Tag: Loyola Ramblers

A Series of Firsts: Loyola Weekend Spring ’19

A Series of Firsts: Loyola Weekend Spring ’19

Hey everybody! Welcome back to “A Series of Firsts,” where I tell you about my many first experiences navigating the resources that Loyola offers its students! Today it’s all about Loyola Weekend, and how it was working for UAO during the busiest time for the office, and Loyola itself.

A little about Loyola Weekend: every Spring Semester, admitted students and their families have the opportunity to visit campus and experience first hand what Loyola has to offer its students. From staying overnight with a current First Year, to touring our campuses and meeting Staff and Faculty from the different Departments at the University, Loyola Weekend is a weekend full of activities so that admitted students can picture themselves as being part of the Wolf Pack!

The Weekend itself is run by the Undergraduate Admissions Office (where I work) with the help of other Departments in order to better accommodate the needs of the incoming families without disrupting normal University activities. It really isn’t a job for the faint of heart. In order to make sure that the Weekend would run smoothly, UAO recruited all of its student workers to give a little help in as many tasks as possible; that’s where I come in. Having decided last minute that I was going to work on Saturday for Loyola Weekend, I had only a slight idea of what I was getting into since I had already worked for a similar event last semester.

Nothing had prepared me for the work that went into preparing for the arrival of the families: days passed and the student workers had to prepare folders for every student that was to come, with information specific to the group they belonged to, as various hundreds of folders were needed for the weekend. I helped with folder making one day, and got a glimpse of all the other things that had to be done before Friday came: Faculty and Staff had to be reminded to attend their respective meetings, as were the Registered Student Orgs that were to participate in the Student Life sessions. The Panels for the different Schools and Departments needed to have enough people in order to give a rather full picture of the experience at Loyola. Students coming for auditions for Fine Arts Programs had to be accommodated properly, as were the students from the School of Business and School of Communication. enough Campus Tour Guides had to be available in order to show everyone around, and Student Ambassadors had to be available to provide the families with directions and help.

There are so many other things that had to be done that I might not know of or not even remember, but every single role was important to be fulfilled, and our advisors at UAO made sure that we student workers knew that. As a tour guide for the Halas Recreational Center, I saw how important it was to show our admitted students what their new home looks like, how crucial it is for them to envision themselves as living in Loyola. As hectic as the whole experience was, with everyone running up and down in order to get everything done, I really enjoyed the experience. At the end of the day, I had enjoyed sharing with others a little of my time at Loyola and to express my opinion towards the different resources that Loyola has to offer its students. I felt that my voice was being heard whenever a student or my parent would ask me to go off-script to tell them a little more of what being a Rambler is like. And I felt great being able to welcome them to the community the way the Loyola community had welcomed me when I was a First Year.

If you came to visit campus during this past Loyola Weekend, leave a comment and let me know what your favorite part of the whole weekend was! And if you have any questions about life at Loyola, just leave them in the comments section!

Fast Delivery Food for Finals

Fast Delivery Food for Finals

Who else gets super hungry when studying?  The worst type of hungry is the 2-am-studying-for-finals hungry.  Damen and Simpson are closed and so are the cafes around campus.  Star Grill is a walk, and it’s probably not a good idea to be walking outside at that time anyway.  Your only choice is to order food, but what can you order at two in the morning?  You can Google places, but it will just take time, you’re starving, and if you’re like me, you’re probably in the worst mood ever because you’re SO hungry.

Grubhub, an online database for food (not really, but something like it), is a website in which you can search for any delivery restaurants that are open any time of the day.  It is very convenient when you’re studying for finals because there are many restaurants that are open later than you think.  All you have to do is search for open restaurants and the list pops out for you.  I’m serious, one time my roommate and I ordered tacos at 3 in the morning just because.

Even though, this only works around the Chicago area, it is a life-changer!  I, ALWAYS, use Grubhub because I like how convenient it is.  Plus, it gives you an estimate on how long it will it take and after you’ve ordered from them a couple of times they may give you a free drink or meal!  However, I do have to say that the only thing that I dislike about Grubhub is that when you put the tip in, it doesn’t always show up on the receipt, which means that the delivery man is not getting paid.  So, I prefer to tip cash.  This way, I am sure that the delivery person is getting paid…especially, since it’s so late at night!  It’s only fair.

Anyway, I have to say that I LOVE Grubhub.  It is so convenient and it gives me a great variety on food choices.  Even though, I always order the same thing: pizza; I’m a total pizzaholic.  Anyway, if you didn’t know…NOW you know!  This is one of my great tips to you, especially because finals are QUICKLY approaching.

Loyola’s recent PhD graduate…

Loyola’s recent PhD graduate…

Have you met Dr. Binaku?

Katrina Binaku, also known as Dr. Binaku, graduated last spring from Loyola University Chicago and received her PhD in Chemistry.  She was my General Chemistry Teacher Assistant freshman year.  She was always very helpful and nice, and I was lucky enough to bump into her last week.  She told me about her dissertation and work experience at Loyola, but was very relieved to be done.  A PhD, the highest degree awarded by a graduate school, is not an easy breeze.  Through her experience and her research at Loyola, she had to spend endless evenings and nights running experiments that sometimes worked and sometimes didn’t.  Chemistry is a lot of trial and error, and while it may be frustrating, Dr. Binaku expressed how rewarding it is!

