An Update from the Alumni Board Chair Sherrie Littlejohn

Sherrie Littlejohn

This summer I wrote to you about our community’s response to ongoing national conversations around systemic racial injustice. Since then, many new initiatives are already underway. You can read President Alan W. Cramb’s most recent statement in its entirety; I hope that you will be encouraged by these key developments:

  • The newly created position of vice president for diversity, equity, and inclusion has been announced, and a search is underway to fill this crucial role.
  • Mike Gosz, vice president for enrollment and senior vice provost, is working to build partnerships with Chicago Public Schools, especially on the South Side and in our neighborhood of Bronzeville, to increase the number of African-American students at Illinois Institute of Technology.
  • Our Office of Advancement is developing new scholarship opportunities, specifically for students from Chicago’s South Side and our surrounding neighborhoods, ensuring a continuing support that gives students new opportunities for success.

These initiatives do not mark the end of our community’s work on diversity, equity, and inclusion. Rather, this is the beginning of an ongoing process and marks the beginning of a new chapter with new opportunities for alumni to think about how their backgrounds and skill sets might be tapped to support our current students.

In addition to this important work, and in spite of the challenges of this year, Illinois Tech’s strategic goals are each moving toward full fruition. The creation of the College of Computing sets us apart as a university uniquely poised to cross industries and think about big problems in collaborative ways. Our world-class faculty continues to impress, and appointments such as architecture photographer, writer, and critic Lee Bey in the College of Architecture and Maryam Saleh to lead the Kaplan Institute expands our ability to offer our students unparalleled instruction. On top of that, our fundraising efforts are proving now more than ever that our partners, friends, and more and more of our alumni see that giving to Illinois Tech is a smart investment in the future.

Last fall I addressed my fellow alumni in these pages and said that I believe that we all have a part to play in helping to make Illinois Tech the beating heart of Chicago’s technology sector.  This is a lofty goal, but it is my belief that we achieve greatness through expansive expectations.

I am grateful for the opportunity to represent my fellow Scarlet Hawks, more than 80,000 strong across the globe. I believe that our diversity is a source of power as we support current students toward graduation, career success, and the opportunity to join our ranks.

To find out how you can get involved, contact

Sherrie Littlejohn (M.S. CS ’82)
Chair, Alumni Association Board of Directors
Trustee, Board of Trustees