When deciding on MBA programs to apply to, one of the criteria I prioritized was being in a big city. While Booth’s Full-Time MBA campus is in Hyde Park, most students live in downtown, which is walking distance from Chicago landmarks like the Art Institute, Chicago Cultural Center, and of course the iconic Bean. Chicago’s unique location along Lake Michigan creates a picturesque running/biking trail during the summer known as the Lakeshore Trail.
The best way to explore all that Chicago has to offer is through Booth student clubs. Some of the most popular clubs focus on food, sports, and cultural activities.
According to Webster’s Dictionary, an epicurean is ‘a person devoted to refined sensuous enjoyment, especially good food and drink.’ At Booth, Epicurean Club is simply for foodies. The club’s purpose is to explore the vibrant food scene in Chicago. Twice a month, club members sign up to sample a local restaurant with fellow classmates whether it’s a Chicago classic, hidden gem, or newly opened shop. Most recently, the club went to two Michelin star restaurants: Porto and Elske.
The opportunities to eat your way through the city are not limited to the Epicurean Club. Almost every club at Booth leverages the plethora of restaurants whether its mixers, small group dinners, or socials. I have discovered some of my favorite restaurants in the city through Booth events. Here are a few:
Tanta – Peruvian Food | AAMBAA/HABSA Small-Group Dinners
Barrio – Mexican Food | Hispanic Heritage Month LPF
Ina Mae – New Orleans cooking | Booth’s Mardi Gras Celebration on Fat Tuesday
Aba – Mediterranean restaurant | Recruiting Event
Football: Chicago is one of the best sports cities in the country, up there with New York, Los Angeles, Boston, and Atlanta. So, it’s only fitting to attend a Bears game once on campus. The African American MBA Association (AAMBAA) hosted a tailgate right outside Soldier Field for Thursday Night Football in October when the Bears faced Booth alum, Jason Wright’s Washington Commanders. Students grilled food, enjoyed some drinks, and tossed the football around leading up to the game.
Basketball Club: If you are more interested in playing sports than watching, then the Running of the Bulls is your event. Each year, Booth’s Basketball Club lines up against cross town rival Kellogg for a full court game at the United Center. The game is played prior to the Bulls tipoff. Students from both MBA programs come early to cheer on their school. After, students stay for the professionals to take the court as the Bulls reclaim their court for a regular season game.
Running Club: If you are up for it, the Running Club explores new neighborhoods through long runs around the city. Stay in shape with your classmates and join them in “10-K Tuesdays” – 10K runs at 7am on Tuesday mornings. Some of our classmates are truly built different.
The Field Museum: Last year, Booth held its Winter Formal at the Field Museum. Over 800 students dressed in tuxedos and gowns wined and dined around ancient artifacts, some of which dated as far back as 67 million years.
Urban Exploration: With countless neighborhoods each delivering a unique vibe, Chicago is the perfect place for urban exploration. Whether you want to catch a comedy show at Second City, sneak into a speakeasy in Logan Square, or enjoy the view from a rooftop in River North, there is sure to be a Booth student group going.
Check out our full list of student groups and clubs to see all the ways you can explore Chicago while getting your MBA at Chicago Booth.