Core Decorum: good places for study spaces

Sketch by Bella Fojut.

Let us take a moment to appreciate SB Hall. While not a gothic cathedral or a medieval castle (both of which I would prefer), it is a very attractive building for its kind. The clean smell and gleaming surfaces boast a newness that, while perhaps temporary, offers a welcome relief from our usual haunts.

You may at first be overwhelmed by its spacious halls or become lost on one of its exorbitant three floors, but this unfamiliar space is not unwelcoming. Rather, it boasts the most natural light on campus, the most comfortable chairs and the best vending machines.

However, in the awe of the moment and amid the natural struggle to claim a study space in the new building, let us not forget other memorable spots on this great campus where students have previously found solace during their times of trial.

The Art Village – I have always been surprised at how few people take advantage of our fortress among the trees. The halls are often empty, as are the classrooms with their beautiful, clean white boards. The glass windows welcome in the stray sunbeams piercing through the surrounding branches. There are tables outside to accommodate sunny days, but I prefer the Art Village in the rain. You can sit inside, surrounded by one of our own artist’s exhibits, watching the drops scatter down the glass. Especially now that we have the honor of hosting the Chagall exhibit, why not study within a few feet of modern masterpieces?

The Café after hours – Most nights, the café is silent, with Swing Club on Wednesdays as the notable exception. If you are in need of table space, good Internet and lots of outlets, this is a perfect place to plug in and zone out for some intensive, uninterrupted study time. The lights are softer at night and offer a nice alternative to the science building’s fluorescent bulbs. Its close vicinity to the Cap Bar is definitely a plus.

The Orphean Theater – “The what?” you may ask. Yes, that is a place on campus. If you walk down to the parking lot between Braniff and SB Hall, find a rose bush and look down, you will see a natural-looking incline leading to a rustic brick patio. This is our Irving equivalent of the traditional Greek theater. As the days become warmer and the fresh, clear air of the outdoors beckons, don’t forget this grassy slope, which is secluded enough for productivity but in excellent proximity to classes.

Haggerty Science Center balconies – So obvious but so underutilized. These two balconies remove the student from the constant temptation of conversation while allowing him to feel like a part of the community at large. The furniture is sometimes rickety, but the view is quite nice and the regular toll of the bell will prevent impromptu procrastination naps.

Let’s face it: we study a lot. Don’t limit yourself to the library or a classroom – you will inevitably spend enough time there! Take advantage of the nooks around campus and embrace a change of scenery; perhaps this change will help provide that new perspective your essay needs.


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