Author: Therese Bennett

Hi! My name is Therese and I am a senior majoring in Biology and English. When I am not studying and doing homework, I enjoy baking French macaroons and creme brulee and cupcakes upon cupcakes upon cupcakes! I also love to write poetry and play the piano and harp. Chicago has always been my home and Loyola has become my second home. Go Ramblers! Read my blog and find out what it is like being a student in the Windy City!
Spots in the outdoors on Campus!

Spots in the outdoors on Campus!

Hi everyone! So with the weather get nicer, I wanted to share some of my favorite outdoor spots on campus which are perfect for just lounging around and getting some school work done. The grass is not green yet, but soon with the weather warming up, rain, and plenty of sunshine, the grass will be a wonderfully lush and green!

Madonna Della Strada courtyard area – Located facing the lake with a half circle to sit around. Get place to catch the lake’s breeze and just to relax. Bonus: This is an amazing spot for pictures on campus!





IC – Located right in front of the IC and facing the lake, this space is a continuation of the half circle in front of Madonna Della Strada. It can get quite windy here, but lots of students just sit on the edge and chat here. I have even seen some lay on the ledge and take naps! Only for the brave of course 😉


The Quad – SO MUCH ROOM FOR ACTIVITIES! I love this spot. There are trees to sit under and also an open area for sports. This space is so large that students can do homework, play sports, take a nap, or just sit and chat without running into each other’s space. People often bring their dogs here to run around as well. Who doesn’t like dogs?!?!


Space in between Madonna Della Strada and Coffee Hall – This is a smaller space which often does not receive much student traffic and that is why it is perfect. This is my favorite space. Facing the lake, it is a small hill that slopes slightly downwards. Since it is more of a quiet spot, there is always peace and quiet for homework. The lake just makes everything calmer and makes struggling through Organic Chemistry homework much easier!


(I apologize for the brownness of these photos, but I promise that these spaces are so lovely when the green grass grows in and there are flowers!)

Setting Up Shop: New Businesses come to Loyola!

Setting Up Shop: New Businesses come to Loyola!

Hello again everyone! Hope your week is going well! Mine has been quite hectic because homework and papers just seem to be piling on with the end not in sight for some time. With all this homework though it is important to step back and let your mind rest and focus on other things, so that is what I am doing with this blog post! I wanted to talk about some new places that have opened/are opening up around campus.

  1. Potbellys – Potbelly has just opened up right near the Loyola Red Line and CVS! A super affordable and super delicious sandwich shop, they have delicious hot sandwiches for anyone’s taste buds. My favorite is the “Wreck” because it is filled with salami, roast beef, ham, turkey, and swiss cheese with savory spices and toppings. It is just to die for. They also have amazing soups and the broccoli cheddar soup is so yummy! But what really takes the cake is their shakes. Rich and creamy, they are perfect for these warm weather days we have been having.
  2. Pita Pit – Pita Pit just opened and it is also located right next to the Loyola Red Line. I have yet to go here, but apparently they serve delicious Mediterranean pitas made with super fresh ingredients. It is definitely something to shake up the eating options around Loyola because we are used to sandwiches, pizza, and burgers. Yay for healthier options! I can’t wait to try this place!
  3. BMO Harris Bank – BMO Harris Bank is opening right next to Pita Pit. So, if you belong to this bank, this will be beneficial for you! Of course, this really is not all that exciting (food options are much better) but it is something new coming to Loyola so I thought I would give you a heads up!
  4. Go Grocer – Go Grocer will be located right next to the Loyola Lake Shore bookstore. This grocery store specializes in healthy and organic products and it was founded by two Loyola alumni! Pretty cool! While of course the products will be slightly more expensive than the average student’s budget, it is still a great place for fresh produce because, of course, everyone is willing to pay a couple extra bucks for better quality food. I know I am!
  5. Insomnia Cookies – Insomnia Cookies is opening up right next to Potbellys. Insomnia Cookies is a bakery that provides fresh baked brownies and cookies. They also serve milk and ice cream. Sounds like heaven! I have never been to an Insomnia Cookies before, but I hear they are amazing! Their popular cookie flavors are chocolate chunk, snickerdoodle, and deluxe s’more.

All these places look fantastic and I only wish that they were around when I was a freshman. Even though I am ready to graduate, I am not ready to miss out on all these really great businesses coming to Loyola. Man, you freshman got it good…..

Staying in Touch

Staying in Touch

Hello again! Hope everyone is enjoying this fantastic weather Chicago is currently having! It is supposed to get into the 60s next week and I have a hunch that classes might not be that well attended because everyone is going to want to go to the beach and spend some time in the sun! This past Tuesday I decided to enjoy some sports to get into the full swing of spring.

Being from the suburbs, I went to my little brother’s baseball game. Well, he really is not that little (he is fourteen) but to me he will always be my little brother. Unfortunately, the game was not played outdoors, but instead, inside a huge dome in Rosemont. It was a lot of fun! My brother played really well!

Having family so close to me and all around me while I have been at Loyola has meant a lot to me. My dad is a doctor at Loyola, my older sister graduated from Loyola, I go to Loyola, my younger brother is a junior here at Loyola, and my youngest sister is a freshman here at Loyola. Also, on the plus side, being from a suburb located closely outside of Chicago always a makes it easy to go home and see family. College is a super exciting time in your life. You will make new friends, learn new things, prepare for the future, and overall just grow as a person, but it is always important to remember those who helped you get there. So don’t forget to call your family, friends, or anyone who is close to you in anyway and has influenced you to become the person you are today. They will always be there for you when you need to cry over a grade, talk about the stress of your future, or just to catch up. College really does fly by (I would know, I am graduating!) and you do not want to lose contact with the ones that you love.

So in the spirit of a new season of spring upon us, give your loved ones a call! Especially if you are missing home while you are at your home away from home, Loyola.

Seeing “Tosca” at the Lyric

Seeing “Tosca” at the Lyric

Hello everyone! Hope you all had a relaxing spring break (even though the weather was not exactly “spring” weather at all last week). I can definitely say that the break was not long enough! While some of my friends traveled to all different kinds of places including Mexico, Arizona, and Spain, I stayed in the burbs writing papers and getting my wisdom teeth out. Not a super relaxing break that I was hoping for, but I did head back to the Lyric Opera to see another wonderful performance of Tosca!

It was AMAZING! Beautiful sets, wonderful singers, and an overall captivating storyline. In this opera, there is a painter who helps hide a fugitive and he is taken as a prisoner because of this. His lover, Tosca, pleads for his release with the general who has taken him captive. Tosca is the most beautiful woman to the general and he wants to marry her, so he proposes that she exchange herself to him for her lover. She does not agree and completely stricken with grief, she laments over her lover. The general sees this and has a “change” or heart. He says that he will stage a fake execution for her lover so that they can then be reunited and he, the general, will not look like a fool at the end. Of course the general is lying, and when the painter is getting shot, the so called “fake” bullets are real and so he dies. Tosca then kills herself because she cannot bear to live any longer without her lover the painter.

This opera was much shorter than the other one I saw. We were there for only about 3 hours, including intermissions. All the singers were fantastic, but Tosca was the best. The control she had over her voice, emotions, and pitch was incredible. She completely sucked the audience in and made us all feel the same emotions she was feeling. It was truly magical. At the end, she had to take so many bows because people just kept on clapping for her! I saw this play at the beginning of my break, so it was a nice start to an otherwise uneventful break. Remember that I said you can get student discounts at the Lyric to see shows for only 20 dollars so take advantage of it! I really believe that everyone should experience the opera at least once because you may be surprised in finding that you actually like it!

Seeing “Tannhauser” at the Lyric Opera

Seeing “Tannhauser” at the Lyric Opera

Hi everyone! Hope you are all staying warm in this freezing weather. Every time I go outside I feel my whole face freezing and when I am breathing on my scarf wrapped around my neck, I can see actual icicles forming. It is insane! But of course, I am braving the weather and so should you! Don’t let a little cold make you not explore Chicago. This past Sunday, I decided to head out of my warm apartment and go to the Lyric Opera to see Tannhauser, a German opera.

