Hannah Steyn, Assistant News Editor
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic limiting the amounts of students allowed in a given space, Utica College has made it possible for students to reserve academic classrooms as study spaces.
These newly available study spaces are located in Hubbard Hall, Thurston Hall and the Library. Hubbard 113, Hubbard 217, Thurston T207 and Library L100 are all now available for student reservations.
Reservations can be made here, and students simply need to click on the room they would like to book. This will take them to a timetable, where they can select as many half-hour slots as they need.
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Many students, both on and off-campus, regularly make use of study spaces offered by the college. Junior Caroline Castriotta is one such non-residential student.
“I find it much easier to focus when I’m not in my own room or my house,” Castriotta said. “The act of going to campus specifically to study means it’s far more likely that I actually get work done because I want to get through the work so I can get home.”
Senior Elma Selimovic has a similar thought process and often goes to campus to study.
“I find I work best when I’m at school because there are fewer distractions and you’re in the environment to learn and focus,” Selimovic said. “When other people around you are working, it’s easy to want to work.”
Selimovic said opening up study rooms that students can reserve is an important step because it’s a great way to ensure that students have the option to get their own space where they can completely focus on their work.
Lisa Rogers, Coordinator of Learning Commons Services, said it’s terrific that students have access to additional study spaces that are reservable.
“Many students, both residential and commuter, find it difficult to sequence guaranteed access to the right kind of space as they move throughout their day,” Rogers said. “Sometimes the timing is too tight to get from a classroom to their dorm room or apartment in time for the next class or meeting which is online.”
Rogers said that while the library has over 200 seats that are reservable through Navigate, the library’s situation might not fit the needs of all students.
“Our group seating for more than two people together is limited, people do need to use headphones when doing virtual sessions and reservations are required,” Rogers said. “However, we are open over 100 hours per week, many of our seats have computers, reservations are easy to make and we do try to accommodate specific needs when asked.”
Despite being happy with the newly available study spaces, Selimovic still expressed a desire for more variety in study spaces.
“I would love it if UC supplied some outdoor study places, like picnic tables and the like,” Selimovic said. “That way students can take advantage of the good weather that we’ll be getting.”
Castriotta mirrored the sentiment, saying that outdoor study spaces with umbrellas are something she would take advantage of if she could.
“I’m happy that UC is providing us with more study spaces,” Castriotta said. “But adding some outdoor spaces to study or just hang out would be amazing when it’s a bit warmer.”