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Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Avenue recommendations: Gainesville's best study spots

Get into the groove of the new semester with the Avenue’s favorite on- and off-campus places to hit the books.

<p>The Avenue staff&#x27;s favorite locations to get to work, including Newell Hall, Wyatt&#x27;s Coffee, Library West and The Hub. </p>

The Avenue staff's favorite locations to get to work, including Newell Hall, Wyatt's Coffee, Library West and The Hub.

The first week of the Fall semester has come to a close, and it’s time to start settling into a study routine. Starting at your desk is a good first step, but Gainesville has so much more to offer.

If you’re ready to ditch the dorm and explore outside, consider some of the Avenue’s favorite on- and off-campus study spots. 

Heather Bushman: 

Wyatt’s Coffee

It’s one of Gainesville’s most popular places, so expect a sizable crowd. But if you’re lucky and manage to snag a seat (and a parking spot), you can spend a few hours hitting the books in this cozy coffee shop. 

Wyatt's Coffee, located at 202 SE Second Ave, is at the heart of downtown Gainesville. Though it just opened in 2018, the coffee shop has quickly become a local favorite, often full of students working or socializing. With the vibrant atmosphere, Wyatt’s is the perfect college town congregation spot: Long windows let in plenty of light, and an array of plants and knick-knacks aligned on wooden shelves and a bright marquee sign displaying the store’s name accent bold blue walls.  

Though the downtown location can be a bit of a hike for on-campus students, the trip is worth it. The environment in Wyatt’s a steady hum of energy, perfect for studying. As patrons shuffle in and out and casual conversations take place, there’s just the right amount of background noise to get lost in your work. Plus, if you’re famished, the location actually works in your favor — Relish, V Pizza and other easy dining options are just across the street if you’re looking for a quick bite after your study session

Wyatt’s is open every day from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Stop in to try the signature lattes and teas, or grab a custom t-shirt or sticker if you’re already a dedicated fan. The drinks, decor and expertly curated playlists are the perfect combination for guaranteed productivity.

Luigi Bencosme:

Newell Hall

This is one of UF’s most modern studying halls to date. While the building itself is quite old, in fact one of the University’s oldest, it was heavily renovated in 2017 and now serves as one of the school’s primal technological hubs on campus. 

The building inside is massive as it consists of 4 separate floors. Another perk to Newell hall is the variety of seating options that they have. You can select anything from a massive conference table with a smart TV that can mirror your computer screen, or you can select to sit in a small cubicle-style desk and chair which block you off from the rest of the world. The possibilities are endless at Newell. There are also white boards, couches, stools, computers, and even printers. 

The location of the hall is perfect itself too. Au Bon Pain, the small bakery and coffee shop,  is located inside the actual building and it's right across the street from The Hub, which has both Starbucks and Chick-Fil-A. 

One of the few drawbacks of Newell include its massive popularity, which makes it quite hard to find anywhere to sit, especially if you are with a group of friends. This can be combated, however, with their online capacity tracker, which provides the most up-to-date information on how busy the hall is at any given moment.

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The Hub

Although this may sound ridiculous to some, the Hub is one of the best places to study while on campus. Let’s address the first issue that many find with this idea: yes, it's extremely busy. In fact, it's one of the busiest locations on campus. The Hub is surrounded by Newell Hall, Turlington Hall, Pugh Hall, Marston Library, the infirmary, the gym and more. That's not even mentioning the fact that the Hub is also one of the busiest bus stops on all of campus — or the fact that there is both a Starbucks, Chick-Fil-A, and a P.O.D. Market inside the building. While this may sound extremely hectic to some, a large portion of people actually prefer this busy environment rather than a quiet one.

Not only is it close to various classes, halls, bus stops and eating locations, but the Hub has various seating options as to where to study. As opposed to a lot of other study spots on campus, and even the libraries, you can openly eat, talk, and drink whatever you want while studying. It serves as both a hangout location and studying spot, depending on what you are in the mood for. 

Even though this may sound a bit sad, the Hub also acts as an amazing spot for when you want to fill the void of not having in-person classes. You can just plug in your airpods, turn on your lecture, and almost feel like you’re actually in class with the amount of people surrounding you. Well, it at least feels less lonely than sitting in a cold dorm room. 

Weimer Hall

As most students of the College of Journalism and Communications (CJC) know, Weimer Hall is everyone’s go-to spot for studying. Weimer Hall has been a staple of the CJC since its inspection and it is huge. It has computer labs, classrooms, studios, a news center, common areas and much more. Two sections within the hall that people are most gravitated towards is the AHA! Lab and The Agency. These are both very collaborative spaces with a modern flare that makes most students feel comfortable to work both alone and in groups. 

