Campus Buzz


Catch up with what's happening around campus at RMU!

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RMU hosts first League of Legends Visit Day

It may have seemed like Orientation as usual on Friday, but an added aspect of the day was a welcoming session designed especially for students interested in becoming part of the RMU League of Legends teams.  In addition to regular registration and information on housing, financial aid, schedules, and advising, these students participated in a session with coordinator Kurt Melcher, Coach Ferris "AGeNT" Ganzman, and a visit to Ignite Gaming where they had a chance to sample different games.
RMU is working on the completion of a gaming practice room on the third floor. Students reviewed the room's design on their tour of the Chicago campus.  In addition to meeting students hoping to be on the LOL team, they also met with other students registering for the same majors.


Orland Park culinary students grow vegetables to be used at Eyrie Restaurant

They say "what goes around, comes around."  RMU culinary students have made sure that vegetables grown in the gardens at the Orland Park campus find their way to Eyrie, the RMU student-run restaurant in Oak Park.  Tomatoes and peppers harvested from the custom garden bins in the OP campus center court provide the ingredients for student chefs to create delicious salads at Eyrie. That's the way to add a little agriculture to the culinary program!



Saturday's orientation brews excitement for the fall

Orientation sessions for the RMU fall start continue throughout the summer.  This past Saturday, another group of incoming students and their parents participated in information sessions, an Expo in the library, special sessions for parents, on housing, advising and financial aid, and lunch in downtown Chicago.  We hope our new Eagles are getting as excited about starting college as the RMU family is to have them on board!



MGSM Alumni Advisory Board gathers to kick off the 2014-2015 year

The Graduate Alumni Advisory Board of Morris Graduate School of Management gathered for a networking event last week to kick of the 2014-15 year and induct new members onto the board.  The group gathered in the State Street Art Gallery for a light dinner and refreshments, and a chance to reconnect with former classmates.

Here's to a great year, Alumni!




RMU student awarded REACh scholarship 

The non-profit consortium REACh (Resources for the Education of Adults in the Chicago Area) announced the recipients of their annual scholarships at a luncheon held at the College of DuPage last week.  Robert Morris University Illinois graduate student Marsha Sinon-Cohen received the VW Credit, Inc. Scholarship of $1500, funds raised through the company’s 2013 VW Credit Inc.’s Charity Golf Outing and matched by parent company Volkswagen Group of America, Inc.  Ms. Sinon-Cohen is pursuing a master’s degree in Management in Higher Education.  “I was so grateful to receive this generous reward, and I was very honored at the luncheon as everyone there was so kind and supportive.”

RMU extends its congratulations to Marsha and to board Chair, Betty O’Leary of the Morris Graduate School of Management staff, who just completed her term of office.


Marsha Sinon-Cohen


Fernando Villeda, Marsha Sinon-Cohen, and Betty O'Leary


RMU Study Abroad students explore England

It may be week 0 for most RMU students - a mini summer break between quarters - but right now students in the RMU Study Abroad program are experiencing the wonders of London with Professor Robert Tenuta.  Pictured in front of Kensington Palace are (left to right) Raven Worthy, Melita Isic, Michael Ingram, Tonya Patterson and Elbrika Ixcolin.

Go Eagles!  Enjoy England!

RMU Study Abroad


RMU Students, Assistant Athletic Director spend morning with Fox News

It was an early morning for RMU students Drew Dicksen, Dustin Hutchens and Peter Buchacz on Wednesday as they made their way at 7 a.m. with Associate Athletic Director Kurt Melcher to the Fox 32 television station on Michigan Avenue.
Riding on the news of RMU's inclusion of eSports - video gaming - to the athletic program, and the first university to offer scholarships, Fox followed up on its own story from last week about our involvement with the League of Legends gaming conference. They brought Kurt and student gamers into the studio for a three-minute segment on the morning news show.  Given the short time slot, they only interviewed Kurt and Drew, but Dustin and Peter provided backup and support, as well as ongoing input and ideas as Kurt develops the new program.
Before the group left Fox, two staffers approached Kurt with questions regarding the possibility of their sons or daughters applying to RMU and playing on the League of Legends team. After a quick breakfast at Einstein's Bagels, the group made their way back to campus - or possibly (at least for the students) back to bed!
Here's the link to see the segment:


esports league of legends   Robert Morris esports

(left to right) Drew Dickson, Peter Buchacz, Dustin Hutchens, and Kurt Melcher arrive at Fox 32 on Michigan Ave.


In the "green room" awaiting the segment on RMU.


