- September 9, 2010
- 4:33 pm
- Patty Sheehy
Academics and Summer in Chicago
As the doors shut to Campion Hall, concluding the fourth year of the Pre-Collegiate Summer Scholars (PCSS) program, the staff members look back at another successful program here at Loyola University Chicago. The diverse group of 60 students arrived from all 50 states and across international borders, bringing backgrounds and perspectives that enriched this year’s PCSS program. This year’s staff hailed from institutions such as: Santa Clara University, Iowa State University, DePaul University, San Diego State University, and California State University at Chico. They arrived with a wealth of experience, skills and most of all a commitment to make this summer great.
The program was comprised of two three-week seminars and a six-week academy. Students lived on campus or commuted. The Academy program allowed students to concurrently enrolled in 100 and 200 college level summer session B courses. The three-week session, developed specifically for the program, consisted of courses focusing on popular interest topics such as: creative writing, entrepreneurship, convergence journalism, and environmental biology, law & civil rights, museum studies, and urban field studies. Along with the rigorous academic programs, the PCSS was peppered with fun and social activities designed for engagement with Loyola University and in the city of Chicago.
This year, the staff cultivated the academics as well as its social programming around a centralized theme: Around Chicago in 40 Days. The focus was to enrich the students’ experiences with events that were free of charge, such as, Chicago cultural festivals/performances, in-hall activities, community services, and on-campus events. Our staff planned over 75 events for the duration of the six-week summer period. Some highlights of events throughout the summer include: a day at Millennium Park, swing dancing in Grant Park, and Tutus and Tuques—a community service project making tutus and hats for children with cancer for a local children’s hospital. Also included were several trips to the museum campus and a visit to Glazed Expressions, a paint-your-own-pottery place. No summer would be complete without attending a baseball game at the historic Wrigley Field. Commuter students participated alongside residential students in all of the activities and excursions, including a day trip to Indiana Dunes.
This fourth year of the PCSS program experienced growth and change, which will benefit future summer scholar students. The program encouraged relationships and individual growth among the students, in the true spirit of a Jesuit university, by fostering conflict resolution, collective decision- making, balancing “college” life with social decisions, and encouraging an appreciation of each other’s differences and backgrounds. The summer was filled with student development, staff growth, fun, collegiate experience, and memories to last a lifetime. As this year’s staff members departed Campion Hall, we leave with an abundance of experience, knowledge, and growth that exceeds the six weeks we resided at Loyola University Chicago.