When people think of Universities in Chicago, DePaul University is usually one to come to mind, so there’s no doubt that the university would have a few connections with some Chicago-related events, and representatives. The mayor has donated tons of money to the school, and the university is one of the first to be included in holiday parades that march down Michigan Ave. But why is DePaul so “plugged” into the city?
DePaul University is split into two campuses; one beautiful, and one that barely passes as a campus. On any given day, the Loop campus is filled with not only students, but a number of pedestrians, including many loiters. How does this constant flow of random pedestrians throughout the Loop campus affect the quality of the university? Furthermore, how does it affect the experience of the students? The same building that holds the school’s student center, is the same building that holds Chicago’s Water Department, as well as many eateries open to the public, so the pedestrians will always be there. It seems there should be a set standard on how open a “Private University” should be to the public.
Students spend tons of money each quarter paying for classes without knowing exactly where there money is going, or how it will benefit them. Since entering four years ago, I have seen a few improvements on the Lincoln Park campus with the addition of the new library, and a few other buildings. But what is the University spending to improve the Loop campus?
I have always imagined that DePaul would do something to privatize some part of the campus to make students feel more comfortable, or at least match the quality of the Loop campus with that of the beautiful Lincoln Park campus. So what does the university do to help the Loop? Add new dorms for DePaul students only? Add a 24-hour library that can only be accessed by students? No, and no; the university invested $70 million dollars to build an arena by McCormick Place, open to the public! Even more shocking, a former Cook County representative has consistently gotten paid $80,000 annually, by DePaul, for representing the university. Being only a student, I cannot explain the university’s logic in these decisions, but it does make me feel like the system of the school’s budget could use some improvement.
Outside of the very few basketball games that the Blue Demons will have in this arena, it will be open to Chicago events, including Public Schools and Community Colleges. This is great for Chicago, but how is this a benefit to the students of the university?
Hopefully this big investment will give the Loop campus a higher-quality feel. Maybe the university wants to keep an open reputation to the city.
Do you think this was a good investment? What can the university invest in to improve the quality of the loop campus? What are some of the standards a Private University campus should have?
Sources: Chicago Sun Times –