Category: Friends



Hello UIC!

I hope your week is going smoothly. It’s the 4th week of the semester! It is going by really quickly. This week consisted of classes, work commitments, time with friends, meetings, and a lot of anticipation.

My classes are going pretty smoothly, my first exam is schedule for Monday, February 13, 2012. I am excited yet nervous. I am also really glad that some of my teachers are giving us take home midterms which I have never had, it seems like a good change. My Physics 116 Professor, Dr. Hoffman let us borrow a “Kill A Watt”. It’s a really interesting apparatus that allows the user to calculate the efficiency of an appliance. I can’t wait to unplug and plug all of my appliances to the Kill A Watt.

I have the opportunity to work with other students and administrative staff in the planning of a new event geared toward the UIC community and their family. It would be a new event to help out students in that awkward transition phase. I can remember when I came to UIC; it was hard to explain to my parents that school is my main focus and that I have to stay on campus almost all day because of the workload and the amount of studying that needs to be done. The event is still in the planning stage but I can guarantee that it will be worthwhile.

With such full weeks, it’s hard to make time with my high school friends, especially since they are always working or out of town.  This time I had the opportunity to go get some wings with my high school friend. We had the opportunity to catch up and exchange Christmas and Birthday gifts (I still have her gifts hostage though). Life has given us ups and downs but I am very lucky to have such great relationships with family and friends.

I also had the opportunity to spend some time with my UIC friends. We went to the local Brazilian restaurant, Sabor Express, as you can see from the picture it was delicious. Aside from delicious food they also have great customer service; the manager brought our table a complimentary appetizer.  It was very surprising to realize that we hadn’t spent time together since last semester. Occasions like these definitely have to occur more often.

SHPE-UIC held its Second Meeting of the Spring Semester. We had the pleasure to have one of our own Alumni, Jaime Frausto, come to talk to our members about the company he works for and give us insight on the corporate world. The members really enjoyed the meeting and a lot of positive feedback was given.

Thank You Maribel Arellano for the picture.

This weekend will be full of excitement. On Friday, the ILS-AMP Conference starts; it is a conference like no other. Students and professionals have the chance to present their research to the participants of the conference and it really gives attendants the motivation to do research and even pursue a post baccalaureate degree. It’s filled with motivational speakers and inspirational individuals.

On Saturday, the Middle School Regional Science Bowl will take place. It’s a fast paced Jeopardy style competition. Students from around the city get the chance to participate for a chance to win an all expense paid trip to Washington DC and compete in the National Science Bowl Competition. This is my first time volunteering in the competition room. I will be serving as a scorekeeper; I could just imagine how exciting the competition room will be. It will give me the chance to perfect my scorekeeping skills for the High School Regional Science Bowl on February 24th.

Next week I will definitely update you on the events and let you know how my birthday goes.

Thanks for reading this week!


Hola UIC!

I hope your school week, is going AWESOME! It’s the third week; things are starting to really pick up. I had my first lab report for my Inorganic Chemistry class due today. I love it when we get rubrics; they really help me get started. I have a lot of trouble with art and writing, it takes me a while to finish an art or writing project, that is why I have to start those assignments early.

I had a good weekend with my family. My mom babysits my youngest nephew everyday so I rarely even see her. It was good to spend time with her and my oldest nephew, Alex, who can only visit us sometimes. He is a really sweet kid. We took him to the Flea Market. Although we did not buy anything special, we did have time to sit down and enjoy some diablitos. They are a shaved ice drink that is made with: tamarindo (tamarind), chamoy (no translation), red pepper, pineapple, lemon, cucumbers, and a Mexican tamarind candy. It’s spicy and a better summer option but it is very delicious. The person who sells them is from Morelos, a state in Mexico, where diablitos are commonly made.  Another thing native to Morelos, Chinelos, a form of dance that uses big costumes and really upbeat music, it is mostly performed during the carnival season during lent and other festive occasions. I strongly encourage you to look up some of the videos from the festivals. They look like so much fun.

Speaking (or should I say writing) of fun, I got to see my co-worker, Christian, in action last Friday. His student organization, Movimiento Latino, performed at a variety show. They are all talented dancers and their passion is transmitted with every step they take. They brought a lot of flavor and energy to the event.

