actually be open for business. The Rockford store opened at 10am, the Machesney Park one a 2pm, and both will be open 24 hours.

The Rockford store is at the corner of McFarland and Perryville, while the Machesney Park store is near the intersection of Perryville and Rt. 173.

Read More … http://www.mystateline.com/fulltext-news/d/story/both-rockford-area-meijer-stores-open-for-business/14082/Tc42t8YVkkCq0fH9bjdBRw