Author Archives: Darren Ujano, Civil Engineering

About Darren Ujano, Civil Engineering

Civil Engineering and I am employed by UIC Campus Housing as well as Project SYNCERE. Fun fact: I love eating Oreos

Carry on the Flames

Hey UIC!

Atmosphere is getting tense! Everyone is getting ready for finals, working on term projects, and it truly has become the moment of truth for the semester. Good luck to all the students!

So for this week’s list, here’s some tracks we play on Krome Radio. Check it out, listen, and Rock out!

(Krome Radio is a UIC College Radio Station that plays new, upcoming, as well as unplugged tracks from the past of Asian and American music!)


“Breakups Are So Like Me” by Kim Jang Hoon (ft. Hee Chul from Super Junior)

“Winter Magic” by KARA

“Most Like You” by Thomas-Jack

“Before It Explodes” by Charice & Bruno Mars

“Be My Baby” by Wonder Girls

So follow Krome on twitter to see weekly updates about College Radio!


In addition, last Wednesday our Men’s Basketball Team rocked against Roosevelt!!! The Pavilion flooded with the UIC Colors and they were handing out free Flames Jerseys to the first 500 students. So go if you can, check out any of the UIC games!!!

TOPIC NEXT WEEK: Thanksgiving

ANSWER FROM LAST WEEK: “I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing” by Aerosmith from the film Armageddon

QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Do you believe in Karma? If so, when will it come most useful?


Hey all!

I’m writing this article in the radio studio right now! Our theme this week is Battles. Anything ranging from personal battle to epic scenes in movies and video games. Which reminds me, since my exam week is over, I’m facing a huge dilemma, whether to buy Modern Warfare 3, Battlefield 3, or Skyrim.

Other than that, I also attended the UIC Engineering Poster Competition. This competition showcases various research projects that graduate students are working on, such as the ones depicted below:

Since exams are over with, I’m on a hunt for my summer internship. If there was a one-book guide to career hunting, I would recommend “What Color Is Your Parachute?” That book is also a self-exploration book in which can improve your chances in getting a job by finding your hidden talents and skills.

So here’s my tips for “Getting an Internship”

3. Focus Your Resume
A tip I learned from the Engineering Internship Coordinator is to focus your resume for the job you are applying for. Any relevant skills that will help you will increase your chances of getting the job.

2. Research the Job You Want
If you can do me a favor, and know what type of job you want. What exactly do you want to get out of it? Job benefits, opportunities for promotion, certain job hours? If you compare the same paid job for the amount of benefits versus work, you will see how important it is to research the job.

1. Get Out There
I heard a weird comparison, “career hunting is like dating.” You have to have manners, skills that appeal to the person who decides to hire you. So if you want to get a job, get out there and sell yourself.

I’m attending RHA Ball tomorrow! It’s a dance held for residents, staff workers, and their dates of Campus Housing hosted by the Residence Hall Association. Here’s the link to the place it will be hosted at: Holiday Inn at the Chicago Mart Plaza, just above the Loop.

TOPIC NEXT WEEK: I’ll think of something awesome, stay tuned =)

ANSWERS LAST WEEK:  I learned that Youtube is what creates 2011 music. Popularity through Youtube

QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Best song to slow dance too!

Road to UIC

Hey flames!

When I say road to UIC, I literally say the road to UIC. I’ve been conducting research on Roosevelt Road for Transportation Class.

Our class project is resolve traffic congestion on Union and Roosevelt caused primary by commuters exiting and entering I-90/94. Our observed data revealed that more than 2600 cars pass that intersection every hour, equating to roughly 43 cars per minute.

Us observing nearby intersection on Roosevelt Road

After we gather data, we analyze the level of service and come up with a solution that will be cost effective and will accommodate to the long terms demands within 10 to 15 years.

The intersection of Roosevelt & Union Road

A student’s life wouldn’t be complete without exams. So I’ll head back to studying and see you guys next week!

Here’s my Top 3: Things I Learned About Chicago Traffic

3. Lane Width Matters
The lesser the lane width (even by a foot), the more reduction in traffic speed due to increased cautionary driving.

