Loyola University Chicago

Department of Philosophy

Undergraduate Testimonials

What drew you to philosophy?

"Philosophy was the first class that I took where I wasn't challenged to memorize information but I was challenged to actually think. After that class I started reading Ancient Greek philosophy. At first I was just intrigued, but that quickly turned into a full blown addiction."

"I took an introductory class my freshman year with Dr. Bergeron, this experience pushed me to take on a minor in Philosophy. I then took Philosophy of Science with Dr. Harrington and this pushed me to become a major and ultimately pursue philosophy in Graduate School for the next year."

Who is your favorite philosopher or what is your favorite philosophical work and why?

"Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica because of how thoroughly he moves through philosophy, and connects it to the Catholic faith."

"Plato, I fell in love with Plato from the first time I read the Republic because I was shocked that women were included in his egalitarian society. This immediately peaked my interest and I started reading his other works. I became addicted to his dialectic style and specifically the Socratic method. I actually wrote my honors thesis on the relationship between medicine and philosophy in Plato's works."

What is one example of how you use philosophy in your daily life?

"It changes the way you think and observe the world around you, you think differently about problems and interactions. So, it is hard to give one example of an instance where I use philosophy in my daily life. I have been forever changed by my philosophical education, I would not be who I am today without it. I guess a better answer might be that everything I do and say are examples of how I use philosophy in my daily life."

"Every time I read the news. Also, in how I apply my own ethical principles to my own life."

What is one challenge you experienced as a philosophy major or in your philosophy classes, and how did you overcome it?

"A challenge that I experienced was, early on in my education I was heavily involved in the hard sciences, physics and biology, this didn't allow me to develop my writing skills adequately enough for writing philosophy papers. I then took multiple philosophy writing intensive classes, with Dr. Harrington and then Dr. Scott. The experiences with these two wonderful professors greatly increased both my ability and my confidence in my academic writing ability. Now I have publications in undergraduate philosophy journals because of their help and some academic growth on my part."

How do you see your education in philosophy helping you succeed beyond college?

"Philosophy has taught me how to think. As a future lawyer this is an invaluable lesson. I have learned to think critically and write successful argument papers. These are invaluable lessons that will strengthen my future law career."

"As part of my future Priestly Formation, I will be required to learn Theology. The background for all Theology is good and solid Philosophy."

"I believe that the skills philosophy provides are very practical. Although not all knowledge gained is practical, the skills for comprehending, writing, and analyzing are helpful no matter the career I choose to pursue."

What advice would you give a first-year student who is interested in majoring in philosophy?

"Do it. Majoring in philosophy is the most eye opening experience; it will challenge you in a way that you have never been challenged before but you will come out the other side knowing how to think critically. This is a tool that you will be able to use in every aspect of life."

"Do not be intimidated, and come in with a willingness to learn. Also, do not expect all the answers to life. Some things remain a mystery."

"I would tell them to always go to office hours and try to do most of the readings assigned, but not to get too caught up on finishing readings because there is a likelihood that it is going to be way too much to be able to do. The most important thing in philosophy is to be familiar with material, attend class, and participate in all discussions."

What was your favorite philosophy class at Loyola?

"PHIL 321- Capitalism, Socialism, and Democracy with Dr. David Schweikart. I loved going to that class because every topic was fascinating and I felt like I learned a lot about economic and political philosophy. Dr. Schweikart is one of the best professors I have ever had and I would take that class again in a heartbeat."

"It is very hard to pick one philosophy class at Loyola, I have loved all of my experiences within this department. All of my professors have been a tremendous help in my growth as a person and as a student. I thank you all for your patience and assistance in my journey."