Now that it’s Spring Quarter of my fourth year, and I’ve finished all my major requirements, I have more time to take classes I’m interested in, explore even more of Chicago, and binge watch another series on Netflix. I’ll be moving out of Chicago for my first full-time job this summer, but there are a couple of things that I want to make sure I do before I graduate:
When I first moved to Chicago four years ago, I had little idea of what to expect. Coming from another major city, I imagined I would immediately and seamlessly adjust to the environment, but Chicago took its time to really grow on me. Now, looking back, I couldn’t imagine spending college anywhere else. Finding my favorite spots in Chicago has been a four-year process and really helped make me feel at home here.
UChicago’s new initiative U-Pass allows students to traverse the City throughout the school year without having to shell out exact change or remembering to reload their Ventra card. A U-Pass card is made for each student, works across the City of Chicago’s buses and trains, and has the ability to be loaded with money for during interim breaks.
For the past 20 years, international travel has been a distinguishing feature of UChicago Athletics. Every four years, each of UChicago’s DIII varsity teams has the opportunity to travel abroad. These trips serve the dual purpose of training and leisure, allowing players to practice their sport with teams around the world, while also taking in the sights. Since the men’s soccer team traveled to Scotland in 1997, UChicago teams have visited 23 countries across four continents.
Ever wanted to start your own business? Interested in startups and entrepreneurship? The Polsky Center, located on 53rd Street in Downtown Hyde Park, is a vibrant hub for innovation and invention. The Center incubates a whopping 10-20 startups at any given time, and more than 2,500 members take use of the wide-open co-working space and conference rooms. The Polsky Center draws in professors, community members, graduate school students, and college students to collaborate and create new products.
Being an adult, or at least trying to be, is scary (to say the least). College is a whole collection of adult responsibilities thrown at you at once, from remembering to eat three (healthy!) meals a day to doing laundry for yourself. The thought of finding a summer internship on my own seemed like just one more thing I wasn’t prepared for, until I encountered the wonderful lifesaver that is UChicago’s Career Advancement.
UChicago’s Campus North Residential Commons has brought a whole new vibe and living area to campus. With a new dormitory and dining hall, North’s 800 residents are split between eight houses that span three towers, all connected by the ground-level lobby. Multiple study rooms, classrooms, and music rooms can be found in each building, allowing a mix of socializing, learning, and living. The second floor windows showcase beautiful outdoor courtyards where students can gather.
Given that Hamilton mania is sweeping the nation, tickets have been through the roof in both Chicago and New York. What to do when you’re living on a college student’s budget but have a burning desire to see Hamilton live? (I may or may not have listened to the Original Broadway Cast Recording on repeat since July.)
While I never would have expected to spend the first night of college asking random strangers for their signature outside of the John Hancock Center (get it?), I’m so glad I did. Our House Activities Night, a quirky scavenger hunt around downtown Chicago, allowed me to experience my new home away from home, Hoover House, for the first time. My housemates and I got to hop from one famous Chicago landmark to the next, oftentimes having to do an activity at each (like singing Katy Perry’s “Roar” next to the lions outside of the Art Institute).
The air warms up, the humidity rises, and everyone in Chicago can feel it: yep, music festival season. We all know that Chicago’s greatest music festival is the one that happens on the UChicago campus in Hutch Courtyard, Summer Breeze, where this year Jeremih, Joey Bada$$, and Sophie killed it. Jeremih of course rocked “Oui,” but it was bringing up beloved South Side rapper Lil Durk that really pushed it over the top. Never fear though, there’s still plenty of live music to check out over the rest of the summer too.