2. Bicycle Lanes Reduce Traffic
Cyclist are frequent targets of car and pedestrian traffic. If there are no bicycle lanes, cyclist will use the road to avoid pedestrians thus decreasing traffic flow.

1. More Lanes Does Not Mean Less Traffic
A major concern right now, especially for the future, is urban gridlock. Cars are being added to the roadway exponentially and there are only so much lanes that can be added. Perhaps lanes aren’t the answer but mass transit.

TOPIC NEXT WEEK: Internships for Civil Engineers!

ANSWER LAST WEEK: I think the coolest couples costume I’ve seen is Fry and Leela from Futurama– and their child Nibbler

QUESTION OF THE WEEK:  Something I learned about 2011 music…


“True leaders will let you fail, but they would never let you be a failure” – Former Army General Stanley McChrystal

Something I learned in the military– from taking caring of staff to learning in classes, this quote follows me everywhere. In addition to being a supervisor, I learned how to balance my social, work, and academic life. Three circles which consume me as a student and I will present to you my life below:

Sunday: Suprise birthday party for one of my friends. We can never take a picture where we all look at the same camera.

Monday-Thursday: Managing meetings and supporting staff events


Thursday: Krome Radio

Everyday: Attend Lectures and Study

Anyway, one of the greatest skills i learned before entering college is time management. I discovered that using a calendar and planning my schedule helps a lot in overseeing the 3 circles of academic, social, and work life.

Sorry this article is short but I’m studying for exams. That’s all I got this week! Look for next week’s Top 3: Things I learned about Chicago Traffic

TOPIC NEXT WEEK: Top 3 Things I learned about Chicago Traffic

ANSWER FROM LAST WEEK: I would tell the world that I love Oreos. Anything involving Oreos is automatic magic.

QUESTION OF THE WEEK: What’s the best couples costumes you’ve this past Halloween?

Sushi and Engineers

“True engineering lies in finding solutions to the impossible– things that have never been seen. That’s what exhilarates us to the edge of experience and knowledge. Because to us, nothing is impossible once you control the probability of failure”

A guest lecturer for CME 315, former BS, MS, and PhD graduate of UIC Civil Engineering, Dr. Jeffrey Adams speaks to us about the latest projects he’s working on with ENGEO Incorporated.

Plans for renovating the Ball Park Village in St. Louis, MO

Other projects include the Desert-Xpress, an expanding rapid transit train to and from Las Vegas that will be built throughout the surrounding towns and cities in Nevada and neighboring California.

Renovation of California’s Treasure Island
One of the flagship projects of ENGEO is an island in California known as Treasure Island which can be seen in the San Francisco Bay. Known for holding it’s historical significance, the island’s future development will include a self-sustaining city with urban farms.

The challenge with Treasure Island is the rapid soil consolidation beneath the island; in other words the island is sinking. This theme ties into our recent soils lab concerning field compaction that will help reduce soil consolidation. The island will be beneath sea level within the matter of a few years.

Field Compaction Lab- testing soils for moisture content


Proposed Development for Treasure Island

Now onto the Top 3 places to eat sushi around UIC. Of course, this is based off of my own awesome taste buds and fellow UIC students so check it out!

–Top 3: Places to Eat Sushi Around UIC–

3. Kohan (
All you can eat sushi for lunch with buffet! Located on South Campus on Maxwell Street next to Morgan’s Bar and Grill.

2. Tatsu Sushi (
Located on Taylor Street, Tatsu has a great selection of sushi, especially the one named after UIC!

1. Ichiban Sushi Cafe (
Another one located on Taylor St.–Offers all you can eat sushi including appetizers! I especially love the Ichiban roll.

My friend and myself at Ichiban's Sushi Cafe

That wraps it up this week! See you and Happy Halloween!!!!!!!!

TOPIC NEXT WEEK: Life as a Campus Housing Student Staff Supervisor

ANSWER FOR LAST WEEK: So recently, I’ve been watching How I Met Your Mother, The Office, Walking Dead, Breaking Bad, Dexter, and Modern Family. Any of those with my idol.

QUESTION OF THE WEEK: What would be one confession/little secret you could tell the world, what would it be?

