LAS Impact

A graphic that reads "LAS Impact 2020"

Celebrate the amazing impact of people in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences!

The College of Liberal Arts & Sciences is unlike any other. Join us virtually Oct. 26-30 as we celebrate the power of LAS innovation and all of the members of our community.

Continue to check back for updates—links to content will be added as each day approaches.

Please note that dates and topics are subject to change. All times listed are Central.

View events by date:



Monday, October 26

LAS Innovation

Learn about life-changing research conducted through the College of LAS.

Events & activities:

  • Preparing Students for a Diverse World: LAS’ Role in Increasing Cultural Competence
    12:00 p.m. | Register

    Join Isabel Molina, Associate Dean for Diversity and Inclusion; Clare Crowston, Associate Dean for Humanities and Interdisciplinary Programs; Elena Delgado, Director of the School of Literatures, Cultures, & Linguistics; and Ronald Bailey, Head of the Department of African American Studies for a discussion about how LAS is helping students campus-wide thrive in today’s diverse and global workforce.
  • "Unruly Cinema: History, Politics, and Bollywood," a Book Launch with Rini Bhattacharya Mehta
    12:00 p.m. | Register

    "Unruly Cinema" looks at the complex series of events that allowed the entire Indian film industry to defy attempts to control, reform, and refine it in the twentieth century and beyond.
  • Medicalizing Blackness: Lessons from the 18th Century American Atlantic
    1:30 p.m. | Register

    Join Rana Hogarth, associate professor in the Department of History, for a talk based on her first book, "Medicalizing Blackness: Making Racial Difference in the Atlantic World, 1780-1840," which uncovers how physicians invested blackness with medical meaning in slave holding societies of the Americas. 
  • From Research to Outreach: A Comprehensive Approach to Fighting COVID-19
    3:30 p.m. |
    Chris Brooke, professor of microbiology, will discuss efforts to support COVID testing at the local and state level. Erik Procko, professor of biochemistry, will share an overview of his work investigating therapeutic agents.
  • COVID-19, Climate Change, and Health
    Watch now
    The vast amounts of data being collected around the world on meteorology, air quality and human health during the COVID-19 pandemic has allowed scientists to observe the effects humans have on our climate as well as the effects of climate on human health. 
  • Safer Illinois: A Transatlantic Conversation on Privacy and Technology During an Epidemic 
    Watch now

    To help universities manage the COVID-19 pandemic on their campuses, researchers at the University of Illinois developed the Safer Illinois app to support the important strategy of contact tracing.
  • Global Voices on the Pandemic
    Read stories

    The University of Illinois is part of a global community including students, scholars, and artists. The Illinois Global Institute has reached out to friends and colleagues around the world to share their COVID-19 pandemic experiences.
Deepen your understanding of the pandemic

Topics by LAS faculty in this free course include "Pandemics in History," "Infection: Biology and Anthropology," "Diagnostic Technologies," "COVID-19 and the Election," and more.

A student wearing a mask

Read about College of LAS research

Our faculty members are leading their fields and generating new knowledge thanks to cutting-edge research in the sciences, humanities, and social sciences. Read more.

Fiction, politics, and the future
Works of imagination help LAS professors teach and convey political theory.
Trelease Woods
A centuries-old forest offers lessons to students and professors alike.
Video: Talking politics
Scott Althaus discusses how to turn a negative conversation constructive.

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Tuesday, October 27

LAS Humanities

Connect with the humanities and see how they are making a difference.

Events & activities:

  • The Human Factor: Providing Cultural, Linguistic and Historical Context to Modern Debates
    10:00 a.m. |
    Join faculty members from the School of Literatures, Cultures, & Linguistics for a discussion about how courses focused on current issues are providing students with the necessary cultural and historical context to understand and engage in debates on the national and global level.
  • The Removal of Monuments in Social Movements
    12:00 p.m. |
    Public monuments are built to represent an idea; this year, those ideas have been put under the microscope. Join the Department of History for a conversation on the important topic.
  • Writer's Workshop for Alumni: Writing Effective Cover Letters
    3:00 p.m. |
    Through one of the Writers Workshop’s most frequently requested topics, participants will review the purpose and common structure of cover letters, gain tips for tailoring the letter to the position, and practice balancing specific detail and concision.
  • Alumni and student networking event with the Humanities Professional Resource Center
    5:00 p.m. | Register

