The Topics

The Latest

Joe Hendrix

Finals Are Here

Winter Quarter finals are here! And while I know that may be a stressful thing for a lot of us, think of positives! We are almost in Spring Quarter! And what does that mean? We’re practically in Spring! We can finally leave the winter behind and get to brighter and sunny days. I’m sure the brisk wind will pop its head out every now and then, but only a few more weeks till sunnier, longer, and hopefully happier days. While we come to dread finals, the simple fact is that once they’re here, they’ll be gone just a moment later, so don’t spend valuable time stressing/procrastinating. You have to keep going and give it all you got till it’s over, and regardless of it you got the highest grade possible you finished, and that’s all that matters. 

We put a lot of academic stress on ourselves, but the simple fact is we don’t give each other enough praise for balancing classes with our extra curriculars, our jobs, our social and other daily responsibilities. We are constantly being told to keep going, do more, faster, harder, but rarely do we ever just get to feel accomplished. Well that’s something I want everyone to feel so after you’re done smashing these finals and finishing up your classes I want you to relax and be proud of yourselves, because all the hard work you put is only ever going to be appreciate it by you, so relish in it, be proud, and have a great Spring Break!

inspirational phrase



Take Care of Yourself

One thing that is often overlooked in the fast-paced environment of college is a student’s mental health. It doesn’t matter how far into school you are, your mental is something you should always keep in check because sometimes we neglect in favor of other things we deem important. Stressing about whether we get this assignment done, whether we have enough time to go hang out with friends, etc. 

College can be overwhelming if you’re not taking the right steps to keep yourself balanced and mentally healthy, and I can tell you from experience that when you don’t your performance in all aspects of your life will decline. School in and of itself will always be a big point of stress for us students, and that impending fear about class can be a good motivator to get work done, but it can also cause us to do things like stay up all night when we should be getting sleep to help our bodies/brains. 

Sleep is something that we often take for granted at this age; we no longer are beholden to bed times, curfews, and other things from high school. But getting enough rest is a part of the self-care needed to really get you to one hundred percent and do your best at school. And of course, every situation is different for everyone so evaluate what you need specifically and make sure you keep your mental health in check. Talk to someone if need be, take a break and enjoy some time alone if necessary, just make sure to keep yourself healthy. 


Apartment Living

For anyone currently living in a dorm I have some advice for you: enjoy the convenience while you can! And I don’t say that to make you think living on your own in an apartment is the worst. That’s just not true. Being in your first apartment is liberating, exciting, and of course fun. But making sure you have rent, paying utilities, and dealing with any maintenance issues are part of the adulting process we all wanted to be back when were younger, but sort of dread now that we are here. 

Personally, I prefer living in an apartment over dorm life, but it is incredibly important to pick the right living situation before you take such a massive leap into adulthood. That means picking the right roommate, the right building/house, and making sure it is in a safe neighborhood. Contrary to popular belief, crime can happen anywhere in this city, so don’t let anyone (particularly those who have been in the city just as long as you) dissuade you from living anywhere because of their biases. Find a sizeable place and even get multiple roommates to help with rent and have fun! Eventually you will get to an age where you may end up living with a significant other and possibly even have a family. So why not live with some close friends for the time being and enjoy young adulthood? 

apartment for rent sign



Party Tips

I was at a party this past weekend where I knew maybe like a dozen people. However, there was upwards of maybe a couple dozen there in general. So ultimately, most of the festivity goers were unknown to me. One of things that I find so interesting about parties (especially college ones) is how people usually aren’t too friendly or willing to dive outside your social circle. So, with that in mind, I’m here to give you a list of options to make your party going experience more fulfilling (or at least fulfilling to me anyway). 

First things first, don’t be afraid to introduce yourself. It can seem overwhelming to walk into a packed apartment where music is blasting and try to meet new people but, in the end, it is better to at least try (even if they ignore you) than to sit it in the same corner all night wondering why no one is talking to you. 

