The Uncomon Blog


The word “trek” gets a bad rep. When you hear someone say they’re making the trek to somewhere, it usually implies reluctance about the journey. This isn’t the case at UChicago.

“Hmm,” said a small voice in his ear. “Difficult. Very difficult. Plenty of courage, I see. Not a bad mind either. There’s talent, oh my goodness, yes -- and a nice thirst to prove yourself, now that’s interesting … So where shall I put you?”       Well if you’re sure -- better be BOOTH!

“Everyone here is going to pick a neighborhood. A Chicago neighborhood. You’re going to do research, conduct interviews, and go out into that neighborhood and find something that’s never been found before.”

On my quest to find a suitable major, I found these instructions before me as I entered into an Urban Sociology class my second year.  At the time, those were some of the most terrifying words I had heard in my college career. 


I am mid-way through my fourth year spring quarter, so naturally I am feeling quite nostalgic. In reflecting fondly on many of my experiences at UChicago, one in particular comes to the fore: my involvement with the Institute of Politics (IOP) at UChicago. The nonpartisan Institute of Politics at the University of Chicago is an extracurricular program designed to ignite in young people a passion for politics and public service.

UChicago Athletics consists of 19 men’s and women’s teams that compete at the NCAA Division III level. The fall sports—including soccer, football, volleyball, and cross country—all start practicing in August. This period is known as “preseason,” when student athletes live on campus for a little over one month before classes start. It is a time for athletes to dedicate their life to their sport before the hustle of classes and extracurricular activities begin. My life during preseason just so happens to be soccer. 

There are so many culinary destinations on 53rd, it’s hard to keep track of them all! Below I’ve listed some of the culinary destinations I frequent most often.


Part III: On or Near 53rd


Harold’s: 1208 E 53rd Street

The best fried chicken hands-down, Harold’s is a spot that you must try during your first quarter at UChicago. With a student discount and specials throughout the week, Harold’s is perfect for a college student who just wants good, cheap food.

The University of Chicago is renowned for giving its undergrads an education that doesn’t just get you a job, but enhances your intellectual life in a way that will (hopefully) stick with you long after your four years are up. Besides our generally impeccable academic rigor, one of the ways UChicago prepares you for a future outside of the school is the BA thesis many undergrads write in their fourth year.

I knew in high school that I wanted to study biology, but I wasn’t ready to give up my fascination with literature, history, and art. When I started my first year at UChicago, I hesitated to declare my Biology major and instead started a Social Sciences sequence (part of the UChicago Core), called Classics of Social and Political Thought. We dived headfirst into Greek philosophy, and I was surrounded by the rich history of classical thought. Each discussion was a new adventure into a past era and school of thought. By the time we reached Nietzsche, I was in too deep.

You’ve finished up your UChicago tour and information session and are now in the Quad admiring the Gothic-style buildings. As beautiful as they are, you know that you’ll be able to see them again on UChicago’s Instagram. Your flight home doesn’t leave until later in the evening--what should you do now? The city of Chicago seems like it has endless options, ranging from premier comedy clubs and world-class architecture to your favorite sports teams and Michelin Star restaurants.

There it was, right in front of me: quite a bit larger than I had imagined, and therefore all the more awe-inspiring. With my own hands I leafed through a nearly five hundred year-old anatomy text, an original edition of Andreas Vesalius’ De humani corporis fabrica from 1543. My History of Medicine, 1500-1900 Civilizations course (commonly referred to as “Civ” on campus) had made a trip to Special Collections at the Regenstein Library to look at originals of such significant works.