Student: Nicole Shoemaker
A small town named Henderson, Kentucky where there are tons of cornfields and no Chipotle. It’s the kind of town where if I went to the local grocery store with my mom, it would take 2 hours for us to get milk because we’d run in to everyone we knew. It’s also the kind of small town where a little 10 year old girl (me) could get lost from her parents during the Halloween parade and walk down the street in the direction of her grandparents’ house until a police officer spotted her and helped find her parents.
I hope to be going many places. Some of which include all 50 states, graduation in 2017, and eventually, Heaven. I also took a trip to Italy with my family last summer, which has motivated me to travel the world and hopefully live abroad someday for a year or more.
I’m a Welcome Week Team Leader, which means I get to help lead our great team in welcoming new students to campus this Fall! I am also an active member of Phi Sigma Sigma, a Panhellenic chapter on campus, was a freshman ambassador, and was President of Bellarmine Hall Council last year.
At Loyola, anyone can feel at home. The beautiful campus, friendly students, and helpful professors and staff make Loyola a truly amazing place. I have made friendships that will last forever and have been taught how to work hard and make decisions that will impact my future in a positive way.
One way I have contributed to Loyola communities is the positive image of Loyola I always try to convey to others. I also love being a part of the Greek Life community on campus. Over the last two years, I have been honored to help fundraise, volunteer, and build community through leadership and friendship.
I don’t live on campus so living off campus in Rogers Park allows me to interact with the locals. I shop at the local market and meet new people there and in local restaurants all the time. I also pet a lot of dogs while walking down the streets of RoPo so I interact with the animals or Rogers Park and their owners often! As far as Chicago communities go, I work at a restaurant downtown so I get to meet many tourists and other Chicagoans and hear their stories of struggle and triumph while living and/or visiting the city.
To me, justice means fairness and treating others the way you wish to be treated.
I attended Catholic school almost my entire life and was raised Catholic so the Jesuit education at Loyola has strengthened my faith even more. The emphasis on a commitment to excellence, service that promotes justice, and global awareness is evident throughout Loyola’s classrooms, all of campus, and its organizations. Students are always in the IC studying to further their knowledge, volunteering around the city, and there are numerous clubs and organizations on campus that focus on educating other students and the Loyola community on the happenings of the outside world. It’s easy to be so immersed in the Loyola community that we forget that there are things happening in the rest of the world and even two blocks off campus, but the emphasis on global awareness helps put things into perspective and reminds students that there’s more going on in the world than Loyola and the exam on Friday.
My favorite spot on campus is in the IC in one of the comfy chairs overlooking the lake. It’s very calming and reminds me of the beauty of Chicago. I could sit there and read a book for hours and forget that I was supposed to be writing an essay.
In all of Chicago, my favorite spot is the street. I don’t have one specific, favorite location in Chicago. I just love wandering down the streets and really seeing Chicago. Walking downtown and being amazed by the buildings and the activity or walking through Chinatown and seeing the culture is truly eye-opening and makes me feel so small, but part of something big. Chicago is a bustling place where great minds are working and inventing each day, and also where people are falling in love and staring families. Walking down the street, I can see all of these amazing things and remember what motivated me to come to the city - to truly be where the action and opportunity is.
Don’t be afraid to get out there and get involved. There’s no better way to enjoy Loyola than to immerse yourself fully in the environment around you. Loyola offers everything a college-aged person needs. You just have to be willing to seek it out and give it your all. Oh, and bring a winter coat.