The Chicago Experience

Elmhurst Students Have a Spectacular City at Their Doorstep

Some of the best college experiences take place outside of class. Taking on an internship, soaking up new cultures, and exploring a dynamic city are great ways to discover the world around you—and yourself.

At Elmhurst College, you’ll find a world of opportunities to explore. Our gorgeous campus is a green oasis in the heart of a safe, quiet suburb—but it’s also just 16 miles from downtown Chicago, one of the world’s great cities. A Metra train stops 55 times a day at the Elmhurst station, two blocks from campus. The ride downtown takes only about a half hour, and we encourage you to make the trip, early and often. But whether you hanker for a downtown adventure or prefer to stick around campus, Elmhurst College has it all. Here’s the top 10 reasons our students say they love our location.

No. 1: You’ll choose from a wealth of great internships.

The Chicago region is the Midwest’s capital of industry, finance, arts and culture, and scientific discovery. From WGN and Soldier Field to Argonne National Laboratory and Morgan Stanley, internship opportunities in the Chicago area are plentiful and varied. As an intern, you’ll develop skills, explore careers, make connections—and maybe even land the full-time job of your dreams.

No. 2: You’ll make excellent professional connections.

Want to learn more about a field that looks interesting? We’ll set you up with a mentor—a professional in your field who will share insights and wisdom with you. You also can shadow a variety of professionals as they make decisions, engage colleagues and pursue their daily goals. On campus, you’ll have the opportunity to hear from—and meet—speakers ranging from New York Times columnists to religious leaders to best-selling novelists. We have strong connections with Chicago-area businesses, hospitals, schools and other organizations, giving you plenty of opportunities to develop connections of your own.

No. 3: You’ll meet people in all their glorious variety.

On campus, you’ll find bright, curious, committed students from many states and countries, and from every religious, racial and ethnic background. In Chicago, you’ll find an array of eclectic neighborhoods reflecting a kaleidoscope of global languages and cultures. The neighborhood of Albany Park on the city’s Northwest Side, for example, is home to people from Mexico, the Philippines, India, Korea, Vietnam, Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia, Romania, Pakistan and the Middle East. West Rogers Park boasts restaurants serving Indian, Pakistani, Russian, Middle Eastern, Ethiopian and kosher food—side by side. Then there’s Greektown, Little Italy, Chinatown and a lot more.

No. 4: World-class culture is just around the corner.

Art, music, dance, theatre—Chicago has it all. Visitors come from across the world to visit major cultural institutions such as the Art Institute of Chicago, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the Shedd Aquarium. But the city also is home to more than 45 museums and more than 120 theater companies, where you can see everything from Broadway musicals to cutting-edge performance art. Closer to home, the College boasts its own world-class collection of Chicago Imagist art, and the Elmhurst Art Museum is only two blocks from campus.

No. 5: There’s plenty to do in downtown Elmhurst.

You can catch a first-run movie at the nine-screen theater just blocks from campus. Opened in 1924, the York Theatre is a cool Art Deco landmark in the heart of downtown Elmhurst. Other entertainment options include Spare Keys, a stylish bowling alley with 14 lanes plus billiards, video games, and a bar and grill. Elmhurst has all of the college staples such as Starbucks, Subway, Chipotle, Cold Stone Creamery and Lou Malnati’s deep-dish pizza. As the Princeton Review put it, “Downtown Elmhurst has almost everything a college student could need.”

No. 6: Chicago is the music capital of the world.

From Buddy Guy’s Legends in the South Loop to Rosa’s Lounge on the West Side, Chicago blues clubs regularly host the top names in the business. Jazz venues across the city and suburbs range from the Green Mill, where Al Capone used to hang out, to the Velvet Lounge on the South Side. And you’ll find some of today’s hottest rock and alternative performers at places like the Empty Bottle, the Vic, Metro and the historic Aragon Ballroom.

No. 7: You can immerse yourself in the great outdoors.

The Elmhurst campus is an arboretum, with more than 120 varieties of trees and shrubs. Nearby is the Morton Arboretum, a 1,700-acre oasis of greenery, and 100-plus miles of hiking trails through leafy forest preserves. In Chicago you’ll find bike trails, sparkling beaches and one of the world’s best park systems. In Millennium Park, the city’s newest and most dynamic lakefront green space, you can enjoy outdoor concerts like Lollapalooza or splash around in the quirky Crown Fountain.

No. 8: The shopping is world class.

In downtown Chicago, the Magnificent Mile on North Michigan Avenue is one of the world’s great shopping destinations, boasting major retailers like Nordstrom and Abercrombie as well as independent boutiques. Closer to campus, Oakbrook Center offers five major department stores and more than 150 upscale shops and restaurants in a lush setting of gardens and fountains. For food lovers, Chicago lays claim to an array of regional specialties, including deep-dish pizza, Chicago-style hot dogs, the Maxwell Street Polish (a kielbasa on a roll topped with grilled onions and yellow mustard) and the Italian beef sandwich. For a crash course in Chicago cuisine, head to Portillo’s just a few blocks from campus.

No. 9: For sports fans, we’re a dream come true.

Chicago is home to seven professional sports teams. The more uncompromising fans of the White Sox and the Cubs (meaning most of them) are rarely seen together, except when the Crosstown Classic pits the rival teams against each other. The Bears and the Bulls bring the town together at Soldier Field and the United Center, respectively. The city has a pro hockey team, Stanley Cup Champion Blackhawks, the Chicago Fire soccer team and the Chicago Sky wnba team. Of course, if you’re a fan of the Cardinals, Brewers, Reds, Colts, Tigers, Packers, Bucks or another rival team, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to see your favorite players in action—even if they don’t have the hometeam advantage.

No. 10: The whole world is a train ride away.

“You can jump on the Metra in Elmhurst, and within half an hour you’re downtown, exploring all that Chicago has to offer,” says Agnes Plawsiuk. “You can take a walk on Navy Pier, go ice skating, see a museum or participate in an academic conference. The opportunities here are limitless.” If you want to go further afield for your explorations, take a 15-minute drive to O’Hare and catch a direct flight to any major city in the world.

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