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For The New Kids On The Block

By: Marybeth Beitzel, Copy Editor (mbbeitzel90@gmail.com)

So, you’re new to UIC. Chances are, you’ve noted the lack of windows on the large cement buildings looming throughout campus, and have been racking your brain to remember if your Orientation Leader ever mentioned UIC being a converted prison. And you’ve now wandered the halls of BSB seven times, still positive that this does not make sense, and have begun to seriously contemplate if the whole set up is part of a rat-in-a-maze psychology experiment. We’ve all been there.

Being a new student can be overwhelming, but try not to be dismayed. UIC is home to a myriad of opportunities and an eclectic student body. Joining an organization on campus is a great way to help make a large place feel a little more manageable, not to mention an easy way to make friends and gain valuable experience. Here’s a few of UIC’s finest:

1. Alternative Spring Break

This student organization offers affordable trips across the US over spring and winter breaks. In small teams, UIC students are sent out in a van to pair with an organization of the student’s interest. Trips in the past have been focused on the issues of housing, poverty, the environment, animal rights, blind disability, and more. ASB does not just provide an opportunity to spend time in a new state, but also a chance to share an incredible experience with your peers, create lasting friendships, and use your time meaningfully. Who knows?  Maybe your trip can shed some insight onto your career goals.

2. Engineering Design Team

Composed primarily of engineering students, this group designs and builds robots, allowing students to apply practical application to the knowledge and skill set they have acquired in class. Since the construction of robots requires several mechanical attributions, students from all facets of engineering have joined the crew. After construction, EDT puts their robotics to the test in a competition with other teams.

3. EcoCampus

Concerned with sustainability globally, this organization champions sustainability initiatives across campus. EcoCampus implements various programs on UIC and educates students about sustainability issues. A project they have recently partook in was convincing UIC dining halls to switch their egg products to a cage-free egg provider.

Chances are, UIC offers an organization to suit your interests. UIC’s website provides an extensive list of student organizations; attending student fairs is also a wonderful way to learn more about the opportunities your school offers. Settle in, get acquainted with your new environment, and get involved!

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