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All posts by Pam DeFiglio

Honor Black History Month With These Events, Books, Films, More Join an African American organization at NLU or learn other ways to expand awareness


By Cindy Danzell, MS, PEL, NCC

As our nation commemorates the 93rd Black History Month in February, we are reminded of the sacrifice, injustice and hardship many African Americans endured in the past and currently face. The Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASLAH), the founder of Black History Month, chose “The Great Migration” as the theme for Black History Month. Their website states, “ASALH’s 2019 theme Black Migrations emphasizes the movement of people of African descent to new destinations and subsequently to new social realities. While inclusive of earlier centuries, this theme focuses especially on the twentieth century through today.”

National Louis University’s Student Experience department wants all students, staff and faculty to immerse themselves in learning about their culture and learning new cultures. This blog post lists events that are taking place all over Illinois during the month of February and books to read in hopes that we may help bridge the gap between interest and knowledge. Continue reading »

How To Change the World? Students to Ask Politicians, Activists Two state legislators, two civic activists coming to answer students' questions Feb. 4

Two National Louis University students who want to change the world will facilitate a discussion with Chicago-area leaders who have taken steps to make society better. The Monday, Feb. 4 event will feature Illinois Sen. Robert Peters, a Democrat from the 13th District; Illinois Rep. Lamont J. Robinson Jr., a Democrat from the 5th District; Alex Boutros, a community organizer with the nonprofit Chicago Votes, and Karla Castilla-Morin,  manager of the Issues in Action program with the nonprofit Mikva Challenge. Continue reading »

Prof’s Survivor Experience Featured on ABC7 News Joel Filmore, Ed.D., interviewed about being victimized by human trafficker

Sex traffickers wreak havoc on their victims’ lives, forcing them into prostitution through a combination of threats, coercion and addiction. The lucky few who manage to escape the horrors of being trafficked find they face one more hurdle. They have a criminal record, even though they were the ones being victimized.

Joel Filmore escaped from his traffickers and earned an Ed.D. and an LCPC. Filmore, who is now an assistant professor of counseling at National Louis University, was able to use an Illinois law to vacate the crimes on his record. The law came into being so that victims, who had already been victimized once by traffickers, were not victimized again.

Watch the ABC7 News interview with Filmore on Jan. 24, 2019. 

Virgin Hotels Promotes Kendall Alum to National Post Growing company named Owen Deignan Director of Food & Beverage Operations

Owen Deignan, Kendall College at National Louis University alum and Director of Food & Beverage Operations for Virgin Hotels.

Virgin Hotels, a hotel brand owned by noted business person Sir Richard Branson, has promoted Owen Deignan,  a Kendall College at National Louis University alum, as the Director of Food & Beverage Operations for the growing company.

Deignan will be responsible for the food and beverage operations of all Virgin Hotels, including the Virgin Hotel San Francisco, opening in 2019.

Deignan earned his AAS in Culinary Arts at Kendall and has worked with a number of food and beverage visionaries. He brings more than two decades of experience to his new post.

Virgin Hotels released a statement which said Deignan will work closely with the senior leadership team to develop and execute Virgin’s strategic plan to drive growth and profitability in the culinary space, largely focusing on the evolution of the Commons Club concept and developing individual dining destinations in future Virgin Hotels.

Jay Wetzel, Vice President of Virgin Hotels Food & Beverage, remarked, “Owen was instrumental in the success of Commons Club and crafting the seasonal strategy for Cerise at Virgin Hotels Chicago, which has seen unparalleled success this year. In addition, Owen has proved that strong leadership skills, pinpoint focus and comradery are the key ingredients in building a great team.”

Continue reading »

Prof Honored by Shriners for Hospital Fundraising Richard Schak, chair of NLU's Criminal Justice program, receives award

Among many National Louis Faculty who volunteer their time for worthy causes is Richard Schak, chair of the Criminal Justice program. By volunteering with the Medinah Shriners, Schak helps raise money to fund the Shriners Hospitals, which care for children in the areas of orthopedics, cleft lip and cleft palate, burns and spinal cord injuries. Schak’s activities primarily support the Chicago hospital.

This month, Schak was named the outstanding Shriner of the Year for 2018, as well as the  Chief of the Medinah Police Unit. This unit provides security and assistance for the organization’s fundraisers and activities throughout the year. In addition, Schak was appointed to the Chicago Shriners Hospital advisory board. Continue reading »

NLU’s Reading Recovery Conference Takes Place Jan. 23-25 Event attracts hundreds of reading teachers and others to hear top speakers

Mary Ann Poparad, Ph.D., director of the Center for Reading Recovery and Descubriendo La Lectura at National Louis University, welcomed guests at a previous annual Reading Recovery conference.

More than 1,000 teachers, reading specialists and others will be attending National Louis University’s annual Illinois Comprehensive Literacy and Reading Recovery Conference, to be held Jan. 23-25 this year.

Reading Recovery is an evidence-based professional development model designed to ensure that the children who struggle the most with early literacy learning gain the skills they need. Continue reading »

Watch Lunar Eclipse Sunday, NLU Science Club Advises The moon may appear blood red, says student-led group


It’s time to get your binoculars and camera phone ready. This Sunday, Jan. 20,  a total lunar eclipse will take place and National Louis University’s student-led Science Club wants you to see it.

“We in Chicago, as well as half the world, will be able to see it if it’s clear outside Sunday night,” said Roy Kaelin, assistant professor of science for NLU’s Undergraduate College. Continue reading »

Tribune’s ‘Best of 2018’ Features Kendall Instructor Jim DeWan DeWan writes a 'bitingly' funny column highlighting food and recipes

Crispy, cheesy, crunchy, salty–who could resist this kind of deliciousness?

Certainly not James DeWan, assistant professor at Kendall College of Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management at National Louis University.

DeWan has been penning a witty and informative column called “Prep School” for the Chicago Tribune since 2005. His “Cheese Toast” column, originally printed Dec. 20, featured the recipe for the parmesan- and cheddar-sprinkled gems and proved so irresistible to Tribune food writer Joe Gray that he selected them for his article,  “10 Best Recipes of 2018.” Continue reading »

NLU Ranks Highly in Educating Military Veterans College Factual ranks NLU No. 7 in Illinois for military-connected students

National Louis University ranks seventh in Illinois, out of 65 colleges, in College Factual’s 2019 Best Colleges for Veterans rankings. That places NLU in the top 10 percent of colleges and universities in the state for veteran friendliness, according to College Factual, which performs data analytics for colleges and universities. Continue reading »