Articles by Rose Montag

Textbooks: A Guide

By Rose Montag / August 12, 2015 / / Twitter / Facebook /
New DePaul students often have questions about purchasing textbooks for classes. This is a helpful guide designed to give you an overview of the process. If you have questions, you can always contact the bookstore at 773-325-7177.
You can find your textbooks by following these steps:
1.    Go to Campus Connect and log into your account.
2.    Click the “Manage Classes” section, which will be one of the tiles on the main page.
3.    Click on “View My Classes”
4.    Click on the arrow next to the room assignment for a class (this will bring up a pop-up window so make sure pop-ups are enabled. 
5.    Click "Textbook/Other Information"
6.    Any materials that have been submitted by your professor will be listed.

This is what it should look like. 
Most professors will not post textbooks until a few weeks before classes start, so keep that in mind. If you find that you click on the link and it says “materials not yet assigned,” this means that nothing has been posted yet. Do not fret, the textbooks will be listed soon enough!
Furthermore, some classes will not have textbooks. Remember, however, that there is a difference between "materials not yet assigned" and "no text required." Make sure to read everything listed on the page, as understanding the proper terminology is important.
These are the primary categories in which your textbooks will be sorted:
The textbook is required for classes. In some cases, you can save money by purchasing an older edition of the textbook. Use your best judgement with this, as you probably do not want to buy a textbook from 1999. If it is from 2012 - present, you might be ok. When in doubt, check with your professor.
Package Component
Also required, there are often textbooks that have multiples “parts” to them. For example, a textbook for a math class might also have a practice book included with it. In many cases, you can purchase these items as a packaged deal.

The “package component” option is essentially like buying the different “parts” individually. Instead of making one purchase of the textbook + the practice book, you could make two purchases: first the textbook, and then the practice book.

If you purchase the textbook as a packaged deal, you do not need to worry about the “package component.” Again, this option is like shopping a-la-carte for different parts of your required books. It is probably easiest to just purchase the entire textbook at once, thus receiving one package in the mail instead of multiple packages.

From the bookstore’s website: “A ‘package component’ is a title that is part of a required course materials package for your course. Be careful not to buy both the complete package and components separately.” So basically - one or the other. Do not buy the required textbook and the package components.
E-Book Option
Some textbooks have an electronic version available. It will be the same thing as the physical book, so you only need to purchase this or the hardcopy. This is a matter of preference, as your professor will likely be okay with either option.
Bookstore Recommended
These are not required by your professor; rather, they are suggested by the bookstore to help you become familiar with the actual textbooks required for your class. You may purchase them, but you do not have to.

Go to Class First
Go to class before you purchase these textbooks. Typically your professor wants to give you more information before you purchase them.

Hopefully, this helps, and happy learning!

10 Dorm Room Essentials

By Rose Montag / July 10, 2015 / / Twitter / Facebook /
​​​​​There are about a million websites with overly-detailed packing lists for living in a dorm (here​ is one), but you really don’t need to bring much more than the basics (here​).  Try to take the less-is-more approach so you won’t overwhelm yourself or your roommates when it comes time to move.

The following items are 10 things I wish someone would have told me to pack before moving on campus, as I ended up buying all of them at some point during the year. While you might not use them every day, I can guarantee you will need them at some point. Save yourself time and effort and be prepared from the start!

Desk lamp
Get a small lamp to fit place on your desk. It’s a great thing to have when your roommates are sleeping and you don’t want to turn on the overhead light.

HDMI cord
I loved having an HDMI cord to connect my laptop to my TV whenever I wanted to watch Netflix. Everyone else on my floor loved it too, because people would ask to borrow it every day. I should’ve started charging for it, actually...

Surge protector
There are outlets in your room already, but a surge protector is a nice way to keep yourself from tripping over cords hooked up to various outlets around the room. Speaking from experience here.

