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Sarah Ryan

Sarah Ryan

Director, Kohl’s | Property Development Law | Class of 1993

A word to the wise from Sarah Ryan to future UI students:

Keep your books close by at all times. It's a lesson Kohl's director of property development law learned the hard way in the early '90s.

"I have many fond memories of the University of Illinois — playing piano in the basement of the Six Pack dorms,  enjoying the swimming pool at IMPE, partaking in whatever drink special at the bars, taking the steps up Altgeld Hall to speak with the head of the math department," Ryan says.

"But the memory that really sticks with me occurred on a Sunday afternoon in late April of my senior year. 

"I was studying in a lower classroom in Altgeld Hall for the CPA exam. I left to get something to eat and when I got back, the building was locked. I didn’t know they locked the building but found out it was locked at 5 p.m. on Sundays. 

"I was able to look in a window into the classroom and see my books. They were so close but I couldn’t get them.

"I was panicked since the CPA exam was in early May. I didn’t think I could afford to not have my books for the remainder of the weekend and possibly lose them if I left them. I thought about different ways I could get in the building. 

"I was lucky to find a policeman who was able to open the doors for me. He escorted me to the classroom and I grabbed my books with great relief. 

"I passed the exam."