Ann Phan Ngọc Quới / Ann Ngoc-Quoi Phan
Crossroads International Student Center

5621 S. Blackstone Ave., Chicago, IL

This was the location of the office of Fr. Emmanuel Jacques and of the Hội Sinh Viên Công Giáo Việt Nam tại Mỹ / Vietnamese Catholic Student Association in America which published Chuông Việt / The Bell of Viet-Nam. Quoi was a writer and editor of the magazine during her studies at St. Xavier College and Loyola University of Chicago (ca. 1951-56).

Historical Note


The Crossroads International Student Center, also known simply as "Crossroads," was a private, non-profit organization located in Chicago's Hyde Park neighborhood. Founded in 1951 by members of the Inter-Cultural Association, Crossroads was first oriented towards international service and activities for Christian (particularly Roman Catholic) students at the University of Chicago, but evolved to become "an international student center dedicated to intercultural understanding and to students of all ethnic, religious and cultural backgrounds." Activities at the center included English and foreign language classes, lectures, and social events. The center's house at 5621 South Blackstone Avenue offered student lounges, a library, and study space.

Crossroads was governed by community members who acted in an advisory capacity, and assisted with the administration of the center. While Crossroads was independent of the University of Chicago, it maintained ties to the university's International House and Office of International Affairs.

In 1995, the Board of Directors voted to close Crossroads due to a decline in funding to support the center's operations.


By 1951, the house had become the Crossroads Student Center. Crossroads was a program of the Catholic Lay Auxilliary of Missions, specifically employing American and European social workers “to convey the meaning and hope of American democracy thru the plain and simple medium of kindness.” Offering language classes, cultural enrichment, student groups, and informal support of various kinds, this little house served thousands of foreign college students each year, of all races and religions. It was bursting at the seams, and plans were announced in 1961 to build a new building. Nothing seems to have come from the plan, but Crossroads soldiered on in this house through at least 1972. After that, I can’t figure out what happened, or how the home came back into use as a private residence. One can only imagine the fascinating and important people who passed through that distinctive recessed porch over the years.
(To see how the place looks like today as a private home at:

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updated 14 May 2012