Small trash can
While DePaul is kind enough to provide every room with both a trash can and recycling bin, it’s nice to have your own to put right next to your desk.

Over-the-door hanger
I loved having one of these to put my coats and backpack on. An easy way to ensure that your floor is not full of various items of clothing and bags.

​Hanging shoe organizer
Sure, you could scatter your shoes all over your area of the closet, or you could conveniently organize them in a shoe hanger. 

Lint roller
A lint roller was one of the first things I purchased after moving in. Using a roll of tape to get all of the lint off of my black dress was a traumatic experience. Learn from my failure.

A sharp knife
I personally cooked a lot while living in the dorms, and there is NOTHING worse than cutting vegetables with a butter knife. A sharp knife is super handy if you’re going to cook anything - and you should cook!

Can opener
This is pretty self-explanatory, but a can opener is always useful.

Basic cleaning supplies
You certainly do not need to bring every cleaning product available at the store, but Clorox wipes and Lysol are both good ideas.

Of course, this is not a comprehensive list. Start with the basics, add some of these, and wait until you move in to purchase too much more. Luckily, there are dozens of different stores in Chicago that can help you find anything you might have missed or something you might need later in the year.

Loop Campus Eats: Good Stuff Eatery

By Rose Montag / March 5, 2015 / / Twitter / Facebook /
If you’re new to Chicago, allow me to share some very important information with you: we have some of the best burger places in the country. My personal favorites include Au Cheval, Red Hot Ranch, DMK, and Edzo’s. Other top-ranked options include Kuma’s Corner, Butcher & the Burger, Rockit Burger, and Burger Bar. Seriously, the options are endless. Lucky for DePaul students, another fantastic option recently opened steps away from the Loop campus: Good Stuff Eatery​.

Good Stuff originated in Washington D.C., and decided to bring the party to the Midwest when they opened their Chicago location. There are 13 different burger options, including the award-winning Prez Obama burger (Applewood bacon, onion marmalade, Roquefort cheese, and horseradish mayo sauce) and the Michelle Melt (turkey burger, caramelized onions, Swiss cheese, tomato, lettuce, and Southlawn herb garden mayo). Political opinions aside, these burgers are award-winning for a reason. The toppings are fresh, the sauces are unique, and the burgers themselves are cooked to perfection. Even better? For those health freaks out there – or am I the only one? – you can make any burger a chicken sandwich AND request to have a lettuce wrap instead of the bun. You simply ask for them to “shun the bun!”

My friends and I enjoyed a few different burgers: Spike’s Sunnyside, which had a fried egg on it. No other explanation needed for that one, it was amazing. We also enjoyed both of the Obama burgers, and I fell in love with the classic turkey burger. It came with fresh guacamole and the aforementioned lettuce wrap, and it was fantastic. The burger prices range from $7-10, and they are filling enough to help you conquer your classes with a full stomach and the ultimate level of happiness. It’s good stuff!

source: Good Stuff Eatery
Not only does Good Stuff have delicious burgers, they also have a generous selection of milkshake and malt options. They are available in regular size (read: giant) or the kids version. Creative options include toasted marshmallow, cookies and cream, red velvet, and your typical vanilla and chocolate shakes. We tried the “Milky Way Malt” and it was great. The milkshakes are super thick, which is always the best option in my book. For a perfect meal, I would recommend a burger, a milkshake, and a generous helping of their freshly made fries. There is even a dip bar for your order of fries, complete with four different homemade mayonnaise-based sauces. 

I think Good Stuff certainly sets itself apart from other burger joints in Chicago, and it is certainly a welcome addition to the ever-expanding urban burger scene. Add in the fact that it is a mere two blocks away from campus (it is right by Adams and Wabash), and you have got yourself burger heaven. I would recommend it as a place to grab a quick bite to eat when you find yourself travelling to or from your Loop campus classes. Or just take a trip down there for the food alone. Food is a good enough reason to go absolutely anywhere. Enjoy! 

