Author: Samantha Eddmeiri

Hi there, my name is Sam! I’m a freshman at Loyola, and although my major is undecided, I’ll probably end up in the Advertising and Public Relations world. When I’m not attending classes, singing at Loyola’s Farmer’s Market or watching Netflix in the comfort of my bed, I’m out exploring, attempting to find mom and pop coffee shops and making really stupid puns. Hopefully my writing will provide insight into the life of an adjusting freshman and invoke a laugh or two.
What You Actually Need For Your Freshman Year

What You Actually Need For Your Freshman Year

I wasn’t really sure what I would actually need while coming to college. Over the past year, I’ve learned a lot and made a lot of mistakes, and here I am to tell them to you. I bought a lot, and boy do I mean a lot, of unnecessary things. There were also things that I wish I purchased, as they would have made my life 20x easier.

1. Phone Insurance
Sometimes, you wash your phone along with your bedspread. Trust me, it happens. Having a phone is pretty much a necessity when you’re away from your parents, and being without one is kind of hard, especially when pulling out your laptop to find the time is inconvenient.

2. Paper Plates/Forks/Knives/Spoons/etc.
You’re not always going to want to do your dishes. Trust me, there’s a whole lot of other stuff that you’re going to be busy with, and taking time out of your day to do dishes is not top priority when you have a six page paper and a test to study for.

3. A Fan
Even though here at Loyola some dorms have an AC system which you can adjust, some don’t. It can get really hot in the rooms, and if you’re anything like me, that can be awful. Buy a fan, however large or small, and if anything it’ll be there for some noise.

4. Headphones. Lots.
The WORST thing ever is when you’re on the CTA or the shuttle and you forgot your headphones. Oftentimes you won’t take the same shuttle as your friends, and will have to ride alone, which can be boring and long. You’ll want headphones. Stock up on them, as if there’s one thing I’ve really realized during college it is how easily headphones break.

Ways To Pack

Ways To Pack

Packing up your stuff isn’t always the easiest thing. I really hate it, and it’s always the most difficult thing for me.

The best way for me to do it was to take my time. Get another person in the room with me and makes sure that it’s just not me in a silent room alone. It’s boring and not fun, and can put a damper on the exciting fact that summer is so close.

Pack everything that you won’t use for a long time first. For me this was winter clothes and blankets, things that I haven’t used in a while. Next went going out clothes, crop tops and short shorts because Chicago is still so cold. I’m so confused as to why it’s this cold, but it sure is.

Packing is not the greatest thing ever, but it has to be done. For larger items, like TVs or refrigerators, make a plan with your family as to if you’re selling them, bringing them home, or throwing them out.

Everyone have a fun time packing and just remember you have to get through this week!

Too Much Baggage

Too Much Baggage

As I’m packing up my room, I’m realizing that I have way too many things. I should have kept in mind that I would be leaving with more than I brought, a consequence of having classes a few blocks off of Michigan Avenue, unfortunately.

I found that I had a lot of clothing items that I hadn’t worn almost all year, and that I didn’t want to throw them away. This got me thinking–what could I do with them? Turns out, there are a few options that you can do with your unwanted items.

The first and most obvious one to me was seeing if anything I was going to give away was wanted by my friends. I put everything that I was ready to part with in a pile, and let my friends go through it. This got rid of a lot of my things, and I knew that they were going to a good home.

Another option is to donate the clothes to good will, or a homeless shelter so people that don’t have more than a few pieces can get them for free or cheap. Good deeds will cost you nothing.

If you are looking to make a bit of money off of that $200 coat that you wore once, there is another option. Loyola has a buy and sell page for students, accessible through Facebook. You can always sell your items on there and make a few dollars off of it if you’re lucky.

Happy Packing, everyone. Don’t get too discouraged, summer is right around the corner.

Study Spots: Mundelien

Study Spots: Mundelien

Happy Dead week, everyone!

If you’re reading this you’re probably procrastinating very very very hard, and to be quite honest I don’t blame you. This week is stressful and not fun for anyone, including your professors.

While everyone is preparing for finals, one thing that I really have found an issue is the lack of places to study. People are coming out of the woodwork, and even the places that are usually empty are packed full. It’s not a huge surprise, as this apparently is a trend that starts around this time, but it can be frustrating.

