PhD Program

Student Life

In a city known for its architecture, the Charles M. Harper Center fits right in. Designed by world-renowned architect Rafael Viñoly, Chicago Booth's Hyde Park campus is one of the most sophisticated business schools ever built. With students, faculty, and staff all under one glass roof, the building helps foster a vibrant and tightly-knit community. What will you find at Harper Center?

  • 11 classrooms with state-of-the-art technology
  • 31 group study rooms with plasma screens that you can connect to your computer
  • A 3,500-square-foot student lounge with pool tables and a large-screen television
  • Four outdoor terraces for relaxing
  • One gourmet cafe with everything from sushi to sandwiches
  • Over 50 workstations, five printers, a scanner, and two Bloomberg terminals in the computer lab
  • A business center with services for copying and print, FedEx, and other overnight delivery, and US mail, as well as poster and banner production
  • A six-story atrium where people meet to study or chat between classes


Chicago Booth and the University of Chicago are located in historic Hyde Park. First settled in the 1850s, the area is filled with tree-lined streets, cozy restaurants, eclectic shops, and some of the city’s best-loved bookstores. The beach and the Museum of Science and Industry are just blocks away, and downtown Chicago is a quick commute by car or public transit. President Obama’s house is in Hyde Park and one of Frank Lloyd Wright’s masterpieces – Robie House – is across the street from Harper Center. Take a photo tour of Harper Center, the campus, and other city of Chicago attractions.  

The University of Chicago itself offers a full range of recreational facilities and social activities to take advantage of, including:

  • Gerald Ratner Athletics Center, a $51 million state-of-the-art athletics facility, with a competition gymnasium, a multilevel fitness facility, an Olympic-sized swimming pool, a multipurpose dance studio and meeting room space
  • Oriental Institute, an internationally-renowned archaeology museum, which houses artifacts from the ancient Near East, and includes a monumental statue of King Tut
  • Doc films, the oldest student-run film society in the country, which screens a different film every night of the week, including some sneak peeks attended by the actors, directors, and producers
  • An Olympic-sized skating rink located on the Midway Plaisance, the old fairgrounds for the 1892 Columbian World's Exposition
  • Court Theater, "A shining example of what American theater can and should hope to be,” according to the Wall Street Journal, where you can view the best in classic theater
  • Reynolds Club, the student center, where you can get a haircut; see a student play; hang out at Hallowed Grounds, the coffee shop; or get a $1 milkshake on Wednesdays


What comes to mind when you think of Chicago? The Blues. Matisse, Degas, and Renoir. Sailboats and skyscrapers. The marathon. Deep dish pizza. Steppenwolf's in-your-face theater. The largest Polish population outside of Warsaw. Die-hard Cubs fans. Hogbutcher to the world. Lollapalooza. Millennium Park. We hope you'll agree with Frank Sinatra and say Chicago is "my kind of town." Here are some fun facts about Chicago.

  • More than 77 geographic communities make up this “City of Neighborhoods.”
  • Second only to New York, Chicago has more than 30 Fortune 500 companies and nearly 100 corporate headquarters.
  • It has snowed in September, been 90 degrees in March, and we’ve even had a day where the high and low differed by more than 65 degrees.
  • The city has 31 miles of harbors, bike paths, and beaches that provide a playground to swim, sail, skate, walk, or play volleyball.  
  • Chicago is one of only three cities in the country to have six professional teams – the Bears, Blackhawks, Bulls, Chicago Fire, Cubs, and White Sox.
  • Among the nationally-and internationally-known cultural institutions that make their home here are the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Lyric Opera, the Goodman Theater, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Joffrey Ballet, Second City, and Hubbard Street Dance.
  • Chicago’s parks and plazas display sculptures by Chagall, Picasso, Calder, DuBufett, Miro, and Anish Kapoor’s Cloud Gate.


Chicago is truly affordable for a city of its size and scope. For information on events, nightlife, restaurants, music, theater, and more, check out these websites: