The Places On Campus I’m Most Excited To See Again

As campus begins to re-open, restaurants begin to allow indoor seating, and Ann Arbor prepares for the fall semester, I’ve been thinking about all the places on campus I’ve missed over the past year, either because they’ve been closed or limited in access due to the pandemic.

By Allison Kolpak June 29, 2021
The Places on Campus I'm Most Excited to See Again by Allison Kolpak

The Hatcher Graduate Library

Of all the buildings on campus, this might be the one I’m most excited to see again. The sixth floor of Hatcher has a little table that overlooks what I think is the best view in Ann Arbor. In the fall, propped in my designated essay-writing spot, you can see the law quad, Ross, and what seems like miles of trees changing colors. Downstairs, the reference room looks like something out of Hogwarts, and the leather seats lining the walls are the perfect place to sift through all your class reading.

U-M Law Library
The Law Quad

The Law Library

Over the past fourteen months or so of the pandemic, I’ve done work for school, internships, and clubs in my bedroom, outside, or in buzzing common spaces. In my pursuit of a quiet space to finish tasks, I’ve looked all over campus for a place that even comes close to the environment of the law library, and have been quite unsuccessful. The silence, low warm lighting, and long wooden tables make it essentially free of distraction and very easy to slip into a book and forget how long you’ve even been there until you’re 100 pages in.

Maizie’s at the League

Maizie’s is the café located just inside and to the right of the front door of the League. While it’s been open this past year, I’ve missed being able to gather and study with friends at their high tables next to the gigantic windows. The real reason to go to Maizie’s, though, and the reason you could find me there most afternoons my freshman year, are the incredible block M cookies you can grab if you make it before they sell out. They’re giant sugar cookies, shaped like the Michigan logo and decorated with Maize icing, and I’ve been thinking about them constantly for the past year.

Perlman Honors Commons

Tucked back into Mason hall, the Honors Commons was where I spent most of my time in between classes freshman year trying to navigate the honors program. In a free hour between two classes in the Mason-Angell-Haven-Tisch complex, I’m convinced I could get more essay words written there than anywhere else (plus, the vending machine right next door has Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups).

The Winter Garden

This year, the Winter Garden, the large common area in the center of the Ross School of Business, has been mostly populated by a few students quietly doing work individually. In past years, the same space has been the buzzing hub of the business school, somewhere you could always expect to see a few familiar faces passing by, and stop for quick chats in between club meetings and classes.

The University of Michigan Museum of Art

Having highlighted all these soon-to-be-open locations, I should give an honorable mention to the one place I’ve been able to see more because of the pandemic that I’ll miss dearly in the fall:

UMMA Study Spaces

This year, as the UMMA (the on-campus art museum) was often closed to in-person visitors looking at art, the university opened its doors for pre-reserved, socially-distanced study seats in its art halls. While many of my typical haunts for doing work weren’t accessible this year, sitting in front of all the cool art at the UMMA to attend my classes was definitely not something to complain about.

Allison Kolpak
Allison Kolpak

Allison Kolpak is a junior in the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy with minors in Business and Economics. She is involved with BOND Consulting Group, a staff writer for the Every Three Weekly, and a member of Net Impact and Sigma Kappa Sorority. Allison is from Denver, and loves skiing, sailing, cooking, and sudoku.