How Do I Fit In?

How Do I Fit In?


2017 thus far, has been a roller-coaster already (and it has only been 32 days into the year!). Whether it has been the effect of the start of new classes in the semester or the new presidential transition or other things, I think it is agreeable that last month has been quite interesting.

Identity is critical at this point in time. We must have pride of who we are and the roles we play in society. Especially at Loyola University, we strive for equality in all realms, regardless of any backgrounds (faith, ethnicity, orientation, income…).


This is a link to Dr. Rooney’s message regarding this:


As you begin your new journey here at Loyola this fall semester, I want to personally tell you that you can feel comfortable here, you will have resources that can help you, and you will be able to live that “college life” free from the other things in the outside world. Ultimately, we SUPPORT you!


If you are a male, minority, low-income, commuter, or first-generation student (any or all!), this blog post can give you more insight into what to expect as you make your transition to Loyola in the future.

This my personal insight. It might not be accurately relatable, but it may give you another perspective to what others such as myself see things.

Male:  There is slightly a larger percentage of females than males. For me at least, I wouldn’t mind this! There has not been nothing substantial to discuss about this; gender is not a huge problem around LUC. We all get along well together.

Minority: According to the Freshman class (2015) statistics, 44% of the students are of color. This means that there are 56% of other students who still make up the class population. Sometimes, I do feel a little different than the others, especially since I come from a Vietnamese refugee family, but I luckily found support from Achieving College Excellence (ACE) to help support and guide me through my years at LUC.

Despite that being the case, the majority of the students do have interest in studying-abroad and/or participate in cultural events or ethnic clubs. It is visible to see that LUC students have an open-mind and sense of adventure to explore different cultures and customs.

Low-income: In all honesty, I believe that I was very fortunate to attend a private, Catholic, and non-profit school. I could have attended a community college and saved money, but because of my academic achievements and scholarships I was awarded, LUC education became affordable. Of course, there are sacrifices– I commute instead of living on campus, I bring lunch from home, I rent books or borrow from the Chicago Public Library instead of buying, etc, I take out loans, apply for federal aid assistance, and so much more.

Altogether, in the 2015 Freshman class:  97% of freshmen received need-based financial assistance &  95% of freshmen received institutional grants/scholarships.

Commuter: If this is you, I give you a high-five! I have made 2 blog posts specifically on commuting and again, I’ll say this again: You are truly a warrior and you have courage! I do not want to discourage anyone from the commute life, but Chicago weather is more unique than most cities and public transportation (CTA) is quite interesting.  Nevertheless, you have SUPPORT! We have an amazing resource for you (that I use too): Commuter and Off-Campus Student Life. They are an amazing group of people, you get free coffee and tea, food discounts ONLY for commuters, etc. Ultimately, for me, I save money by traveling instead of dorming.

First-Generation Student: This section, I feel most passionate about. As I have said previously, I come from a Vietnamese refugee family. The support I receive from them is different to the kind of support non-first-generation students get. My family may not understand what American higher-level education is like and might not have higher connections to help me in careers and such. Personally, I also have other responsibilities at home that require my help, either translating things, managing paperwork, etc.


I’ll end this with a good quote for you all that may be a little nervous about this new transition to college:

“Promise me you’ll always remember that you’re braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” -Christopher Robin to Winnie the Pooh

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