The biggest perk of Weimer, however, is its hours. While different sections only allow you to enter after certain hours with an access card swipe, most of Weimer is open 24 hours a day — especially the third floor common area, which is open to all students.

Therefore, in the situation that you want to pull an all-nighter or want to cram all night before a test, without bothering your roommate, Weimer is the place for you!

Anushka Dakshit:

Library West

Chances are you’ll walk into Library West and feel like it’s packed with people; don’t walk out the door. With three floors and the capacity to seat up to 1,400 people, you’re sure to find a cozy corner if you let yourself explore far enough. Packed with wooden desks and bookshelves stacked to the brim with ancient textbooks, this location is bound to bring out the light academia in you. 

If you’re an avid people watcher like me, Lib West is perfect. Catch yourself over hearing bits of pieces of whispering conversations from a struggling study group or a friend group falling apart at the seams. 

Need a study break? If the answer’s no, you’re not studying right. But don’t fret, there’s a Starbucks in the lobby and Krishna lunch is just a couple steps away. 

At Library West, anything is possible if you just look hard enough. From productive late night study sessions to meet cutes with friends, you can find yourself making beautiful memories without sacrificing the grades. 

Veronica Nocera:

Smathers Library

Also known as Library East, Smathers Library fulfills all of your dark academia desires. The oldest library on UF campus, the space hosts four floors of collections and seating — and if you’re looking for a quiet place to study with just a little more grandeur than your typical library or common area, Smathers is the place to be. 

Various reading rooms throughout the building are available for students, including the Map & Image Library on the first floor and the Latin American and Caribbean Collection on the third floor. The most representative of Smathers’ age and style, however, is the Grand Reading Room located on the second floor. Adorned with large, sunlit arched windows, suspended ceiling lights and rows of tables, the space provides the perfect academic environment to get you through the final stretch. 

If you’ve wrapped up your work and need to refuel, Smathers is also located on the corner of Plaza of the Americas — offering students easy access to a range of dining options. During the weekdays, Krishna Lunch is available, and if you’d rather eat off-campus, Chipotle is a short walk away. It’s proximity to Library West also means a coffee run is at your fingertips. 

So if a quiet, scenic spot is more your style, pack up your readings and head over to Smathers Library. 

Kristine Villarroel:

Plaza of the Americas

If you enjoy being outside and don’t mind the presence of other people, sitting in Plaza during the afternoon or the early morning creates a great studying experience. When the weather allows, spending the day studying under the trees can make working on even the toughest assignments an enjoyable experience. 

The resources around Plaza make it extremely easy to spend the entire day studying there while also having changes of scenery when needed. With a Starbucks, Krishna Lunch, Library West and Smathers all within seconds of the Plaza, almost every student need can be satiated without going somewhere else. 

A pro tip would be either taking a break from studying or escaping to the nearby libraries between noon and 1 p.m. as hundreds of people come to enjoy Krishna Lunch. 

Prepare to see almost every person you know. After all, Plaza of the Americas is on the busier side of campus spots. Few things top the experience of running into friends on Plaza and spontaneously having a group study session. 

If you can focus without needing a quiet space, grab a towel or a blanket, put on your headphones and go enjoy the beautiful nature that Gainesville has to offer. 

Paul Lombardo:

Reitz Student Union

If you have yet to visit the Reitz Student Union, you’re missing out on a top-tier campus location. Self-described as “a space for all students to gather, collaborate and exchange ideas” and as a “thriving environment for student activity and a place for self-discovery,” it's no surprise that the Reitz Union is a popular locale among UF students.

Depending on the setting in which you like to study, the Reitz offers a variety of places to sit down, whip out your laptop, and get to work. If you’re a natural extrovert and being around other people gives you the inspiration you need to make it through a lengthy study session, the Reitz has you covered with a bustling environment. Not big on other people and prefer being alone? Grab an empty study room and grant yourself some privacy.

The Reitz Union also harbors numerous dining options, so don’t worry about going hungry if you forget to pack a lunch (yes - this includes an on-site Starbucks for you coffee fanatics). Feeling stressed and need a break from studying? Head down to the Reitz Union’s recreational game room for some well-deserved R&R. The game room includes bowling lanes, pool and foosball tables, as well as board games for students to rent out and relax with before hitting the books once more.

Even before its sizable 2016 renovation, the Reitz Student Union was a favorable place for students to meet up, grab food, study, and relax. Look no further than the Reitz if you’re looking for an efficacious setting to hone in on those coveted college study vibes.

Lexi Carson:

Concord Coffee 

The perfect morning, lunch, or break for a quick study sesh between classes is concord coffee. The coffee shop can be found right off campus at 1380 W University Ave. It's located between the Chick Fil A at the Standard, and Sus Hi Eatstation. 

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