Itching to get out of your messy room?
It may not seem like it yet, but it will soon soon be time to shed jackets and sweatshirts for T-shirts. With warm rays on the way, it may be tempting to throw work out the window in lieu of a day playing frisbee on the Cut.
But for those without time to relax, the warm weather is not off limits. There is no reason to tackle work inside when there are so many outdoor locations on campus to sit back, relax, and get down to work.
Following are some of the best places to work with the benefit of fresh breezes. Many of these locations are secluded and immune to the noise of campus, making them the perfect places to boost productivity.
The Hobbit Hole
Located just outside the main entrance to Baker Hall, this study spot on the Mall is not visible to the average passerby. A work area carved out of a hill, this space is likened by many students to Bilbo Baggins’s house from J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit, and is the perfect spot to hide away in when work begins to pile up.
Not only are there a number of spacious benches to spread papers out upon, but there are outlets to juice up devices when their battery power runs low. Also, the hubbub from the Cut seems to fade away after descending into the carved out area. Noise from WRCT’s speakers and students promoting their organizations’ causes outside Doherty Hall are not an issue here. The sun shines pretty brightly on the benches, but it’s possible to pick up work and move to the shade of a nearby tree when the heat becomes unbearable.
Tepper School Courtyard
Want a space to work outside, but need the comfort of mortar and bricks to focus? The courtyard inside the Tepper School of Business may be the perfect place. This open area at the center of the building is equipped with a number of tables and outlets, as well as access to the open sky. At night, there are lamps, although turning them on can be confusing. There’s always back-up light streaming through the windows of the building, though, which makes this space a feasible place to work into the early hours of the next morning, if needed. Plus the courtyard is closed off to the bustle inside the building during the day, so noise is not a problem.
If it rains, there is a spacious room right next to the courtyard with doors that open out onto it. Prop them open to escape the water, but still get that feeling of being outside.
Beneath the Pausch Bridge
The Randy Pausch Bridge is one of the most well-known and well-traveled places on campus. At night its rainbow lights at make it hard to miss, and the penguins on its walls bring a sense of intrigue to the structure.
But what is less well-known about the bridge is the great shaded study space it provides below. There is a nice patch of grass just below the bridge equipped with a single bench. Few travelers pass through this way, so noise is not a problem. While there are no outlets to charge devices, the area below the bridge offers a nice reading area. Print out papers and skim away.
On either side of the tennis courts are two perfect places to study. Between Margaret Morrison Hall and the courts is an area that was just refurbished with chairs to lounge in and watch the matches... or do work. This area provides a zen atmosphere that could make you feel like you’re in Florida.
On the other side of the courts is a nice grassy hill that everyone on campus knows about. The hill is tiered, meaning there are various flat elevation points on it to spread out work.
The only downside to these locations is the noise that they attract. At the center of campus, these places are almost never completely quiet due to the number of people who pass by them at all times of the day. Nevertheless, if noise is not a hindrance, these locations are some of the most easily accessible, and both get strong Wi-Fi signals.
Gesling Stadium Bleachers
The football stadium’s bleachers don’t only have to serve spectators on the weekends. They can also serve students hoping to get in a few extra hours of studying. The bleachers are essentially flat slabs that span a large portion of the East Campus Garage, giving students plenty of real estate to use. They can be quiet if not too many people are on the field and traffic isn’t too heavy on Forbes Avenue on the opposite side of the garage.
If some cover is preferable, Tartans Pavilion across the way offers a view of the stadium and an open atmosphere to the outside on days when it is nice. Access to Wi-Fi is questionable on the bleachers, but easily attainable at Tartans Pavilion.