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The Hawks' Herald

The Student News Site of Roger Williams University

The Hawks' Herald

The Student News Site of Roger Williams University

The Hawks' Herald

Academic Buildings: What’s Your Favorite?

Elizabeth Van Liew
Global Heritage Hall, one of many academic buildings on campus.

Roger Williams University has many different academic buildings; each one sporting their own types of lounge spaces and environments. Some are in desperate need of remodeling while others are brand new. After exploring many of them, I would like to stress that you do not need to be a specific major to use any major affiliated buildings. Here I will give you the inside scoop to some of the buildings’ spaces that could be your new favorite study spot.

Over the past two weeks, I reached out to students via survey to see what everyone’s favorite building was in terms of lounge space, food access and environment. I was pleasantly surprised by the feedback I received and learned some interesting things about buildings that I’d never known before.

When asked about their favorite place to study and do homework, the library and GHH tied for first while Cummings School of Architecture came in second. Gabelli School of Business came in third.

When asked why, students shared that GHH has, “nice views,” a “cafe vibe,” and provides “study cubbies” on floor one and two. The “study cubbies” are cushioned chairs with walls around the sides with a small desk and an ottoman to rest your feet. When sitting in them, you get the feeling of being isolated while also being in a large space, you can still see the great views from the floor to ceiling windows and, “it has the perfect amount of background noise,” as one student mentioned. Another student talked about the private study rooms saying, “I just go in there and use the white boards!”

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Students who selected the library picked it for its quiet atmosphere and comfy seating. One person said, “The tutoring center is there just in case I have any questions,” which can be very helpful when working on a tough assignment. A student who chose Cummings said, “I can always get help from my peers and it’s a nice environment.” Another reported, “I am an architecture major and I have my own personal desk.” In my exploration of the Arch building, there are quite a few lounge spaces with very cushy couches and tables that are almost always empty for non-arch majors to take advantage of. One student picked Gabelli because of the library on the third floor, which I didn’t even know existed and might check out.

Next, I asked what building has the best environment. GHH came in first with 61%, the library in second with 19%, Cummings in third with 13% and a small number of students chose CAS, the Law School and Gabelli. Multiple students picked the arch building because they like the people there. Saying they’re “friendly” and they’ve made friends with their “desk-mates.” One student said it’s because, “everyone is always working hard.” It’s always nice to be in a space full of people who are focused on their work, it can motivate you to do the same. The one student who chose Gabelli said it’s “very homely and relaxing.”

After giving students the option to pick which building is the best to get food, either Starbucks in GHH, the Law School cafe or the cafe at CAS, I was surprised with how many people picked the Law School cafe. I have yet to go there since coming to Roger but, I hear it’s a Chipotle style place and everyone loves a good burrito. The Starbucks is nice because you can go to GHH to study and get a quick snack or a sandwich but the line can be quite long, especially in the morning.

Obviously GHH and the library won for comfiest lounge space, but there were interesting answers for some of the other buildings. One student said Gabelli because “the chairs are the best on campus,” and others agreed. Someone who chose the arch building mentioned the “couches are the comfiest to sit/lay on and even take naps on.” Someone chose CAS for the “comfy chairs on the first floor.” Even one student picked the Marine and Natural Sciences building for the “comfy couches in the foyer.”

Lastly I added a space for people to give any extra opinions. Multiple students mentioned how CAS is very rundown and in major need of remodeling. Someone else mentioned the inconsistency with the buildings.

“If one building is state-of-the-art then the next building shouldn’t look like it’s from the 80s.”

They also brought up the labs, “even just room to room, a state-of-the-art lab and then a lab held together with tape and glue.”

Since my major doesn’t involve labs, I had no idea it was like this. Someone else said CAS and the Marine and Natural Sciences building have “heating and cooling problems,” MNS also has “no natural lighting so it’s easy to fall asleep.” Someone else mentioned the cafe in CAS “isn’t really opened.” Other students commented on the need for more “study cubbies” since they’re almost always occupied. Someone else added “the engineering lab study space is so underrated but is so cool and comfortable,” which I have yet to explore.

After hearing all these answers, I’ve realized how good it is to get feedback from Roger students. While my survey didn’t reach even a quarter of the school, I was still able to get a lot of feedback from them and I can only imagine what kind of information we could get if surveys like this reached a wider audience. But with this information, next time you need to do homework, I suggest trying somewhere different than your normal spot, try something new. You’ll never know where your next favorite study spot could be.

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About the Contributors
Brianna Frissora
Brianna Frissora, Herald Photographer
Brianna Frissora is double majoring in journalism and creative writing. Her passions include photography, writing and reading. She hopes to publish a book someday and work for National Geographic.
Elizabeth Van Liew
Elizabeth Van Liew, Chief Designer
Lizzie is the Chief Designer of the Hawks' Herald. She is a Graphic Design major and plans to minor in Marketing. On campus she is also Secretary of the Design Club and works in the design lab as part of the Design Collective. For fun she enjoys reading stories, writing them and baking.

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