    LAS Alumni are invited to join humanities students for a virtual networking event. 
  • A Virtual Panel Discussion: Unorthodox
    Watch now

    Join the Program in Jewish Culture & Society for a virtual panel discussion about the the mini-series "Unorthodox" and about the communities represented therein.
  • Center for African Studies 50th Anniversary Celebration
    Watch now

    Established in 1970, the Center for African Studies at the University of Illinois is one of the leading African studies programs in the United States.
  • When States Come Out: Transnational Movements & the Diffusion of LGBTI Rights in Europe
    Watch now

    In the last two decades, the LGBTI movement has gained momentum that is arguably unprecedented in speed and suddenness when compared to other human rights movements. Phillip M. Ayoub this transnational movement.
A psychology alumna's humanities career

Alice McGinty is a writer, instructor, keynote speaker, and psychology grad who is pursuing a career in the humanities.

Alice McGinty with the quote "I remember the excitement as the pieces began to fall into place…as I read Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and realized that Goodnight Moon [...] fulfilled a child’s need for safety and security."
A screenshot from Jessie Ann Foley's Alumni Advice video
Becoming a Successful Writer

Jessie Ann Foley, award-winning author of "The Carnival at Bray," provides tips for a writing career in our latest video in the Alumni Advice series.

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Wednesday, October 28

LAS students

Engage with the 2020 student experience.

Events & activities:

  • Student Experiential Learning Through Service & Public Engagement
    10:00 a.m. |
    Join Ann Abbott, associate professor in the Department of Spanish & Portuguese, and Ryan Shosted, professor in the Department of Linguistics, for a conversation about educating students through courses focused on public engagement.
  • LAS Student Researchers: Lunchtime Lightning Talks
    12:00 p.m. |
    In this virtual lightning talk event, hear about the impact that students from a variety of disciplines across LAS are making through their research.
  • Greece and Me: A Conversation with George Reveliotis
    5:00 p.m. | Log into event

    Join the Department of Classics for a conversation with George Reveliotis (BA, ’96, history), recipient of the 2020 Quadrangle Award. He will discuss his time growing up in Greece, the impact the University of Illinois made on his life, and his career and volunteerism experiences after graduation.
  • LAS Student Panel for Alumni
    5:00 p.m. |
    In this virtual networking event hosted by the LAS Leaders, alumni will have the opportunity to hear from LAS undergrads about life on campus, academics today, being a student during COVID-19, and more.
  • 2020 Virtual Scholarship Celebration

Learn about College of LAS initiatives

In LAS, we strive to provide the best learning experience for our students, no matter where they come or are learning from. Global experiences, courses focused on making a difference, and more—learn about a few of our student initiatives.

Access and Achievement Program
LAS AAP prepares students for academic success, graduation, and a life of impact.
Through COVID-Corps: Action for Solutions, students earn credit while helping the world.
College of LAS Emergency Fund
To help students navigate challenging times, we've established the LAS Emergency Fund.

Learn about LAS departmental initiatives

With 68 departments and units throughout the College of LAS, there is never a shortage of activities for students to participate in! 

Students participate in the Summer Illinois Math Camp
SIM Camp
The Summer Illinois Math (SIM) Camp for middle and high schoolers is hosted by mathematics.
A female student working in a chemistry laboratory
Women in Chemistry
The Department of Chemistry has compiled an extensive list of resources for students in the major.
Historic murals
La Casa Cultural Latina and the Department of Latina/Latino studies protest murals have returned.

Learn about LAS students

Students within the college of LAS are inspiring. Read about their experiences in our LAS Insider blog, and check out some featured student content.

My internship with Seaside Sustainability
This summer, Miranda Johnson worked to combat the global climate crisis.
Student study abroad experiences
Students throughout the College of LAS have many opportunities to study abroad.
Psychology student secures NIH fellowship
Dani Kang studies alcohol's effects on threat sensitivity.

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Thursday, October 29

LAS Alumni

Celebrate our alumni.


