Hidden gem study spots on campus offer a fresh perspective

Being a student at the 5Cs means having a litany of incredible, interesting classes at your fingertips. But with those amazing classes comes a slew of daily work. For many students, this means packing their computers and notes into their backpacks and heading to Honnold Mudd Library. Yet only a short walk away lie many underrated studying spots. 

Chairs and tables on the balcony at Malott Commons.
(Corina Silverstein • The Student Life)

Take your studying to the next level at Scripps College

Perched on top of Malott Commons sits one of the most overlooked balconies at Scripps. While hundreds of students pass underneath it each day en route to their meals, the two tables outside the student union are often empty. 

The area, which seats up to six, towers over the heart of campus with a mountainous backdrop, offering quiet with the reduced hum of voices below. 

Lauren Mar SC 25 found the study spot by accident after leaving a meeting in the student union and making a mental note to return for studying. Since then, she’s gone back a handful of times, both alone and with friends.

“I like this study spot because it’s private without being isolated,” Marr said. “It overlooks Malott and the Bowling Green, which makes me feel connected to campus, and it’s quiet enough that I don’t get distracted.”

Chairs and tables at Roberts Pavilion.
(Corina Silverstein • The Student Life)

Step up your routine at Roberts Pavilion stairs

Just across the street at Claremont McKenna College, in between the amphitheater-style steps outside Roberts Pavilion, sit two metal tables with comfortable chairs and excellent views. 

The few steps between the two sets of tables add some privacy between study groups while still offering a semi-social space. The study location looks out on Parents Field, adding comforting background noise on game days.

Raizel Yu CM 22 said the study spot is both reliable and convenient, as she lives nearby in South Quad.

“I like that it’s not an overt study spot, so there’s not a lot of people taking up the tables,” Yu said. “It’s a really good perch to people watch and enjoy.”

A student sitting outdoors smiles while reading something on her laptop.
(Corina Silverstein • The Student Life)

Enjoy peaceful people-watching at Pitzer College

In Mead Hall’s courtyard, students can find calming white walls with intermittent colorful murals. Benches, a picnic table and a single glass table are scattered throughout the relaxed area, offering an interesting background to break up the monotony of studying. 

Bree Reed PZ 23 lives in Mead and decided to try out studying in the courtyard they pass on the way to their room every day. While the area can be busy in between classes, Reed says it’s usually the perfect balance of people-watching and general quiet.

“I just like to watch people walk by, and just people moving in the background while I’m studying is also great,” Reed said. “In the middle of the day, it’s nice and quiet.”

Students study on the balcony at R. Michael Shanahan Center for Teaching and Learning.
(Corina Silverstein • The Student Life)

Find through-the-roof views at Harvey Mudd College

To the north, Mudd’s campus offers pragmatic buildings and a few newer, more modern additions. One such building is the R. Michael Shanahan Center for Teaching and Learning. Its rooftop offers plentiful study spots with excellent campus-wide views, a serene garden and a nice breeze.

Leo Romero HM 25 said the rooftop nook is a great place to do math homework and listen to pre-recorded lectures.

“I like the atmosphere; it’s open,” Romero said. “It’s nice to see the mountains. Also, I like being high up, so the third floor is nice for that.”

A student studies at Lebus Court.
(Corina Silverstein • The Student Life)

Study in serenity at Pomona College

The vast Pomona campus offers a multitude of study spots, though many are often crowded, creating distracting noise. 

The shaded tables in Lebus Court, a grassy area fitted with a fountain, provide a more private studying area. The courtyard lies within the art history building, near the heart of campus, but far from the noise. The calming hum of the fountain provides nice white noise, drowning out the sounds of nearby cars. 

Olivia Reichle PO 25 walked by the area a few times before sitting down at the table to study. She mentioned that the spot’s combination of outdoor shady seating without too much noise was a refreshing break from the monotony of dorm studying.

“I walked by here a couple times, and it just seems really peaceful,” Reichle said. “There’s not a lot of people, which I like more because I like to be able to focus by myself.”

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