honest advice from honestly nice people
By Denton Wood
What up, class of 2020!
Today, we’re going to take a journey through your home for the next 4 years. But, it’s not going to be the tour you took on a campus visit (that some of you may have had multiple times by now). No, we’re going to explore some of the shortcuts and lesser-known places on campus to give you some inspiration for the coming year. This isn’t an exhaustive list, but it will get you started.
1. BSB Shortcut
Chances are that you’ll have a science class as a general requirement this year, no matter what major you’re pursuing. If you do, you’ll get to tote your books over to one of Baylor’s largest and most impressive structures: the Baylor Sciences Building. Located in the northeast corner of campus next to the Student Life Center (SLC) and East Village, the BSB is a bit of a walk from any residence hall that isn’t Earle or Teal (especially for you, Brooks residents), and you might need to make it there in a hurry to get to class on time. Once on campus, you’ll notice that a large crowd walks up Speight Avenue and goes around the SLC in order to get to the BSB. If you’re coming from a building along Speight, like Waco Hall or Tidwell, that probably is the best way. But, if you’re coming from most other places on campus, there’s a less traveled and potentially faster way. From Fountain Mall (the giant grassy area in the middle of campus), take the road to the right of Moody and cut across or go around the McCreary Music Building parking lot (watch out for cars!). Then, take the sidewalk along the water to the bridge. Ta-da! You’ve made it to the BSB in time for chemistry. If all these names have thrown you for a loop, I’ve included a map!
2. The Quietest Place on Campus
If you’re like me, you don’t like a lot of background noise when you study. What if you could find a place of total peace and quiet to get through that tough reading for Christian Scriptures? Well, I can’t promise you a sound vacuum, but there are two places on campus specifically designed for silent study. Armstrong Browning Library, situated in the southeast corner of campus, is a picturesque library with wooden tables and benches on the first floor for study. The beautiful stained glass windows create an atmosphere of reverence in the library, and the Garden of Contentment outside is a prime location for those who prefer to study outdoors. Unfortunately, Armstrong Browning closes at 5 PM; if you need more time to study, you can head on over to the second floor of Moody Memorial Library to find the Pritchard Study Commons. This space is denoted as a silent zone – if someone is talking, they’re in the wrong – and has plenty of tables, chairs, and comfier chairs to use. Hopefully you never have to pull an all-nighter, but if you do, this area is open all night Sunday-Thursday!
3. 3rd Floor Track at the SLC
The Student Life Center is the place to go if you want to work out on campus. Featuring a workout room lined with equipment, a pool with a water slide, racquetball courts, a climbing wall, and more, the SLC is worth checking out even if you don’t regularly work out (*shamefully raises hand*). What you may not discover right off the bat is that the third floor has a running track. It has four lanes for different speed levels and areas off to the side for stretching and warming up. Take the main staircase to the second floor, then either back staircase to the third floor (there’s also an elevator near the pool). Make sure to look for itif your outdoor run gets rained out!
4. Brooks Dining Hall
If you live in the Brooks community, you will know this place well within the first few weeks of the semester. For the rest of us, it can be worth the trip every once in a while. Out of the four dining halls on campus, Brooks is the most secluded, walled in by Brooks Residential College (not to be confused with Brooks Flats, which is next door) in the southwest corner of campus. To get there, you have to go under the Flats archway behind Pat Neff Hall (if you see the ECS Research Annex, turn right because you went through the wrong archway). Brooks will be on your right – go through the breezeway, turn right, and the dining hall is on your left. But why should you endure such an arduous journey for food when the best dining hall (objectively Memorial) is so much more accessible? For one, Brooks’ signature dish is its Friday burgers, the best in a campus dining hall. During the past semester, they introduced an ice cream freezer. They have raspberry sweet tea (the main reason I go). The hall itself takes influence from the Great Hall of Hogwarts of the Harry Potter series. Granted, it’s also the smallest dining hall, and I wouldn’t eat there every day, but it’s definitely an occasional treat.
5. The SUB Game Room
Need to check your mail? Going to an organization meeting? Tired of dining hall food (you’ll be surprised)? The Student Union Building has many uses. It’s also home to the offices of Student Government and the Chamber of Commerce, has computers for student use, and has a game room in the basement. Once you find your way to it (the SUB is a little confusing), the game room has ping pong, pool, four bowling lanes, etc. There’s a small cost for use of the room and for bowling, but much cheaper than going out and finding a bowling lane.
This, of course, isn’t even close to all of the neat places on campus. Some majors and schools have private study areas, there are some cool museums across University Parks, and campus has many places just beautiful to look at. Of course, Baylor also has many secrets, but you’ll have to find those for yourself (hint: ask around). But, in a few short weeks, you’ll have time to see it all for yourself…when you aren’t cramming for that math test, that is. Happy exploring and see you all soon!
Denton is a sophomore Computer Science major from Kentucky. He loves playing Pokemon Go, going on crazy adventures, and making new friends!