Loyola University Chicago

Office for International Programs

April 2016

Denise

Home Country: Singapore

Major: Visual Arts  

Why did you choose to come study abroad at Loyola?  

It’s actually kind of funny because I was stalking my professor from last semester and found out she went to Loyola so I was asking her about the school and everything.  I thought the concept of going to a Catholic school was interesting since Singapore doesn’t have any. I wanted to see what it’d be like at a Jesuit university so I decided to come here.  Initially I wasn’t planning on studying abroad but after talking to her, Chicago seemed like quite a nice place to try. 

What have you enjoyed so far about your study abroad experience?

At the International House, my favorite part is the kitchen because I can cook.  I think I’ve really improved my cooking skills because I never have to cook at home actually.  At Loyola, being a part of Campus Ministry has been really fun. I’ve been going to retreats and spending time with people in Campus Ministry, which has been the highlight of my time here. There’s this line from one of the retreats that really struck me, which was “We’re going to give you a degree, but it’s not for you.”  This really changed my whole perspective about what education is really about and why I’m even studying and doing a degree at a university.  I used to think that learning for the sake of learning was the best way because you’re learning what you’re really interested in.  But coming here, I’ve learned about the importance of learning for the sake of helping others.  It really changed the way I viewed education and a college degree because it’s not something everyone can afford. 

How did you get involved with Campus Ministry?

I just went to their office and asked how I could get involved.  I also visited their website and signed up for retreats.  I thought this would be a great way to meet new people! I also go to daily mass and I’m part of CLC (Christian Learning Community) with a group of girls. 

What do like to do for fun?

I actually do a lot of art stuff.  I’ve been painting and drawing.  I’ve been doing a lot of portraits so I paint my friends and family.  I also like to play the ukulele and sometimes I go to my friend’s dorm next door to play. 

What will you miss and won’t miss the most about Loyola/Chicago/the International House?

I think I will be glad to go back to Singaporean food and cheap food.  But I will miss the people I’ve met here and the Jesuit environment.  I think I can really see the Jesuit values in all of the classes I take.  The values are very universal and I realized I can apply it to any situation.  I think it’s really good that I came here so I can go back and share the values with my friends and everyone back home.  But I will definitely miss the friends I made here.