To provide students a unique learning environment where classroom concepts meet real world applications, new social interactions take place, and professional development flourishes.
The new UIC Business Learning Center is focused on providing what other tutoring ventures haven’t: A unique on-campus location dedicated to the educational and professional well-being of students from the College of Business Administration.
Here, business students from different backgrounds can convene & share ideas, receive tutoring for their respective majors, congregate for student organization functions and attend career-related events. Our tutors on staff are here to make sure that your needs are fulfilled to the highest standard along with being able to provide answers to some of your professional goals and needs. Complementary to this, various events will be held throughout the year to give students an insight for careers in Finance, Accounting, Marketing, Information Decision Sciences, and Entrepreneurship. So stop on by and connect with our staff!
History of BLC through Serafina Ha, co-founder
The idea of the BLC culminated with the formation process of the Business Student Advisory Board (BSAB). When Andrew Ericson, Michael Mihailescu, and Kalpit Shah, the three founders of the BSAB, interviewed each of the candidates for membership, they asked us [Serafina Ha & Tyler Albert] what we thought were some areas that needed change within the CBA through the eyes of a student. We had prior notice about the questions to be asked, so I had time to think about it.
In my opinion, it was that students here lack a sense of camaraderie. It’s natural because our school almost entirely consists of commuters, and also I sensed there was a more competitive business environment within our college which in my opinion, discouraged a sense of unity. Additionally, the CBA students didn't have enough of a communal space dedicated to socializing and relaxing. I thought that if we addressed that problem, then we'd be eliminating one significant anti-unity factor. Sometimes all a person needs is a little push out of their comfort zone and the BLC was a facilitator for that to happen. Finally, I addressed that the study spaces are always taken most of the time during the school year. This would leave many CBA students and groups in frustration, so we needed a space to accommodate them as well. It was a combination of my concerns as well as Tyler Albert’s that led us [The Founders] to create the "BLC Task Force" within the BSAB in order to make the Business Learning Center possible.
There were definitely some hiccups that we faced on the way before our wonderful directors came into the picture. Back during my BSAB interview, we had differentiating views on student engagement but we eventually agreed on a structure that is organized and encourages students to be involved and connect with each other in a productive and easy way.
Getting the right space was also a big difficulty for us as well. We considered everything. At first we thought we'd have a piecemeal type of operation going by using the four group study rooms in DH. Then we considered a room in BSB - which was further but larger. Unfortunately when that fell through, we were stuck at a standstill. During this time, we still fought for our fellow students to try find the ideal spot. Eventually we got the current place, which is better than anything else anyone could have provided. Sometimes you have to make sacrifices to achieve the bigger goal.
Finally, time was another issue. Because of hiccups like these, where we waited for meetings and discussions to occur and decisions to be made. It's understandable that things take time and we adapted ourselves to these obstacles. Overall, the inception of this center has truly made us appreciate the services provided to us at UIC and the effort it takes for these kind of projects to occur.
Having all that said, though, I must comment that the CBA administration could not have been more supportive. From the inception of the BSAB, the support that the dean and his team has given us has carried on relentlessly and they have treated us more than just a mere student. We would like to give special thanks to the following people:
Jim Pierce, Executive Director for Resource Management and Accountability for making us feel comfortable at owning up to this big responsibility.
Angela Prazza Winters, Assistant Dean of Undergraduate Programs for being in constant contact with us and has been supporting us through the rough patches of the project.
Regina Smith, Business Administrative Associate for being very helpful in acquiring supplies for the center along with hiring the tutors.
Holly Griffin, Director of Planning & Special Events for evaluating the need of this center.
David Taeyaerts, Associate Vice Chancellor of Facilities for helping us find and create the ideal spot for our center.
Michael Mikhail, Dean of the UIC College of Business Administration for making this dream for a better tutoring center a reality.
And overall thanks for everyone else for making this dream becoming a reality! We couldn't have done it without all of you!