I love going to the opera! While it is not for everyone, the beautiful singing just mesmerizes me and the story plots, costumes, set designs, and actors/actresses are just wonderful. However, if you are a first timer to the opera, I would not recommend seeing Tannhauser. It is a four and a half hour long opera which is quite a long time for people to sit through. It is also a tragic and depressive opera which is not everyone’s cup of tea. If you are a first timer, see something shorter and lighter, like the Magic Flute or a Shakespearean opera.

At the opera, I am pretty sure that my friend and I were the youngest ones there. The opera can be quite pricey, so not a lot of young people go. Since it was an older crowd, and it was a long opera, many people fell asleep! Which is kind of typical in long operas, but not me. It was way to enthralling for me to fall asleep. The general plot line is that a man is in Hell living with Venus who has enticed him away from his true love on earth. He begins to feel restless and wants to leave Venus to get back to earth. She lets him go, but unwillingly. Once returned, the man sees his love and wants her back, but she is unsure because he already left her once and she does not trust him. Many other men are vying for her attention, so a sing-off is held to see who she will choose. The man is still under Venus’s spell, so he sings of lustful love and everyone is disgusted. He is commanded to go to Rome to have his sins wiped clean. He goes, but is not forgiven and his love dies because she is distraught over the outcome. The man says that the pope will not forgive him unless his staff bears leaves. It miraculously does so at the end of the opera, but it is too late for the man because his love has died. The whole opera was in German so you have to read a prompter that is in English to tell you what is being sung.

It is a tragic opera, but a beautiful one. The Lyric offers student discounts for any student in Chicago, including Loyola Ramblers! If you go to their website and register as a student for free, you will receive emails saying when you can go to discounted operas. Usually the tickets are only around 20 dollars or so! It is a nice incentive to go out and get cultured in Chicago!




Hi there! Since this week has been filled with papers and studying, I did not have much time to do anything exciting to tell you guys about, so I thought I would talk about Sakai! Woohoo, three cheers for academic related blog posts!

Sakai is Loyola’s online learning management system. It stores all your classes and is a great way to build a connection between a student and their instructor. On this site, your instructor posts their syllabus and can add any sort of files you may need. If your course has extra online reading materials, your professor can have them posted under “Resources” and here you can always have access to the readings that you need. Under each course there is also an “Announcement” tab where your professor can send you news updates on the course. These announcements are tied to your email, so whenever an announcement is posted on Sakai, you will also get an email about it.

Another tab is the “Assignments” tab. Here, your professor may write what assignments you have to complete over the semester. Your assignments could have direct submissions on Sakai where you upload a document or type out your response in a dialogue box. The “Gradebook” tab is used to display your grades for each assignment over the semester. It is always helpful to see where you stand in a class! There is also a “Wiki”, “Blogs”, and “Forums” tabs which are used for creating discussions and collaboration with other students. You can create your own Wiki page, blog about the readings you are doing, or post comments in the forum and see what other students have to say.

There is also a great tab where you can email your class/professor/certain student in class. This can always be helpful in case you missed an assignment and need notes, ect. Sakai is a great way for students to connect with their professors to enhance their learning in a class through technology. I was one of the classes that was the test class for Sakai and I loved it! Sakai has always been a helpful tool for me as a student!

Saturday Food Trip to Thai Grill

Saturday Food Trip to Thai Grill

Hello hello hello! Hope everyone is having a fabulous Tuesday! Just a few more days till the weekend. My birthday is this weekend and I will be turning 23 (I know, I am super old, ah the life of a fifth year student) and unfortunately, my birthday falls around midterms Every. Single. Year. But it is not as bad as you think because sometimes you just have to celebrate earlier. Last year I celebrated my birthday at Thai Grill. Being a major foodie, bet you have not guessed that yet (sarcasm), I love all kinds of cuisines, but Thai is one of my favorites. This past Saturday I had the wonderful pleasure of heading back to Thai Grill.

Thai Grill is super close to Loyola’s Lake Shore campus and it is a favorite place among the students. It is located at 1040 West Granville which is literally about less than three blocks from campus. I have tried a lot of Thai places, but this one so far has been my favorite and I could not be more thankful that it is so close!

