Eph Advice: Best Places to Study/Hang Out


Though your room is your castle, the Williams campus offers an abundance of additional nooks & crannies to study & hang out, from the very-public to the very-private. You’ll find nice views, a variety of noise levels, and good size ranges. When you need to find an alternate to your room, you’ll find other locations that work well for you for either studying or hanging out (or both!).

“The new Sawyer is an absolutely wonderful study space through and through. I often camp out on the first-floor forum, where the green chairs and round, white tables form a soothing color scheme that doesn’t distract you from your essay. There’s easily-accessible hot and cold water, a vending machine, and lockers on every floor so you don’t have to haul your textbooks back and forth!” – Angela Chan ’19
“I have three go-to spots: upstairs Goodrich, Tunnel City, and the Clark Art Library in the Manton. The first two have all I need: coffee, friendly baristas, and semi-comfortable seating. The third is a gem I discovered halfway through the fall semester, and my only issue is that I didn’t discover it sooner. Though going to the Clark is quite a trek, I found the investment (in terms of the energy and time spent getting there) worth it. I knew I had to get a substantial amount of work done to justify the twenty-minute walk, and this mindset has helped me power through several papers and readings. Plus, my breaks consisted of looking at incredible art in the galleries. What more could I ask for?” – CJ Salapare III ’20
“I like to study anywhere that’s not my room – Sawyer, Eco, Schow… That way my room is a place where I can relax and not be thinking about having to get work done.” – Emily Harris ’19
“Tunnel is trendy but it can be pretty crowded and hard to get actual work done. If you’re looking to study in a more social environment and still feel accomplished, visiting lower level Paresky during off hours (usually between 2 and 5) is a great option. It’s amazingly quiet and if you ever want a break, social life is just a staircase away.” – Megan Siedman ’20
“The Zilkha Environmental Center is the perfect place to both hang out and study! There are comfy couches and tables, and the design of the building is just like a home, so if you ever get homesick, just spend some time there!” – Krushi Maisuria ’19
“I’m a big proponent of upstairs Paresky; it’s quieter than downstairs but you still get to see your friends walking through so it doesn’t get lonely and tiring when you’re studying. For anything you need quiet for, try Schow. It’s an underrated study space now that Sawyer is around, but it’s quiet and peaceful. And if you ever need to be motivated to keep working, go to Sawyer. It’s hard to procrastinate when everyone around you is hard at work.” – Erica Chang ’18


“One of my favorite places to hangout is in the entry common room. People are usually walking through, so it’s a great way to get to  know your entry mates better. A great place to study are the third and fourth floors of the library in the straw mat carrels. They are a great place to hunker down and write a paper or get some reading done with a beautiful view. When it’s warm out, be sure to do your readings out on the grass in the sun, you won’t regret it!” – Ayami Hatanaka ’18
“Finding a great place to study is all about knowing the ambience you want. If you like the energy of being in an open space with other people, you choose upstairs Goodrich or Paresky. If you want a quiet place with an inspiring view, you pick Sawyer or study areas on Thompson. If you like more of a classic library feel, you can go to Schow. Or if you like working in a classroom, consider Clark Hall. Any of the buildings on campus can be a great place to study. You just have to be willing to explore.” – Franky Barradale ’19
“I love studying in Goodrich. Upstairs there is a really nice, quiet ambience, and comfortable couches/booths. Plus, when I’m in need of a break, I can just walk downstairs and grab some coffee! It’s like Tunnel City, but you don’t need to walk all the way down to Spring Street.” – Daniel Brandes ’18
15333912362_b9fab87848_z“I found that Sawyer Library was the best place to study whenever I was feeling lazy orcas not in the mood to learn. The ambience, with everyone studying would always give me a reminder of what was at stake.” – Nana Ama Ofori Atta ’19
“I love having different study spots depending on how I am feeling. Sawyer is amazing, and can accommodate tons of different types of studying: group study sessions in the oak-and-marble Mabie Room, reading by the fireplace in the 24-hour study room, and getting some serious work done with a view on the top floor mezzanine. It’s great to have different spots, and don’t be afraid to switch it up and try upstairs Goodrich, the couches in the Zilkha Center, or a classroom in Hollander or Schapiro. While the weather is still nice and warm (and the trees are gorgeous) take advantage of the outdoors! The Williams campus is truly beautiful, and doing homework or hanging out with friends at a picnic table or under a tree is a great way to appreciate it. Try new places and see what works best for you.” – Janelle Gowgiel ’20
“I love going to Goodrich in the morning. If you show up a little after 9 there’s no line and you can sit and read or socialize while enjoying your breakfast. If you wait until after 9:30 though a swarm of people come in on their way to 10 o’clock class and you’ll waste time waiting in line. It’s a great place to go if you want to work alone but not in silence. The building is also open even if the coffee bar isn’t, it’s a great place to go in the afternoons.” – Erin Denham ’20

140630 Paresky 2

“I’m a big proponent of the Eco Cafe. There’s skyr and coffee, what more do you need?” – Erikka Olson ’19
“If you are like me and like to study in a low light setting, upstairs Paresky has a round room that is dark after sunset. There are lamps around you that allow you to control the amount of light that hits you but does not affect others. Plus, if you do not wish to leave the building for hardcore studying reasons, food is served in Paresky four times a day. It’s great!” – Mauro Renteria ’19
“I have to change the spots I work in pretty frequently so I don’t get too comfortable in one spot (and as a result slack off). The one spot I can use extensively is the reading room in Stetson. The antique feel of the room really makes me comfortable in a way that makes me feel academic, but also a part of some history, so it compels me to do my work.” – Dorothy Gaby ’18


“When I came here, I thought I would be able to study in my room. Turns out, that it is really difficult to study in your room when you want to make new friends freshman year. Fortunately, there are a lot of interesting places to study in! There are times that I want to be surrounded by people to study so I go to the bean bags in third floor Sawyer or to upstairs Paresky. But then there are times when I want to be by myself so I go to one of the big classrooms in Hollander or sit near the compact shelving in Schow Library. When it is really nice outside, however, I like to sit at the tables in front of Science Quad or by the Dennett entrance. There are so many places to study in and it is all up to you to discover your personal study space!” – Jessica Munoz ’19
“On nice, sunny, and warm days, take advantage of the soft Science Quad lawn. Of course, it often is not like that so spending time at the tables inside science quad (the one in the corner of Morley is particular nice), inside Dodd on the booths, or even the ’62 Center. There are so many comforting and quiet places hidden all around campus.” – Alexia Barandiaran ’19


“I enjoy my cozy room when I feel like some time alone and the library is flooded with people. I appreciate upstairs Paresky when I’m feeling energetic and craving for some open space to converse. During finals, Schow library rooms and Sawyer library OIT room are my top choices to discuss problems and review with friends. The best place to study for me always varies depending on my mood at the moment.” – Ziaoyong Cui ’20
“I’m a huge fan of studying with a view. There are some great spaces in the top floors of both Hollander and Schapiro with floor to ceiling windows that look out over the purple mountains. Sometimes I get so distracted by the view that I’m not that efficient, but it’s a nice way to keep calm and remember there’s more in life than the math problem set I’m flipping out over. Hanging out in the ’82 Grill on a Saturday night is bound to leave you with some great stories and unforgettable experiences. The terrace outside the Zilkha Center is really nice to sit and have long chats with friends or do some reading on a nice day.” – Miranda Weinland ’19
“If you need to get some reading done before class, grab breakfast in Goodrich and do it there! However, if you REALLY need to focus you should camp out in the quiet room in upstairs Paresky, it’s almost impossible not to get work done in that room.” – Stephanie Boulger ’18