DeBlogs > Josue Ortiz
Welcome to fall quarter here at, my favorite university, DePaul!
If you’re a new Blue Demon a super welcome to you! This fall I am studying in
Los Angeles, California for DePaul’s LA Quarter program. It’s pretty nice over
here in LA the weather is warm, the palm trees are cool, and the history is
rich. I’ve yet to go to the Hollywood sign but rest assured it is on my to-do
For those unfamiliar with DePaul’s LA Quarter, it takes
place in the fall and spring quarters and is for students studying animation,
film, and other majors of that nature. I was fortunate enough to get in this
fall and will be here until the winter quarter. The main ideas while out here
is to get an internship with a production company, explore the city, and network.
I look forward to sharing more of my LA experiences with my readers throughout
the quarter and if you’re interested in having a more visual experience with
me, you can check out my YouTube channel where I will be vlogging some of my
Thanks for reading my blog and once again welcome to another
Stay awesome friends!
Thank you for reading my blog and as always, stay
“Good music is hard to find,” said no one ever at DePaul University.
Here on campus we have tons of talented musicians that dedicate their lives to playing, writing, and performing. Just last week the DePaul Activities Board (DAB) hosted its annual Battle of the Bands, where student bands and DJs come to battle for the audience’s admiration in hopes of getting their vote and winning the grand prize.
The line up this year had a variety of talent from the hardcore rock style of Rotten Mouth to the smooth, funky jams of Walcott. In between bands, DJs performed their sets to keep the crowd going. It was a packed venue over at Lincoln Hall, a venue near campus just north of Lincoln and Fullerton. The winning band was awarded studio time and connections with Music Garage in Chicago.
The winning DJ gets the opportunity to open for After Hours, the EDM DJ performance that happens after FEST in the McGrath arena. As if all this wasn’t enough for an awesome packed event, the FEST line up is revealed exclusively to all those that come first then online for all of DePaul to see. The winners included Rotten Mouth and DJ Affinity. Make sure to check out DePaul After Hours to see DJ Affinity open for Grandtheft! Also, in case you are wondering. The line up this year is Karmin opening, T-Pain in the middle, and The Neighbourhood headlining FEST 2016!
Make sure to get your tickets next week when they go on sale!
Creating things is awesome. From nothing but a thought in your mind to now a physical object that can be handed out and shared. I love to create.
Here at DePaul I am double majoring in Digital Cinema and Public Relations and Advertising. The Digital Cinema portion of my degree is what I am going to focus on in this blog. It all started when I was in 8th grade. My father had bought me my first camcorder, it was supposed to be for our family but I used it the most, and my sister had just bought the first laptop for our family. It was with these two items that I began making movies.
I would use the free editing software known as Windows Movie Maker and I would film my brother, my family, and anything else I could. I began putting the clips into the editor and messing around with the different functions, I had absolutely no idea what I was doing. Which, in a way, was kind of nice. I was not told how to edit, how to add clips, or different ways to cut. I simply did it through trial and error.
That was one of the coolest feelings ever for me to just mess around with something that I had to figure it out. It was a discovery and I was addicted to learning more and exploring more. I started doing little camera tricks like making stuff disappear, making inanimate objects move, and adding music to my footage. The biggest take away I had was just to create. There are no rules - no right or wrong way to go about it, there is just creating. Making something that didn’t exist before is a feeling that I love.
So to my fellow artists, explorers, and creators I say to you ABC, Always Be Creating.
Thank you for reading my blog and as always, stay awesome friend!
From 6am Thursday until 12am Friday our dancers went anywhere and everywhere in the city where they would have the opportunity to get someone’s change or kind donation For The Kids. The venture began with a kickoff event in Centennial where coffee, bagels, and other breakfast goods were provided to give us the energy for the long, demanding day ahead of us.
Serving as the Assistant Technology Director, I arrived on campus and immediately pulled out my camera to film promotional content for our YouTube channel and Facebook page. Directors, assistants, and morale captains packed into the Office of Student Involvement (OSI) with their laptops writing heartfelt emails to family members, friends, past teachers, and anyone else that might be willing to contribute.
Classes served as an obstacle on this ambitious day and a three-hour depart from my DemonTHON duties had to be taken. However, my adventures resumed at the end of class. Reporting to OSI, I inquired about anything I may have missed and what was next to come. A hospital tour brought me and several dancers to the loop to see what all our donations and hard work do for the hospital.
