Loyola University Chicago

Loyola Experience

How is your first year
going so far?

Your Loyola Experience is underway, and we are committed looking forward to all the ways you will make your mark on campus by building community, joining clubs and activities, and engaging your professors. To launch that success, consider these important Fall Programs that will enrich your Loyola Experience.



Fall Programs

Loyola’s Fall Programs will kick off with Welcome Week and will continue throughout your college career.
Here are a few that will occur during your first semester.  

Thursday, August 23 

Family Mass 
All new students and families are invited to join the Loyola community in Madonna della Strada Chapel for this annual tradition of welcome and blessing for our new class of Loyola students.

Contact Office of Sacramental Life / 773.508.8045

Parent Send-Off Picnic
All new students and their families are invited to an indoor picnic sponsored by Student Development. 

Contact Student Activities & Greek Affairs / 773.508.8850

Weeks of Welcome
Welcome Week is your first opportunity to get acclimated to college by exploring opportunities to: build relationships, engage in social and academic programs, enhance your understanding of what makes the Loyola community unique, and quite simply just have fun. There will be a variety of events hosted throughout including the Student Organization Fair, Saturday of Service and the New Year’s Festival.

Thursday, August 23 – Saturday, September 1

Contact Student Activities & Greek Affairs / 773.508.8850

Friday, August 24

The First-Year Student Convocation is an annual tradition when all freshmen are officially inducted into their graduating class, and their academic careers officially begin at Loyola University Chicago. Convocation is a celebration of university life and the traditions of Loyola University Chicago. All freshman students attend this important event as part of Welcome Week celebrations.  The Convocation address is the new student's first academic lecture; it is an introduction to the interplay between the mind and heart at Loyola. After the address, students are broken into to small groups and paired with a faculty member to discuss the first-year text.

Contact First-Year Experience / 773.508.7381

Sunday, August 26

Mass of the Holy Spirit
The Mass of the Holy Spirit is an opportunity for the entire University Community to gather in prayer at the beginning of the academic year. We offer thanks to God as well as our prayer for our world, our community and for the success of the coming academic year.

Contact Office of Sacramental Life / 773.508.8045

Throughout Your First Year

Loyola 360° Retreat
Loyola 360° is a two day retreat open to all first year students interested in making the most of their Loyola experience by utilizing the social, academic, and spiritual resources on campus.  Retreat participants will come to understand and appreciate the identity and mission of a Jesuit education through relationships with student leaders and professional staff.  This retreat will provide space to make friendships, learn how to be involved in the Loyola community, and support the transition from high school to college.  Through disconnecting from technology and the routine of the Lakeshore campus, students will have the chance to see the bigger picture, get perspective on their experiences, and discern potential opportunities still undiscovered at Loyola. The two-night experience costs $50, but financial assistance is available.

September 7-9, September 14-16, September 21-23, November 2-4, January 25-27, February 22-24

Contact Loyola Retreats / 773.508.2159

First-Year Weekly Service
Each week, a group of First-Year Loyola students travels to St. Thomas of Canterbury Soup Kitchen to prepare, serve, and share a meal with guests.  Join us to go just a few stops south on the EL. Meet at the Center for Community Service and Action (Mundelein Room 804) with your U-Pass and wearing appropriate clothing and close-toed shoes.  

Every Tuesday and Friday afternoon at 3:40pm. 

Contact Center for Community Service and Action / 773.508.8260

First-Year Programs
Don't miss out on your chance to enter the First-Year Essay Contest and attend the First-Year Lecture Series

Contact First-Year Experience / 773.508.7381


Go Back to Pre-Fall Programs



All Semester

  • Open Your Mind
    Attend one of several Leadership Workshops on campus.
  • Strengthen Your Body
    Try out a student-led fitness class at Halas.
  • Explore your Faith
    Reflect and worship in Taize Prayer.
  • Be of Service
    Reach out to your neighbor.
  • checkmark icon

    The First-Year Milestones

    Reflection questions

    For anything else related to your transition and creating your unique Loyola Experience this semester, please contact the Office of First Year Experience. 773-508-7381 / Sullivan 255 / firstyearexperience@luc.edu