Tag: Off-Campus Student Life

Calling All Commuters!

Calling All Commuters!


Commuter life is a world of its own. If there’s one major difference between Loyola students, it’s if you are a commuter or you dorm on-campus; our [commuter] lives are quite unique and different.


Unlike the dorming student, we travel, sometimes from afar, every single day via different methods of transportation. Train, bus, car (or even Uber), bike, on foot, or teleportation- we have some idea of how to get around from place to place. We have to make the daily commitments of being on time (finding out when the train will arrive at the station, running after a bus, or factoring rush hour and traffic times, etc). Timing becomes more crucial during the winter because Mother Nature loves to surprise Chicago with unexpected snow blizzards and below zero weather. As a native Chicagoan, I know to have my supplies ready- umbrella (A MUST), an extra sweater, a sled, some reigns, and a pack of sled dogs.

For us commuters, please consider us warriors. (That will give us motivation for this upcoming winter)


Timing is one thing, but having the motivation and mindset is another. Commuters have to be determined to wake up earlier than the dorming student, know his/her responsibilities that need to be done at home for the family, and have enough energy to get through the day (factoring classes, school work, and the commute home). The dorming student may have similar responsibilities, but they can be considered more independent because they are not living under a family roof and since they live on campus, can do much more with friends 24/7.


The one thing (in my case) that I think commuters especially appreciate and love is……the UPass. Whereas people in general have to pay a fee every time they use the CTA, we have this lovely card which allows us to use the CTA as much as we want, whenever we want, using any form of CTA public transportation. This card allowed me to explore much more of Chicago during my free time and has allowed me to cut costs on commuting.  Prospective freshman…you will understand what I mean! 🙂


Here at Loyola, we have the Off-Campus Student Life group (which I am a part of). Our motto is that we are “Commuter Proud.” Yes, we are proud. We are warriors, aren’t we? We are more than your average dorming student because not only do we engage in student activities and go to classes, but we actually experience Chicago in a much more raw and realistic way. Us commuters, though we tackle many obstacles, we still are proud of who we are and our accomplishments.


9 Loyola Myths

9 Loyola Myths


Over the past 3 years in admission, I have noticed there are A LOT of misconceptions about Loyola University Chicago. I am going to use my blog this week to set the record straight. Here are what I consider to be the top 9 Loyola myths:

  1. We are not the same school as Loyola Maryland, Loyola New Orleans or Loyola Marymount. We are all completely separate schools. The only thing we have in common other than our name are our Jesuit background and values. So no, you cannot study at another Loyola in the U.S. However, you can Study Abroad at other universities all over the world or at one of our three campuses in Rome, Beijing or Ho Chi Minh City, which are in fact run by Loyola University Chicago.
  2. You do not have to be Catholic (or even religious) to go to a Jesuit University. About half of our students identify as being Catholic and as a Catholic University, we do offer regular masses, Taize prayer, resources and mentors for our Catholic students. Loyola has the only student-run mosque in Illinois and we have an incredibly strong Hillel Community on campus. We also have several different prayer spaces in our Student Center including a Puja Prayer Room. We are a home to all faiths and encourage interfaith dialogues and for students to lead their own spiritual path with assistance from Campus Ministry which provides resources, services, and mentors on-campus. I also want to throw out that you do not need to be Catholic to attend one of our Retreats at the Loyola University Retreat and Ecology Campus, these retreats are awesome and open to everyone.
  3. We are actually in the city of Chicago (not a suburb) and are right next to Lake Michigan (not a block away, our buildings are a foot or two from the lake).
  4. We are not a commuter school. Yes, in the past, a lot of students did commute to Loyola, but not in recent years. Now all first and second year students are required to live on-campus and while upper-classmen have the option to live on or off-campus, most stay on campus or live within a block or two of campus. However, the students exempt from the housing policy still have a community and home on campus thanks to Off-Campus Student Life.
  5. Housing is not hard to find on or around campus. As mentioned above, we require that 1st and 2nd year students live on-campus and we have several upperclassmen residence halls at both the Lake Shore Campus and the Water Tower Campus. There are also hundreds of non-Loyola owned or operated apartments near campus.
  6. Our acceptance rate is not 92% or 98%. It is closer to 63%. This is one of those cases where you can’t believe everything you read on the internet so if you’re questioning something you read, call or email your admission counselor!
  7. We are not a school that lacks athletic success, spirit, or history. We are a Division One school in the Missouri Valley Conference and last year our Men’s Volleyball Team won the NCAA National Championship on our very own campus. Go Ramblers! We are also the only D1 School in Illinois to ever win a NCAA Men’s Basketball National Championship, which we did in 1963, but we are still proud of the win and of our contribution to NCAA history via the Game of Change.
  8. Chicago’s weather isn’t always horrible. Our fall is actually warmer than most of the Midwest thanks to the wind blowing warm air off the lake. Most of the time, we don’t see snow or really cold days until late December when students are already home for Winter Break. Yes the beginning of the spring semester is cold and has some snow, but harsh winters build character and stories you’ll be telling the rest of your life. And don’t forget how much of the year (typically March – November) brings truly amazing weather to Loyola. During these nice months you can find our students hanging out at street festivals, enjoying the great outdoors that you CAN find in the city, and by hanging out at “Loyola Beach” (really called Hartigan Beach).
  9. We are not “the wolves”. We are the Ramblers! However, Lu Wolf is indeed the name of our mascot.