The day did not end there, and I rushed back to OSI to drop off footage to the Director of Technology so he could edit and upload it for our social media. Switching hats from DemonTHON to DePaul Activities Board, I volunteered as a dealer for Black Jack for our Casino Night themed DePaul After Dark. The event ended at midnight but I was allowed to leave early to join my DemonTHON crew just before the big reveal of our total.
It was back in OSI that over 50 members awaited the final number. Tired and sweaty we cheered and kept our spirits up with chants like “I believe in miracles!” Finally, it was time, we entered the conference room and the countdown began. Everyone in the room was silent and apprehensive to see if we reached our goal. The animation created by our Director of Technology and PR Director began to rise and the final number was revealed, $48,312.99! The room erupted as dancers hugged one another and cried tears of joy. We had accomplished our goal! This was my first experience ever for Miracles ‘Til Midnight and it was amazing.
Run, sprint, just go, and don’t look back. Sure, people will look at you like you’re crazy but it’s a feeling that cannot be matched.
It was the summer of 2014 and I had just completed my first year at DePaul. I was looking forward to hanging out with old friends, playing soccer for endless hours, and going on long late night bike rides. Yet, it wasn’t exactly like that. I got a summer job, enrolled in two courses, and the tires on my bike had to be replaced. It was overwhelming.
A friend had told me about “free running.” Sound weird? It kind of is. The idea is to, at any moment and any place, take off sprinting as fast and as hard as you can. Just go and don’t look back, until you’re out of breath and need to stop to catch it. There really isn’t any purpose to it besides the feeling of freedom and the burdens being lifted off your shoulders for that short moment where you feel on top of the world.
Running, it’s so simple but so impactful. I remember when she first told me about the idea and I thought it was a bit weird and figured I would never try it myself. To sprint for no reason, what if someone thought I stole something? Or thought I was running away from a crime scene? These were the logical, and limiting, thoughts I had at the time. Then one day, after work, I felt it. I was tired, stinky, exhausted, and just felt crummy. I remember walking out of the building and there was an open sidewalk, not a person in sight or a car driving by. I looked to my left and my right, behind me and in front. I just felt it and began, walking my pace quickened and then, I sprinted. Down the side street, jumping over cracks in the sidewalk, dodging fences that people left open, feeling the wind in my face, my short hair pushing against the breeze, sweat gathering on my forehead, my heart pounding, and my legs churning. I ran as fast as I could in my cargo shorts and tennis shoes. At the end of the block I stopped and put my hands on my head as I gasped for air. I laughed and smiled. Not one person was around me, not one car driving by. I had just completed my first ever “free run” and I now understood why it was called that.
Thanks for reading my blog, and as always, stay awesome!
On one hand you have a positive and kind act being the response of a negative one, but on the other hand is it a genuine kindness or is it just a different method of revenge?
This is what I like to call, an “either or” type of situation. This means that there really isn’t a right answer it simply depends on what you believe. I like to think that the killing with kindness method, regardless of intent, is a good one. If you try to fight fire with fire, well, you’re going to get a bigger fire. However, if you fight fire with water, that changes the game.
There was an interesting activity I took part in on a retreat once in high school. On the floor laid several candles all of which were lit. The speaker began talking about the significance of everyone and their purpose in life. As she progressed in her speech, she began blowing a few candles out. She continued this until there was just one candle left. At this moment, the speaker told us that we are all lights in this world. The last candle was blown and we sat in darkness. With our hearts beating, our minds thinking, and our senses feeling (my words not hers) we make this world the place it is. The speaker continued her speech and began lighting the candles one by one until the whole room was once again bright.
One light may not seem like a lot, especially when it is surrounded by darkness but together, we shine bright and make the world warmer. This, I believe, is the key. As St. Vincent himself believed oh so many years ago, we must learn to coexist, accept, and love one another because together we are bright and warm and the darkness stands no chance.
Thank you for reading my blog and as always, stay awesome.
I remember being told that if I didn’t get A’s and B’s in school that meant I was a bad student. I remember being told that if I didn’t read, study, or act properly I would never succeed in life. I remember being told that I had to dress a certain way and talk a certain way in order to be taken seriously. These things I remember. I also remember the first novel franchise I ever became obsessed with, Captain Underpants.
With mean old, grumpy Mr. Krupp becoming hypnotized by his students, George Beard and Harold Hutchins, Captain Underpants was created to save the world from various villains that threatened our existence. I took an instant liking to the novels written and illustrated by Dav Pilkey.
