Wine, Cheese, and Student Organizations

Happy Monday, everyone!

As many of you know, part of my job as Assistant Director of Student Services at UIC Liautaud is working with our various student organizations – on everything from recruiting membership to budget requests to planning student events. Generally the student organization initiatives are completely student-run – I’m just here for support and to answer questions the student leaders have along the way. 

The student leaders in UIC Liautaud tend to be very busy – with school, work/GA positions, and often involvement in multiple student organizations. Despite their busy schedules and various commitments, the leaders of the UIC Liautaud student organizations still find time to create initiatives and plan events to reach out to the Liautaud student body and give students the opportunity to get to know each other, expand their professional and social networks, and enhance their overall student experience. 

That said, one of my favorite parts of my job is that I am often able to witness the final result of student leaders working together – sometimes for months at a time– to create one of these initiatives or student events.

Last Friday night, I attended the UIC Liautaud Women’s Interest Network (WIN) Wine and Cheese event. The event took place at Woman Made Gallery in Chicago – an art gallery that supports women in the arts and promotes public awareness and recognition of women’s cultural contributions. The Wine and Cheese night takes place annually and is always a great opportunity to mingle, catch up with current students and alumni, and enjoy the fine combination of art and wine!

In the planning of the Wine and Cheese this year, I had the opportunity to work with some very enthusiastic members of WIN. Dianne Gaffney, Shelly Hennig, Lez Trujillo, and Lee-Lin Wang all collaborated together to put on a fantastic evening of wine and cheese. Though each of the women involved had multiple other commitments to balance throughout the planning process, they all came together to work out logistics and responsibilities for the event. Lez is actually a member of the American Cheese Society, and she put together some beautiful cheese platters at the event!

Throughout the planning process, our conference calls were efficient, the follow-up emails were plentiful, and the end result displayed the effort that went into it! Students and alumni from the different Liautaud programs were represented. The event ran from 6-9pm, and at 9:30 there were still people mingling as everyone cleaned up. Overall, the event was a true success.

Now, I may be somewhat biased, but I strongly believe that getting involved in a student organization is one of the best ways to develop your student experience while at UIC Liautaud.  Even if you're working full-time, or even if you're taking a full load of courses, it IS possible to get involved with a student organization - or two - and to have it be a worthwhile experience! A good number of the students who are involved in student organizations are actually working full-time, attending school part-time, and contributing to student organizations in their "spare" time. As we near the end of the fall semester, and the soon-following start of the spring term, I would encourage you to get involved in a Liautaud student organization – whether it be the Women’s Interest Network, Graduate Marketing Association, or any of the other organizations that may strike your fancy. The student organizations offer the opportunity to get involved outside of the classroom, to expand your network and meet new friends, and – through all of that – to make your student experience truly your own. 

To learn more about our student organizations, visit the “Get Involved” section in the My Liautaud Loop student portal. You can also talk to your fellow students, contact the Liautaud Office, or attend student social events to get more information about ways you can get involved.

Have a great week!