Author Archives: cmckeon

The Parents are Coming! The Parents are Coming!

FPJHow do you spend an entire weekend entertaining the people who spawned you?? … Have them take you out to fancy dinners, of course! What else are parents for?! (Oh, you know, besides emotional support, practical advice and general life-promoting things…) Here at MAPHCentral, we’ve compiled a few things we think parents and family will go gaga over – when they’re not going gaga over YOU IN YOUR FANCY CAP AND GOWN WITH THE ULTRA-PRACTICAL WING-BAT SLEEVES! Continue reading

Trust me, I’m a Doctor(al student)


This woman is HIGHLY ambitious.

We know it might seem like we’ve been withholding information about applying to PhD programs. For a little while, that was indeed the case. There are certain ways in which MAPH needs to be done for MAPH’s sake, and it’s important to explore other career options outside of “THE ACADEMY.” But by now, many of you are still probably on the PhD bandwagon (or at least very seriously considering hitching a ride) and the time to start thinking about your next steps is now. So, throughout the rest of the quarter, we have a series of PhD application and academic professionalization events that we think you should go to. (Oh, and read this article – it’s distressing and refreshing all at the same time, and does a good job of outlining the types of questions you want to ask yourself as you weigh this decision.)  Continue reading

Everything (seriously, everything) you want to know about MAPH Summer Internships.

Work?You know how we have been telling you all since Colloquium to use this year to think about your professional life, as well as your academic life? Well, this time we really mean it. Now that the bulk of Winter Quarter is behind you, it is time to seriously consider—and more than consider, actually take action on—your post-MAPH plans. You will hear a lot of moaning and groaning from us over the next few months begging and pleading with you to come talk to us about resumes, cover letters and all other things “job-application-y.” These are all things that you should do. And while a great burden will befall you come June 15th, MAPH tries to alleviate some of this stress by offering paid (yes, you read that right: PAID) summer internships.  Continue reading

Ways to Stay Sane (and Warm!) During Winter Quarter


Yes, this is a thing that happened on Lake Shore Drive in 2011. But, much to our amusement, this photo accompanies an article entitled “Abandoned on LSD.”

Alright, so you’ve heard us all griping about how difficult and harrowing Winter Quarter is. And as we’re sure you know, now that you’re in the midst of it, it sure is. But before you start to feel like this, we wanted to intervene to let you know that there are plenty of things to do to manage Winter Quarter stress. And some ways in which, maybe, you might even learn to enjoy the UChicago quarter that is almost mythically scary. 

1) Pace yourself. Plan ahead. Resign yourself to the fact that you won’t be able to read everything for every one of your classes. Prioritize your workload so that things feel manageable. Try to settle on final paper topics by Week 5 so that you are not struggling to pick up the pieces at the last minute. You will really thank yourself by the time the quarter is winding down. Try to find interesting ways to put your classes into conversation with one another (or with your thesis). It will make your work feel more meaningful, creative and comprehensive – and it also might help you narrow down your reading lists when it comes to approaching final papers and projects. Continue reading

“I just started grad school! You want me to think about WHAT?!”

Get out your calendars!

That’s right folks – the first major MAPH Career event of the year is upon us. Please join us this Wednesday, November 14th in Classics 110 from 5:30 – 8:30pm for CAREER CORE’s MAPH Alumni Night. There are a ton of MAPH Career-related events this month. You should go to them. But this Wednesday’s event will be worlds of informative – it might as well be mandatory. (If it helps you to think of it that way, cool. COME. NO EXCUSES.)This event will offer you guys the unique opportunity to speak with MAPH alums about the infinitely cool and diverse things that they are doing post-graduation.

“But, Mentors! It’s Week 7! Do you know how much stuff we have to do?” Well, yes. We do. We were there! And as people who were there, we can tell you that this is one of those events that you simply should not miss. As much as it feels like you’re just starting to get your feet wet with this whole grad school thing, it’s important to remember that you guys are only here for one year. It’s important to start thinking about what comes next sooner, rather than later. Continue reading

Why do I have to go to that?

