A Guide to Free WiFi and Charging Stations

When you are on the go as a graduate student, it can be hard to keep all of your devices juiced up and ready to use. Going without WiFi can leave a huge dent in your next phone bill, and if you forget your charger, it’s game over, right? Well, fear not! We have searched the Chicagoland area for you and come up with a list of free WiFi hot spots and charging stations for you to use.

Free WiFi

  • DePaul has free WiFi available to all of its students on its campuses. To join, select the DePaul secure network on your device under WiFi and enter your Campus Connect username and password to log in.
  • The Metra stations are all equipped with free WiFi under the name “Metra Wi-Fi.” The hot spots are available in the following areas according to the Tribune:
    • “At Union Station, the hot spot and charging station are near the Metra ticketing area between the north and south concourses.”
    • “At Millennium, the Wi-Fi hot spot covers the passenger waiting area in the center of the station, where the charging stations were installed.”
    • “At Van Buren, the hot spot reaches the north and south portions of the waiting area and both charging stations.”
    • “At Ogilvie, Wi-Fi is available in the platform-level waiting area as well as around the charging stations on the ground floor in the passenger concourse.”
    • “At LaSalle Street, the hot spot covers the outdoor concourse and the indoor waiting area.”
  • OpenWiFiSpots is a site you can use to find free WiFi hot spots around the city. All you need to do is type in your location, and the site will show you locations around you where you can get free WiFi.
  • Both Apple and Android have apps that you may download and use to find free WiFi:
    • WifiMapper from Android allows you to pull up a map based on your location with input from other users as to which spots are yay or nay.
    • WiFi Map from Apple displays a map of WiFi spots around your area, but it also shows comments from users in regard to whether or not the WiFi and location were satisfactory. This app also lists passwords for free WiFi that users may or may not know about when trying to connect.

Charging Stations

  • DePaul has gone green! Check out the solar panel charging stations in the LPC Quad and the Loop campus. You only need to supply the cord to charge your device in either an electrical outlet or USB port. Neat, right?
  • Both the Loop and Richardson libraries have portable battery packs for you to check out that come with the necessary cords for either an Apple or Android device. You can request these at the circulation desk.
  • You can also check out an Apple or Android USB cable from the libraries to charge your phone.
  • Chicago Union Station, Millennium Station, Ogilvie Transportation Center have charging stations for all of you commuters.
  • According to the Tribune, there are free phone charging kiosks located in the following stores:

Inexpensive Excursions

Seeing the sights in the city doesn’t have to drain your back account of its every last cent. Many places in the city have free entry if you show your DePaul ID, offer a discounted price with your DePaul ID, or offer reasonable deals.

Read on to find out about all the places you could go for a great price.

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2016 Lakeview East Festival of the Arts

Here is a fun event for everyone coming up soon:

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Lakeview East Festival of the Arts

This event will feature over 150 artists, live music, local foods, a garden oasis, and family activities. You can browse artwork, jewelry, sculptures, and more at this fun festival.

Saturday, September 10: 10:00 am – 7:00 pm

Sunday, September 11: 10:00 am – 6:00 pm

Along Broadway, Belmont to Hawthorne

For more information, please visit the event page!

Adult, Veteran, and Commuter Student Affairs Upcoming Events

The office of Adult, Veteran, and Commuter Student Affairs has a few events coming up:

New Adult Student Reception

“To welcome you, we would like to invite you and a guest to our New Adult Student Information Session and Reception. We will be covering university-wide tips, resources for both graduate students and adult undergraduate students, icebreakers, and horsd’oeuvres will be served! Feel free to come even though you may not be able to stay for the entire event.”

Loop: Tuesday, September 13 from 4:30pm to 6:30pm at the DePaul Club – 11th floor, 1 E. Jackson Chicago, IL 60604

LPC: Thursday, September 15 from 4:30pm to 6:30pm at the Lincoln Park Student Center – RM 315, 2250 N. Sheffield Ave.

Click here to RSVP.

Graduate Student Fair and Social

Meet with other graduate students and celebrate your acceptance!

Thursday, September 8 from 4:30pm t0 6:30pm

Exchequer Bar and Pub (226 S. WabashChicago, IL 60604)

Click here to RSVP.

Compass Groups

“Compass Groups are peer cohort groups in which you will meet on a specific topic. Groups meet for 4 or 5 times each quarter. You will meet other Adult students, gain various skills, learn about resources, and ultimately have a great experience! Click here to learn more about them or to sign-up.”