With the success of Captain Underpants, spinoffs were produced such as Super Diaper Baby. It was no question that I would begin to read those as well, given Pilkey’s talent for entertaining writing. Then one day I decided to take another look at the first novel. Usually I would read a book from cover to cover then immediately jump to the next one, indulging in a sort of pre-Netflix binge of literature. However, this time I went to one of the final pages and saw a picture of a man with text just below the image. It was Dav Pilkey and the text was a message to the reader. I cannot recall the full excerpt but what I do remember is the excitement I felt when I read that Dav Pilkey was not really a “good” student and that his teachers told him he would not succeed.
This changed my world. It is a lesson that I have kept with me ever since that day. We are all unique in our own way and no matter what any teacher, boss, friend, or ex-friend says, in the end all we can do is be ourselves.
It was not the end of the world if I got anything lower than a B. The teachers that doubted me were wrong because here I am today at a world-class university achieving and succeeding every single day.
Who would have known that a superhero running around in his underpants would have taught me so much?
The days are long but the years are short. I find myself balancing the daily life of a college student, oblivious to the time passing. I wake up, get ready, grab coffee, take the train to the Loop, and head to class. It is a routine, it is my schedule.
As I reflect on my college life thus far, I remember when I was a freshman taking my first steps on campus following the student orientation leader like it was yesterday. I was excited, apprehensive, and even a bit scared. I was entering a new world transitioning from high school to college.
Fast forward, now I am a junior. I am in several different organizations with leadership positions in two of them. I’ve been on retreats with my fellow peers, participated in DePaul’s dance marathon (DemonTHON), planned and coordinated events for the DePaul Activities Board, and more. It has been, and still is, an experience I will remember for years to come. When I think and reflect on the person I am and the values I hold dear, my four years at DePaul will be a major aspect of that. As the days fly by and I continue to go about my routine, oblivious to the time passing, I am convinced more and more every day that I made the right decision by becoming a Blue Demon.
Thank you for reading my blog, and as always, stay awesome.
The holidays are on their way and as usual, people have begun setting up their trees and playing Christmas music. My family has always been quite the procrastinators when it comes to setting up our own. Usually, traditionally, we set up the tree the weekend after Thanksgiving. However, in reality, we usually wait until the week of Christmas. Maybe not enjoying it for too long before the actual holiday but leaving it up for a good amount of time after Santa makes his visit to our home. This year, my mom decided to get a head start on Christmas.
I was very surprised a few Wednesdays ago when I showed up with a film crew to my house ready to make a short for my visual design class, and the tree had been placed in our living room. Though bare, the Christmas tree stood tall and invaded the space I needed for my cinematic world. Unable to shoot around the tree, I decided to allow it in our shots. Since the film is set in winter, I figured it could work aesthetically. Friday that same week, I came home late from DePaul to be greeted by a wondrous, beautiful display of flashing lights and sparkly ornaments. It eased the tension from my demanding week and calmed me. Though I was disappointed that I did not get a chance to assist in the setup, my mom explained to me how the train, that goes around our tree and plays music, was still in the box. She was hoping that one tradition would remain the same. So, like every year, my brother and I played Straight No Chaser’s Christmas album, constructed the track for the train, and placed the polar express in its rightful position.
Yes, Christmas in my house came quite early this year but every night when I return from a long day of studying and campus activities; I see the star shining on top and the lights flashing away endlessly. Just for that moment, I forget about the demands of the world and the abundance of tasks that lie ahead of me. Who knows, maybe this early Christmas helped me do better on my final exams.
Thank you for reading my blog! Stay awesome my friends!
As always, thank you for reading my blog. I hope you enjoy this movie as much as I did working on it. It is a great display of the talent here at DePaul University and an even better display of what good collaborations can create.
There’s a date! You may ask, “A date for what?” DemonTHON! DePaul University’s 24-hour dance marathon! Sound awesome? Interested in being a part of this really cool nationwide movement? Well look no further!
DemonTHON is our annual dance marathon where we raise money for the Ann and Richard H. Lurie Children’s Hospital in Chicago. We dance, inspire, and strive for a greater tomorrow. I got involved with DemonTHON last year as a member of the Catholic Campus Ministry team. You can register as a team or individually. Together my team and I raised money For the Kids!
We danced the full duration of the event, learned the morale dance, and I even got on stage to lip sync to “Dirty Diana”. It was an event that impacted me so much that I decided to take my involvement a step further. Working on the technology committee, I have begun doing video production for this amazing organization. My tasks mostly include filming and editing content for our YouTube channel. This year I hope to bring more friends of mine to the event so we can all dance together.
Dancing is fun, making friends is awesome, and the cause is a good one! The event sees a huge student turn out every year and gets major support from other organizations at DePaul, as well as local businesses.