I received some wonderful news today. I was selected to attend Alternative Spring Break (ASB) to Appalachia with the Newman Center. We, the volunteers, get the opportunity to build homes for low income families in Eastern Kentucky. It will surely be an unforgettable Spring Break.

This week was extremely packed. With a lot of upcoming events like: The SHPE-UIC Meeting (January 31st), The Illinois Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (ILS-AMP) Conference (February 3-4 ), the CHANCE Ambassador hosted Fun-A-Thon (Look out for the date), Regional Science Bowls (Middle School February 4th and High School February 25th), I am Woman Conference (March 3rd and 4th), the ASB volunteering week (March 16-20), and the SHPE Region 6 Regional Leadership Development Conference (March 29-April 1), it was a week full of planning meetings, proposal writing, and inspiration. I had the opportunity to speak with some of the students from our high school component (SHPE Jr.) at Juarez Community Academy and Roosevelt High School, they are truly admirable. I did have a lot of support from my co-chairs (Anthony and Victor) they are also looking forward to the students’ success.

Sorry for only one picture. Next Week I promise there will be more. Comment below for any questions or suggestions for next week.

Thanks for reading this week. (Especially my “Super Mega Fan”, Erika Ayala)

“Cheese Tia!”

Hello UIC!

It is the second week of school (January 16-20). Do not forget, this is the last week to submit any changes to your schedule without a “W”, declare any pass or fail classes, or petition for grade recalculation (this is standard with most colleges but check with yours just to make sure). Now that all of the schedules are finalized, the semester can truly start. So far I am quite impressed with my classes.  My Energy classes in particular are extremely interesting, they give me new insight on alternative energy and it really makes me think about the future of energy.  It makes us the students assess ourselves and allows reflection on our way of thinking and how narrow minded we can be sometimes. I cannot wait to start my project; we have to design a new alternative source of renewable energy.

Now that classes have started I do not have as much time to spend with my family. I do however try to visit my nephews whenever possible. This past weekend, I visited my two nephews and was invited to make my first snow man with my nephew, as they say, “a picture is worth a thousand words”. Here is our product and my nephew. Every time he says, “Cheese Tia!” my heart melts a little. Although, his mom and I did most of the work, he shows true signs of leadership, he delegated and motivated us throughout our construction.

This week was full of extracurricular activities. On Wednesday was our first Spring General Meeting for SHPE-UIC, I was extremely happy to walk into a full room. It is always good to see the chapter growing, it allows for the sustainability of the chapter. We are lucky to be housed in the College of Engineering and to have admirable advisors and leaders. Our dedicated advisors always take time out for us and help our members out in every way possible. Our leaders are always willing to take time out for the betterment of our community.

*Thanks to Perla Rodriguez for the group picture*

On Thursday, we attended our second basketball game together. The flames did a good job against Butler. Along with having sometime to bond during the game, we also had the opportunity to win some money for our student organization. If we had the most students attend the Basketball Game, we would get money for our programming. Although we have a large mirage of ideas and motivated members, money is always needed for our outreach events, scholarship opportunities, and our robot. We hope that the results are favorable.

Thursday was also a very important day for my support program, CHANCE. We had our Informational meeting where we gave new students insight on how they could benefit from the program and showed the success of our programming through examples and success stories from our own students. I also had the pleasure of telling the Women in the room about our upcoming I am Woman Conference, which is sure to be full of networking and novel opportunities for all women on the UIC Campus. If you would like to attend, let me know and I will gladly send you a personal “e-vite” and keep you informed about workshops, companies represented, and the agenda.

I am looking forward to another trip down Latin American gastronomy with some of my favorite kids. So far we have visited restaurants that represent the following countries: Panama, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Mexico, and Guatemala. Our next visit will most likely be to a Chilean restaurant for “empanadas”. I love living in Chicago, we are very fortunate to have so much diversity. If you have any good suggestions for a restaurant or would like to come, let me know.

This was a very full week, next week already seems pretty hectic but we will have to wait and see.

Thanks for reading this week!


Happy Holidays UIC!! 

If anyone is out there, please grant my wish of Chicago Bulls tickets =) that would be the best holiday gift as of right now!

