Power restored to much of Loyola’s Rogers Park campus

By Jillian Schwartz

Power was restored by late afternoon Monday to much of the southeast side of Loyola University Chicago’s Lake Shore Campus following an earlier outage. 

Students were surprised after the power in the Information Commons, and much of southeast side of the campus went out at about 2 p.m. Monday.

Students entering the IC were faced by officers asking for their ID.

Officers were working to get the issue fixed, while many students moved to Mundelein Center to get their work scanned, printed and copied.

The power in CFSU went out for a short time, but was soon up and running. Lights in the IC were restored soon after.

“It’s amusing,” said  Tim Fiedler, 22, a senior entrepreneurship major. “It’s unfortunate for those who have to turn something in, but you have to roll with the punches sometimes.”

Loyola suffers power outage on southeast side of Lake Shore Campus

By Jillian Schwartz

Students are in a frenzy after the power in the Information Commons, and now reportedly on the entire southeast side of Loyola University Chicago campus went out.

Students currently entering the IC are faced by officers asking for their ID.

Officers are working to get the issue fixed, while many students move to Mundelein to get their work scanned, printed and copied.

The power in CFSU allegedly went out for a short time, but is now up and running.

While some worry about when the problem will be fixed, others kick back for a break from work.

“It’s amusing,” said  Tim Fiedler, 22, a senior entrepreneurship major. “It’s unfortunate for those who have to turn something in, but you have to roll with the punches sometimes.”

Man injured in drive-by shooting in Uptown

A man was injured in Uptown after being shot by a passing car early Sunday morning. This incident is one of three that occurred overnight, though the other two resulted in death. Police are still investigating the event.

Here’s the story from the Chicago Tribune:

Earlier Sunday morning, a male, whose age was unavailable, was shot in the buttocks about 3 a.m. in the 4500 block of North Clarendon Avenue in the Uptown neighborhood on the North Side, police said. The shots were fired from a passing 4-door silver vehicle, according to police, but additional details weren’t available.

– Alexandra Watt

Loyola students prepare for Hunger Week

Students will be raising awareness for the hungry this November by participating in Loyola University Chicago’s Hunger Week.

From November 6-11, you can choose to run, pray, fast, or even eat for the greater good, by attending Loyola Hunger Week events, such as the 5K run/walk, the interfaith prayer gathering, the Fast-a-thon, dinners, and many more.

Proceeds will be going to three hunger related organizations, one local, one national, and one international. This year they include CUERP Campus Gardens, Feeding America, and the Catholic Relief Services.

Here are more details from Loyola Hunger Week or

for event dates and times visit luc.edu/hungerweek.

– Ruthie Tomuta

Students support Loyola’s environmental sustainability efforts

By Ted Ballantine

Most Loyola University Chicago students support the school administration’s push for current and future environmental sustainability around campus, according to an informal survey.

Through 2015, Loyola’s Center for Urban Environmental Research and Policy (CUERP) is hoping to implement numerous policies aimed at improving many aspects of the University’s environmental footprint. Among these objectives are reducing emissions of Loyola’s transportation system, using waste food from the dining halls to heat buildings, and harnessing solar and wind energy to provide the University with 10-20 percent of its electricity.

“By investing in the environment, you are directly funding the betterment of the students themselves,” said Tim Rose, an 18-year-old political science major.

Rose may only be a freshman, but he is already on board with Loyola’s sustainability goals.

“Loyola should make a strong push towards, say, making buildings more efficient,” he added. “They are actually saving money in the long run that could go to grants and scholarships in the future.”

Joaquin Karrig, an 18-year-old freshman journalism major, agrees.

“If you’re looking at the long term, you’re saving more money on energy and spending less money on maintaining buildings,” said Karrig. “In the long run it [‘green’ investments] will end up being more efficient than what we’re spending money on now.”

The website Greenreportcard.org grades colleges on their environmental sustainability policies. Loyola received a C+ in 2010, but its grade jumped to an A- this year, putting Loyola in the top 20 percent of schools nationwide that were surveyed by the website. Still, not all students notice everything the University is doing.

“I don’t really encounter too much stuff [‘green’ policies] from the University,” said Charlie Portman, a junior philosophy major.

Other students think Loyola’s initiatives could be accomplishing even more.

“They do help, but they’re not making as big of an impact as I would hope,” said George Wilson, a junior.

But the 20-year-old International Studies major still has high hopes.

“There’s a lot planned for Loyola. Right now we’re still in the growing phase.”