If you are interested in finding out more about DemonTHON,
here are some links to check out:
Help me fundraise!
Words do not allow me to express just how amazing of an
experience this event is. Please do not hesitate to reach out to me if you are
interested in helping with the event or registering as a dancer.
Thank you for reading my blog, and as always, stay awesome!
• Self-Understanding & Personal Integrity
• Taking Seriously the Perspective of Others
• Contributing to a Larger Community
• Knowledge and Intellectual Competence
• Striving for Excellence
I am a firm believer in these dimensions. Communicating is difficult and people often miscommunicate creating issues aside from whatever problem may need to be solved. With the five dimensions above, communicating will not necessarily be 100% clear, but it will be a lot clearer and better than a conversation without these dimensions. My hope for anyone that reads this blog, is that you read and understand these dimensions and of course, if given the opportunity, participate in WLC.
Thank you for reading my blog and as always, stay awesome!
Thank you all for being amazing and you all have a special place in my heart. Go accomplish your goals and dreams and remember that I always got your back! Just like many of you have had mine. I hope to continue the greatness that the Class of 2015 has shown me and that I can inspire others as you have done.
Thank you for everything and congratulations!
Thank you for reading my blog and as always stay awesome!
Opening – Milo Greene
Middle Act – American Authors
Headliner – Big Sean
But wait there’s more!
Milo & Otis
So if you have yet to get your Fest tickets, what are you waiting for? I will be there, other awesome people will be there, and it is going to be a great time!
Thanks for reading my blog and always stay awesome!
P.S. I want to see YOU at Fest and if you see me come say hi I love making new friends!
I hope everyone is enjoying their spring so far! Thank you
for reading my blog and as always, stay awesome!
As always thank you for reading my blog stay awesome!
Fresh off WLC (Winter Leadership Conference), I told my CCM (Catholic Campus Ministry) small men’s group that I was enlightened. We meet on Monday’s and this past Monday, as many of you probably already know, was the remembrance of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Some schools had days off, others used this day to remember and share the ways of Doctor Martin Luther King, and for me I had my small group. It was interesting, as usual, but the discussion became centered around leadership which corresponds to the weekend retreat I attended. We talked about Jesus and his teachings and drifted into discussion about Doctor King.
One thing I noted about the discussion was the peaceful approach to very difficult and conflicting topics. Things such as prostitution or racism usually get people very heated in debate, and in unfortunate circumstances violence. This past weekend at WLC, we discussed the 5 dimensions of an SRL (Socially Responsible Leader). Which are as follows:
I want to focus on number two, “Taking Seriously the Perspective of Others.” The way I interpret this dimension is that everyone has his or her own way of thinking. We all have values, morals, and opinions that do not always, in fact quite frequently, agree.
So this specific dimension, I feel, is easier said than done for two reasons:
One, anything you have ever been taught in life has to be put on hold and you need to listen to the person speaking. You need to think about their position and their life to understand where they are coming from.
Two, you have to go against your natural instinct of sticking to what you know. We have to become uncomfortable and delve into the life of another individual in order to truly understand them and take their perspective seriously. I believe that the great teachings of Jesus and Martin Luther King, Jr. are exactly what we should use as models for our life. They push humanity to be more. Everyone has his or her opinion, and everyone will fight for what they believe is right. It is a higher understanding that allows us to relate to one another. To say, “we are different and that is not something that should separate us, but rather something that should bring us together in order to learn more and become more as people.”
That is all for today, thank you for reading my blog, if anyone has heard of WLC and is on the fence about attending I highly recommend that you do. For more information visit the SLI (Student Leadership Institute).
Many times in life, I have felt as if I had to act a certain way in order to be accepted. I thought that if I talked a certain way and wore clothes that were popular then people would like me. Yet, when I would go home and be in my room alone I knew that the person I was pretending to be was far from who I actually was. This year at DePaul has been a very explorative one for me. I have joined several clubs and have taken part in numerous activities from D.A.B. to intramural soccer. I recently told a friend of mine that I am trying to figure out what I like, the type of people I want in my life, and the way I want my life to go. Whenever anyone has asked me about this year I usually begin by listing all the clubs I am in. This is usually followed with something like “wow you’re a busy person.” I think that’s kind of funny because I think of myself as more of a confused person than a busy one. The reason I go to so many groups and am in all these clubs, aside from the fact that they’re fun, is simply because I need to figure myself out. Which is awesome because it leads to exposure to different people and different ideas, which eventually leads to me deleting or accepting new ways of thinking. Year number two at DePaul is going pretty awesome for me, so far.