So last week, I was talking about the“Time Capsule Video.” I plan on filming a daily journal starting 12:00am on New Years Day and this project will last the entire year. I will show you and my friends the life of an RA, Engineer, DJ Radio Host, Food Explorer, and many more. So stay tuned in for my blogs and I will give you guys sneak peaks!!!

Top 3: “Shows You Must Watch Over Winter Break” (If you haven’t caught up or seen it yet)

1. Breaking Bad
It’s a drama show about a struggling high school chemistry teacher who was diagnosed with cancer and turns to a life of crime in order to secure his family’s financial future. This show gets more badass in every episode.

2. Walking Dead 
An action packed television drama show about a group of survivors in a “zombie filled world.” It’s all about the human psyche when you’re pushed to the brink of death.

3. How I Met Your Mother
A comedy show about a story of a group of friends in New York City. This show gets compared to Friends a lot, which isn’t a bad thing, because it’s truly that funny.

Another gift my friend, How I Met Your Mother!! In turn, I gave my friend Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. 

A gift from a fellow RA, "How I Met Your Mother: Season 6"

**This season is the gift of giving TV Series, so feel free to hope along on our bandwagon and give your friends TV Series DVDs as well**

Until Next Time!


ANSWER FOR LAST WEEK: I would give my celebrity crush idol, Emma Watson, Season 3 of Saved by the Bell

QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Worst holiday food you’ve had?


The Biology Blues

Final grades usually come out a week or two after the semester ends, but sometimes you’re lucky to get your grade earlier…and at other times you’re lucky to not receive your grade earlier. Well, if you ever take a biology course at UIC, you’ll be getting your grades early before they land on your transcript for real–but mine weren’t pleasant. I guess I’m just happy to pass, but our biology professor gave us a Blackboard announcement saying if you didn’t get a good grade in the class, then you have to step it up because this class resembled the MCAT/GRE type of exams (a lot of biology or other science-major students are pre-medicine). I think it’s good because we get exposed to it and all, but man do I have a lot of work ahead of me in terms of preparing for the MCAT! Apparently my class scored the highest out of all the classes previously, which means I was surrounded by a lot of smart people! I consider myself the average type of smart, the smart that can get by for some things but in general depends on a lot of studying. I have a feeling everyone else was the talented-smart…the type who can just get things almost by instinct. I don’t know how they do it! Those kind of people perplex me because I probably have to study five times harder than they do to get the same or a similar grade.

I had organic chemistry Friday and I think it went all right. I haven’t gotten the final exam grade and final grade for that class, but I’m okay not knowing for a bit.

Studying for my organic chemistry exam at my desk in MRH

I have actually not used my desk in my room at MRH since the beginning of the year. The light is really bright and served to be a wonderful place to do homework! I'm going to be doing this more often next semester.

As for my other classes, I know nutrition went well because she uploaded the exam right away and it’s by points so it’s easier to pass in my opinion. I haven’t gotten a grade back yet for my Asian studies paper, nor my short stories in English.

I finished writing my paper at the UIC Library around 1am!

The weekend before finals week I went to the UIC library to write my Asian studies paper. I stayed there until 1am and finished it!

It’s funny. After we had Thanksgiving break, I had no motivation whatsoever to do work. I think that effect of being at home just really relaxed me, and having to go from that back to school was a bummer. My roommate and I stayed up until 5am this one night because we just felt angry all of the sudden, and we are pretty collected people if you ever meet us. I was triggered into a venting state when I went on Facebook and saw something that I really disapproved of. I don’t understand why people have to say things that other people would either say “aww” or barf from reading. I guess there’s only a few eyes that you want to read your status updates, even though everyone can see them! It was just another reason why I do not go on Facebook very often. Does anyone else feel a negative type of nostalgia when they decide to go on that website? I definitely don’t like that I have to figure out how to navigate on Facebook because they always change their layouts. Yeesh.

Some idiot(s) wasted a good bag of potatoes to pull a prank.

If there's something I really don't like about college, it has to be the immaturity of the population here. I'm not talking UIC specifically because I think it happens at any college campus, especially in the dorms. When my roommate and I were having this heart-to-heart talk, we heard some voices near our door...giggling sounds. We didn't think much of it besides they were clearly up to no good, but the next day we opened our door to go outside and a giant stack of potatoes just rolled in our room! We were outraged, especially ever since we realized how many things we were upset about the night before socially. My roommate went crazy and picked up all of the potatoes and kicked them and threw them across the hallway. I don't see how people have fun hurting others, even if 'it's just a joke.' I definitely wasn't laughing.