Also, you don’t have to drink! No where in the rules of partying does it state you must be under the influence of anything to have a good time. In fact, one way to keep things fun for yourself is to play drinking games (without the drinking!). “Beer Pong” will always be fun to me, doesn’t matter if there’s anything alcoholic in the cup. 

Finally, dance! Dancing in fun, and never let yourself feel afraid of looking stupid. So next time you’re at a party, introduce yourself, have fun, relax, and just be yourself. Rarely is it ever like it is in the TV shows.

a party


​​

Procrastination and Other Things

I had absolutely no motivation to go to class today. Whether it was from a lack of sleep or not keeping track of my priorities, school fatigue is a problem that plagues us all. But fear not! It is a problem that we can conquer but only if you put forth effort. 

If you have early morning classes, I’m sure you already know getting enough sleep is a necessity. For the past few years, I’ve depended on caffeine to help wake me up, when in reality I need a better sleeping schedule and a proper diet. Not only that, but proper exercise can also help your motivation and ability to stay focused on your goals. 

Also: try not to procrastinate. I know it is easier said than done, but waiting until the last minute for everything will only become detrimental as time goes on. Take it from someone who at one point became a Master of Procrastination: In the end we must evolve as young adults who will eventually join the public work force. As hard as things may seem now, the real world (post-college) can be a rough place. Bosses, supervisors, superiors, etc. will not accept late work and are definitely not as swayable as professors you might encounter here. Consistently being late will get you fired. So while it may be annoying to adhere to some rules within a university, it is much better than having to keep up with a real life job. So enjoy your time but realize you must evolve with it!

falling asleep while studying



Netflix Binge The Cold Weather Away​


As Chicago continues its bipolar weather season, rarely do we know if outside will be habitable from weekend to weekend. Luckily for you, I’m here to break down all the amazing things you can be watching should you not want to go out into freezing cold. Who needs bars and parties when you have Netflix or Hulu? Am I right? 

For those interested in some good Sci-Fi comedy, Future Man on Hulu is a great half hour comedy that has an amazing spin on the whole-time travel gimmick and manages to have an entire cast full of likable characters, entertaining situations, and just generally strange comedy in a breath of fresh air. Not all science fiction or action shows need to be super serious or too campy. Future Man is able to find the right balance and so far, has two incredible seasons you can binge watch right now! 

Future Man on Hulu


For those who have Netflix, there are numerous movies and shows I can suggest to you. Funny enough, both Hulu and Netflix are two different documentaries on the chaotic train wreck that was Fyre Festival. Despite both films being about the same festival, each is somehow completely different due to having different footage, different people interviewed, and both are just as equally entertaining. 

Also, Netflix recently premiered the new show The Umbrella Academy which is based off the graphic novel of the same name. I’ve only watched the first one so far, but from what I know and have heard it’s a delight for fans of comic books, mystery, action, and family drama. Definitely some things to look out for when you’re snowed in or don’t want frostbite! 

The Umbrella Academy on Netflix



Adjusting for Success

Internships are an important part of any college experience. No matter what your area of study is, an internship is a necessity in gaining a full-time job in your field post-graduation. I’ve just started my first internship these past few weeks, and it has been quite an eye-opening experience. 

For almost the last year, my only job was working weekend afternoon/nights. Now, most of my week is the early nine to five adult life that for so long I have been dreading. But after like two weeks, it is not that bad at all! Freshmen year the earliest class I had was at 10am. After that, most of my classes are in the afternoon or at night, meaning I’ve spent the better part of the last four years not waking up early. It is a privilege I enjoyed very much, but this quarter I’ve been trying to acclimate myself more to the real work force. 

I know it is a struggle for quite a few college students, and I’m here to tell you waking up earlier and getting sleep is something you should never fear. I think one of the many tropes of college is that all-nighters and a lack of sleep are a necessity to get everything done -- but that’s not true. The right amount of sleep is key to your mental health and not something you take lightly. Most professional jobs want you on your A-game bright and early and if its your dream job you will have to comply, for the betterment of your career. 


