My 3 favorite things about UIC
Oh UIC, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways. UIC has become a place of many memories for me. From my first day of orientation to my soon-to-be first day of senior year, I have grown to love UIC in many ways.
Although my college memories are riveting and profound, you’re probably not interested in hearing all of them. Instead, I will share with you the top three things that I love about my future alma mater, the University of Illinois at Chicago (man, does that sound good to say).
- Location. I have always been a city boy deep down in my heart, born and raised in the Chicago area. Although my family roots originate from the southern towns of Parkdale and Pinebluff, Arkansas, I quickly realized that the South and other college towns were not made with me in mind. UIC is perfect for me because of its proximity to everything that the second city has to offer. While it took me a little bit to learn my way around, once I was familiar with the surrounding area of UIC, I fell in love all over again with the city life. In addition to having the city life in the palm of my hand, I’ve found that UIC’s location was perfect for my career in advertising. I quickly took advantage of all of UIC’s career resources and other great businesses near me, which were plentiful because of its location.
- People. You’ve probably heard this a lot – so much that it may be cliché – but the diversity of UIC is amazing (I say “diverse” in terms of mental, spiritual, physical aspects of life). I have never in my life been around such a diverse group of peers. UIC embodies the idea of the Chicago melting pot. I have learned so many different lifestyles, ways of communicating and ways of preparing meals than ever before. UIC has more than 27,000 students, but no students are nearly the same. Take the chance of talking to a new person every day and you’ll see that point come to life.
- Atmosphere. I came into UIC as an architecture student. I loved everything about architectural and landscape designs. That didn’t work out, but I still am an admirer of great work. What’s unique about UIC to me is its brutalism style (as seen in the ever so complex BSB) to the modernist style seen in buildings such as Lincoln Hall. In addition to the mixture of architectural styles, the landscape of UIC is something that always makes me feel at ease. Walking back home after a long day of classes and noticing the serene flower bushes and the colorful trees mixed in with the Chicago skyline is something that may not appear to be that big of a deal, but is simply astounding to me. The landscape of UIC is something that should not be taken for granted. No other university has the scenery as beautiful as ours.
UIC is a unique university; you will never find another place like it. If you are graduating this year (#UIC16), take a minute and think about the things you love about your college. Appreciate what you have before you leave.
Christian Gray is a senior majoring in marketing with a focus in promotion and communications and a minor in economics. He is president of the Student Activities Board. When he’s not planning events or doing schoolwork, you’ll catch him watching something sports related (#KOBE) or vibing out to music. His career goal growing up was to be Batman. He won’t tell you if he was successful on that mission, but let’s be real – have you ever seen him and Batman in the same place before?