Nothing is as good as the original, but the gang had a few good college years

There are many ways in which the first two weeks of your MAPH year (otherwise known as Colloquium) can feel something like your undergraduate freshman orientation. You may have the impulse to hunker down with your newly assigned work and read Freud’s entire corpus of work (please don’t do that; we promise it’s not necessary) so that you nail that first writing assignment and to skip some of the things that seem merely “optional.” But MAPHCentral has carefully planned an agenda of events that will impart you with invaluable knowledge for a productive/supportive and as-un-insane MAPH year as possible. Here’s a breakdown of the most important events for the next two weeks – and reasons to drag yourself out of bed early enough to attend them.

Tuesday, September 18th, 10:30 
Classics 110

Okay, seriously. If you miss this one, we will be super sad. And so will you. Because we have awesome advice to give about how to navigate this dizzying year. It will be over before you know it, so let us help you make the best of it. Come listen to your mentors – real, in-the-flesh people who were in your shoes a mere 370 days ago – discuss how they walked away with Master’s Degrees from the UofC and lived to tell the tale. You’ll also get the chance to hear from other important people who will be crucial resources throughout the year. Finally, we’ll have a Q&A session at the end, where you can ask your most pressing questions and we will do our damnedest to answer them. Also, bagels. Continue reading

Navigating the CTA: A MOVING Tale

The CTA L System

So, you’ve settled into Hyde Park. It’s quiet and luscious and quaint. You’ve already decided whether you’re Team Jimmy’s or Team Cove and have picked your favorite Z&H sandwich. Now, how the heck do you get out of here? There are a few options for traveling to and from Hyde Park, and we thought it’d be good to give you a brief rundown of how best to navigate your way to the Loop and beyond.


The CTA Buses are probably your most consistent and convenient modes of transportation to and from this lovely little Hyde Park bubble, but there are some things to know about each. If riding the bus instills a sense of terror in you (for fear that something like this might happen on your first jaunt into the Loop) see the CTA’s helpful “How-to” guide for conquering the steel beast:

6: Jackson Park Express – The 6 runs along the east side of Hyde Park, making stops along Stony Island Ave, South Hyde Park Blvd and Lake Park. It is the only bus with Hyde Park Service that runs all day and on the weekends (service generally stops around 12:30am).  The 6 runs express between 47th Street and Museum Campus, which makes it one of the fastest ways to get downtown. It makes several stops along Michigan Avenue, which gives you easy access to most L lines. Continue reading

First MAPH Meet-up!

For some of you, it’s about that time of summer; you’ve exhausted your reading list, you’ve gone to the Museum of Science and Industry (twice? three times?) and you’ve braved public transportation into the Loop a handful of times. You’ve even tried the “sulky-intellectual-in-a-dark-bar-who’s-too-cool-for-friends” look on for size, but you’re getting pretty bored, aren’t you? Well, good news! MAPH will be hosting its first official-unofficial pre-program meet-up next week (I am celebrating the use of the hyphen in anticipation of National Punctuation Day: September 24th. Mark your calendars, people*.)

If you’re already in Hyde Park, come mingle with your fellow early birds and meet your Mentors in the flesh! (Mmm… flesh.) We will be convening at Z&H at 2:00pm next Thursday, August 16, 2012. It’s located on the heavily (alright – moderately) foot-trafficked block of 57th Street and Kenwood. It’s a great little place with delectable sandwiches and well-above average coffee. One Yelp reviewer even posits: “I can honestly say that these three sandwiches [Godfather, Lil’ Smokey O Malley and the Hennessy] are on my top sandwiches in the world list.” I mean – with a glowing recommendation like that, how can you resist? And also – how do we get our hands on that list? We’re pretty serious about starting a Global Sandwich Initiative.

We hope to see some of you there! And for those of you who have not yet arrived, that’s perfectly fine – we’ll be having another get-together closer to the beginning of Colloquium.

On a somewhat tangential note, please really do feel free to use the [MAPH-etc] listserv to schedule meet-ups amongst yourselves or to inform other MAPHers about things you might be doing for the rest of the summer. It’s a great way to meet people before the start of the program!

*Please don’t forget to download the recipe for the Official Meat Loaf of National Punctuation Day ®