Finding Ways to be Grateful in January


The older we get, the farther we are from the whimsical elements of life we once used to cherish. I remember loving snow as a kid, and now when I see it I wonder if I’m going to have enough motivation to get to class. No longer do I anxiously await meeting new classmates, but wonder if there’s anyone who I will get along with. I think as we get older and become more accustomed to life at a college university we begin to lose touch with things we once enjoyed. We begin to take little things for granted that we once may have marveled at. I know this may not be the case for many but being able to choose my class schedule and never having to wake up past a certain time is a privilege I never had growing up in the Chicago Public School system. 

Since I’ve been to DePaul, I’ve never had a single class on Friday. When I tell my friends from other universities that I’m on break from Thanksgiving 'til early January, they look at me like I’m crazy. Now I know you’re wondering why I’m telling you stuff you already know, but I talk to so many students ranging from Freshmen to Seniors and all of them (even myself from time to time) seem to be ungrateful for the things we have in front of us. We have great professors, great offices/leaders, incredible amenities that a lot of colleges don’t have. So just remember that on those rough days of snow, annoying roommates, noise complaints, and anything else that’s got you annoyed.

text saying "There's always something to be grateful for."


Let it Snow!


Let the heavens rejoice, we have snow! I was starting to think that global warming had really taken over. And while 50-degree days in January is definitely a cause for concern, I’m just happy to see that snow is on the ground. I mean really what is Winter Quarter if you are not bundled up in snow boots trudging through blizzards to get to class? 

Chicago in the Snow

Now I know for those who may be from warmer parts of the country, Chicago weather is not something you are accustomed to. Well have no fear as I have been living in Chicago my entire life and I’m still not used this weather. Every year, blankets of snow seem to get further away from December and closer to the beginning of spring, which can make things very confusing wardrobe-wise. I think I’m currently in a record year when I’m wearing four different layers just to keep warm, and I assume that will only continue as the temperature continues to drop. 

Some key things to remember though is that large amounts of snow and cold weather is no excuse not to go to class, attendance adds up to participation points you may be counting on to get the grade you need. Also, don’t let cold weather stop you from leaving your dorm. I know the walk from your room to the student center may seem like a journey, but you must get used to being active in cold weather such as this, especially if you have got a few more years here at our wonderful university!


Happy 2019!


Happy 2019 DePaul! It feels like forever since I’ve done a DeBlog and I hope it doesn’t show. I think my biggest New Year’s Resolution is to make sure I don’t let senioritis take away from my focus. I spent most of break relaxing after the war zone that was finals week, but I also spent the most time I ever have working on extra-curriculars. Whether that be music, writing, or even meeting cool new people, looking back I really enjoyed 2018, and I hope it was just as beneficial for all of you! Now here’s where the tough part comes in: adjusting back to rigor that is higher education. 

I’m sure you’ve all been back for a few days now and seeing friends you haven’t hung out with since before break can lead to a bit of a distraction, and some may even feel that after one quarter “you’ve got everything in the bag.” But don’t get too cocky, take it step by step, don’t let the “syllabus week” catch you off guard, and stay focused. But just because it’s the start of the quarter doesn’t mean you can’t have fun! Don’t be afraid to join new clubs or try new things this quarter. Some of the closest friends I have met and most interesting experiences I’ve had at DePaul have been a result of trying new things and meeting new people in Winter Quarter. Don’t let the cold weather stop you from getting out every now and then; you’re here to learn but you’re also here to have fun. So, start your 2019 off the best way you know how!​

DePaul Student Center



Happy New School Year at DePaul University!

I’m so glad to once again show you DePaul through my lens, and I look forward to sharing my experiences with you. First and foremost, I hope everyone had an amazing summer. Allow me to tell you about some of the activities I partook in.
There’s a great old-style arcade in Brookfield, Illinois called "Galloping Ghost " that is very affordable for all-day admission to play whatever you want. As a nostalgia nerd, I spent a lot of time there playing not only today’s most recent games but arcade machines spanning all the way back to the 80’s. Anybody in the area who is a fan of that type of stuff should definitely check it out.

