Category Archives: Uncategorized

Aliens and Burgers!

Dear all,

We are very excited to announce that MAPH 2016 will commence this Sunday, September 13th at 3pm in Social Sciences 122! You can find the screening room on the first floor of the Social Sciences building on campus (see map below). The screening of Ridley Scott’s Alien will be followed by a delicious BBQ on the Classics Quad (right outside the MAPH Office) at around 5.45pm.

Feel free to wear whatever you feel comfortable in

A few things to remember:

– Dress is casual! Fell free to wear whatever you like. We are expecting (and hoping) that Sunday will be fairly sunny, but with recent rainfall we’d encourage you to wear comfortable footwear, as the BBQ will be on grass.

– Plus 1s are very welcome to join us for the BBQ! We really encourage MAPHers to bring partners and families to events throughout the year, and this is no exception. We only ask that they arrive at 5.45pm for our BBQ, as due to space restrictions we cannot accommodate more than the size of the cohort for the film screening.

– The BBQ is a great chance to meet your preceptor and people in your precept or wider cohort. When you arrive, be sure to grab a sticker with your name on it from our mentors! We’ll be at a table just outside SS122 so that we can all find each other.

Thanks for reading, and we can’t wait to meet you all on Sunday!

Your Mentors x


[MAPH] Opening BBQ MAP


Meet your MAPH Staff!

Hi MAPHers!

The opening film screening of Alien is three days away.  You are settling in, buying books and course packets, exploring the city and University, and getting excited about Colloquium!  It’s a time of fresh beginnings and lots of new things to figure out and places to navigate.  Chances are, you have a lot of questions, so now’s a good time to introduce you to MAPH’s fabulous staff.  We’re here to help! A few weeks ago, we wrote a post introducing us, your mentors.  For this post, we put some hard-hitting interview questions to our Associate Director, Maren, and Program Manager, Jane.  They are both invaluable resources for you throughout your year here at UChicago.  We are all here in the MAPH office, Classics 117, to help in any way we can!  Feel free to stop by, enjoy some free coffee, and introduce yourself!

Your Mentors,

Michael, Jess and Clancey

Maren Robinson, Associate Director


In your own words, what’s your role with MAPH?  

As the Associate Director I can help you navigate issues surround all administrative aspects of the program from restrictions and registration issues to a leave of absence or choosing to go part time. I also have great institutional knowledge of where to find or access things on campus and which alumni might be good to email with if you have a question about a certain kind of work or academic program.


What do you provide students with/what could students come to you about? 

Really, if you have questions or concerns about the program, the university of even about where to find things in Chicago I often have an answer or point you in the right direction. Also, if you are just anxious or stressed, that is a good time to find me too. I have a great supply of tea.

Ask me about?

Anything MAPH or University related, outside of MAPH I love talking about theater and performance in Chicago, where to see parrots in Hyde Park, Yellowstone National Park, photography, knitting, and where to find quiet spots of nature in the big city.

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Spring Songs

imgres-3Hey Maph,

This time of year can be both very fun and very stressful, sometimes all at once. Below are some music recommendations to either celebrate the nice weather (perhaps for a bout of spring cleaning?) and/or to pump you up as you face thesis revisions.

For more great music, and even greater dance moves, check out the new Mentor video.

This is a varied list, but I’d love more recommendations from you guys! Feel free to suggest other songs down in the comments!

Always Spring- by I’m From Barcelona

Good Day Sunshine- by The Beatlesimgres

Good Feeling- by Flo Rida  Continue reading

A Guide to Transportation: Campus Days 2015

Hello Prospective Students!

We are excited to see you all for Campus Days this weekend and have some excellent events planned for you all. But first, here is some advice for getting to Hyde Park and even exploring Chicago, if you have time. Below are our recommendations for transportation. Feel free to email us ( if you have any questions!

From the Airport:

O’Hare: The Blue Line runs straight from ORD to the Loop, where you can grab any other L train or the buses that go to Hyde Park (see below).

ChicagoElevatedTrainMidway: The 55 bus goes straight from Midway to Hyde Park. The 55th & Ellis stop is essentially on campus, but some of you might be staying farther east, as ask your host (or Google) which stop you should use. You can also jump on the Orange Line from Midway. This will take you to the Loop, where you can grab a train to another neighborhood if you are staying/hanging out outside of Hyde Park.

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10 Books to Read Before Grad School

MAPH is an intense year, and reading time quickly becomes a scarce keep-calm-and-love-reading-64resource—so we here at MAPHtastic polled some of our current students, staff, and alums to see what books they wish they had read before doing the program. See below the jump to see what might be a good beach book for the summer before, or what theory people wish they had read before the MAPH Core class in fall!

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Tempus Fugit: The Fine Art of Time Management


Lo! Behold the bleak, surrealist landscape of Winter Quarter.

Come winter in MAPH, most students find that they have much less structured time than they did in fall. Without Core twice a week and the set precept/social hour schedule on Fridays, the average MAPHer’s week looks very different from the fall.Winter inevitably means lots of unstructured time and lots to accomplish in ten weeks—which makes time management one of the biggest challenges this quarter.

For instance, I know a lot of you only have Tuesday/Thursday classes this quater—how do you make sure you’re structuring M/W/F (and the weekend) to stay on track and keep making progress with your thesis, course readings, and job hunts? Keep reading for some tips on managing your time and staying productive through the long winter months!

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Harnessing the Power of the Internet

Last year, I felt torn between a need to be productive and a need to take breaks from studying. We all need breaks, especially coffee breaks.  But then there can be this sense of guilt or concern of “Oh no! I am not doing my homework!” or other similar exclamations. This often connects to the conflict that, while courses are the first priority for the next 8 months, soon finding a job will also be competing for your attention.

Thus, I want to suggest a way for you to both be productive and to take a break from that book you’ve been staring at all week.

These are three small things that you can do and work on that are 1. not all about school and 2. productive for life in and after Maph.

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Yes, And

This is a guest post by the very awesome, much-beloved Evan Stoner, discussing his experience in MAPH, pursuing the Creative Writing Option. (I also recommend that you check out his related post on AWP here.)

Yes, And: Evan Stoner (’14) on Pursuing the Creative (Writing) Option

freeadvicecryingFor anyone considering MAPH’s creative option, even for a fleeting moment, this post is for you!

One of the great things about MAPH is that all of you have so many options, and I strongly encourage you to think about all of them. The creative option is unique, because even though my thesis ended up being a creative writing project, there are lots of other possibilities.

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