Off Campus Eats: Keeping Warm at Andy’s Thai Kitchen

By Rose Montag / February 17, 2015 / / Twitter / Facebook /
Chicago is known to have bitterly-cold and snowy winters. This year has been no exception, as the city was recently the lucky recipient of almost two feet of snow AND temperatures that are well below zero. A bit of snow should never put a damper on plans though, especially if those plans involve delicious food. If you are looking for a way to experience warmth without actually escaping the city, I have the perfect restaurant recommendation: Andy’s Thai Kitchen.

Andy’s Thai Kitchen is a short train ride away from the Lincoln Park campus, situated in the heart of Lakeview. It is located steps off of the Wellington brown line, which is perfect considering the fact that nobody wants to walk far in this weather. The restaurant specializes in unique Thai dishes that are freshly made to order. It is a small restaurant so I definitely would not recommend going here with your entire dorm room floor (maybe order takeout in that situation!) but it is a great atmosphere for you and a friend or two. It would also be a great place to go on a date, if that’s your thing!

Food options include traditional Thai dishes such as steamed dumplings, egg rolls, Pad Thai, Pad See Ew, and fried rice. There are also exciting and distinctive dishes such as Kai Tod (deep fried marinated half-chicken with Thai spicy sauce), pork neck (grilled with a spicy lime sauce), and grilled squid (broiled with a spicy chili garlic) for those looking to go on a food adventure. I enjoyed the Boat Noodle Soup, which consisted of beef brisket, pork skins, Chinese broccoli, bean sprouts, and thin rice noodles in a spicy and sweet soup broth. It was different from what I usually order (I typically go for the Pad See Ew because I’m a creature of habit) but absolutely delicious. I would also recommend the Sunshine Beef as an appetizer, which is a Thai beef jerky.

I have been to many different Thai restaurants in Chicago but Andy’s is one of my top picks. The Lakeview neighborhood is full of awesome restaurants that are worth braving the cold weather for. I might be a little bias because I live in Lakeview, but I would not steer you wrong when it comes to food. If you go to Andy’s, definitely try something that you would not normally order. The restaurant uses natural and fresh ingredients that are guaranteed to give you a great meal. If you really do not feel like leaving your dorm room – and that is completely understandable – they have a delivery option, which is easily one of the best parts about living in Chicago. GrubHub for the win! Enjoy!

DePaul Goes Nuts for Donuts

By Rose Montag / February 13, 2015 / / Twitter / Facebook /
​​Chicagoans take their donuts very seriously. Before moving to Chicago and starting school at DePaul, I honestly was not a fan of donuts. While it pains me to admit that, it is the truth. I quickly changed my ways after learning of the many amazing donut (or doughnut, whatever floats your boat) options we have in the city. 

One of the greatest things about DePaul is that all full time students receive a Ventra card with their tuition. The Ventra card is essentially a free pass to any place (read: ANY RESTAURANT!) in the city. It allows students to ride both the trains and buses for free, which is a lifesaver. As great as Lincoln Park is, there are so many unique and delicious neighborhoods to explore during your time at DePaul. 

If you are looking for a reason to bundle up and venture around the city, I have got the perfect idea: a donut crawl. Pile on your layers, grab your Ventra card, and take a journey to my top five favorite donut shops in Chicago.

1. Glazed and Infused

Where: Lincoln Park. Take the brown line to Armitage.

What: Glazed and Infused has quite a few different locations around Chicago, and you can actually purchase their donuts at the Student Center using your meal plan. Seriously. They bring donuts TO DePaul (perfect if you are reaaaallly sleep-deprived), but you can always visit the friendly Armitage location which is steps away from campus.

What you’re getting: They have a ton of options ranging from a classic Vanilla Glazed to a Nutella Banana Pretzel, but my favorite will always be the Maple Bacon Long John.  