Drew and Kurt are ready to go.


During the interview.


RMU Featured in Business Officer Magazine

Check out the article here!


RMU Becomes First University to Offer Gaming Scholarships With the Addition of eSports to Varsity Lineup

League of Legends - Wed, Jun. 11, 2014


CHICAGO - Robert Morris University Illinois is pleased to announce the addition of an online sport to its athletic program.  Commonly referred to as eSports, the activity consists of organized video game competitions. Specifically, RMU students will compete in League of Legends, one of the largest and most popular eSport games.   Although eSports have long been a part of the culture of gaming, competitions have seen a large surge in popularity in recent years.  Robert Morris University recognizes the value and legitimacy of eSports and is excited to add eSports to its already rich athletic program.  
Associate Athletic Director Kurt Melcher states, "Robert Morris University has always been at the forefront of providing opportunities for a diverse student population with different interests and skills.  League of Legends is a competitive, challenging game which requires significant amount of teamwork to be successful." 
Robert Morris University is in the process of recruiting students for the first year of competition, beginning with the fall quarter in September, 2014. RMU will join the Collegiate Star League, made up of 103 institutions of higher learning and compete against other universities including Arizona State, George Washington and Harvard. Significantly, Robert Morris University is among the first in the nation to offer substantial scholarships for members of the first RMU Varsity eSport League of Legends team.  Qualified gamers can earn scholarships of up to 50% tuition and 50% room and board.
Currently there are over 750 schools in 46 states and eight Canadian provinces that participate in League of Legends High School Starleague (HSL). Robert Morris University seeks eSport athletes with experience in the HSL or similar for their inaugural competitive season. Teams in the Collegiate Starleague compete for Riot's North American Collegiate Championship and $100,000 in scholarship money. Qualification to the event can be obtained through league play or through the North American Collegiate Open tournament.
The RMU eSport Program will be directed by Kurt Melcher of the Eagles' Athletic Department.  All eSport League of Legends applicants will have their application fee waived.  
For more information contact:
Kurt Melcher - 312-935-4110

Institute of Culinary Arts participates in Supermarket Chef Showdown

Robert Morris University Institute of Culinary Arts students had the rare opportunity to participate in an exciting event at McCormick Place last week.  Chef Jen Lamplough had been selected as a judge in the Supermarket Chef Showdown, an annual recipe completion that recognizes and honors the culinary skills of supermarket chefs.  It is sponsored by the Food Marketing Institute and held each year at FMI’s annual convention. 
Chefs who work at supermarkets around the country participate in the competition.  Chefs submit recipes in different categories including healthy meals, family meals or desserts.  As a judge, Chef Jen came to the competition with great credentials – she evaluates student creations in her culinary classes every quarter!  She also brought along a group of 19 RMU culinary students who volunteered their services in different parts of the completion, as well as participating as an enthusiastic audience for the final competition.
“This was a great opportunity for our students to experience the excitement of a food show at McCormick Place and also see what it is like to work behind the scenes,” said Chef Jen.  “It gave them a chance to participate and network with other professionals in the culinary field.”
The winners of the completion provided recipes for such tasty dishes as, Banana Beignets, Mediterranean Chicken Meatballs, Garlic Sweet Potato Fries, Greek Grain Salad and Chickpea and Kale Stew. 
Congratulations to Chef Jen for being selected as a judge and for including RMU students in this exciting experience.


Students inducted into Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society 

On Wednesday, June 11, Robert Morris University Illinois inducted students into the Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society.  Phi Eta Sigma is an honor society for students completing their freshman year who demonstrate high scholastic achievement.  Founded at U of I in 1923, the society has over one million members in 375 chapters.  Its goal is the recognition and encouragement toward academic excellence among college freshmen.  Congratulations to the RMU 2014 Phi Eta Sigma inductees!

​More photos can be found at:

Honor society inductees



Graduation ceremonies held for Class of 2014

On Saturday, June 7, graduation ceremonies were held for the Class of 2014 at Arie Crown Theater at McCormick Place.
Graduating senior Blake Whitmore gave the student address, followed by a keynote speech by alumnus Victor Herrera, Director of Operations for Chicago Public Schools and a member of RMU's Alumni Hall of Fame.  Mr. Herrera was given an honorary doctorate by the University.
Alumna and attorney CJ Muller was recognized as the 2014 Outstanding Advisory Board Member.  Ms Muller started out in RMU's paralegal program and continued her education through to a Juris Doctor from John Marshall Law School.
Alumni Chris Fryzek, Nina Rodriguez and Rosie Thompson were also recognized for their individual accomplishments and participation in RMU Alumni efforts. They participated in the distribution of honor cords to this year's graduating class.
Robert Morris University is proud of the achievements of the Class of 2014.  Go Eagles!
(More photos from graduation will be posted on the RMU Shutterfly site. Go to


Rmu graduation  



Robert Morris University Illinois Offers Tuition Scholarships for Artists Through the Art Guild

Robert Morris University Chicago Art Guild is now offering full tuition scholarships to graduating high school students with outstanding artistic talent.

