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Articles by Tim Littman

Three Thing I Wished I Had Know Before Coming to DePaul

​​​​1) You learn more outside of class than inside of class

Compared to high school, the amount of time you spend in a classroom is significantly less. All of this extra time gives you the opportunity try new things and utilize your time the way you want to. You will most likely have the most “free time” than you’ve ever had, and probably ever will. This free time should be used to
find internships, volunte
er, meet new friends, attend guest speakers, do homework, explore the city and
network. I wish I had known this so I could have planned what I wanted to do in my free time. Sure, a large amount of this time is spent doing homework. If I was given the opportunity to freshen up my time management skills, I would have been able to utilize my time better in the early years of my college career.
 
2) Take advantage of your professors

Your professors are there to help you. You would be in complete shock if you heard what they have done as a professor/ before becoming a professor. As a student you are paying a lot of money to go to college. It is important that you use every resource to improve yourself whether it be in your field of study or in life in general. Professors LOVE when you go and talk to them. I have had some awesome experiences with my
professors and it was all because I had taken the initiative to talk with them.

3) Do what makes you happy

Part of college is finding what you like and what you do not like. It is completely okay to change your major. It is completely okay to try multiple internships and jobs. Change is good. So many people are afraid to change their major and career path. As I said previously, college is about finding what you like. If you don’t like your classes, you cannot blame anyone but yourself. Luckily, DePaul has a ton of majors and classes that you can take while in college.


School Spirit

​I cannot emphasize enough that the experience you get at DePaul is unlike any other university. Just like people’s preferences between a Mac computer and a Microsoft computer varies, so do people’s preferences regarding universities. Even though you are getting a degree, the route you go to get your degree and the experiences you have vary greatly. Also, like the Mac vs. Microsoft dilemma, people have different thoughts on which is better and there truly is no correct answer. Your school decision is no different. You need to make a decision on what you feel is personally right which may not necessarily be what your counselor tells you.

The reason why I wrote this is due to the fact that school spirit cannot be judged on a 1-100 scale. You come to DePaul and many people are wearing DePaul gear. Does that mean our school has school spirit? Maybe. I don’t know. DePaul’s school spirit comes in a very different form from many other schools. You go to a school with a successful football team and school spirit is driven by their sports team. DePaul’s school spirit comes from the experiences not only students have with the university but from the experiences the community has with DePaul.

My school spirit is directly derived from the experiences I have had as a student. From my awesome classes, professors and friends I have met to the experiences I have had at things such as my service immersion trips and field trips, I have school spirit because what I have gotten from DePaul is more than I had ever imagined.

Even people that have not gone to DePaul have spirit for the university. DePaul stretches way beyond its walls. It floods the workforce with employees, provides thousands of volunteers to needy areas and, creates jobs and educated individuals for the community. I have met many people that had never been to DePaul, but were positively affected in some way by the university. I would not be lying in saying that most people in Chicago are affected in some way by the university. 

School spirit is very important. A person needs to have passion in order to truly do something well. This ties directly to their education. DePaul breeds school spirit.


How to Make a Good First Impression

​Professors are resources. They do more than just teach you. They can help you with career advice, be great mentors, and provide you with seasoned life lessons. To get all of these great things, it always helps to be on the professor’s good side. Here are some things that you can do to ensure that you give a good first impression to the professor.

Step 1: Get to class on time or early
It is crucial that you are in class on time. Especially if it is an important or difficult class, the professor will start lecturing right when the class begins. Running in late is obnoxious and can be easily alleviated by catching the earlier train or hitting the snooze button one less time

Step 2: Be active and aware
It is one thing to be in class and another thing to be actively listening and participating in the discussion. Let’s face it, professors know if you do not care. They know if you are actually taking notes on your computer or if you are just tweeting about how bored you are.

Step 3: Make a connection
In my opinion, this is most missed step, the hardest step, and the most important step. If you are able to go to the professor and show interest, share a commonality, or ask a question after or before class, it will show your interest and desire to have a personal relationship with your professor.


College is more than just sitting in class all day. You need to take advantage of everything that DePaul gives you. Every student wants something different out of college. It is important that you look a professor as a resource and not an obstacle.

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How to Deal with a Difficult Quarter

​​One accounting class is a lot. Two accounting class is near crazy. This quarter I have the pleasure of taking two accounting classes at the same time. Most students that major in accounting spread their classes out so they only have one accounting class every quarter. Luckily, I have learned how to deal with taking multiple tough classes at once. 

Below are a few tips on how to cope with a tough quarter:

1) Acknowledge that you have a tough quarter
​No quarter is going to be a walk in the park; but, it is up to you to understand and acknowledge when one quarter is going to be hard. Being able to do this can get you mentally prepared.

2) Have some scheduling tool
​​​Whether this be a written planner or something on your phone, be able to organize what you are doing so you don’t forget anything. Even though this is a good idea for any quarter, it is pivotal for the difficult ones.