One of the places that I’ve found really good for studying, however, is Mundelien. It has Palm Court, which granted won’t have as much space due to the weather not allowing patio use, that includes a study area or a place for you to zone out and relax while looking at Loyola’s gorgeous campus. Additionally, it has a lot of empty classrooms that you can study in. throughout next week, classrooms will be available, however if a class starts to come in, you obviously must leave and find different space.

Additionally, it has a cafe on the first level that you can go to and get snacks, sushi, and refreshments at. Across from the cafe, there is a room filled with comfy chairs and sofas for you to zone out in.


French Market Exploration

French Market Exploration

This weekend, I had the privilege of going to the Chicago French Market with my friends! I had heard of this, and often times wanted to visit, but just now got the chance. (Funny, seeing as I should be overloaded and busy with homework and not pushing off my responsibilities, oops.) It’s a lovely array of shops, located a two different train rides away from the Lake Shore campus.

To get there, take the red line heading towards 95th/Dan Ryan all the way to State/Lake. From there, switch lines (you’ll need to get your U Pass out again) to go to the Pink Line, heading to Cermack. You’ll ride that until you get to the Clinton stop, walk down the stairs, and then the French Market is right there.

While you’re there, I would highly suggest getting food. (Obviously). Go hungry, as there are many options. While I was there, I purchased 10 macaroons and a croissant from Vanille, a lovely pastry shop. ($22) While this seems pricey, it’s worth it if you enjoy macaroons. They are amazing.
Next, I went to a taco stand (odd, I know, being in a french market) and bought a bottle of Jarritos pineapple soda, a side of Spanish rice, a chicken taco, and a quesadilla (that came with guacamole) for lunch. ($12) I had leftovers of the quesadilla, guacamole, and rice, so I took them home as leftovers.
For dessert (as if I really needed it), I went and got black dog gelato. I’d heard of this before, but never got the chance to try it. It is amazing. A cone came with one flavor in it, and it cost me $3.50 exactly. My friend got a small cup, which allows for two flavors, and cost her about $4.50.

The French Market is definitely one of Chicago’s treasures, and is a good place for an outing. My suggestion is you plan on spending some money there if you want to purchase goodies, as my entire trip cost me around $40. (This was in large part due to the macaroons, but I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to try them from the French Market. I won’t buy them every time I go, but they are a nice treat. One of them is about $2, so I could have easily spent under $40.) You may also want to block out about an hour and a half of travel time, as you will probably have to wait for trains. However, my friends and I took an uber back, and it ended up costing abut $28, taking about 25-30 minutes. (The price was also heightened because it occurred during a surge, where the price was 1.6 times higher than it normally would have been.)

While this was an expensive outing for me, it does not have to be. Go with a few friends and split the uber cost or take the el both ways, and avoid dropping $20 on delicious french cookies and it will not be as expensive as a trip as it was for me.

Next Semester Registration

Next Semester Registration

It’s the time of year again that everyone has a love/hate relationship with–registration. While it theoretically should be easier for those of us already enrolled at Loyola that are continuing onto sophomore year and up, that is not guaranteed.

I don’t mean to make registration sound like a horrible process, because it really isn’t for most students, but it can be stressful if you’re not sure about your major/minor, or are running out of core to take. While I know not everyone really took their four year plan in UNIV 101 seriously, it is a great resource to use–there is no reason you should be at a complete loss of what classes you should take.

I recommend making at least three schedules if you’re not the first to register (honors, ROTC, or athletes), with a variety of classes and teacher that you are willing to take. Don’t believe everything you read online, and keep in mind that people who write reviews are often very opinionated one way or another. A good way to figure out who you want to take next semester is to look at a few times and teachers that will work for you, and then asking around who has had which teacher and the workload in each class.

Remember, it will all work out and it really isn’t a big deal–you will get the classes that you need. There’s always a chance that the class you want that filled up the space before your registration time will have an open seat during the summer! You can add, drop, swap until what is pretty much the first week of classes next semester.

Good luck to all!