In addition to that incident, the MRH Resident Director sent an e-mail to everyone about damages. I remember experiencing this when I lived at JST last year and it’s almost always split among everyone who lives on your floor, not the whole building. Well, I live on the third floor and each person has to pay $6.38 for damages. First floor pays nothing, second floor pays $2.73, and fourth floor pays $1.09. I mean, seriously? What if it was someone from first floor who went to the third floor and did that damage? How do they account for this…and is it really my responsibility to go to someone on my floor and tell them not to be stupid? I know some people choose to live on campus for the parties and social events, but I personally just want to live in a nice quiet place where I can study and sleep peacefully! MRH is closer to that type of living environment I’m looking for as opposed to JST, but it could be better.

Well, I guess this is enough ranting. I’m at home right now and it’s been really great so far. I recently watched The Sitter and it was surprisingly really good! I thought it would be bad because I don’t like the other movies the main actor is in (e.g. Super Bad), but everything about it was hilarious and contained some kind of moral-ness to it. I ran into a couple people today from high school and junior high so looks like I’ll be catching up with them this winter break!

I still don’t have any ideas for what to do during my winter break besides getting my allergy shots and doing research, but I guess I’ll wing it. I’m also going to go to the writing center a few times because one of the main journals in the writing center field is looking for submissions from undergraduate students and so the writing center director is asking anyone who is interested to attend a workshop. It should be a lot fun!

Student Center West

This is outside of Student Center West. I'm here a lot because of my two jobs. It snowed, but I guess you can't see here too well. Chicago winter is brewing.

The sky was getting pink at 6am.

I had to get up at 6am to go to west side for research. I didn't get much sleep, but the mornings are very beautiful. The sky actually made UIC's SES building pretty for once.

I promise my next post will be a lot less mundane! Hope everyone had a better week than I did.

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?


Happy September

I still find it hard to believe that we’re on our ninth month of the year 2011, and that my beautiful roommate and friend Simona turned 19 today! Soon I will turn 19 (in October) and it just feels weird. I know it is probably nothing like turning 20, or even 21, but it’s almost like the last “teen” year I’ll have.

Ice Cream Cake

We went to Dairy Queen in downtown to get an awesome Blizzard Ice Cream Cake for my roommate's 19th birthday!

Starting next week, I will have my first nutrition exam; the week after, I will have my first cell biology exam; and finally, the week after that, I will have my first organic chemistry exam. I feel so fortunate to have taken 18 credit hours and coincidentally have almost every exam spaced out! It is a rare quality. Week two of my crazy schedule went well, but I still need to study a bit more in organic chemistry. We have a Russian TA, and he seems a bit impatient and intimidating to all of us.

Yesterday in Music Therapy, my class and I watched a video on an overview of the arts and medicine, and it was just so inspiring! It made me want to play my violin again, and the piano and erhu. I miss music so much but it really takes a lot of practice each day to be good and it is just very difficult to balance study time and class time, work and research, and of course all of those extra-curriculars. Fortunately, the extra-curricular clubs tend to be unorganized (sad, but it is true) so I do not have to worry a great deal. Every club that I joined last year started out great, but overtime people just got busy I guess and did not contribute or attend. I suppose it is because undergraduates just like party all the time, but I seriously don’t understand how people who do that can maintain good grades. It is quite boggling.

Anyway, Spark in the Park was AMAZING. Lupe Fiasco sounded just like he does on the CD when he performed live. The only annoying part was when people blew big puffs of cigarette smoke in front of my face. My eczema definitely does not react well with those free radicals…

Spark in the Park

Lupe Fiasco at Spark in the Park! I love UIC. :D

It’s labor day weekend! I am going home tomorrow…somehow. My brother has to meet with the restaurant owners of Bop n’ Grill because they want us to design their t-shirts! My brother’s designs are pretty cute, haha. Speaking of which, I need to switch hosts because my brother is complaining that it’s annoying to click “store” and not arrive to the store…and other things. Yeesh.

My cousin is having a baby shower this weekend! I’ve never been to one, so this will be a fun and new experience. =)

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