Summer FAQs

It really does look like this in Hyde Park right now

We at MAPHCentral are hard at work preparing for the arrival of all 119 new shining faces in less than four weeks. In the meantime, we know that the stress of (let’s just say for argument’s sake) packing up one’s things in Washington, DC, cramming them in a UHaul and driving cross country with one’s Mom (who loves the Beach Boys and only the Beach Boys) can weigh heavily on one’s leisure time in August.

On that ride, you’ll have plenty of time to think of questions. Here are some that typically come up this time of year, as pre-students get (understandably) excited about starting….

  1. Do I need to sign up for classes yet?” The more intrepid of you, without a doubt, will have already located the University Time Schedules. That’s a great place to start drooling over the academic cornucopia set before you on the table of plenty at the University of Chicago. BUT. Don’t fret about registration. All of that will take place DURING COLLOQUIUM after your arrival in September. (Good news: there are more things you don’t need to worry about after the jump…)
  2. Should I contact professors to introduce myself yet?” Wait till you get here. It may be extremely tempting to introduce your academic interests and your research background and talk excitedly about what you’re coming here to study. But professors are still Summering in Nantucket or whatever. Hold off. Wait for the advice of the mentors, preceptors, and directors about whom to contact.
  3. Will there be summer reading?” Yep. But not a ton. We’ll be sure to send it to you as SOON as it becomes available. And you will have plenty of time to finish it.
  4. Where can I find the syllabus for Core?” It is still being finalized, and again, we will be sure to send it as soon as it becomes available.
  5. How should I find an apartment?” I cannot highly enough recommend for its ease of use and thorough listings. There’s also good ol’ Craigslist and Chicago Apartment Finders. These are the three best sites, methinks.
  6. Do I need a car?” No. A car is definitely not necessary, especially if you live in Hyde Park.
  7. Do I need a boat?” What?
  8. I’m already in Chicago. Can I come to MAPH and say hello?” Yes! Please do! We’re freezing in this office by ourselves.
  9. Do we have to bring beer to the Welcome Barbecue?” This is not a frequently asked question, but we actually did get this question last year. So kind of you to ask. No. There will be free beer. For you. Of course, if you want to bring a bottle of whiskey for MAPHCentral, we wouldn’t be opposed.
  10. I’m already in Chicago. Who can I email to ask for advice about other things?” Me (, Ben (, Whitney ( We love email. It’s a weirdness.

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