3) Stick to study plan
​In college there are a ton of distractions. Make sure that when you have a date with the library, treat it as a date: be early and don’t leave until the date is done.

4) Do not take important things out of your life to do well
​Even though you are going to be busy, don’t stop going to the gym, calling your mom/dad, talking to your friends, or having fun. Obviously you have to find time to study, etc., but make sure what you move around or get rid of is not something important.




Apartment Hunting

Looking for apartments makes you really feel like an adult. You have a budget. There are contracts, tons of paperwork, research, negotiations, and credit reports. It feels like you are being thrown into a Financial Fitness Course with people that have already taken the course before. It is a lot of work and can be difficult at times but worth it in the end. The relief you get when you sign the contract and get the acceptance is an awesome feeling.
 
My guardian savior for apartment hunting is an app/website called Zillow. With this website, you can search nearly every apartment in the city, filtering your results to fit your criteria. It consolidates almost every listing, from Craigslist to private realtors.
 
My sophomore and junior year I lived off campus, even though I would hardly consider either apartment off campus. Both times I lived less than two blocks from campus in Lincoln Park. For students that live on campus their freshman year, I would recommend living in the Lincoln Park area to get accustomed to living off campus, while still staying involved in extracurricular activities on campus.
 
As my senior year is coming quickly, I have decided to move to an area outside of Lincoln Park. This is the time when leases begin to become available and agents begin showing apartments. I am looking at Lakeview, Uptown, and Wrigleyville. Wherever I end up, I am sure that it will be a place that I will grow to love!

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Vincentian!

It seems as if when many people look at DePaul, they think religious. Sure, we are the largest Catholic university in the United States and yes, being Vincentian is one of our core pillars, but hearing these words should not steer away any student from DePaul. There is more to religion than going to church and that idea is embraced at DePaul.

First of all, the Vincentian order was founded along the ideals of St. Vincent DePaul. Vinny dedicated himself to the poor in France, teaching them, feeding them, and telling them about Catholicism.

Tying this to DePaul, the university was founded to allow the marginalized in Lincoln Park, which used to be a very poor neighborhood, to get a quality education. Even today, education is a top priority of the university. That is why professors, not TA's, teach almost every class at DePaul.

DePaul also embraces the idea of doing community service and understanding what is happening in our local community. Many of our classes are geared toward understanding realities of society. There is also a plethora of volunteer opportunities and service trips that you can go on through DePaul.

You should not look at DePaul's religious identity as a negative aspect. The effects are extremely positive for every DePaul student. This creates a positive, effective environment for any college student to learn.

My Service Trip to Alabama

This spring break I participated in my second Service Immersion trip with DePaul. Both times I attended these trips, I was blown away by the amount that I learned and the experiences I had. For this Spring Break, I went to Montgomery, Alabama. The theme was Civil Rights.

Firstly, I had never been to the south before so I was initially enticed to attend the trip to gain a new experience about life in the south and how topics such as discrimination and religion affect the present time.  Learning about Civil Rights in the epicenter of the Civil Rights movement was also something that I was extremely interested in.

Once we got to our service and living site, I was amazed. We stayed at Resurrection School, which was a private catholic school. Compared to my previous trip, we had beds to sleep on. That alone was enough to make me happy after a thirteen hour bus ride. We did a lot of service at the school such working with the kids, assisting the teachers, and helping Doyle, the school custodian.

We went to many museums and took many tours of colleges, nonprofit organizations and different cities. One of my favorite events was the peace dinner that we attended, which was hosted by the priest of the school. Here we met many past and current community activists. We even met Dr. King’s barber!

For me, it was important that what I learned I would be able to bring back to my community and I know that, through sharing my experiences, I will be able to do this. It is hard to explain these experiences, especially in a blog post. The effect that they have had on me is immense and I encourage all students to take advantage of them.


5 Things to Do over Spring Break

You are given a week of freedom. What are you to do during that week? This is a list of five options I would recommend to you.

1. Go on a Service Trip

DePaul offers many service immersion trips that you can do over Spring Break. I have gone on two of them and they have been awesome trips that I would recommend to anyone.

2. Go home and visit your family

It is great to spend a week at home with you family and friends. Spring Break is a break so you should take a load off and do something that will give you the chance to relax and enjoy yourself.

3. Go spend a week at one of your friends schools

Not all schools have the same Spring Break as DePaul does. If you do have some friends at different colleges, it is a good opportunity to go visit them. There you can hang out with them, maybe sneak in to one of their classes as well as check out a different university.

4. Stay in Chicago

Sometimes a staycation is all you need to relax. If you stay at DePaul, you can relax, maybe get some spring cleaning done and rejuvenate yourself for Spring Quarter.

5. Vacation

SPRING BREAK!!! If you are a person that wants to go to Florida, Cancun, anywhere that has been in a Spring Break movie, go do it. Whether it be on land or on a cruise, make your Spring Break your Spring Break.