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Finding Your Spot: Waubonsee Abounds with Study Locations for All

No one study spot will appeal to everyone. Whether a student chooses a library, café or quiet corner somewhere, Waubonsee's campuses abound with great study spots for all.

Alissa Delgado didn’t set out to find the best place on campus to crack open her books and prepare for exams and papers, alike.

But one day earlier this year, as she passed it by, she just knew:

There, in a hallway lined with benches, hiding in plain sight, she had discovered that for which she didn’t even know she had been searching .

“That was it,” said Delgado, of Montgomery, a second-year student at Waubonsee Community College. “I was just taking a shortcut to the Science Building through Weigel and Akerlow, and I found it.
“No one’s ever in there, it’s really quiet and I can spread out, put my bag up, put in my headphones and get stuff done.”

And to top it all off, she said, there are vending machines just down the hall, should she need a bit of a caloric boost.

Every fall and spring, Waubonsee students of all ages, backgrounds and abilities follow Delgado’s path, seeking just the right study spot.

While some students for a variety of reasons might prefer to study off campus, whether at home or in a workplace’s break room, among others, many Waubonsee students prefer to select from among the abundance of study locations, ranging from familiar and tranquil to bustling and unexpected, offered in Waubonsee’s array of campuses and buildings.

In Aurora and Sugar Grove, alike, for instance, students may opt for either the library or the café.

Others, like Delgado, may seek out a quiet place in a hallway, or a place they can gather with friends and share laughs and chitchat while comparing notes without disturbing others.

Zayra Juarez, of Aurora, said she can study in just about any atmosphere.

Much of the time, she said, she’s huddled around a table or lounging in a corner somewhere on campus with others, often including three fellow second-year students, Bianca Ramirez, Citlaly Rivera and Kay Cee Tillman, all of Aurora.

Some popular spots for the four friends and classmates include quiet areas such as traditional study spots like the Todd Library in Collins Hall, computer labs in the Henning Academic Computing Center and on Aurora Campus, or at Student Life in the Student Center. They also opt at times for some less prominent locations, including hallways in Akerlow Hall or a room outside Waubonsee’s Auditorium.

“There’s a spot there, right by a window,” said Juarez. “It’s one of the best spots on campus just to sit and read a book.”

For students with disabilities requiring assistance and a place to focus, Tillman recommended Waubonsee’s Access Center for Students with Disabilities on the second floor of the Student Center.

“It’s quiet up there, there are computers for us to work on, and we get all the support we need,” said Tillman. “It’s a good one.”

However, the friends said they often prefer places with a bit more activity to provide ambient noise and a wide-open feel, which they said, in some ways, enhance their study experiences.

That’s why they said they often can be found in the cafés in both Sugar Grove and Aurora.

“You get here after 3 (p.m.), or before 9:30 (a.m.), and it’s usually not too loud,” said Tillman.

“We just like the social aspect of it,” said Juarez. “We’re not much for total quiet, all the time.”

However, while they can do well in some less quiescent locations, Juarez said they don’t usually opt to study at home, which, with its familiarity and constant buzz of activity involving family and friends, can actually be more distracting than even a busy cafeteria.

“That’s why I’m here 90 percent of the time,” said Juarez, with a laugh.

Daniel Noll, a second-year student who serves as Waubonsee's Student Trustee, of Hinckley, said he also will opt to avoid studying at home, if possible.

“There are a lot of distractions at home,” he said. “I know that people who have come here are here for a purpose.”

He said his study spot-of-choice since his first semester at Waubonsee has been in a big comfortable chair in a corner near a window in the Todd Library.

“Sometimes I might be out in the APC (Academic and Professional Center), depending on what’s going on,” said Noll. “But if I really need to study, and focus, this is where I’ll come.”

The students said they generally don’t mind if other students might also uncover their preferred study spots.

“I use my headphones a lot,” said Delgado, with a laugh. “So it’s OK.”

And if fellow students should prove a bit too disruptive or distracting, Ramirez said she and her group may just head out for a more sparsely inhabited location on campus.

“If the spot’s taken, we may just go somewhere else,” said Ramirez. “We’ve got other places.”

The students encouraged their classmates to take the time to explore the campus to find the study spots suiting their needs.

“If you want it loud or quiet, or you want a lot of people, or nobody around, there are a lot of places to go,” said Tillman. “If you can’t find the spot yourself, someone might know – a teacher, other students, you never know.

“Just ask around.”