Our students, faculty, and alumni accomplished so much in 2019.

Celebrate the amazing year we had in the College of LAS by taking a look at some of our favorite moments.
The Class of 2023 at LAS Liftoff
Photo by Heather Gillett

Welcoming the class of 2023

The LAS class of 2023 enjoys LAS Liftoff, the college's annual new student welcome event. The College of LAS welcomed over 2,400 new students, the highest number of new freshmen in more than a decade. Read more.




Students measure a tree in Trelease Woods
Photo by Jesse Wallace

500-year-old forest offers lessons to students and professors

Students participate in hands-on research in Trelease Woods, a centuries-old forest on the edge of Urbana. Through a partnership between LAS and the College of ACES, students are conducting a tree census throughout the forest, mapping nearly 50,000 trees. Read more.




An LAS alumnus walks through the crowd at IlliniFest
Photo by Jesse Wallace

LAS alumni in Chicago: 58,000 and growing

LAS alumni gather in Millennium Park for the first ever Illini Fest. Including interactive booths from units around the college, live music and dancing, and appearances by head football coach Lovie Smith and Chancellor Jones, the event brought thousands of alumni together to celebrate Illinois pride. View a video.




The first image of a black hole
Photo courtesy of EHT Collaboration

Astronomy professor helps capture historic photo

Illinois helps produce first image of a black hole through the Event Horizon Telescope Project. Illinois astronomy and physics professor Charles Gammie co-led the theory working group for the large, multi-institutional collaboration. Read more.





Ancient extinct sloth tooth in Belize tells story of creature's last year
Photo by Stanley Ambrose

Ancient sloth tooth tells a fascinating story

Illinois researchers make ground-breaking discoveries of the climate and environment of Belize over 27,000 years ago, all from a fossilized sloth tooth. Researchers analyzed the orthodentin and the cementum in the sloth tooth while refining methods for studying similar specimens in the future. Read more.




English building roof, aerial view
Photo by Jesse Wallace

English Building ready for its next 100 years

Construction completes on a project to upgrade the 100-year-old roof of the English Building. This building serves over 3,300 students every week.




LAS students at graduation
Photo by L. Brian Stauffer

LAS grads equipped for success

Over 3,800 College of LAS students graduate from Illinois and celebrate in convocation ceremonies across campus. The University of Illinois convocation in Memorial Stadium celebrates a record number of graduates in attendance, with Chancellor Jones referring to it as "the proudest day of our year."




Anemonefish (clown fish) near anemones
Photo by L. Brian Stauffer

Insights from the sea

Illinois psychology professor Justin Rhodes and his colleagues discover that the male-to-female sex change in anemonefish occurs first in the brain. The findings describe the first known example of an animal undergoing a sex change in the brain before it occurs in the sex organs. Read more.




Jane Bergman displays her replica of the glass dome that once overlooked the library in Altgeld Hall.
Photo courtesy of Jane Bergman

Recreating a lost masterpiece

Jane Bergman completes a replica of the glass dome that once overlooked the library in Altgeld Hall. With design firms CannonDesign and Bailey Edward in the process of planning a renovation of Altgeld Hall for 2024, the possibility of restoring or recreating the stained glass dome is being investigated. Read more.




Quad Day 2019
Photo by Heather Gillett

Starting the year off right

Students from across the university participate in Quad Day 2019. Enjoying beautiful weather and exploring hundreds of booths, students throughout the College of LAS found new organizations to join. 




William Conwill, center, a professor in the Department of African American Studies, poses with Illinois students for a photo near Chicago's Oakwood Community Center
Photo courtesy of The Community Builders

Illinois students help revitalize a community

20 Illinois students intern with The Community Builders, a non-profit that provides affordable housing and fosters community. An ongoing effort by the Department of African American Studies, the program encourages students to participate in community engagement projects. Read more.




The ACES + LAS Career Fair
Photo by Jesse Wallace

Preparing for successful careers

Students from the College of LAS and College of ACES participate in the ACES + LAS Career Fair. Over 760 LAS students attended the fair, which was also attended by representatives from more than 100 companies. 




Alumni award winners pose near a wooden I decorated for Homecoming
Photo by Heather Gillett

Distinguished alumni recognized

The college honors seven alumni award winners during Homecoming weekend. The alumni represented a variety of backgrounds and degrees, and their achievements have clear links to their experiences as students at Illinois. Read more.




The Humanities Professional Resource Center opened this fall.
Photo by Melissa Kuhl

Connecting humanities majors with careers

The Humanities Professional Resource Center opens its doors. This center offers career advising and opportunities specifically focused on humanities students. Read more.




Students from LAS enjoy activities offered throughout the college
Photos submitted by LAS students. Clockwise from top-left: LAS senior Julie Culler enjoys a hike while studying abroad in Switzerland; LAS senior Brendan Labbe poses for a photo with classics professor Brett Kaufman; LAS students enjoy some sight-seeing while studying abroad in Vienna, Austria; LAS junior Kavya Vaidya works with professor Sangjin Kim on a research project; LAS junior James Rozsypal captures a sunset while studying abroad in France; Student participants in LAS 399 (Leadership and Professional Development) pose for a photo in front of Alma Mater.

Students enjoy life in LAS

The College of Liberal Arts & Sciences provides a fantastic experience to its students, from interesting courses to study abroad opportunities and more. This year's student enrollment for LAS topped over 14,500 students (12,035 undergrads and 2,500 graduate students).



Thank you for your support throughout 2019.

Your contributions resulted in a year of tremendous progress and growth in the College of LAS. If you'd like to support LAS students and faculty in the new year, learn more about our priorities.