Alex Goodlive shares his favorite study spots for finals week. Photo of the Zen Den courtesy of Maddy Bartsche.
Alex Goodlive | Staff Writer
With another semester winding down, many students are probably eagerly waiting for time to speed up. They may be looking forward to summer vacation and trips to the beach, parties, beginning postgraduate life or just relaxing at home. But before you can enjoy your summer vacations, you’ll have to make it through the dreaded finals week.
The thought of taking exams or submitting final assignments may seem dreadful for many students. The question of where to prepare may make things feel even worse. Some roommates can make studying in the dorm impossible and the student neighborhood can be notoriously noisy. That’s why Flyer News decided to share a few of our favorite places, on or around campus, where you can quietly study, work on an assignment, or at least find, as George Costanza once said, “Serenity Now”!
The Zen Den
As a freshman, I quickly decided that the Zen Den was the coolest thing on Earth. Located on the fifth floor of Roesch Library, it looks like a shiny dome tent on both the inside and outside. Step in and seat yourself on a pillow and take a look up at the ceiling reflecting light. You may be tempted to bring a blanket with you as you study but be prepared to comply with any library employees. If you need a break from the Zen Den, head downstairs to the basement where you’ll see The Blend, serving Starbucks coffee six days a week.
The Blend isn’t your only option if you’re a coffee drinker. Walk over to St. Mary’s and you’ll arrive at this relatively new cafe. Rather than Starbucks, Heritage offers 3-19 coffees, from a company founded by Dayton grads, and espressos as well as hot chocolate and various teas. If you’re not really a coffee or tea kinda person, you can still order various baked goods from a local bakery called Boosalis, offering coffee cakes, scones, muffins, and more (my favorite is the cheese danish). As “a place to sip and a place to stay” there will often be a long line but once you get your order, simply find a seat and get some work done while music plays in the background.
Every now and then, I find myself taking a walk in this cemetery, right down Brown Street. I don’t take my phone with me; I prefer to clear my mind and be free of distractions for a while. As you enter the cemetery, you’ll see Wright Brothers Lot, remembering the inventors of the first airplane. There are probably thousands of graves. As I walk among some of them I wonder how long it has been since some of them were visited by a loved one. You’ll see the statue of Johnny Morehouse and his dog, who pulled the drowned child out of the Dayton canal. Another one that stands out to me is the massive statue of Adam Shantz sitting in his chair. Allow yourself some time here before you return to studying, maybe a little less stressed.
Another option is back on campus, right by Marycrest Hall. Here you can sit by the fountain, appreciating the beauty of the outdoors and the pine trees. Before you sit down to study, maybe pay your respects to those buried on the hill on the side. Then allow yourself to be lost in appreciation.
I hope these suggestions help you have a productive and tranquil.