So now I think about the people around me. What I see on Facebook, what my friends tell me, and what I hear people talking about with their friends leads me to a realization. No one has any sort of idea of what is going on. That may sound bad at first but allow me to elaborate.
As confused as I feel with certain things, my parents have seen it all, or at least have seen more than me. When I think that something I’ve experienced is crazy, insane, and has never happened to anyone else my parents laugh and tell me a story of their past. They offer advice to me and even understand that I have to make my own mistakes in order to grow. That’s what I mostly hear from others too. “I did (insert awesome story here) because I wanted to try it.” There should be no judgment or wagging of the finger, there should just be understanding and acceptance. That goes for mistakes as well as good experiences because we have to make mistakes in order to learn and we have fail in order to succeed. For my parents, they accept me for who I am. As for who I actually am, well that’s still being discovered little by little every single day. There is one thing that’s certain, and that is that I am just doing me. Living every day the way I want to and not allowing anything, or anyone, to prevent me from trying something new. In the end, our choices are what define us and I would rather be known as the awesome guy that went skydiving than the guy who said he was going to do it but “never had the time.”
Thanks for reading my blog, as always stay awesome!
Thank you for reading my blog and always stay awesome!
Finals week, we all knew it was coming. The weeks were passing by and those dreadful exams, projects, and papers got closer and closer.
One place to check out is the CCM (Catholic Campus Ministry) office located in suite 104 in the student center in LPC. They will be open every day from 9am – 9pm, aside from Friday (9 am – 5pm), and anyone is welcome to come in, sit on the very comfortable couches, and work. Granted the couches are extremely comfortable so you might fall asleep, but the invitation is there.
DAB will also be hosting a finals study session in the LPSC (Lincoln Park Student Center) room 120 on November 23rd starting at 3pm. Just like CCM, this event is open to all students, but wait there’s more! Right outside of room 120 there will be a tea bar and free massages to help relieve some of the stresses of finals.
Another thing to remember is the library will be open 24 hours starting November 18th and throughout the rest of finals. So, whether it’s at CCM on a comfy couch, with DAB and free massages, or just at the library in your favorite study spot I wish everyone good luck during this finals week and may we all pass our classes!
Thank you for reading my blog today and as always stay
Thanksgiving Tick Tock Clock Countdown: T-minus 7 days, 10
hours, 3 minutes, and 39 seconds
Hello everyone and happy Monday! Today I will be writing about getting involved at DePaul. “Get involved” I am sure many of you have heard this before whether it was at orientation here at DePaul, from a speaker, or someone else. I am here to let you know, it is true!
There's a fairly new app that is trending around college campuses called “Yik Yak” and on this app I see too many post about individuals not having friends, no events to go to, etc. Aside from Yik Yak, I recently looked up DePaul University on Google, because I was bored, and found that we actually have a Yelp page dedicated to us. For those of you that are unfamiliar, Yelp is a website where consumers can post reviews about a certain business, store, and now apparently schools too. While scrolling through the reviews, I saw a person post about how angry they were with the experience they had here at DePaul and I was shocked! This user gave DePaul a 1 out of 5 star rating and posted a very long and descriptive review of how DePaul let them down.
I will not go into specifics, but one thing I noticed when reading the review was that this user was a commuter and not involved. In case you didn't notice, I am a HUGE advocate of DePaul University and am enjoying my experience here greatly. So to see a review like this, I had to take a step back and really think.
The realization I came to was that if it was not for all the clubs and organizations that I am a part of my experience here would suck, and that decision to become more than just a student has to come from the individual themselves. DePaul supplies the resources but you have to supply the motivation.
So to those who feel as though they have no friends, no plans, and nothing to do I challenge you to look on DeHub and join random clubs. Cause the only way your experience will become better is if you take that extra step. If you are the type of person who needs an invitation to something or else you won't go, then consider this my invitation to you! I will be including a list of a few events going on that I will be at. If you see me do not hesitate to walk up and say “hi,” I love people and even more than that I love making new friends!
Catholic Campus Ministry(CCM)
Food for Thought – Friday 11/14/14 1:15pm LPCSC 104
DePaul Activities Board(D.A.B.)
General Board meeting – Monday 11/10/14 5pm LPCSC 220
Ray Meyer Fitness Center
Intramural Sports registration for winter quarter teams
Mockingjay premiere event – 11/21/14 – time: TBA
Thank you for reading my blog and as always stay awesome.
Thanksgiving Tick Tock Clock Countdown: T-minus 16 days, 8 hours,
45 minutes, and 42 seconds