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Tribune: NLU Student Went From 320 Pounds to Running Marathon The Trib's Heidi Stevens chronicled Gaylon Alcatraz' inner and outer journeys

screen-shot-2016-10-21-at-10-58-51-amThe Chicago Tribune’s Heidi Stevens wrote a column about NLU student Gaylon Alcaraz, who was tipping the scales at 320 pounds when she decided to join Weight Watchers in 2012.

She started walking a little bit, too, to get some exercise. A friend who was involved with an African-American women’s running group asked her to do a 5K, running when she could and walking when she could not.  Continue reading »

Love Writing? Meet Writers, Get Inspiration and Cake at MOSAIC Party Oct. 24 Authors, writers from Tribune and Sun-Times will share tips

screen-shot-2016-10-20-at-4-33-02-pmIf you are a writer, you know the most important reason for eating cake: to allow a few more minutes of procrastination while you stare at a blank screen.

Beat that procrastination problem Monday evening, Oct. 24, at the MOSAIC Writers’ Party at National Louis University’s Chicago campus, 122 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago. You’ll get so much inspiration from four well-known writers that you won’t need excuses to start writing that first paragraph. Continue reading »

NLU Partners With Year Up To Ready Students To Achieve Program uses education, internships to prepare struggling youth to work


Year Up alum Brahulio Ignez, from left, Cook County state’s attorney candidate Kim Foxx, NLU President Nivine Megahed, Ph.D., Year Up Executive Director Jack Crowe and Year Up alums Charlotte Norman and Steven Cannon pose for a photo at the Year Up breakfast on Oct. 14.

The young people who find themselves at Year Up, a non-profit which offers 18-24-year-olds a yearlong preparation for the working world, have many different stories. Some had parents who had died, or were too ill to take care of them. Many lived in challenging neighborhoods where they didn’t know people who had steady jobs and stable home lives. Most of them didn’t have plans for college or a career, and some barely had enough income for day-to-day life.

All of them eventually heard about Year Up, and in a defining moment of their lives, applied and were accepted. Year Up partners with educational institutions to offer six months of education and six months of internship in a business. After they complete the program, 85 percent of graduates become employed or enroll in higher education within six months.


NLU’s Dr. Megahed tells the Year Up breakfast audience about NLU’s partnership with Year Up.

On Oct. 14, National Louis University President Nivine Megahed, Ph.D., and Year Up Chicago Executive Director Jack J. Crowe announced that NLU and Year Up are forming a partnership.

“We are completely aligned in terms of our mission,” Megahed said at Year Up Chicago’s fourth annual opportunity breakfast, held at the Union League Club.

“Education is a tool to restore the hope that often is lost for individuals who don’t see pathways to success. Year Up is a program that restores hope, empowers people to feel they can make that difference for themselves, so we are delighted. We think this is an incredible partnership.”

The first cohort of 30 Year Up students will start at NLU in January. They will earn academic credits toward an undergraduate business degree. After studying full-time at NLU during winter and spring quarters, they will begin six-month workplace internships in June at a variety of Year Up’s corporate partners.

In September 2017, plans call for a second Year Up cohort, this time with 40 students, to start. The two organizations’ leaders hope the partnership will grow from there. It will also be possible for Year Up graduates to return to NLU to complete their degrees or earn advanced degrees, on either a full-time or part-time basis. If they work full-time and want to attend school part-time, NLU has long offered flexible scheduling, classes during evening and weekend hours and online classes.

Learning How Domestic Violence Victims Feel Students take part in 'In Her Shoes' Domestic Violence Experiential Training

My name is Roz, and I’m married to Marty. We have two kids. He gets mad, picks fights over my cooking, criticizes me and starts hitting me. He has broken my nose, and one time he broke my rib, too. But this last fight we had was the last straw, and I’ve had it. I want to leave him.


An NLU student playing the role of a domestic violence victim tries to decide what her next step should be. Her teammates can talk to her, but she has to carry her own suitcase and “children,” in the form of stuffed animals.