As an undergraduate student she worked in industry, but decided on Loyola’s graduate program and worked alongside Dr. Shmeling, a Loyola professor.  Therefore, it comes to no surprise that she joined the Loyola team and is now a laboratory instructor for all the freshman laboratories.  Her smile and amazing personality make her an outstanding instructor, and I’m so glad to have witnessed her growth from a graduate student to a professional instructor.  I am sure you will see more of Dr. Binaku and her future research.  Keep an eye out…


Loyola Joins The Missouri Valley Conference: UPDATE

Loyola Joins The Missouri Valley Conference: UPDATE

It’s been a busy couple of weeks at Loyola. We opened our awesome new Damen Student Center and started construction to revamp our on student gym, Halas.

But perhaps the busiest office on campus was the Athletics. They did two majors things over the past week. First, they hired a new women’s basketball coach, Sheryl Swoopes. For those of you who don’t know, Swoopes is regarded as one of the best athletes (women’s basketball) of all time. Her accolades include a NCAA title, 4-WNBA titles and 3 Olympic gold medals.CRAZY!

The second move athletics made was even bigger than hiring Swoopes. Loyola announced hat Loyola was leaving the Horizon League to join The Missouri Valley Conference. Loyola held a press conference today announcing the move which is affective July 1 2013.

I was hoping to write more about the move today, but it’s been busy in the office. I’ll provide a more in depth look at the move early next week. Check back then!


As promised, I’m back to write more about Loyola’s move to the Missouri Valley Conference. To make it a littler easier to understand, I’m going to break down my analysis into a couple different section: who, what, when, where and why.

Who- A majority of Loyola University Chicago’s Division 1 athletic teams

Most of Loyola’s teams will make the jump the the MVC. The only team that won’t is Men’s Volleyball.

What- Missouri Valley Conference

Loyola was one of the founding members of the Horizon league and has seen the league gain attention over the last couple of years. But, change is good. Especially when you’re making the jump to the second oldest conference in the NCAA and a conference that has some serious basketball powerhouses (e.i. Wichita State and formerly Creighton). A new (and not to mention strong) conference, and one known for hoops, will help Loyola improve it’s level of competition and attract new recruits across all the sports.

When- July 1, 2013

As I wrote above, LU fans won’t have to wait long for the school to make the jump to the MVC. The switch is affective this summer and teams starting officially playing MVC teams in the Fall.

Where- All through the Mid-West and Arch-Madness

True to the name. MVC’s teams are all located through out the mid-west. Which mean, our teams don’t have to travel to far for games.  Each year the MVC hosts it’s annual conference basketball tournament in St. Louis, thus calling it “Arch-Madness.” The MVC hoops tournament is one of the first events that marks the start of March Madness and has had some impressive crowd turnouts over the last couple of seasons.

Why- Fit and Chicago

Last, but not least, is the why. There were a number of reasons given at the press conference as to why Loyola accepted the bid to join the MVC. The word that came up over and over again was “fit.” The league felt Loyola fit well with the league is trying to do now and what it wants to accomplish in the future. The MVC’s commissioner, Doug Elgin commented on how impressed he was Loyola’s facilities and commitment to the ‘student’ part of student athlete. Beyond fit, one of the bigger reasons the MVC looked at Loyola was our location, Chicago. Having a school in the nation’s third largest media market, allows the MVC greater exposure for not only the conference, but it’s teams.

Pretty exciting move, through and through.

Loyola Hoops

Loyola Hoops

For many, the start of the Fall signals the return of some of the nation’s most popular sports. Specifically college and professional football. I am not one of those many. In fact, I think I’m one of the few. Because, for me, the start of Fall means that basketball season is right around the corner.

I follow the professional and college game very closely. I think of most my friends and family members would say my following borders on “obsessive.” On the NBA side, I keep keen track of my beloved, Sacramento Kings. On the college end, I keep keep very, very close track of my alma mater, The Loyola Ramblers!

As I student I made it a point to attend as many basketball games as I could. This was easy since admittance to most games was free for students. For a couple hours each week, I would go to the games to temporarily escape the constant cycle of homework and classes.

Now, as a graduate and an employee of the university, I still make it a point to attend every game I can. This time around I’m attending the games as a season ticket holder (I felt real cool typing that).

Its an exciting time to root for the Ramblers. The university has recently renovated the training facilities for all it’s student athletes with the completion of the gorgeous, The Norville Center. In addition to building The Norville Center, Loyola also overhauled the interior of our basketball arena on campus, The Gentile Arena. The renovations created true stadium seating and reworked the nice, intimate setting already instilled in the bulding. The new Gentile Arena is a fantastic place to catch a game. Both facilities, which are connected, are truly impressive.

The Ramblers are poised to have a great season (full schedule here). The team will be taking on some great opponents. As usual, we’ll play Horizon League rivals, Valparaiso and UIC. We’ll also face, perennial basketball powerhouse, Michigan State in East Lansing. I think there’s one game that stands out from the rest, one with Mississippi State.

Why is this game so important?

Well, 2013 marks 50 year anniversary of when Loyola won the NCAA Basketball Championship. On the way to the championship game, Loyola had to face Mississippi State. A school that, at the time, was not allowed to play racially integrated teams. From Loyola’s Athletic Website:

“Its second-round opponent, Mississippi State, was a late addition because sports programs representing Mississippi schools were not allowed to play integrated teams. Coach Babe McCarthy stole his team to the tournament under the cover of darkness before an injunction could be served prohibiting the Maroons from playing the Ramblers. Loyola won the historic contest, 61-51, with a 20-point effort by All-America forward Jerry Harkness. That contest would prove to be a landmark event in the civil rights movement.”

Pretty cool right?

If you can’t tell, I’m looking forward to the season. I’m sure I’ll be writing more about hoops as the year progresses. Until then, I’m literally counting down the days until tip-off.

All photos from Loyola’s Flickr Page