What is the Art Guild? It is a team of student artists who will be provided an artistic coach, studio space on campus, and art supplies to develop their work on a weekly basis. They will participate in monthly critiques, field trips to galleries and professional artists’ studios, and yearly exhibitions of their work. They will ultimately be working toward exploring their own artistic style and completing a full body of work suitable for a gallery exhibition.

As a part of the Art Guild, students will receive a full 4-quarter per year tuition scholarship. Students may study any major offered at RMU while being a part of the Art Guild where they will further their creative skills. All they need to do is complete the application form and upload 7-10 samples of their finest artwork at Qualifying students will then be selected to present their artwork in person at the campus nearest them. If selected, they will need to apply and be accepted to RMU before receiving the award.

Placement in the Art Guild is very limited, and the deadline has been extended but is quickly approaching. The application is due June 15, 2014.


Students celebrate Cinco de Mayo in the Student Center

Robert Morris University students got into the festive mood of Cinco de Mayo with a nacho bar in the Student Center.

A little spicy snack around noon was just what many students needed for some energy as before they headed to their afternoon classes.
Cinco de Mayo


Springfield students meet Governor Quinn

RMU Springfield students have participated in the Federation of Independent Colleges and Universities Lobby Day for the past 9 years.  RMU students, along with students from other private colleges and universities from around the state converge on the state Capital in an effort to inform their legislators of how important the MAP grant is to the funding of their education.  Students meet with legislators from their home districts and this year had the opportunity to meet with Governor Quinn.   


Jennifer Muryn Volunteers with Chicago Cares

RMU's Jennifer Muryn is an active participant in the Chicago Cares Organization and was a presenter in Chicago Ideas Week.  Their 21st Annual Serv-a-thon is set for June 7.  Thank you for your service, Jen! 


Chicago Shorts Festival announces 2014 winners

The Chicago Shorts Festival, hosted by Robert Morris University Illinois, is pleased to announce the 2014 winners:  In the Animation category, the first place winner is Allysha Webber of the International Film School in Sydney, Australia, for The Last Artist.  Second place goes to Margaret Corinne Orr of the Rochester Institute of Technology for Crappy Film.  The third place winner is David Pavon of ESDIP, Torrenueva-Granada, Spain, for Origami.

In the Comedy/Parody category, the first place winner is Michael Oleshko of Robert Morris University Illinois for Porsche: A Day at Home.  Second place goes to Alvaro Martin of the University of Salamanca, Spain, for Stockholm; and the third place winner is Jack Rosman of the University of Southern California for It's All A Joke.

In the Documentary category, the first place winner is April Knell of DePaul University for Out in the Open; second place goes to Brent Bandemer of Colombia College Chicago for Gone, and third place goes to Blake Whitmore of Robert Morris University Illinois for Green Morning.

In the Dramatic Narrative category, the first place winner is Joseph Kosty of DePaul University for Midway, second place goes to Greg Dixon, also of DePaul University for Me vs The Tooth Fairy; and the third place winner is AJ Young of Columbia College Chicago for Gadget.

The Festival is a venue for collaboration and fosters community among college students, providing them a forum to tell a story, have their voices heard through film, and to be recognized and awarded for their work. It is open to all college students worldwide, regardless of country, major or school they attend. It is free to enter and free to attend.

Entries were received from around the world including Australia, Poland, Venezuela, and Spain. In the US, students from NYC, California and Illinois participated.

The screening of the Chicago Shorts Festival Winners was held last week at the Gene Siskel Film Center.  Robert Morris University Illinois expresses its appreciation to all who supported the event through time, dedication, talent and hard work.  All entries can be viewed at




Performing Arts presents "Shades of Spring"

The Robert Morris University Illinois Department of Performing Arts presented "Shades of Spring" at the RMU Arlington Heights campus on Friday, April 18.  The new Theater Group, the Jazz Band, Drumline, Marching Band, and all the choirs performed several pieces that evoked thoughts of spring and the Easter season.  Congratulations to all the students and directors for their hard work in creating a beautiful concert for friends and families of the RMU community.



Robert Morris University Illinois hosts Greater Chicago Chapter of United Nations Association

On April 16, Robert Morris University Illinois hosted the General Membership Meeting of the Greater Chicago Chapter of the United Nations Association of the United States of America. Students from colleges and universities in the Chicago area attended.  UNA-USA is a program of the United Nations Foundation.  It exists to educate the American public about the invaluable work of the UN, raises funds and carries out local activities related to the UN.  Students become involved in such key issues as global climate change, human rights, global health, championing women and girls and UN Peacekeeping. 



College of Adult Studies and MGSM hosts after hours appreciation event for business partners

The RMU College of Adult Studies and the Morris Graduate School of Management welcomed its business partners at an after hours appreciation event in the State Street Gallery.  Several companies who have partnered with RMU over the years by providing internship, hiring and networking opportunities for our students attended.  "We were happy to welcome representatives from the Illinois Department of Human Services, CDW, US Bank, Groupon, Panera Bread, the Chicago Police Department, Junior Achievement, Ziegler Insurance and others," said Betty O'Leary, director of Corporate Relations.  

Attendees also had the opportunity to view an exhibit that is currently on display in the gallery, featuring the work of Nick Paciorek and Bruce Cascia.  Additionally, RMU student artist Dorothy Zhu worked on one of her paintings during the event.

"This was a small way to express our appreciation to these companies for their continued involvement with Robert Morris," Ms O'Leary continued. "They provide a connection to the working world that is to important to our students."




RMU design students create awesome game app available in iTunes 

Matt Theodosopoulos (lead developer), Tyson Bosco (lead designer), and Jessica Bahena (designer) worked together in RMU IAD's new Apps class to conceive, design and code an entertaining and educational game based on knowledge of Hipster lifestyle details and fast reflexes to increase the length of a health bar to go to the next level or to run out of time and repeat the same one. The game uses the iPad's accelerometer to allow the player to tilt the device to move a skateboarding hipster left and right to catch hipster rewards: skinny jeans, bicycles, vinyl LP's, PBR Beer, cigarettes, etc., and to avoid things that hipsters hate: cars, mp3 players, bathtubs, etc. An ever shortening timer dictates how much time the hipster has to collect his goodies rom level to level. They were able to accomplish this in six weeks using Corona SDK software which was donated to the University by Corona Labs ( with the help of COO David Rangel.

Download it for free at


hipster hysteria


Hipster Hysteria



Career Services hosts 2014 Spring Career Fair at the Chicago Hilton



RMU Illinois participates in University Center's "Next Iron Chef" competition

Robert Morris University participated in “The Next Iron Chef” competition held at the University Center on Friday.  Four teams – one from RMU, one from Columbia College, one from the UC Security and one from Aramark - were required to prepare an appetizer, entrée and dessert. The special ingredient to be included in all courses was bacon.

The teams were judged on their dishes’ flavor, appearance and creativity.  Mary Jo Cameron and Natan Mendes represented RMU.  We came in second place.




RMU Illinois football team starts gearing up for fall

We may be looking for spring, but the RMU Illinois football team is already thinking about fall. Here are a few shots of the Eagles testing out Morris Field on Friday during a few scrimmages - and it was cold! While we're at it, mark your calendar now - Homecoming is set for October 11, 2014. Students, help spread the word!

RMU Football Practice

Students, faculty and staff recognized for extraordinary contributions in Proclamation Ceremony

Students, faculty and staff were recognized for extraordinary efforts at the Proclamation Ceremony held on Friday at the RMU Athletic and Convocation Center in Arlington Heights.  Congratulations to the following individuals.  We are proud of your efforts on behalf or Robert Morris University!

Cindy Byrd, business professor at the RMU Peoria campus, was honored for her article published in an issue of Peoria InterBusiness Issues.  She used three episodes the television serious “Undercover Boss” to illustrate strategies that can help improve employee engagement.  “I’ve long held as a belief about organizations that branding happens on the inside; how a company treats its employees is extremely significant.  It’s the internal brand.”

Coach Thomas “Chico” Adrahtas, coach of the RMU Eagles Gold Hockey Team, was recognized for his work in the RMU hockey program and as the 2012-13 Central States Collegiate Hockey League’s “Coach of the Year.”  Under Coach Adrahtas’ direction, the Eagles were the only team in the ACHA in 2012-13 with a winning record against the two teams ranked #1 in the nation.

Four RMU students represented the group, “Eagles Soaring for Change.”  The 21-member (and growing) organization has helped raise money and awareness for such organizations as the Salvation Army, the National MS Society, the Susan G. Komen Foundation, Lurie Children’s Hospital, Toys for Tots and more.  The have taken an active role in monthly awareness causes and rallied students at the Elgin campus to participate. Ashley Koessl, Tanya Vargas, Rebecca Cox and Christopher Nicolai accepted the proclamation.

The RMU Homecoming Committee, Lora Timmons, Megan Smith Eggert, Nick Jarmuz, Lindsay Parrish and Lauren Joyce Hensel, were recognized for organizing the first annual homecoming with a Spirit Week at all campuses, a pep-rally ad pre-game activities at the Athletic Convocation Center.  Their efforts laid the groundwork for a fall tradition at Robert Morris University that builds a sense of community, spirit and collegiate atmosphere.  Megan Smith and Lindsay Parrish accepted the proclamation.

Dr. Raman Patel’s MGT 590 class participated in the GLO-BUS competition, a computer-based strategy simulation that is modeled to reflect the real world character of the digital camera industry.  When one of the companies in the class, “Champion Cameras” stood tied for first place worldwide in November, there were 2876 companies from 170 colleges participating worldwide.  Their company had a perfect score on investor expected target, and a perfect score on Best in Industry performance.  Students Lindsay Dahl, Ashley Jackson and Latosha Turner accepted the proclamation with Dr. Patel.

RMU’s Residential Advisers ad the staff of the University Center were recognized for their efforts in creating a “Day of Kindness,” which encouraged students to branch outside our campus and residence halls and spread overall good will.  As part of the campaign, students created the UCanLead Series, and UCService Series, in addition to volunteer activities for the Greater Chicago Food Depository and Lurie Children’s Hospital.  Those attending to receive the proclamation included:  Marlene Levine, Bob Brophy, Tulani Myers, Bryan Ellis, Miranda Perry, Bianca Bater, Shay Robinson, Quintina Mangyen and Adam Knapp.





Thomas “Chico” Adrahtas of Wheeling Recognized by RMU Board of Trustees

Thomas “Chico” Adrahtas, head coach of the Robert Morris University Illinois Men’s Gold Hockey team, was honored by the RMU Board of Trustees in recognition of his being chosen by his coaching peers as the 2012-13 Central States Collegiate Hockey League’s (CSCHL) Coach of the Year.  This is the second time in three seasons that Coach Adrahtas has been selected for this esteemed honor. He was presented with a framed proclamation from the Board at a ceremony at the RMU Athletic and Convocation Center in Arlington Heights this past week.

Coach Adrahtas was recognized for the team building skills he instills in his student athletes both on and off the ice.  The Eagles Gold team has set or tied a record for regular season victories three seasons in a row.  In 2012-13, the team achieved its highest season ranking in RMU history, holding the #2 spot in the nation for four weeks.

The Eagles Gold team also excels academically:  half the team had GPAs over 3.5 and several maintained a perfect 4.0.  Coach Adrahtas has inspired the team to become involved in charity events and student activities.  Graduating players have returned to participate in the RMU hockey program as assistant coaches and supporting the team at home games.  In honoring the coach, the Board indicated, “Coach Adrahtas bends over backwards to be of assistance and guidance to his players, not only while they are here but after they graduate.  He is a mentor to his student-athletes in every sense of the word.”


RMU Gold Hockey Team Coach Adrahtas



Paralegal students inducted into LEX Honor Society 

Robert Morris University Illinois is pleased to announce that the following students have been inducted into Lambda Epsilon Chi (also known as LEX), a national academic honor society for paralegal students.

From the Chicago campus:  Joyce Bonner (60653), Eric Coronado of Oak Forest, Brooklyn Kerlin (60605), Naomi McNeal-Dawkins (60643) and Miguel Melendrez of Sunnyvale, CA. 

From the Orland Park campus:  Maribeth Bonko of Mokena, Gerardo Bravo of Chicago Heights, Keanu Calumpang of Tinley Park, and Ryan Funk of Orland Park.

From the Springfield campus:  Maralee Hanners of Sherman, Illinois.

According to their charter, “Lambda Epsilon Chi recognizes students who have demonstrated superior academic performance in an established, qualified program of paralegal/legal assistant studies.”  The RMU students who qualified are in good academic standing, needing a minimum of a GPA of 3.5 in their paralegal courses.

RMU extends congratulations to these students for their academic achievement and commitment to the paralegal profession.




Check out the Robert Morris University Illinois Jazz Ensemble performing at the State Street Gallery!



Galleria Jazz Café Concert Series

Robert Morris University is proud to announce the debut of the Galleria Jazz Café Concert Series. The 45-minute weekly concert series will feature the RMU Jazz Ensemble performing in the University’s State Street Gallery.   The first Galleria Jazz Café Series will debut on Thursday, March 20, 2014, at 5pm and continue through the end of April 2014.

The RMU Jazz Ensemble will feature music to include “Blue Train” by John Coltrane, “April in Paris” by Vernon Duke, “On Green Dolphin Street” by Bronisław Kaper, and “The Pink Panther” by Henry Mancini.  The RMU Jazz Ensemble includes undergraduate students who represent the School of Business, Institute of Culinary Arts, and the Institute of Technology and Media.

The concert series is free to attend and is open to the public.  The RMU Jazz Ensemble is directed by Patrick Keelan.   For more information, please contact Michael Zaremba, Director of Performing Arts, at 312.935.4404 or   


Theater at Robert Morris University

Robert Morris University is proud to announce Theater as the University’s newest performing arts addition.  The Theater Ensemble will stage three full-scale performances every year beginning in Fall 2014.  Weekly practices will be held at the Chicago Campus, and performances will be staged at the Arlington Heights Campus Auditorium.

Students who participate in theater will be engaging in a community that emphasizes learning new skills and teamwork.  Students will develop talent in multiple disciplines to create a successful production, including acting, directing, music, dancing, costume design, lighting and set design. 


Alumni Honored in Saturday's Alumni Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony

Alumni were nominated by faculty members for recognition of their academic excellence, volunteerism, leadership, generosity of spirit, contributions to their community, and activism as an RMU student.


Congratulations to (left to right) Natasha Granholm, BBA '98; Tony Frais, BBA '13, Chris Fryzek, BBA/MBA '13, Victor Herrera, AAS '97, MIS '09; Nina Rodriguez, MBA '12; James Poole, BBA/MBA '10; and Rosie Thompson, BBA '11, MBA '13. 

  Saturday's honorees pictured with the faculty who nominated them.  


Mardi Gras Celebration

Mardi Gras!  In French, it means "Fat Tuesday," referencing the last day to celebrate and indulge in fancy food before Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent.

In the Student Center on Tuesday, RMU students put on some shiny beads, feathered masks and sampled some King Cake. Certain pieces of King Cake have a little plastic baby baked inside - they were the winning slices for more Mardi Gras hats.

Despite the cold outside, it was like New Orleans inside, with live music by a Creole band. A great way to take a study break!




Read the latest edition of MGSMessenger here!


Chicago Shorts Festival Calls for Entries

If you attend college in Illinois, grab your camera and start shooting. Those of you in Wisconsin and Indiana, you’re included too. Robert Morris University Illinois invites all college students to participate in The Chicago Shorts Festival.  Together with DePaul University and Columbia College Chicago, the schools are encouraging would-be filmmakers to create short films that take on a conceptual approach to the theme of “Planet at Risk.” What defines YOUR planet?”  The films will be screened at each school and the culminating event with the announcement of the festival winners will be at the Gene Siskel Theater on April 14, 2014.

Artist Shelley LaMantia, Dean of Experiential Development Through the Arts at Robert Morris, has been working with students in organizing the event.  “To have a theme for a film festival is not common,” she said.  “We are trying to encourage students to think conceptually by suggesting that they put themselves into the question of ‘what is your planet?’  They should make it personal – where does this idea begin? In your home, neighborhood, at work, at school?  And where does risk enter the picture? Is it trying to juggle time, is your environment? Your planet and the risks to it are not summed up by natural disaster and endangered species. It’s much, much more. And it can be uplifting and motivational, or perhaps a humorous approach to a very broad question.”

In addition to the fame that will accompany the winning entry, there will be $1,000 in cash prizes.  It is free to enter and free to attend the screenings.  Submissions will be accepted February 15 through March 15, 2014.

Students are directed to begin the application process through the Festival website: and can email questions to


Designing for Good

With the holiday season a month gone, the scramble to finish Christmas shopping or plan family events are comfortably in the past.  We may be struggling with the weather, but at least we don’t have to dash out to the store for those Daniel Green slippers we forgot to buy for Aunt Louisa. 

Thinking back to December, a group of RMU students found themselves in their own scramble:  they had an assignment for a class and once completed, the effort wouldn’t only result in a final grade.  They didn’t know it at the time, but they would end up getting much more in return than they gave.

Mary Russell is a graphic arts professor and this past quarter, she has been teaching freshmen.  She decided to challenge them with a unique project.  The assignment was to create a project – as a group – that resulted in something that benefited the community.

Usually, students step into an art class and are expected to create a design projects that will highlight their own individual talents, and will ultimately take a prominent place in their final portfolios.  The opportunity Ms. Russell placed before them was one that required them to not only work as a team, but to also take their own egos and personal gain completely out of the picture.

The results were amazing.  In just three weeks, the students came up with the idea of creating a coloring book for kids. Their intended organization was Ronald McDonald House. Each student created a page and together they compiled a book called “Holiday Rascals.”  They all agree that the process was just as important as the final product.

“Learning and working with the Illustrator program really mimicked what we would do in a design firm,” said one student.  They started out with a bit of chaos, “but once we figured out our roles, it all came together.” 

As most students will affirm, team projects are instrumental in the learning experience at Robert Morris.  Sometimes the team clicks instantly – other times it doesn’t.  One person may do most of the work or another doesn’t seem to make his or her deadlines.  Most teams look for strengths and talents in their members.  The best experiences are when everyone helps one another and can ultimately take pride in the best result.

The group managed to get the project completed before Christmas.  They worked with the copy center at RMU and had 100 copies ready for the kids at Ronald McDonald House by December 23.  “They were very happy with the gift,” added Ms. Russell.  “It was a small but very much appreciated item for the kids to find on Christmas morning.”


RMU Illinois Men's Bowling Team receives championship rings from President Viollt

Players and coaches of the RMU Illinois Men's Bowling Team from the Chicago campus were invited to the President's Office on Wednesday, January 29 to receive their championship rings from President Michael Viollt.  The occasion celebrated the 2013 USBC Intercollegiate National Championship and the 2013 NAIA Invitational Championship.  President Viollt extended his best wishes to the team for bringing another championship to RMU, and added his hope for another successful season.



Robert Morris University Illinois Signs Articulation Agreement with MacCormac College Chicago

RMU Provost Mablene Krueger and MacCormac College Dean of Academic and Student Affairs Mary Ann Rowan, Ph.D., signed an articulation agreement today, allowing associate degree MacCormac graduates to transfer to RMU as juniors. To complete a bachelor’s degree at RMU, MacCormac students need to complete 96 quarter hours of RMU coursework.

Additionally, students will receive the RMU two-year guarantee, which allows them to take as many courses as desired, but only pay for two academic years. They are also eligible for a scholarship of $2000 per quarter for six quarters.

MacCormac College offers associate degrees in such legal and business oriented programs as court reporting, paralegal studies, criminal justice, business and entrepreneurship. These programs of study easily correspond to the freshman and sophomore classes in RMU baccalaureate programs in Business Administration in Management or Professional Studies in Law Enforcement or Law Office Administration.

“Robert Morris is pleased to offer a seamless transfer experience to MacCormac graduates,” said Provost Krueger. Dr. Rowan added that, “MacCormac College is honored to be entering this agreement with RMU and is delighted with the opportunities this provides our graduates.”

For further information on transfer opportunities at Robert Morris University, call 800-762-5960 or consult the website,

Robert Morris University Illinois is a not-for-profit, baccalaureate and graduate degree granting institution, accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.* The University serves over 7000 students interested in getting an education in business, graphic arts, nursing and health care, culinary and computer studies at its main campus in Chicago, as well as at locations in Arlington Heights, DuPage, Elgin, Orland Park, Bensenville, Springfield, Peoria, Schaumburg and Lake County.

*Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, 30 N. LaSalle Street, Chicago, IL 60602, 312-263-0456.

Representatives of Robert Morris University Illinois and MacCormac College gather for the signing of an articulation agreement between the schools. Left to right from RMU:  Nicole Farinella, Sr. VP for Enrollment Management;  Catherine Lockwood, VP for Adult Undergraduate and Graduate Education; Stella Mach, Dean of Student Information; Mablene Krueger, Provost; Paula Diaz, Dean, College of Liberal Arts; Mary Ann Rowan, Ph.D., Dean of Academic and Student Affairs of MacCormac College; Larry Nieman, Dean of RMU's School of Business Administration; Andy Berger, RMU Director of Admissions; and Peter Murray, Program Director, General Education of MacCormac College.     Mablene Krueger, left, and Mary Ann Rowan, right, sign the Articulation Agreement between Robert Morris University and MacCormac College.   Nicole Farinella and Mablene Krueger of RMU give Mary Ann Rowan and Peter Murray of MacCormac College a tour of the Chicago campus, including the RMU Institute of Culinary Arts.    