The menu is traditional Thai: including delicious noodle dishes, chicken, fish, soups, fried rice, and appetizers. I always order the same thing when I go here, which is kind of sad of course, but hey, if it still works and is delicious, no need to change it up. I always order the Pad Kee Mao. It is a spicy noodle dish with green peppers, wide rice noodles, and your choice of meat. The spiciness if quite hot, so if you do not like spice don’t go with this dish. The menu has helpful little stars located next to each dish to indicate if it contains a lot of heat. For me, the hotter the better. If it does not burn away my taste buds, it is not hot enough! My favorite dish that they serve though is their Crab Rangoon. Deliciously deep fried dumplings filled with crab meat, cream cheese, garlic, and scallions, these are what I want before I die as my last meal. They are served as an appetizer and are oh so good! I always also order a Chai Iced Tea, which is chai black tea combined with ice and sweetened condensed milk. It is to die for! Besides all these amazing dishes, Thai Grill also serves Bubble Tea which is fruit smoothies with tapioca. I am not a fan of tapioca, but people who are say that Thai Grill has amazing Bubble Tea.

I recommended this place to everyone and everyone loves it! It is so close to Loyola, offers lunch specials, delivers, and is always filled with Loyola students. It is a great place to meet up with friends and just enjoy some good food.

Searching and Locating Resources at Loyola’s Library

Searching and Locating Resources at Loyola’s Library

Hi! Since it is becoming close to midterms and papers are piling on, especially papers that have a research component, I thought it would be useful to let you know about Loyola’s library website. I have used the library’s extended resources to help me find information on a variety of subject materials including Shakespeare, African-American literature, Chemistry, Biology, and Sociology. Loyola’s online and in print library is so extensive, you will never not find what you are looking for!

To get to Loyola’s online library, you can go to Loyola’s homepage at, then click on the dropdown “Links” tab until you find “Library”. Or, you can just go to the Library’s homepage directly at Once on their homepage, you can already see how many amazing resources they have. They have a whole “Services” section where you can request a resource from another library, reserve library rooms, get audiovisual aid for a presentation, renew books, and learn about other helpful resources the library offers. On the homepage there is also a “Help” section where you can figure out on how to get started using resources at the library, ask a librarian a question, talk with someone who is a specialist in the subject you may need to do research on, and learn what classes and workshops the library may be offering. There is also an “About” section on the homepage which explains policies, hours, job opening, and staff members. There is also a “News and Events” section to keep you updated on what is happening at the library.

The section that you will use for research will be entitled, “Find”. Under this title, it will list all the different ways you can search and locate what you need. The first way to find resources is located under “Books and E-Books”. Here, you find books and e-books in Loyola’s library using such search engines such as “WorldCat Local” and “Pegasus Online Catalog”. If Loyola has the book you are looking for, simply press the “Request” bottom and they will hold the book for you so that you can pick it up. If the book or any resource is not available at Loyola, you can request it via the Interlibrary loan. It can take a few days to borrow the book from another library so make sure you look for whatever you need in advance!

Also under the “Find” section there is a section labeled “Article”. Here you can search for any article. For an online article search under “Article Finder” and “E-Journals”. If you need the article in print, search under “Pegasus” or request via an Interlibrary loan. The “Article” section is particularly helpful if you already have an article in mind.

My favorite and most helpful section is called “Databases” Here you can find any articles/resource you need. This section is great because you don’t have to have a certain article’s title in mind, instead you can just search for an article that is written on the topic you want. If I want to look up research for an English subject literary work, I use the “MLA International Bibliography” database. Here I can simply type up something like, “Gender in Macbeth” and articles will pop up. I can even narrow my search down by choosing specifically scholar articles, ect. Another popular database that students use for articles is JSTOR. There are a ton of databases to choose from with specific subjects in mind. If you are having trouble searching for anything, just ask a librarian. They are always happy to help!