Tony’s Tigers!

Hey UIC!!

Came back from the intramural finals– I’m not glad Tony’s Tigers lost the championship but we gave the other team one hell of a game. I’ve never coached a team that adapted, engaged, and played each game better than the last. We know what to work on and hopefully return next season.

2011 Semi-Finals: Tony's Tiger's, 2nd to none

During game time, there’s a special bond that can only form under pressure. It’s only pressure that can turn dirt into diamonds. Diamond, being the strongest gemstone, gets stronger and stronger only through time and pressure and Tony’s Tigers is the king of them all.

A tribute to sports, here’s my Top 3: Things I Learned in Sports:

3. “The Game Isn’t Over Until It’s Over” -Yogi Berra
I will add to this, “you miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” During game time, always give it your all, pedal to the metal. Nothing is like a game where your done by 10, 2min left on the clock, and you clutch to a win. As GMC says it “Never Say Never”

2. “Don’t see players for what they are, but who they can be”
Whenever I lead a staff or coach a team, it’s important for a leader to see potential. Get your players to step outside their comfort zone. Challenge them, get them to be all they can be and never settle for average. They’ll thank you for all those tough lessons and

1. “Walk With Purpose”
Putting forward a lot of effort that you reach the state tennis quarter finals– I remember losing and feeling like I failed the team. My coach came up to me and said, “you played tough, but chin up– and walk with purpose.” This quote applies symbolically throughout life.

That’s all I have this week, see you around!


TOPIC NEXT WEEK: Top 3- Sushi Restaurants Around UIC

ANSWER LAST WEEK: I would spend a night in IKEA, I like having the option of where to sleep, plus the cafeteria!!

QUESTION OF THE WEEK: What Fall TV Shows will you watch with your idol?


Fantasy Football!

“Winning isn’t everything, it’s the only thing” – NFL Coach Vince Lombardi

I’ve been hooked on ESPN Fantasy Football these past few weeks. The league I play in has 16 teams, including residents and UIC Campus Housing coworkers. I know I’m going to get alot of criticism from true fanatics but to spark conversation, here’s my fantasy team:

Team: That’s No Moon (–Star Wars)
QB- Drew Brees, NO
RB- LeSean McCoy, Phi
RB- Ryan Mathews, SD
RB/WR- James Starks, GB
WR- Jeremy Maclin, Phi
WR- Mike Wallace, Pit
TE- Jason Witten, Dal
D/ST- Eagles
K- John Kasay, NO

QB- Jay Cutler, Chi
RB- Pierre Thomas, NO
RB- Michael Bush, Dal
WR- Victor Cruz, NYG
WR- Preston Parker, TB
TE- Rob Gronkowski, NE
D/ST- Redskins

I recently earned one trophy titled “I Beat My RD” for defeating JST Resident Director and my supervisor Miranda =P

**Top 3: Must Attend Chicago Fall Events** 

3. Hot Chocolate Run (November)
Running never felt so sweet! After the Chicago Marathon, Chicago’s next big one is the Hot Chocolate Run! Thousands upon thousands of people, businesses, and charities will be there sharing the fun. Link to the Hot Chocolate Run:

2. Chicago’s Navy Fear (October)
Weeks leading up to Halloween, Navy Pier becomes Navy Fear. Overrun with frightful monsters, Haunted Houses, and moving objects, they go all out in this theme park

A monster surprised us while we wait in line for "The Fear" (haunted house)

 1. Magnificent Mile Lights Festival (November)
One of nation’s largest holiday evening events, Chicago celebrates it’s tradition of lighting more than millions of lights down the Mag-Mile. I go every year since I lived in Chicago and get so many free things =)

Next week I’ll talk about the intramural basketball team I’m coaching, Tony’s Tigers. And we just made the playoffs!
TOPIC NEXT WEEK: Tony’s Tigers

ANSWER LAST WEEK: I’m going to cheat and say I would bring The Harry Potter series.

QUESTION OF THE WEEK: If you could spend any night at one store, which would it be?

“Think Globally, Act Locally”


A busy past few weeks it’s been– went kayaking, played intramural basketball, studying for exams, while supervising JST Staff and DJ for Krome Radio.