One of the best movies I saw this summer was called “Sorry to Bother You ” directed by musician, Boots Riley, and starring a bunch of smaller actors I like. The experimental film is a topical comedy about the problems of workforce labor. It’s honestly one of the best films I’ve ever seen and has a great deal of diversity and inclusion. It’s an incredibly weird movie but with an important message and some fantastic performances.

And speaking of performances, the last thing I want to share is the perfect way I ended my summer - and that was seeing Childish Gambino live in concert. Coming off his award-winning show, chart-topping songs, and whatever he decides he wants to be good at Childish Gambino had a concert here in Chicago last night and it was incredible, the man can truly put on a show and continues to be in my inspiration in all things creative.

I hope you all did some cool things during summer as well, but regardless the school year here at DePaul will lead to a lot of fun and new experiences, so take some time to not only do some work but enjoy everything on campus as well!


End of Junior Year

It’s the end of the school year and to be honest I don’t really know what to say. It’s always the same amount of time each year yet somehow it feels like things are flying by. In just another year I’ll be graduating and going into the real world. It sounds scary, to not have the safety net of school and being a student. But it is something that I look forward to. In the last year, I have gotten my first apartment, multiple jobs to help pay for it, and have made significant strides in my personal career. I think in this current age of social media we see a lot of people our age with a lot of success so young and we look down on our own positions. I know for a fact I’ve done this, but I want to let everyone reading know that you should be proud of everything you’ve accomplished no matter how small. If we focus too much on the end game we can’t have fun during the journey. And whatever path you take you should have fun. Whether that be chilling with your closest friends even if you are not doing anything, or spending time on a project for a class you really care about (because school work can be incredibly fun). Whatever it is, just enjoy it because life is too short to be constantly stressing about the future or comparing your situation to others. I’ve had a great school year and hope you have as well. Have a great summer, looking forward to you reading my adventures next year.


Men of Color Initiative

Becoming involved with some organization, club, or group at your university is a must. Not only does it look good on a resume but it allows you to meet a lot of different people and potentially even bring you closer to the school you’ve decided to attend. Here at DePaul University I have become involved in the Men of Color initiative. It is a program that works to help acclimate male minority students into DePaul. The program aims for incoming freshman to have someone to help them not only use all of DePaul’s resources to the best of their ability but also have someone to talk about common struggles such as being a person of color in a predominantly white college.
Programs like this are very important because having people you can identify with and know what you’ve been through and knowing you are not alone is something that a lot of students do not have. Being a part of this program just within the last year has opened my eyes to just how important it is that I can help incoming freshmen navigate the tricky world of university. In fact, in just the last two months I helped a student to ultimately decide DePaul was the best place for their university education just speaking candidly about my experience. So whether it is a program like this, a school-sponsored one, or even an intramural sports team try to get involved, it can change your life.

My DePaul Experience

My DePaul experience can be summed up as unexpected. As in, when I started going to this school I certainly didn’t expect to be performing music in front of people - not once but three separate times. In fact, when I entered DePaul I didn’t think I would be making music at all. Where you decide to go college really can change the trajectory of your life. Whether that be the friends you make, the classes you take, or the paths you embark on, I feel like DePaul has influenced all of those things. Music is a big part of my life now and I’m not sure if it would be that way if I didn’t go to school here. The people I’ve met have allowed me to experience new things and have opened my mind to different ways of thinking that I believe have allowed me to become more diverse. Whether it be the way I dress, the way I talk, or the way I interact with people my development as a person is forever tied to my experiences at this university. Whether they’ve been bad or good I have dealt with things I wouldn’t change at all, because it has allowed me to grow into the person I need to be for what I want to do in the future, and thanks to what has happened to me here that will be a lot. I’m thankful for DePaul and their diverse student groups, organizations, and their location because I wouldn’t trade these experiences for anything, and I hope you experience life-changing moments of your own here.


