Illini Days Naples, Florida 2020

Thursday, February 13, 2020
Alumni College: 12:00 p.m.
With Illinois Reception: 6:00 p.m.

The Ritz-Carlton, Naples
280 Vanderbilt Beach Rd.
Naples, FL 34108

We look forward to seeing you. Space is limited, so RSVP today to ensure your spot.

RSVP Today

Chancellor Robert J. Jones  invites you to join him at The Ritz-Carlton in Naples, Florida on Thursday, February 13, 2020 for Illini Days, featuring an alumni college and evening reception.


Alumni College with the University of Illinois Alumni Association

Starting at 12:00 p.m. 

This is your chance to get back in the “classroom” and learn from some of Illinois’s remarkable faculty members— but with no term papers or tests! This event will include lectures and a University update.

Alumni College Presenters

  • Ned O’Gorman, Professor of Communication
  • Cele Otnes, Anthony J. Petullo Professor of Business Administration
  • Jeffrey Woods, Professor of Kinesiology

See the alumni college schedule.


Getting the Most Out Of Your Generosity: Using Incentives in the Tax Code to Help Yourself, Your Family and the University

5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.

In this session you will learn about various ways to reduce your tax bill, increase your income and provide financial security to loved ones, all while providing vital support for the University of Illinois. Strategies covered will include gifts made now, as well as various forms of estate gifts. Also covered, the recently passed “SECURE ACT,” that affects retirement plans. Whether you are a longtime supporter, or just beginning to consider the best way to “give back,” don’t miss this opportunity to make sure you are getting the most out of your generosity!


Reception with Chancellor Robert J. Jones

6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Join us for a reception with fellow alumni and friends.


Map and Directions


Alumni College Sessions

Ned O’Gorman, Ph.D.Professor of Communication

Session Title: “Hollywood’s Nuclear Weapons Laboratory: A Story from the Archives of Lookout Mountain Laboratory.”

Session Description: Why would the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission want to collaborate with the U.S. Air Force in 1948 to set up a large-scale secure, secretive faculty in Hollywood of all places? Why would they request of the services of Hollywood luminaries like Jimmy Stewart, John Ford, and Marilyn Monroe? This presentation explores the fascinating—and bit troubling—relationship between the makers of the Bomb and the makers of movies in the 1940s and 1950s. We will look at the ways in which Hollywood not only helped the government propagate the bomb, but accomplish the difficult work of nuclear science itself.

Bio: Ned O’Gorman is Professor of Communication at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. O’Gorman writes at the intersections of history, criticism, and political theory. He is the author of three books on the Cold War: with Kevin Hamilton he wrote the award-winning Lookout America! The Secret Hollywood Film Studio at the Heart of the Cold War, published with over 600 images by Dartmouth College Press and a basis of the Smithsonian documentary “Atomic Age Declassified: Filming the Bomb.” The book is about the remarkable but largely forgotten history of Lookout Mountain Laboratory, a U.S. Air Force film studio responsible for many of the most iconic images of the Cold War, from mushroom clouds to space monkeys. He is also author of the award-winning The Iconoclastic Imagination: Image, Catastrophe, and Economy in America since the Kennedy Assassination, and the widely reviewed book Spirits of the Cold War: Contesting Worldviews in the Classical Age of American Security Strategy.


Cele Otnes, Ph.D. – Anthony J. Petullo Professor and Head, Department of Business Administration, Gies College of Business

Session Title: “Not Just From Me to You: How Social Networks Influence Gift Giving”

Session Description: Gift exchange is most often understood as occurring between a giver and a recipient. However, many norms govern the types of information givers and recipients are allowed to share (e.g., “no dropping hints;” “just get me anything”). This presentation explores how givers in particular rely on the recipient’s broader social network of friends and family members to select gifts, and to sometimes give gifts they know might be risky. We will discuss six specific strategies that givers leverage when trying to reduce risk, and offer accepted and welcome gifts, to recipients.

Bio: Cele Otnes is the Anthony J. Petullo Professor of Business Administration, Professor of Marketing, and Head of the Department of Business Administration at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She is an adjunct professor of marketing at the Norwegian School of Business and Economics (NHH). Her research primarily focuses on understanding how ritualistic consumption shapes the experiences of consumers within and outside of the marketspace (e.g., in broader cultural domains). She recently published Royal Fever: The British Monarchy in Consumer Culture with Pauline Maclaran (Univ. of California Press, 2015). With Elizabeth Pleck, she co-authored Cinderella Dreams: The Allure of the Lavish Wedding (University of California Press, 2003), and has co-edited several books on rituals and consumption, including Gender, Culture, and Consumer Behavior with Linda Tuncay Zayer (Routledge 2012). Her work appears in the Journal of Consumer Research, Journal of Retailing, Journal of Advertising, and Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, among others. She primarily teaches courses in consumer behavior (undergraduate) and qualitative research methods (doctoral at Illinois and NHH). She has served as co-chair of the Association for Consumer Research European and North American conferences, and of the Qualitative Data Analysis workshop.


Jeff Woods, Ph.D. – Mottier Family Professor of Kinesiology and Community Health, Director, Center on Health, Aging, and Disability, Associate Dean for Research, College of Applied Health Sciences

Session Title: “Ask not what your microbes can do for you, ask what you can do for your microbes”

Session Description: This session will introduce you to the powerful effects that your gut microbes have on your health. The good news is that you exert some control over your microbes. A physically active lifestyle and a healthy diet influences your gut microbes in positive ways. On the contrary, various diseases like inflammatory bowel disease, colon cancer, diabetes and obesity are associated with detrimental changes in your gut microbes. This session will explore how lifestyle-induced changes in gut microbes might lead to better health.

Bio: I received a B.S. degree from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, M.S. from Springfield College (MA), and a doctorate from the University of South Carolina at Columbia all in the area of kinesiology/exercise science. I also completed a post-doctoral fellowship at the Minneapolis Medical Research Foundation in the area of neuroimmunology.  I am currently a Professor of Kinesiology and Community Health with additional appointments in the Division of Nutritional Sciences and the new Carle-Illinois College of Medicine at the University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign (UIUC). My expertise are in exercise physiology in general, and more specifically the effects of exercise on the immune system, the gut microbiome, and aging. I have mentored 30 graduate students, 2 post-doctoral fellows, and have received campus recognition for guiding undergraduate research. I have authored over 130 peer-reviewed scientific journal articles and have been a Principal or Co-Investigator on >$22 million of funded federal and industry sponsored research. I am an active Fellow of the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) and the National Academy of Kinesiology and am past-President of the International Society for Exercise and Immunology. I have served on numerous National Institute of Health (NIH) review groups, was Chair of the ACSM Research Review Committee, and have served as an Associate Editor for several journals in my field. I am currently the Director of UIUC’s Center of Health, Aging and Disability and an Associate Dean for Research for the College of Applied Health Sciences where I play a leadership role.

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