Blogs, Journals, and Periodicals to Follow

Columnists

  • Kevin Pang: Hilarious, insightful, and talented writer Kevin Pang takes on food and pop culture in his column, writing about the politics of food as well as the savory nature of it. Although he is no longer writing his column for the Chicago Tribune, Kevin Pang’s archived articles are still up. His web site is here.
  • Chris Jones: Jones runs “The Theater Loop” for the Chicago Tribune, where he covers theater news and offers his own reviews. His coverage is extensive, including news about comedians, television, and more. His Twitter is here, if you would like to follow him.
  • Richard Roeper: Roeper is a contributing columnist for the Chicago Sun Times, where he reviews films for his readers. His reviews are excellent and very detailed without being too spoilery, so you should definitely check them out before you see a film (or after if you are like me and hate reading reviews before seeing the film).
  • Lori Waxman: As a freelance contributor, Waxman writes about contemporary art for the Tribune and other publications. She is deeply versed in her beat, as she has a Ph.D in Art History from the Institute of Fine Arts.
  • Blair Kamin: As a notable scholar of architecture, Kamin has brilliantly covered Chicago architecture for the Tribune since 1992. Kamin does not shy away from the politics of buildings and spaces, analyzing them thoughtfully and critically.
  • Phil Vettel: Since 1986, Vettel has held the position of restaurant critic for the Tribune, and he is still writing about good (and sometimes, unfortunately mediocre) foods! That sounds like a wonderful life. If you want to read about the dining industry and up and coming eateries, check out his column.
  • John von Rhein: If you have an ear for classical music, you may enjoy von Rhein’s column. As the classical music critic since 1977, von Rhein has a wealth of expertise and possesses some great insights about the Chicago classical music scene.
  • Howard Reich: Since 1978, Reich has covered the arts for the Tribune and written a couple books on the subject. A highly awarded journalist, Reich reports on a variety of subjects within the arts with a focus on the Chicago area.

Blogs about Chicago

These blogs will keep you updated on events in the city, politics, fashion, entertainment, eateries, and more.

  • Chicagoist: This popular site covers a wide breadth of topics in the Chicago area. With topics in news, arts and entertainment, and food, Chicagoist has something for everyone, and they pay attention to trending topics, too.
  • Serious Eats Chicago: With recipes, guides, features on eateries, and cooking techniques, this blog has just about everything related to Chicago dining.
  • Time Out Chicago Blog: This blog covers news, events, music, dining, nightlife, and more. The blog is up to date and has some fun, miscellaneous posts for you to enjoy.
  • Chicago Like a Local: This blog features something unique: the articles are written by Chicagoans for Chicagoans. These seasoned Chicago writers have a expert take on many different aspects of city life, and will probably be able to take you off of the beaten path away from the tourists.
  • Curbed Chicago: This site reads like a bulletin board for the city, with events, listings, news, and trending topics conveniently on its front page for you to pick through.
  • Chicago Reader: With news, politics, music, arts, culture, film, food, drink, and classifieds, anything you are looking for, you can find in Chicago Reader.

Arts and Literary

  • The Big Roundtable: According to the site, “The Big Roundtable is a home, both online and offline, for writers with true stories they need to tell and readers looking for compelling tales.” This is a great read for anyone who is in want of some non-fiction stories.
  • Chicago Review of Books: As the title suggests, here you will find book reviews, interviews with authors, and news about the literary world.
  • Slag Glass City: This online journal is run by DePaul’s own Dr. Barrie Jean Borich. Specializing in nonfiction arts, this journal has internships and editor positions available to DePaul students, and takes submissions, as well. It is a great way to get your work published as a DePaul student.
  • Tony Fitzpatrick: A featured artist at the DePaul Art Museum, Fitzpatrick’s blog is full of his artwork and some insights as to what motivated his work. Definitely an inspiring read.
  • Jim DeRogatis: DeRogatis covers the politics of rock n’ roll, which is a very unique beat to cover, yet interesting all the same.

Academic

  • The Thesis Whisperer: This blog is a resource for those of you who are in the process of/planning to write your thesis. This is a a great place to visit when you are stuck and need some motivation, or if you want some helpful tips and advice when moving along in your work.
  • GradHacker: This blog is a nice resource for graduate students that need advice with various aspects of academia.

Travel and Lifestyle

  • Lion + Maven: This blog is a great inspiration for traveling! Run by a blogger named Lauren, each post chronicles Lauren’s adventures traveling around the globe.
  • So Fawned Lifestyle: Blogger Désirée Fawn posts about many things in her online magazine: parenting, technology, cooking, recipes, fashion, books, and more.
  • The Cultureur: This blogger documents their travel and lifestyle experience throughout many countries. This blog is a great read if you are looking to read up on the process of traveling to a country before you get on a plane.

Motivational and Personal Development

  • Sam Davidson: As an entrepreneur, Davidson has some great advice for young entrepreneurs looking to start working in an area in which they are passionate.
  • Scott H. Young: Young writes about being an entrepreneur and career development. He also humanizes his blog by writing about his own lifestyle experiences.
  • Zen Habits: If you are in need of self-care and ways to clear up your mind (and clutter in your life), this is a wonderful resource blog. The blog covers a variety of areas from exercise to mental health.

Business and Finance

  • Wake Up Cloud: As an author of a couple financial books, Henri is here to help you learn how to turn your passions into a profitable career.

Student Housing Resources

Whether you are moving to Chicago from elsewhere or simply in search of a new apartment, we have compiled a list of resources for you that students have successfully used in the past.

