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  • Top of box for the game Operation

    Curiosities: Fun and Games

    Did you know that the game Operation started as a class project for a sophomore at U of I? John Spinello promptly sold it to a company for $500 and the promise of a job after he graduated. He got the money, but the job never happened.

  • Dennis Craig sits at the ornately carved granite bench north of the Architecture Building.

    Campus Historic Preservation Officer Dennis Craig answers the Proust Questionnaire

    'We have a lot of interesting architecture with interesting stories,' Craig says. 'I think my favorite part is the digging and looking for things to continue to tell the story of the campus.'

  • atmospheric scientists pose with their 'Doppler on Wheels' truck

    Inside Nature's Fury

    They had reached the eye of the storm. Above them, the sky was open and blue and clear and quiet. Around them, the angry clouds formed angled walls... Below them, the waves of the ocean grew to huge swells - a frenzy of whitecaps and sea spray.

  • Mateo Sebastian, the Q’anjob’al-language engagement liaison

    Found in Translation

    How the University of Illinois and the local Q’anjob’al-speaking Mayan community are discovering ways to communicate.

  • Alumnus Mort Nathan

    Mort Nathan (MEDIA '75), executive writer and producer of The Golden Girls, was kind enough to answer a fangirl's questions about the iconic show.

  • inside a wildfire in a wooded area with groundcoverings and trees burning. No photo credit given.

    Visiting a burn zone with undergrad Andy Sima

    Andy Sima (LAS '21) takes us to a burn zone in New Mexico, scarred land created by the 2019 Ute Park Wildfire.

  • Jessica Steinrock served as the intimacy director in a production 'Firefly Love', produced by Something Marvelous and directed by Rinska Carrasco-Prestinary. Víctor Maraña and Steph Vonedll are pictured kissing.

    Choreographing an illusion of intimacy, passion on stage

    Jessica Steinrock and Zev Steinrock help actors on stage and screen perform authentically, safely, and with consent.

  • Land of Wonderous Cold

    In his newest book of environmental history, English professor Gillen D’Arcy Wood explores the race to Antarctica, the continent’s influence on climate change, and. . . Alice in Wonderland.

  • Illini Service Dogs volunteer wearing "respect the vest" t-shirt carries a puppy

    In Training: Illini Service Dogs

    Founded by Bridget Evans (AHS '13), Illini Service Dogs is one of campus' most beloved student groups.

  • graphic - Delivering the vote: how the civil war shaped mail-in voting today

    Delivering the vote

    How the Civil War shaped mail-in voting today: It was complicated then, and it's complicated now.

  • A wayward mirror catches University of Illinois photographer Fred Zwicky at work covering student move-in. Photo by Fred, of course.

    Flipping the Focus: Campus photographer Fred Zwicky

    A photographer’s magical power is to freeze time. 'As life passes us by in a blur, I think the still image gives us just enough time to process that individual moment in isolation. An effective photograph coalesces how that scene makes us feel...'

  • Innovation accelerated

    How Grainger engineers—and medical professionals, manufacturing experts, animal scientists, and designers from around Champaign-Urbana—brought a COVID-stricken world an emergency ventilator in less than two weeks.

  • Water tower at Philo, Illinois, declares it 'the center of the universe'

    Mosaic and margaritas at the Center of the Universe

    Colleen Bushell remembers when she, Marc Andreessen, and Eric Bina began to grasp the enormity of their creation of Mosaic (world's first graphical web browser) while sipping on a cocktail in Philo, Illinois.

  • Professor Nadya Mason laughing. Photo by Andrew Bird

    Sharing the beauty and wonder of physics

    Her work in experimental physics may sound out of reach for many of us, but it is exactly that notion that Nadya Mason works hard to dispel.

  • Zach Sharpe stands beside a 'Beatlemania'-themed pinball machine

    Pinball Wizard

    Gies Business alum Zach Sharpe is one of pinball’s most celebrated players. He now lends his expertise to one of the world’s largest pinball manufacturers in the world, Chicago-based Stern Pinball.

  • Fudog sculptures at the U of I's Allerton Park

    Robert Allerton: A beautiful legacy

    Philanthropist Robert Allerton traveled the world, immersing himself in the art of different cultures. His generous spirit enriched Chicago’s Art Institute as well as Illinois’ Allerton Park & Retreat Center.

  • Roger Ebert's signature at the bottom of a typed letter

    A Lifetime in Letters: Ebert's correspondence with his Illinois mentor

    Once Roger Ebert graduated from Illinois, the letters began to flow. His correspondence with his mentor, Professor Dan Curley, chronicle inside jokes, career frustrations, and the shared sensibilities of two writers.

  • two young men look at pepper plants in an urban, raised-bed garden plot

    Farming in the Windy City

    From rooftops to abandoned lots, urban gardening in Chicago is thriving.

  • Chicago's Superdawg family is an Illini family

    Steffie Drucker, granddaughter of Superdawg's founders, reflects on the family legacy.

  • Claudia Cassidy publicity photo

    The power of her pen: Chicago Tribune theater critic Claudia Cassidy

    She was called a queen. She was called a viper. Whichever side you were on, Claudia Cassidy's power in Chicago was indisputable.

  • Three hidden spots on campus where glass takes center stage

    Windows in the Library's Reading Room represent printers whose early forays into book publishing helped expand the reach of knowledge. Our Rare Book Library holds copies of early works printed by each printers’ mark represented.


  • a plate of apple pandowdy in Bevier Cafe

    Recreating Apple Pandowdy

    We dusted off an old recipe found in the university library and asked the Bevier Café to bring it back to life.

  • students

    Lessons in leisure

    Every spring, a class of Illini embark on a tour filled with more than twenty excursions in less than two weeks’ time.

  • Illustration of youth and teacher in guarded classroom. Illustration by Katie Miller

    Science on the inside

    How neuroscience graduate students are bringing science education to youth behind bars.

  • sepia-toned image of a decades-younger Gene Robinson wearing full beekeeping regalia

    Gene and the honey bee

    Gene Robinson, who now directs the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology, got his start with the honey bee well before 'genomics' existed as a field.

  • player piano music roll for 'Pennies From Heaven' by Irviing Berlin

    Illinois Curiosities: Audio

    Illinois' curiosities are displayed in museums and glass cabinets, tucked safely in boxes and drawers This audio edition of curiosities explores not only what we can see but also what we can hear.

  • Title slide graphic. Line drawings of campustown scenes

    New from Storied!

    Green Street: Visualizing 100 years as "the heart of campustown"

  • dramatic green colors of a moth sitting on a fern

    Curious Encounters with the Natural World

    'We are not photographic trophy hunters, seeking to make each and every image that perfect portrait, but biologists who seek to capture the little windows of time that show nature as it is.'

  • Humboldt penguin

    Saving the penguins of Peru

    By combining fieldwork in Peru with their expertise caring for Humboldt penguins at the Brookfield Zoo, two Illinois grads are among those hoping to turn the tide for these endangered animals.

  • the skyscrapers formerly known as Sears Tower and the John Hancock building

    Alumnus Fazlur Khan: Raising the Skyline

    Fazlur Khan revolutionized city skylines with his innovative engineering—starting in Chicago. To this day, most skyscrapers built after the 1960s employ Fazlur’s structural techniques