College is Hard, But Your Chair Doesn’t Have to Be: Comfortable Study Spots

By Aine O’Connor, Neighborhood Coordinator

Are you and your friends searching for new study spaces? Getting tired of your desk, Science Center study rooms, and library tables? As midterms and finals creep closer, where will you go if (gasp) your favorite spot gets taken? Here are ten study spots to shake up your routine and find new motivation. Happy homeworking!

On Campus

Cozy Chairs in Lubbers:

If you just want to curl up and read a good book for your English class, Lubbers is the way to go. Each floor has at least four super cozy chairs to work on. Pro tip: On the weekends, you can oftentimes drag two chairs together to make a megacouch. Just be careful not to fall asleep!

Phelps Dining:

Many freshmen think that going to lunch or dinner alone is embarrassing or lonely, but it can sometimes be the best time to study! Go over to the fireplace side and grab a small table or a booth (some even have outlets close by). If you look around, I promise you won’t be the only one!

Rare Books Room at Van Wylen:

Do you want to feel like you’re actually at Hogwarts, even when you’re doing Physics II? Head down to the Rare Books Room in the basement of Van Wylen Library. There are hundreds of old hymnals, books in Dutch, and interesting stories to browse when you get bored.

Martha Miller Rotundas:

These spaces are open to you all day! The rotundas offer great views of downtown Holland and have the best beanbags on campus. Go to the first floor for a meeting or the second floor for some quiet study time.

Res Hall Lounges/Hallways:

People automatically think of the study rooms as the place to go, but sometimes your res hall’s lounge can be perfect. In Van Vleck, where I used to live, we used our hallways! Chat while you work, meet up to write together, or escape your roommate’s snoring at 2 AM by going to a new place.

Your RA’s room:

RAs love to see their residents! If our doors are open, feel free to stop by, catch up, and work on stuff. Another pro tip: I can promise that your RA is REALLY smart. It might not be a bad idea to ask them for help if you get stuck. They may also be a great pair of eyes on a paper or assignment! This is the view from my RA room last year.

Off Campus

Herrick District Library:

Herrick is just across from Centennial Park and is a fantastic resource for students. There are quiet reading rooms, rentable spaces, and awesome cozy chairs in the young adult section. Most importantly, almost no students think to go there during finals week!

Kollen Park:

Kollen Park has beautiful views of Lake Macatawa and is within walking distance of campus. If you go in April or May, there’s a chance you’ll see some tulips along your route!

Windmill Island:

During the fall and winter months, Windmill Island is often open for free, especially in the evenings. It is a great place to work on a book or writing project. Need to write a poem? Head to Windmill Island- you’ll find something worth writing about.

Crane’s in the City:

If LJ’s or Ferris gets too crowded, head downtown another block and go to Crane’s in the City (next to Karla’s Place). They have great cider, donuts, and even some apple pie if you’re lucky. They also have large tables to spread out at and a homey, autumn feel.

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