University News

Photo Courtesy of the Visual Production Center Dividends provides WIU students, faculty and staff with a dining option in Stipes Hall 118
[Download Print-Quality Image]

Photo Courtesy of the Visual Production Center Dividends cyber café in Stipes Hall 118 offers study space and a wireless connection for laptops
[Download Print-Quality Image]

Dividends Gives WIU New Studying, Dining Space

September 18, 2008

Printer friendly version

MACOMB, IL - - The returns or rewards resulting from an activity, effort or undertaking: That's the definition of the word "dividends" in Merriam-Webster. "Dividends" is also the name of the new coffee shop and cyber café located in Western Illinois University's Stipes Hall 118. According to officials from Western's College of Business and Technology (CBT) and First Bankers Trust -- the sole donor for the project -- the name couldn't be more apropos.

"The Dividends concept was a great collaborative effort that put the needs of our students first," said Tom Erekson, CBT dean. "There was a true need in Stipes Hall for additional student study space. We're thrilled to be able to offer the University community with this great new dining option as well as to be able to provide a place where students can grab a coffee, have a bite to eat or hang out to study or socialize."

According to Dennis Iversen, senior vice president at First Bankers Trust in Macomb and WIU honorary alumnus (1994), six or seven of the bank's officers are WIU graduates, so the Dividends project is a win-win situation for the bank and for the University.

"It provides First Bankers Trust a way to give back to Western. More than that, it provides a relaxed atmosphere in which faculty and students can interact," Iversen said.

First Bankers Trust operates an ATM in Dividends. Sodexo Campus Services, the service that provides food and dining services to WIU, is also part of the collaboration, according to Erekson.

"Dividends is serving brewed coffee and espresso as well as other beverages, salads, sandwiches, hot dogs, soups and some other convenience items," he said. "Students, faculty and staff can use their dining points to purchase items."

Dividends has been open since classes started in August, it's open from 7:30 a.m.-6 p.m. and it provides a fully wireless environment for individuals who want to go online while in the café.

CBT will officially unveil Dividends -- and honor First Bankers Trust's contribution to the project -- during the Macomb Chamber of Commerce and Downtown Development's Business After Hours event from 4:30-6 p.m., Wednesday, Oct. 15. CBT faculty and staff, as well as several First Bankers Trust dignitaries, will be on hand at the event.

For more information, contact Schuyler Meixner at (309) 298-2442 or

Posted By: Teresa Koltzenburg (
Office of University Communications & Marketing