2. Do-Rite Donuts

Where: The Loop. Take the red line to Lake.

What: Do-Rite is quite literally a hole in the wall. It is a tiny shop that makes small batches of donuts every morning. They even have curbside delivery, if for some reason you do not feel like walking the extra ten steps to go to the front counter. Even better: they have a daily vegan option!

What you’re getting: I am in love with the Apple Fritter, which is gigantic and amazing, but the Lemon Pistachio Old Fashioned is a close runner up.

3. Stan’s Donuts 

Where: Wicker Park. Take the blue line to Damen. 

What: This California-based donut shop opened in Chicago and immediately won the hearts of locals and tourists alike. They also specialize in gourmet coffee, so this place is extra helpful when it comes to staying warm during the many months of Chiberia.

What you’re getting: The Biscoff Pocket. Have you ever had the Cookie Butter from Trader Joe’s? If not, you should. If yes, then you will know that this is heaven on earth. It is basically cookie butter in a fried piece of dough. 

4. Dinkel’s Bakery

Where: Lakeview. Take the brown line to Paulina.

What: Dinkel’s Bakery has been in Chicago since 1922, making it the oldest establishment on this list. It is also one of the best in Chicago for very good reason: they have classic donut options that consistently taste fresh and lovingly homemade.

What you’re getting: Anything. Honestly, I have loved all of the donuts I have tried. Bonus: if you go on Wednesdays, you can get 6 donuts for $6. You can share with your roommates or eat them all yourself. Nobody will judge you.

5. Beaver’s Donuts

Where: The Loop. Take the brown line to Washington & Wells. They also have a food truck that frequents DePaul’s Loop Campus.

What: Beaver’s makes bite size donuts that come in a variety of options, ranging from cinnamon and sugar to raspberry cheesecake. These donuts are the best because you can eat six of them and not feel guilty.

What you’re getting: The cinnamon sugar donuts. If you order them from the food truck – it usually is on the Loop Campus on Wednesdays – they make them fresh to order. Amazing.

This list is by no means exclusive of all of the fabulous donut options in Chicago. Other great ones include West Town Bakery, Doughnut Vault, and Firecakes. College can sometimes be stressful, but I firmly believe that donuts are the true source of happiness. Now take your Ventra card and conquer the world!

Lincoln Park: A Taco Lover's Dream

By Rose Montag / December 9, 2014 / / Twitter / Facebook /
DePaul’s main campus is located in the Lincoln Park neighborhood of Chicago. One of my favorite things about this area (besides the campus, of course) is its proximity to so many amazing restaurants.

I’ve tried dozens of restaurants throughout the city, and I love to try new types of cuisines as much as possible, but Mexican food will always hold a special place in my heart. I can never say no to a taco or some guacamole.

So it is only natural that I’ve done extensive research on where to find the BEST taco in Chicago. I’ve tried tacos in Wicker Park, Logan Square, Lincoln Square, South Loop...the list goes on. And luckily for me (and you too, as a DePaul student!), the very best option is one block away from campus.

Taco and Burrito Palace #2 is a tiny restaurant located near the intersection of Halsted and Fullerton and is open from around 10am to 2am daily. I first discovered it when I moved in right next door to the restaurant. I used to go there so frequently that the guys all know my name and order. I’m not going to lie, that is one of my proudest accomplishments.

TBP2, as I like to call it, is a great place to go with friends and grab a quick and, most importantly, affordable bite to eat. The tacos are just over $2 each, and they have daily dinner specials that guarantee you a delicious and filling meal for way less than $10.

My personal favorites are the pork and steak tacos, and my friends love their burritos and traditional Mexican dinner plates as well. Other options include chilaquiles (a Mexican breakfast dish with eggs), tortas (similar to a taco but served on bread), and, of course, tamales.

No matter what you choose, you will love TBP2. Next time you find yourself hungry after class, take a short walk over and be prepared to feast. Enjoy!