  • Homecoming: An Illinois Tradition
    12:00 p.m. | 
    Join LAS alumnus Ryan Ross (BS English '08; MS Library & Information Science '10), assistant director of history and traditions Programs for the Alumni Association, for a history talk about one of our campus' longstanding traditions: Homecoming.
  • 2020 Virtual Alumni Awards
    5 p.m. | Register 

    We encourage alumni from around the world to join us in celebrating the outstanding achievements of their fellow alumni.
  • The Great Unconformity and Tales from Arizona Field Trips: A Virtual Fireside Chat with Professor Steve Marshak
    6:30 p.m. | Register 
    Professor Emeritus and former geology department head Steve Marshak will give a talk about The Great Unconformity and tell tales from Arizona field trips of the past. 

Volunteer with the College of LAS

Volunteering is a meaningful way for alumni to stay connected with LAS. There are so many ways to donate your time and talents, and you don’t even have to be near campus to participate!

Get involved

Learn about a few volunteer opportunities:

School of Integrative Biology
IB Career Connections allows current students to network with alumni.
Department of Psychology
Students can email psychology alumni with questions related to careers.
School of Molecular & Cellular Biology
MCB offers a Pre-Health and Professional Mentorship Program.

Learn about LAS alumni

In our LAS@Work news series, alumni answer questions about their jobs and how their Illinois degrees helped them find success. In our Alumni Advice video series, LAS alumni offer advice on topics related to professional success.

Lindsey Dunn Burgstahler
Supporting the front lines
Lindsey Dunn Burgstahler, vice president for the American Hospital Association Center for Health Innovation, helps those serving on the front lines against COVID-19.
Joey Levin
Diversity & inclusion
Joey Levin, human resources manager at Stepan Company, describes how to establish diversity and inclusion within a team environment in an Alumni Advice video.

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Friday, October 30

Uniquely LAS

Revisit LAS' interesting places and programs. 


  • Poetry reading and discussion with Ninth Letter
    12:00 p.m. | Register

    Join Ninth Letter editor Jodee Stanley, alumna Jessica Tanck, and poet Kathy Fagan for an immersive virtual event featuring a poetry reading and a discussion.
  • Spurlock Museum Exhibit Opening: Debates, Decisions, Demands - Objects of Campaigns and Activism
    2:00 p.m. | Register

    Alumni from around the world are invited to join Spurlock for a unique virtual event: the opening for their new exhibit "Debates, Decisions, Demands: Objects of Campaigns and Activism."
  • Altgeld Chimes Centennial Concert
    3:00 p.m. | Stream live

    The Altgeld Chimes are turning 100! Join the chimes players and the Marching Illini for a live concert to celebrate the occasion.
  • Celebrating a Campus Landmark: The History and Impact of Altgeld Hall
    3:30 p.m. | Register
    The University of Illinois is embarking on a project to restore and renovate Altgeld Hall. We invite alumni to join us for a virtual event focused on the history of this iconic building and to learn more about the plans for its future.
  • LAS on Tap: Astronomy
    5:00 p.m. | Register

    In this interactive virtual happy hour, you'll join your fellow alumni in learning more about the secrets of the universe from faculty in the Department in Astronomy in an engaging, accessible, and entertaining virtual environment.
  • Virtual Chemistry Magic Show
    Watch now

    A long-running tradition, this family-friendly, free event is produced by teaching faculty and students and demonstrates chemistry principles in a fun and approachable way, featuring approximately twenty-five demonstrations that produce the "magic" of chemistry.
  • Hong Kong Identity and Migration Past, Present, and Future
    Watch now

    Hong Kong has throughout most of its history been a place full of "people from elsewhere," from China and from all over the world, often in transit to somewhere else. Dr. Gordon Mathews takes a look at emigration and migration in Hong Kong.
  • History of NetMath
    Watch now
    NetMath is the online self-paced distance learning program of the Department of Mathematics at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Learn about uniquely LAS units

With over 68 departments and units, the College of LAS spans areas from earth sciences to the cosmos, the beginnings of historical thought to today's language, huge data sets to single cells, and everything in between.

Read about a few of our units, each focused on one of our key areas: social & behavioral sciences, physical & mathematical sciences, and the humanities.

Cline Center for Advanced Social Research
At the Cline Center, scientists and humanists transform data into knowledge to better understand societal issues.
Illinois Neurobehavioral Assessment Laboratory
INBAL supports cutting-edge science in the assessment of behavior.
Women & Gender in Global Perspectives
This program studies international human development focused on gender equity.