- Class: Freshman
- Major: Psychology
- Gender: M
- High School: Hinsdale South H.S.
- Transfer Student: N
Location,location,location! Though the Lake Shore Campus has the bone-chilling winds of Lake Michigan during Chicago's winter months, living right by the lake is certainly a treat! My favorite buildings on campus overlook the lake: the Madonna Dela Strada chapel and the new Information Commons, a multi-million dollar,"green" study center. Also, the Water Tower Campus is two blocks away from Michigan Ave and the heart of downtown Chicago. You are within walking distance from hundreds of shops and restaurants. Last semester,I spent more time window shopping than in class when I was downtown (don't worry, I've stopped that!).Complementary shuttle service transports students to and from both campuses every 15-30 minutes and the CTA's Red Line and 147 buses provide more frequent services as an alternative to the shuttle. While the Water Tower Campus is located in the most desirable Chicago neighborhood, the same cannot be said about Rogers Park, the location of the Lake Shore Campus. While it is certainly NOT a dilapidated,crime-ridden neighborhood, personal safety should be taken seriously. As in any big city, use caution at night. If you're a female, be sure to walk with someone else or call 8-ride to get a safe ride anywhere close to campus. Basically, use common sense and you should be fine. One disadvantage about Loyola is the lack of a "campus feel". While the majority of students live on-campus,around 30% commute to campus. Also, most on-campus students live in the Chicagoland area, so many students (including myself) go home on some weekends, so this makes the campus feel empty. Luckily, the school does a good job of providing weekend activities, from theme nights to basketball games. While there are numerous food joints within a walking distance from campus (namely McDonalds,Dunkin Doughnuts,Chipotle,Thai Grill), there is no "college town" that would be found in Big Ten universities. Rogers Park itself doesn't provide many food options either. However, you have the city of Chicago at your fingertips. A hop on the red line to Argyle,Fullerton,Belmont and downtown provides a wealth of dining options, as does a trip north to Evanston. Just be careful not to overdo it, this is Chicago and things are expensive!
Overall, the education at Loyola has been outstanding. I feel that I have been challenged by dedicated professors who truly care about their students' success. While there are classes in large lecture halls (namely intro level biology and psychology classes), most classes are in classrooms with 20-30 students, so this enables the professors to know students' names and allow for discussion-based learning. Professors are very open-they constantly recommend us to take advantage of their office hours, and many professors are open to talking with students in the cafeterias and coffee shops. They are quick at answering e-mails, even at the last minute, so they are open to questions and encourage them! While Loyola has a wide range of liberal arts and science majors to choose from,as well as a reputable business and law school, a large number of students are biology,pre-med or nursing majors. Loyola has a reputation for quality health care in the Chicago area, and it is evident that the university successfully prepares its students for this field and many others.
The majority of students are from upper-middle class from the Chicago suburbs. However, there are plenty of first-time college students; the university does give out scholarships and loans to those who need it. There is also a relatively large minority student population that continues to grow as Loyola attempts to diversify its student body. While students are free to express themselves, nearly everyone owns a piece of clothing from North Face. Surprisingly, very few students wear PJs or sweatpants to class, many students care about their appearance and dress up to look presentable.
The Best Things
quality academics, location in Chicago
The Worst Things
neighborhood, safety concerns