Employment Options During the Semesters

Employment Options During the Semesters

Something that a lot of parents and students wonder about is if their student is going to be able to have a job to help fund their life in the Windy City over the semesters. The truth is, it’s not guaranteed. You have the responsibility to find a job, either through Loyola’s career center, or  around the campus area.

While you do not have to be qualified for federal work-study to get several on-campus jobs, it certainly does help. However, off campus jobs do not take that into consideration when they’re hiring.

Keep in mind that we have more than one campus as well! Downtown stores (both the magnificent mile as well as the Water Tower Place mall/Macy’s) are often looking for seasonal help around the holidays, and will sometimes keep seasonal employees that do a great job.

Another option to look for is internships–some of them are paid, and they are great experience to add to a resume. You can find ones that are in your field of study/interest, or just ones that sound cool. Keep an eye out for now hiring signs, and if you know there is a place you’ll likely be hired, you can even arrange your schedule for the following semester around optimal work shifts.

While it is not a required thing to have a job on or off campus, it is a nice thing to have extra cash. Just keep in mind the number of credit hours you’re taking, and make sure you don’t over book yourself.

Down to the Wire

Down to the Wire

This is the time of year when everything is just absolutely so stagnant. We’re a few weeks from the end, and with only three (not even full weeks) until finals, everything is getting down to the wire. While it feels like our grades are pretty much where they’re going to be at for the end of the year, don’t forget to check and make sure that you double check with your syllabi to ensure that there isn’t any surprise papers or projects before finals week.

Another good idea would be to double check when your finals are, and what kind of a final they are. Some professors prefer doing a final in the form of a paper, where as some prefer to do a project or a cumulative exam. If you’re lucky, the exam might not even be cumulative, and just over what you’ve learnt since the last test.

No matter the format of your final, if it’s a particularly hard subject for you, start studying now–it’s recommended by pretty much everyone that you start studying ahead of time. Cramming the night before the final is doable, but increases your chance of a bad grade. Putting a semester’s worth of information in your head over the span of a few hours is near impossible and extremely stressful.

Best of luck these next few weeks!

Move Out Prep

Move Out Prep

There is less than a month until the last day of finals.
I repeat:

Now, as exciting as this is, that means move out is upon us. I know that this shouldn’t make me nervous and freak me out, however let me tell ya…living in Chicago has really awoken the shopper in me. I didn’t realize it until now, but I have so. much. stuff. Moving in at Loyola was almost a flawless process, but moving out will be less so–not everyone has designated times they need to move out at, although technically it’s 24 hours after your last final.

As an out-of-stater, move out plans are a little tricker. My family knew that they wouldn’t be able to get everything (fridge, microwave, coffee pot, etc) out of my dorm room and back home to Nebraska in one foul swoop. That being said, there are many different options to accommodate those of us who don’t have the desire to drive half of a kitchen back home for 4 months.

Located right next door to the mailroom, there is a storage facility called Uncle Bob’s storage. You are more than welcome to store your belongings there until the next semester starts. Otherwise, you may have a service ship your items home, or you may start to bring items home little at a time.

Personally, my family is taking a trip up here for a weekend, taking a great majority of my stuff back home with them, and then I’ll probably end up living out of a suitcase or two for the last weeks of school.

Whatever works for you the best is what you should do–but now is the time to start thinking about it!

Easter Break

Easter Break

Just a reminder that the dorms are indeed open for Easter break. You are not obligated to go home this weekend, but it is encouraged so you get to spend time with your family. 🙂

For those that are staying, remember that certain things will and will not be open: Halas, certain dining halls, as well as other on-campus and off-campus businesses.

Damen dining hall is open on every day except Sunday, and for those of you who live downtown in Baumhart, Lu’s is open every day except Sunday as well. If you don’t have food in your room already and need to stock up for Easter Sunday, Aldi’s as well as the small-business grocery stores along Granville are open through Saturday.

Easter events will be held through the Madonna chapel and campus ministry over the weekend to celebrate.

Halas will be closed on Good Friday and Easter Sunday, but will be open Thursday, Saturday, and on Monday it will return to it’s regular hours.

Have a great Easter Break!


Edit: If you don’t feel like cooking your own meal, Summer Noodles and Rice will be open on Easter Sunday, and they do deliver! (Located directly next to the Granville stop.)