On a quiet Thursday morning at NLU’s Chicago campus, Criminal Justice student Gelissa Nealon is playing Roz’s role during an experiential training exercise called “In Her Shoes.” Advocates for domestic violence victims in Washington state developed the training, and based it on the experiences of real people. Continue reading »

Job-Seeking? Escape The Black Hole of Applicant Tracking Systems By Christine Andrelczyk, NLU Career Advisor

jobsearchphotoWhen you submit an online job application, do you ever feel like your resume is being sucked into a black hole, never to be seen or heard from again?

It may have something to do with the Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) that many companies use nowadays to scan incoming resumes in order to narrow down the applicant pool. Resumes that successfully make it through the ATS will then move on to the next stage of the hiring process. While ATS is a great tool for employers to use in order bring speed and efficiency to their hiring process, it can also be difficult, confusing, and frustrating for job applicants to navigate. Continue reading »

Talan, Keneman in Daily Herald: Give Teachers Cultural Competence Two profs explain importance of helping teachers become self-aware, inclusive


Screen Shot 2016-03-07 at 10.39.45 AMThe news broke last Wednesday morning about a Yale University study which detected that preschool teachers expected more misbehavior from young African-American male students than from other students.

By Wednesday afternoon, faculty members Ayn Keneman, Ed.D., and Teri Talan, Ed.D., J.D., had written a letter to the editor explaining that NLU’s early education programs  stress the importance of making budding teachers aware of their young students’ cultures. Keneman is NLU’s Early Childhood Program Coordinator and Talan is the Michael W. Louis Endowed Chair of the McCormick Center for Early Childhood Leadership. Continue reading »

WFLD-TV, Daily Herald Feature Dr. Richardson Discussing Cliques She shared 'Five Signs a Clique is Making Your Girl Miserable' for National Bullying Prevention Month

screen-shot-2016-10-04-at-1-19-38-pm“Mean girls” in schools can make life deeply painful for other girls, starting at about the fifth-grade level and often continuing through high school.

Wytress Richardson, Ed.D., a behavioral scientist and associate professor of Social and Behavioral Sciences at National Louis University, has been featured on WFLD-TV Fox 32’s “Good Day Chicago” show speaking about “Five Signs A Clique Is Making Your Daughter Miserable.” She told “Good Day Chicago” interviewer Corey McPherrin how parents can help their daughters get through the rejection, anxiety and depression cliques sometimes inflict on girls. Continue reading »

Building Better LGBT Acceptance in Schools Alum Outlines Need for LGBT School District Employee Affinity Groups

By NLU Alum Kevin O’Connor ’98

10362858_766626973382288_1854493922962478078_nThe tables and seating areas were arranged in the elementary school cafeteria. Forty-five minutes later, as members of our founding organizing committee were greeting each incoming attendee, we were also setting up extra tables. By the start of the meeting, there were 150 people in attendance  more than we had expected.

Participants from the meeting left energized, eager to tell others and ready to move forward with GLASEN: Gay, Lesbian, and Ally School Employee Network for Broward County Public Schools in Florida. Continue reading »

Engage and Empower Employees, Profs Urge In Honig and Legler advise managers how to retain talent in tightening job market

screen-shot-2016-09-30-at-5-13-55-pmAs the job market heats up and job candidates are able to find new jobs more quickly, employers have to strategize in order to retain their talent.

They can do so by engaging employees, fostering a climate of respectful communication, providing professional development, recognizing employee contributions and rewarding employees with compensation and benefits, write Catherine Honig, Ph.D., associate professor of business and management, and Ray Legler, Ph.D., assistant professor, who teaches organizational leadership,  in an article appearing in It appeared in the website’s Excellence Essentials series. Continue reading »

New to National Louis: Inclusive U Written by Courtney Brinson, Graduate Assistant in the Office of Student Experience

shutterstock_318054821With the fall term off to a great start, an excellent way for students to develop themselves as well as contribute to the development of our University learning community is through Inclusive U! Inclusive U is a program designed to engage students, staff, and faculty in unique professional development opportunities geared towards improving skills and knowledge around inclusivity and positive civic engagement. Continue reading »