Aspiring Musicians


Play4Polarpalooza

One of the coolest things I believe DePaul does is hold multiple music events on campus. At the end of the school year, we have a concert called DePaul Fest which has led to musical acts such as Childish Gambino, T-Pain, The Neighborhood, Logic, and many others performing for a price that’s more than affordable for all students.
But not only does DePaul give established artists a chance to perform here but up and coming DePaul students as well. I have been to many of weekly events where students host panels and performances all over campus allowing students to perform covers of songs, poetry, and even original material. For instance, this Tuesday, February 6th at 7 pm to 9 pm yours truly will be competing at the Play 4 Polarpalooza competition where six DePaul musical acts will be competing for the chance to be the opener for the winter concert, Polarpalooza. Don’t worry though this isn’t going to be me plugging myself for an entire blog. I more so just want to let any students know that this campus is a great resource to not only have your music heard by the student population but also start to get your name out there and collaborate with other DePaul musicians. I wish everybody competing the best of luck and hope anybody interested will come out to support not only your favorite blogger but the rest of your fellow DePaul students. You might see an accompanying theme to a lot of my blogs here but the gist is there are a lot of cool things that make DePaul a really great place, so definitely take advantage of them and definitely spread the word!


Digital Cinema

Shout out to all Digital Cinema students! Especially the ones not aware! You should use all the resources here at DePaul to your disposal. As students of the College of Computing and Digital Media, we have unique opportunities such as renting extremely expensive and high-quality equipment. I’m in my junior year here at DePaul and I certainly don’t think I’ve used these resources as much as I should have been.
But it’s never too late, underclassmen should be aware that at the Loop campus in the basement of the 14 East Jackson building there is “The Cage​” that allows you to temporarily borrow equipment. If there’s any short films, sketches, or even professional interviews you would like to do, I would suggest using these resources to the best of your ability all four years. Don’t be afraid to ask about certain materials and equipment if you’re not sure how to use them. Always make sure you’re getting exactly what you ask for and please always return it on time. 
There are many students here at DePaul waiting to use the equipment so try not to damage it either. I recently rented cameras from the cage and had one of the best filming experiences of my life. I’m personally not so handy or knowledgeable behind the camera so it was difficult at first but I learned quite a lot just to getting into it and doing what I can. I think in-class learning is a necessity but getting actual experience is just as important. So it doesn’t matter what your concentration is, rent some equipment, start filming, and get some equipment!


Meet Joe!

Hi there! I’m Joe Hendrix and one of the newest DeBloggers! I’m a junior here at DePaul University majoring in Digital Cinema  with a concentration in screenwriting. I’m from the city of Chicago and I couldn’t be happier to be at a university that allows me to stay in my hometown around my family and friends while also exploring new parts of the city I’ve never been to all while also meeting new and interesting people. As you can tell by my major I’m really into movies and television, specifically writing for them.

But I’m also into music as well, over the last couple years I’ve become fond of many different genres such as alternative R&B, underground rap, Triphop, etc. At the end of my freshmen year, I even began to start making music myself. I find it to be a fun way to express myself as I believe music is a medium that everyone at some point or another will enjoy. Music is universal.

That being said I want to be a jack of all trades when it comes to my career. I’d like to create a television show, movie, album, anime, and probably some other stuff in my lifetime. I like to think of myself as a creative. I don’t want to limit myself to just one career or thing that defines me, and I don’t think you should either. People I look up to like Donald Glover are comedians, writers, musicians, and actors and that inspires me to try to go after and obtain whatever I want in life. And I’d like to hope that in the future I can try to achieve many things I didn’t think were possible when I was younger, and I hope you do too! I look forward to you learning more about me and my adventures here at DePaul! Have a nice day and always go the Vincentian ​way!