There is also the “E-Journal” section which is useful in finding online journals based on a title or specific subject. There is “Research Guides” which is specifically helpful for locating research for a particular subject. There is “Reserves” which can be used by your professors to hold certain works for you and your subject. And there is “Digital Collections” which is all works created by the Loyola community.

The library is an amazing resource center that you should take advantage of when being a student. The librarians are always willing to help and guide you in the right direction. Using their articles, I have learned a whole bunch of new things!

Search and Join some Loyola based Facebook Groups

Search and Join some Loyola based Facebook Groups

Helloooo! Hope everyone is staying nice and warm! With it being under 10 degrees today, I definitely packed on the layers over here. Today I wanted to let you guys in on some amazing Facebook pages about Loyola that you can like. Facebook is a great way to connect with different students.

The first group is called “Free and For Sale”. This group is great! It is a page designed for the sole purpose of selling and buying things from students. Whether you need new furniture for an apartment, some new clothes, notebooks, lamps, sometimes even pets, this page is for you! It is all Loyola students who are handing things down to you. You moving into a new apartment and need some furniture? This page has some for you! Sometimes, cars are even sold on this page! As college students, budgets are limited, so join this page where you can actually afford things. The students who are selling stuff know exactly what kind of situation you are in.

The second group is called “Textbook Exchange”.  On this page you can buy and sell your used textbooks. Just post a picture, describe the edition, ect. and viola! Someone will buy your textbooks! No need to set up an Amazon account or anything. It is just one student selling their textbook to another student, usually at a much cheaper price than other sites. So give it a look and see if it has anything you need for class!

The third group is called “Jobs and Internships”. This is the page where students will put up any job listings or internships that they know of. Usually those students have worked at these places and have hands on experience to let you know what the company will be like. It is a great way to discover a job or internship to help boost up that resume for the future!

Other groups that are used for Loyola that I belong too is the “Biology” group, the “Loyola University Catholic Students’ Organization” group, and the “Events and Parties” group. Of course, these are based solely on my interests, but there are others for your interests! So go on Facebook and discovers some awesome new pages to connect with Loyola students!

Stops for Food on Campus

Stops for Food on Campus

Hi again! Since every day is getting a little harder to get up for, I often do not have time, nor energy, to pack a lunch. Sometimes I just plain forget to. Since I work during the day as well as go to class, I always try to pack a lunch because I usually end up starving about halfway through my day. Even though I may forget to pack a lunch sometimes, there are always super, close by food options on campus, sometimes even in the same buildings as your classes are in. Whether you need some soup to warm you up, a sandwich, hot coffee, or just a quick snack, there are plenty of options on campus for you to get your energy boost!

Besides the dining halls, there are five other places on Lakeshores campus that have food options. The first is located in Mundelein. This café has soups, salads, drinks, Starbucks, and snacks. It is located right in the entrance hall of Mundelein and across the hall, there is a place to sit down and eat. It is conveniently located in a classroom building, so you always have the option of grabbing food and running into your class on time! The second location is in the Damen Student Center. Not only in there a dining hall in Damen, there is also a restaurant like/grocery store. You can order burgers and hot sandwiches to go, as well as Mexican food and pizza! Here you can also find grocery options like fresh fruit, salads, drinks, hummus, sushi, toiletries, medicines, and kitchen needs. Super great! The third location is in the IC. It is located in the hallway that connects the IC with the library. This is a smaller café, but they offer Starbucks drinks and delicious bagels, cupcakes, and donuts. This place is the most caféish because there a bar to sit at and a few tables around the perimeter of the room overlooking the lake. It is a great place to meet with an advisor or a friend to just catch up!

The fourth place is in the Simpson freshman dorm. This is not a café, but a grocery store. You can get cream cheese, bread, pastas, snacks, fruits, vegetables, ice cream, toiletries, ect. It is just like going to a mini supermarket! The last place is located in the IES building across from Mundelein. The Café is called Engrained and it contains many of the similar foods found in the other cafes. It is also conveniently located in a classroom/dorm building. This great thing about all these places is that they all accept your Rambler bucks (if you are not sure what that is, check out one of my earlier blog posts in which I explain)! Super easy, super convenient, and super delicious!