As the steady tide of finals comes in, students seek refuge in their favorite nooks and hideaways to study. Some prefer open areas and public places while others withdraw to hidden cubbyholes with locations guarded by a select few lest they become overcrowded.
James Swak, a junior philosophy major, usually studies in the library but as an early riser, said he wishes they opened earlier each day.
Last Tuesday, Swak sat in a narrow row of comfy chairs on the second floor of Luther Bonney overlooking the entrance to the computer lab. “I come over here sometimes instead of the library because it’s closer to classes,” said Swak.
Many students choose the chairs on the north side of the Glickman Library for its panoramic views of Back Bay and shelf to put their feet up.
Several programs on campus have their own hidden student lounges. The MBA lounge is protected by an inconspicuous, unlabeled door tucked between two vending machines on the second floor of Luther Bonney. The door only opens via a digital keycard swipe. MBA students must trek down to the basement of Payson Smith every single term to reactivate the card, although the lounge has its perks such as a free book exchange, couches, tables and ample lighting and outlets.
First year MBA student Ernest Orodi said he sometimes studies to the point of exhaustion in the MBA lounge before dozing off on one of the couches because the room is so seldom used.
“I like to study in the library on the Gorham campus, in the chairs in the back of the room. They are nice and comfortable and you can hook up your laptop there. It’s great,” said Kelsey Mungaard, a freshman nursing major. Mungaard said while she prefers the Gorham library for personal studying, she comes to the Luther Bonney computer lab to work on group projects where students can talk in low voices.
Not every student prefers the solace of a secret room or the seventh floor of the library. One USM student who wished to remain anonymous said that he studies best in local bars, preferring the louder public environment to a quiet academic nook.
As tulips and daffodils spring up on the campus landscape, many students crack the books outside on the grass at Portland and Gorham. Often these outdoor academics can access the wireless signal from nearby buildings and take phone calls without disturbing anyone nearby.
As people buckle down and study for finals, distractions crop up from unexpected areas. Sophomore marketing major Corey Gilmore studies with a new iPad in the Glickman Library and Luther Bonney. “I’m looking forward to the day when everyone has an iPad so that I don’t get so many questions when I’m studying. People come up and want to know if it has a camera, can it play videos; everyone is really curious,” said Gilmore.
He said he doesn’t mind answering the constant barrage of questions because he studies society’s adaptation of technology but wishes that the iPad could print documents. Currently the device must be synched with a laptop or other computer in order to print.