RMU Painting Guild Tours Pilsen Studio

The Robert Morris University Painting Guild provides coaching and tutoring for a select number of students who desire to pursue and advance their artistic talents, regardless of their programs of study.  Robert Hutchison, art faculty member, provides much of this direction and he often enlists the knowledge and expertise of area artists in exposing guild members to different styles and experiences of those who make their livings as artists.

Recently, Mr. Hutchison took guild members to the studios of Oscar Luis Martinez in the Pilsen Art District of Chicago.  The students heard first hand of Mr. Martinez’s philosophy, style and technique as an oil painter of the abstract.  “My artwork is about creating the appearance of stories and dramas that are based on reality, dreams and the imagination,” he explained.

Also on display in his studio is the work of artist Paul Sierra. Much of Mr. Sierra’s work depicts tragedy and disaster, with a distinctive reminiscence of woodblock prints by Japanese artist Utagawa Hiroshige.  A native of Cuba, Mr. Sierra feels that, “art has provided me a means for leaving the past behind; not getting lost in the limbo between the old and the new.”



8th Annual Roto Grip Eagles Baker Challenge

Once again, the RMU Eagles dominated the 8th Annual Roto Grip Eagles Baker Challenge in Addison this weekend. The Chicago women's team came in first of 22 and the Chicago men's team was first of 24. Our women's Peoria team came in 4th place and our men's Peoria team came in 16th. The Springfield women ranked 12th, the Lake County women ranked 22nd. The two-day tournament with 24 colleges and universities literally took over Stardust Bowl as student athletes, coaches and a huge contingent of parents and fans crammed the facility. RMU parents attended in great numbers - not only to cheer on their sons and daughters, but to raise funds in support of the University's bowling program with a successful raffle of donated prizes. Way to go, RMU Eagles and RMU Parents! We're proud of you!


Professional Development Week

Each year, the Morris Graduate School of Management sponsors Professional Development Week, a series of workshops and guest speakers that allow students and alumni to gain insight from some top executives in the area. Robert Morris welcomed Dr. Greg Morris, Managing Partner of Morrishumml, LLC; Bill McClinton, Deputy Director of Human Resources of the Social Security Administration, and Latasha Gillespie, Director of Global Diversity and Inclusion at Caterpillar.

The series was capped by a reception in the Culinary Dining Room, complete with fabulous appetizers and desserts created by RMU culinary students. Attendees had the chance to network and mingle while enjoying a wonderful holiday spread.


RMU Student Honored
The weather outside was frightful on Sunday evening, but inside University Center on State and Congress, it was truly delightful. Students from Robert Morris, Roosevelt, Columbia and DePaul universities who participated in the UCan Lead series, a Leadership Development program, gathered for an award celebration called "Lights on the Terrace." RMU student Jennifer Davis completed the five-seminar program, each of which highlights a different area of social change through leadership.

In addition to recognizing the UCan Lead students, attendees participated in different holiday crafts, including "Make Your Own Outrageous Christmas Sweater," Gingerbread House Construction, ornament and stocking crafts, and enjoying holiday music, hot chocolate and an array of snacks and treats.

Congratulations to all the students from all the universities who participated in this wonderful program.



Following the Eagles

As the RMU Women's Soccer team traveled down to Alabama for the NAIA Championship Tournament, don't think that they made the trip alone. RMU students back in Illinois followed the games via computer feed in the Student Center.

Tuesday's fabulous win over Vanguard University in the second round was a great accomplishment for the team. RMU was ranked 20th and claimed a 2-1 victory over sixth seeded Vanguard.

In Wednesday's game against Northwood University in the NAIA quarterfinal, however, a win was not in the cards. The Eagles lost 2 to 1 during a rainy game at the Orange Beach Sportsplex.

On behalf of the entire RMU community, great season, Eagles! Congratulations on getting RMU into the national tournament!

captions: Students follow Wednesday's RMU Women's soccer game closely on the televisions in the Chicago campus Student Center.

Students and athletes of different sports supported the RMU Women's soccer team.  









Robert Morris University Illinois is a private, not-for-profit associate, baccalaureate, and master's degree-granting institution, accredited by the Higher learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (230 South LaSalle Street, Chicago, Illinois 60604, 312.263.0456). Robert Morris serves over 7000 students interested in getting an education that meets the demands of today's business, graphic arts, health care, culinary and technical world at its main campus in Chicago as well as at locations in Arlington Heights, DuPage, Elgin, Orland Park, Bensenville, Schaumburg, Springfield, Peoria and Lake County.