Bahader Singh, 19, agrees that the University’s current goals are only the beginning.

“Some people would argue that one person doing something isn’t enough,” said the sophomore political science major. “But with something like environmentalism, it can influence the next person to take part, and the next, and over again…in the end it does have an impact.”

To read an outline of CUERP’s sustainability strategy through 2015, click here.

Loyola seniors fear they won’t find jobs, pay off student loans

By Stephen Mathis

As Loyola University Chicago seniors prepare to graduate in the spring, they face the reality that their student debts may be harder to pay than expected.

A CNN report issued in April noted that student debt has topped $1 trillion dollars and exceeds credit card debt for the first time in history.

Despite another report by CNN saying that the economy is not in a recession, but continuously growing, Loyola seniors fear that they’ll have to work jobs for which their majors didn’t prepare them.

“I am nervous about opportunities just after college…my biggest fear is not being able to find a job in the field I want” said Matthew Hogan, 21, senior marketing major.

Other students are concerned about potential jobs and their ability to pay off loan debts.

“I do have student loans that I need to pay off after I graduate…I’m crossing my fingers that I will have a teaching job, come August 2012,” said Carmen Joya, 21, senior bilingual elementary education major.

This doesn’t come as a surprise, considering that the national average debt for recently graduated seniors is $24,000. At a private institution like Loyola, that number can rise in just one year.

“I will probably have to pay about $35,000 to pay back in loans once I graduate,” said Cassandra Sheppard, 21, senior advertising and public relations major.

Another option students consider is pursuing a higher degree. If students go to graduate school, they may take out more loans. This will not only add greater competition in the job market, but to the student loan debt as well.

“It makes me feel like graduate school at this point is a much better option than going straight into the work force” said George Vasels, 21, senior software development major.

Loyola Medical Center helps create new research

Loyola University Chicago’s Medical Center has been in the news recently for promoting Breast Cancer Awareness Month and now for creating a promising new approach to treating debilitating nervous system disease. This type of disease affects 1 to 2 people per 100,000 of population. Here is the story from EurekAlert.org.

 A groundbreaking study in the journal Nature Medicine suggests what could become the first effective treatment for a debilitating and fatal disease of the central nervous system called SCA1.

The study, based on an animal model, found that the disease is linked to low levels of a multipurpose protein called VEGF. Researchers found that in mice that had SCA1, replenishing this protein lead to significant improvements in muscle coordination and balance.

Ameet R. Kini, MD, PhD, an associate professor in the Department of Pathology and Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center of Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine, is a co-author of the study.

SCA1 (spinocerebellar ataxia type 1) is an inherited disease caused by a mutation of a single gene. The disease affects 1 to 2 people per 100,000 of population. The first symptoms are usually lack of muscular control of the hands and trouble with balance while walking. Later symptoms can include difficulty swallowing, indistinct speech, neuropathy, spasticity, weakness and memory problems. The disease generally proves fatal within 10 to 30 years, and there currently is no effective treatment, according to the National Ataxia Foundation.

In the first part of their study, researchers conducted several tests that demonstrated that mice with SCA1 had low levels of VEGF (vascular endothelial growth factor). In the brain, VEGF stimulates the growth of blood vessels and works in other ways to keep brain cells healthy.

Researchers then tested whether boosting VEGF levels would benefit mice that had SCA1. They boosted VEGF two ways: By genetically engineering mice to produce more of the protein and by delivering VEGF directly to the brain.

Mice that had SCA1 were given a performance test called Rotarod, which measures balance and coordination. The test, which is somewhat like a log-rolling competition, measures how long a mouse can stay atop a rolling cylinder.

Researchers compared diseased mice that had been treated with VEGF to diseased mice that received no treatment. The VEGF group performed significantly better than the untreated mice — and in some cases nearly as well as healthy mice that did not have SCA1. In addition, microscopic examinations found significant improvements in the brains of diseased mice that had been treated with VEGF.

The findings suggest that reversing low VEGF levels “may be a potentially useful treatment in patients with SCA1,” researchers wrote.

The results also could prove relevant to other ataxia disorders “and possibly even other neurodegenerative syndromes,” researchers wrote.

However, Kini cautioned that while the study findings are promising, they do not necessarily apply to humans. It would require clinical trials in patients to prove that replenishing VEGF levels is a safe and effective treatment, Kini said.

The study was jointly conceived and designed by Kini and his colleagues Marija Cvetanovic, PhD, (first author) and Puneet Opal, MD, PhD, (corresponding author) of Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. Other co-authors are Jay M. Patel, BS, of Northwestern and Hugo H. Marti, MD, of the University of Heidelberg.