Chicago Getaway Hostel:

If you are in need of immediate housing, even if only temporary, this hostel is very close to the Lincoln Park campus. Located east of campus down Fullerton and two blocks north of Fullerton, Chicago Getaway Hostel is affordable and close to food and shopping. You can choose to have your own room or share with others to lessen the cost. There is free Wi-Fi, free breakfast, and is listed at $72 a night. The 74 Fullerton CTA bus will take you to campus. The stop is located just a few steps west of the McDonald’s at Fullerton and Lincoln.

You can book your room through sites like hotels.com or expedia.com.

  • Phone number: 773-929-5380
  • Website: getawayhostel.com
  • Address: 616 W Arlington Pl, Chicago, IL 60614

DePaul Students Living Off Campus Public Facebook Page:

This page is a student run Facebook page (you need a Facebook account to post) where students list apartments available for rent or make posts seeking roommates/subletters for their apartments. You can either make a post yourself asking if there is anyone who knows of a place to stay, or you can browse the posts students have already made. Those who are interested are asked to comment/message the poster on Facebook. It is wise to message the poster and ask to meet face to face to discuss the listing prior to accepting anything.

offcampushousing.depaul.edu:

Similar to the Facebook page, this site is also for DePaul students seeking off campus housing. You can search for roommates or listings based on the criteria that you would like for an apartment. You can also create a roommate profile so prospective roommates know a little bit about you. You can see the prices and contact information of the lessor, as well as the move in date.

zillow.com:

This site allows you to search for apartments (with the criteria of your liking) in an area of your choosing and view the prices, amenities, and utilities offered. The listing will allow you to contact the landlord or lessor for a showing.

domu.com:

Similar to Zillow, this site allows you to search for apartments (with the criteria of your liking) in an are area of your choosing and view the prices, amenities, and utilities offered. The listing will allow you to contact the landlord or lessor for a showing.

The Apartment People:

This service allows you to search a database of apartment listings in order to find an apartment that meets the criteria of your choice. You may schedule an appointment for free with an agent that will ask your desired criteria and then search the listings for you in order to meet said criteria. These agents are not landlords, and act as a liaison between you and the lessor.

The Apartment Finders:

This service allows you to search a database of apartment listings in order to find an apartment that meets the criteria of your choice. You may schedule an appointment for free with an agent that will ask your desired criteria and then search the listings for you in order to meet said criteria. Through this service, an agent will drive you to the listings you would like to see for free. These agents are not landlords, and act as a liaison between you and the lessor. This site has a tab for student housing, as well.

spotcrime.com/il/Chicago:

It is important to consult this site when looking for an apartment to make sure you are staying in a safe area. You can use this map to search your area and see what, if any, crime has happened around the apartment you are interested in. If there is a high crime rate, do not accept the apartment, even if it is a great price. Make sure to also check the bus and/or train stations that are close to your apartment to see what crime has happened there, too.

General tips:

  • It is always a good idea to meet face to face with the poster/landlord/lessor/agent to see the place and discuss before agreeing to anything.
  • Ask the prices of utilities to make sure you know how much you will be paying in addition to rent.
  • If you are going to live with roommates, make sure to ask questions about lifestyles and preferences to see if you are compatible roommates.
  • Ask about how much is required for the security deposit and other fees.
  • Do not sign a lease until you see the apartment and make sure there are no damages. Take pictures of the apartment before you move in to show there were no damages at the time of moving in.
  • Apartments that are out of the way of transportation should be your last choice, if possible.

***For any other questions, please contact Adult Student Services at 312-362-6216

Here are these resources as a PDF available for download.

Who We Are: Kelly Ferrell

Kelly FerrellKelly Ferrell, MALS 2016

I have gone through many personal transitions throughout my MALS program.  I will be retiring from federal government service after more than 13 years, and seeking job opportunities in the private sector.  My MALS degree, which started out as a quest for personal fulfillment and development, has now become an integral part in securing future employment.  I will be much more competitive in the private sector with a DePaul MALS degree.

I can honestly say I am a different person than I was almost a decade ago when I entered the MALS program, idealistic and young.  I am very appreciative of the opportunity to grow as a person through the MALS program.  I enjoy learning about a variety of topics and this program has allowed me to do just that.  My transcript demonstrates a variety of interdisciplinary courses and an understanding of historic and social contexts that have shaped and changed our modern world.  My business and leadership courses have taught me the values and leadership and management styles necessary to create and sustain ethical organizations.  I have faced personal and professional challenges over the years, and the MALS program has been a creative and challenging outlet of expression.

My grandma got her pilot’s license and attended law school while raising six children.  She became an attorney, a judge, and retired as a Commissioner.  She is 93 years old; she tap dances and exercises regularly.  Her secret to a long life is to always keep moving and never stop learning.  I will undoubtedly miss the academic stimulation of the MALS program, but I am prepared to confidently enter a new career path as DePaul MALS graduate.

Start your self-constructed educational journey today by contacting the DePaul MALS/IDS program.