Bruno Skokna's unforgettable four years at Loyola
Bruno Skokna (BBA ’19) can hardly believe that his senior year is over. During his time at Loyola, the finance major played for the Loyola men’s basketball team, including during their run to the Final Four in 2018, and found both friends and a career path.
“My four years at Loyola flew by,” says Skokna. “I was given so much in being able to play basketball for the Ramblers and in the connections I’ve made with students and faculty. I know we will be connected forever.”
After finishing his bachelor's degree in December 2019, Skokna is now pursuing an MBA degree at Quinlan.
Reflections from the Class of 2020
To celebrate the Class of 2020, Skokna and other Quinlan students created brief digital send-offs discussing Loyola, the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, and their hopes for the future. Watch his message:
For Skokna, the campus closure due to COVID-19 meant missing out on some of the final celebrations he had been looking forward to.
“We didn’t get the normal chance to celebrate our hard work and take advantage of our ‘lasts,’” said Skokna. “Of course, our hard work didn’t go to waste. All of those senior celebrations are just icing on the cake of our time at Loyola.”
Skokna is grateful in particular for his classroom experiences.
“I will miss the excitement of having the opportunity to learn new things. Whatever you want to know, there’s a class to help you grow, or there’s someone to talk to and find the answers,” says Skokna. “I know that I will miss having time to learn so much.”
From Croatia to Chicago
In his digital send-off, Skokna describes the rollercoaster ride of playing basketball for the Ramblers over the last four years. His journey to play for Loyola began at a basketball game in his home country of Croatia, where he met Quinlan Professor Nenad Jukić.
“After a game in high school, Professor Jukić came up and introduced himself and said he taught at Loyola,” says Skokna. “He encouraged me to consider coming to Chicago for school and to play basketball for the Ramblers. We kept in touch, and I got to know Coach Porter. Then after playing in a European Championship for Croatia, I accepted an offer to play for Loyola.”
A special connection with Bob Parkinson
Through the basketball team, Skokna became close with the late Bob Parkinson (BBA ’73, MBA ’75), former dean of Quinlan School of Business and chair of Loyola’s Board of Trustees. He feels especially blessed to have had the opportunity to know Parkinson.
“One of my favorite memories from my time at Loyola will be meeting Mr. Parkinson. He became a wonderful mentor for me. He gave me advice that helped me decide to go into finance and encouraged me to reach my potential.”
Looking to the future
Skokna will be finishing his MBA this summer and looking to start his career in the United States after that. But he also hopes to spend more time with his family.
“During my four years here, I’ve been home for less than six months total, so I’m hoping to go back to Croatia to see my family,” says Skokna. “I’m also hoping to have my parents come visit me here when it’s safe for them to travel so they can see Chicago and the rest of the U.S.”
In his video address, Skokna assures his classmates that he is optimistic about their futures and sees the opportunity for the Class of 2020 to make a difference. He highlights that it is the people we meet who make our time special, not the material success.
“Thank you to my parents, my brother, Professor Jukić and his family, and the Parkinson family for everything they have done to help me succeed. I’m incredibly grateful for this opportunity.”