The study was funded by the National Institutes of Health, National Organization for Rare Disorders, Brain Research Foundation and National Ataxia Foundation.

–Matthew Prosia

Loyola theater production “Into the Woods” opens soon

Audience members will get to reminisce about their favorite childhood stories in Loyola University Chicago’s play “Into the Woods,” running Nov. 4-13.

“Into the Woods” is part of the Department of Fine and Performing Arts’ 2011-2012 Mainstage Theater Season. Run and performed by Loyola’s own students, the shows will be held in Mullady Theatre.

The Thursday through Saturday shows will begin at 7:30pm and the Sunday shows will start at 2pm.

Here’s more about “Into the Woods” from the DFPA blog post:

A modern twist on conventional fairy tale lore, the “happily ever  after” takes center stage in this enchanting Broadway favorite.  Famil­iar characters, including Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood,  Rapunzel, and a handful of dashing princes, all head to the mythical  woods wishing for something out of reach, but an evil witch and a big  bad wolf throw obstacles in their overlapping paths to fulfillment.   Stephen Sondheim’s score and James Lapine’s book, both Tony  award-winning, bring Grimm’s classic fairy tales to life with colorful  twists and contemporary edge in Loyola’s mainstage season opener.

Tickets range from $7-15. Click here to order your seats.

– Alexandra Watt

Chicago aldermen push to decriminalize pot

If you toke up, plan to get ticketed.

Chicago aldermen are calling for the city to decriminalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana.

Here’s the story from Chicago Sun Times:

Cook County Commissioner John Fritchey and a handful of Chicago aldermen are calling for the city and neighboring towns to decriminalize small amounts of marijuana possession.

The move would allow officers to issue a $200 ticket to someone suspected of carrying 10 grams or less of marijuana, rather than spending hours off the streets to haul someone to jail on a misdemeanor charge. It is similar to an ordinance passed by county commissioners in recent years that calls for issuing a ticket to those busted with marijuana in unincorporated Cook County and areas where the sheriff has primary policing duties.

“We want to make it clear — we’re not approving the smoking of pot,” said Ald. Ariel Reboyras (30th). “What we’re asking is the police to make the right decision when someone has 10 grams or less in their possession — simply write them a ticket and let them go. That police officer will stay working on his beat.”

Considering the time and money spent on an arrest or jailing someone, Reboyras said: “We can better use our resources in the streets.”

Danny Solis (25th) said residents around the city have been “screaming and pleading” for more officers to patrol the neighborhoods, and this is one way to keep police on the street.

He said, too, there is a revenue benefit.

“If we are collecting $200 every time somebody is caught with 10 grams or less of marijuana that is a potential revenue that this city and this county can potentially use,” Solis said.

He plans to introduce a decriminalization measure at next week’s City Council meeting and will talk to Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy about whether he’s on board.

–  Ashton Mitchell

Loyola students spooked by Statesville Haunted Prison

Photo by Chris Lehman
 By Chris Lehman

Loyola University Chicago thrill-seekers took part in a trip to Statesville Haunted Prison to get in the spirit for Halloween weekend.

The Sigma Alpha Epsilon (SAE) Fraternity bought 300 tickets to the haunted house and sold them to students at a reduced price. The students gathered Thursday night at Loyola’s bus stop before being transported to Statesville Prison in Crest Hill.

The Alpha Sigma Alpha Sorority members were also present as they had set up a snacks stand to satisfy those waiting out in the cold to board the buses.

The annual event has sold out every year that Loyola has been hosting it.

Freshman, Lauren Sedall, 18, who was lucky enough to get a ticket in time, thought the event was well-worth her time.

“I think it’s great because we got a great deal with the transportation and the ticket for only $10 instead of the full $25,” said Sedall, a spanish and biology double major.

Sedall was not the only one to rave about the great deal. Fellow freshman, Rachel Bush, 18, also believed that she received a good amount of entertainment for the cheap price.

“I thought it was awesome that there were two different houses that we got to go through,” said Bush.

Statesville Haunted Prison is known to be the best haunted house in all of Chicago and has been that way for some time. The living attractions are not allowed to touch the visitors but still find other ways to frighten the entrants.

“I got attacked on the bus by two monsters!” Said Natalie LeFlore, 21, a senior management major.

The event is such a success because of the environment created by the workers. From the loud music, to the special effects, to the enthusiasm of the workers, every brave thrill-seeker is guaranteed a good time.