Kayaking vintage photo before departing for the 6-mile trip

Kayaked down Chicago River. Enjoying the evening view before watching the Navy Pier Fireworks

Another exciting seminar I went too, Dr. Brundtland travels to UIC to raise awareness for global climate change and how to move towards a brighter, secure, and more sustainable future.

Former Director General of the World Health Organization, Prime Minister of Norway, and now serves the United Nations for the Special Envoy for Climate Change, Dr. Brundtland

She emphasized taking a more proactive role locally in helping global sustainability, putting forward research and funding and opening roadways to allow policies that will help achieve a greener future.

Top 3: Tips to Survive Exam Week

3. Make your schedule revolve around studying
Always put your schoolwork first. Work, hanging out, fun activities, etc. can always wait. Grades first!
2.  Survival of the Fittest
It’s important eat and rest well. In addition, get as much help as you can get to give you an edge on the exam– Office Hours, Study Groups, etc.
1. Sleep!
     Pulling “all-nighters” are very dangerous. What’s the point of studying late, if you can’t think straight. A rhyme I learned during ROTC.

Thank you for reading and I’ll catch you next week!


QUESTION OF THE WEEK: If you had one movie to bring to a deserted island, what would it be?

ANSWER FROM LAST WEEK: I would play Call of Duty with my idol.

TOPIC NEXT WEEK: Top 3 Chicago Events to Look Forward to This Fall!








Bye September– Hello October!!

Hey Flames!!

Activities are rocking the Quad on East Campus. Just like the one below of UIC Concert Band.

Director David Morrison and the UIC Concert Band

An exciting event in Campus Housing titled Waka Wake Guac N’ Talk where UIC Honors College where invited to interact with residents in James Stukel Towers’s Tower Lounge B.

Dean of Honors College Bette Bottoms, Faculty in Residence Brandon Valeriano, and JST Residents

So here is my article based on bathrooms I’ve been to on campus.

Top 3: Awesome Bathrooms in UIC No One Knows About 

3. UIC Student Organization’s Bathroom (SCE 3rd Floor)
It’s just an overall nice bathroom.

2. Basement Bathroom for Courtyard’s Atrium
This bathroom is best know for it’s privacy. Not many students know of it’s existence and it’s conveniently placed next to the Residence Hall Association office.

1. JST Resident Assistant/Peer Mentor Bathrooms
The bathroom is so big you can literally fit a bunk bed. Some showers include a seat and a shower head with huge cabinets.

This week’s question of the week comes from Krome Radio. Tune in to me and DJ Rome 8-10pm!
QUESTION OF THE WEEK: What video game will you play with your favorite idol?

ANSWER FROM LAST WEEK: Approximately 27,000 attend UIC of which 3,800 live on campus.

TOPIC NEXT WEEK: Top 3: Tips to Survive Exam Week

Krome Radio!!!

Happy Thursday UIC!!

You feel the breeze this morning!! It’s turning into Fall!!

Last week was our kick-off show for UIC Krome Radio! I’m honored to DJ with the legendary Rome as we lead Krome into Season 3 to listeners everywhere!!

In case you missed it– Krome Radio plays a variety of popular Asian music, such as K, C, and J-Pop. Each show has an awesome theme so get pumped for our guest and events. Krome goes live from 8-10pm every Thursday on UIC Radio so stay tuned! (

First UIC Radio DJ meeting of the year. Hosts and DJs from all different programs.

As I promised, here’s my Top 3: Things Not To Eat During Class
(And yes, these are based on true stories) 

3. Chips and Sub Sandwich
Yes, I can hear the crunch from the chips and the crinkly wrapper sound from your delicious sub sandwich
2. Sushi
I love sushi. However, I can smell that and the soy sauce from across the lecture hall.
1. Burrito
If it’s falling apart and getting messy to the point its all over your notes, then I’m sure you’ll impress the professor.

–That’s all folks, Darren out!

TOPIC NEXT WEEK:  Top 3: Awesome UIC Bathrooms That No One Knows About 

QUESTION OF THE WEEK: How many students attend UIC this year?

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