Georgetown University’s campus and the wider Washington, D.C. area have many prime study spots where Hoyas can hit the books. Even if you’ve sworn allegiance to your favorite table or cubicle on the second floor of Lauinger Library, these study spots offer pleasant atmospheres to make a weekend study session or cramming for finals just a little more bearable.
Located on the first floor of Healy Hall, the Bioethics Research Library is a beautiful space that’s quiet enough for you to get work done. The library houses the Kennedy Institute of Ethics’ extensive collection of research material, which draws in researchers from both on and off campus. The space also has plenty of tables and couches for students seeking an alternative reminiscent of Lau. Be sure to check the hours before you head over, however, as the library often closes early.
We’re almost reluctant to give up this one: With floors full of spacious, empty classrooms, White-Gravenor Hall is a perfect place to study for finals. Whether you’re studying by yourself or working with a group, the seminar-style classrooms let you spread out your study materials and take advantage of wall-sized chalkboards. The natural light coming through the windows also gives White-Gravenor an edge over the classrooms in the Intercultural Center, which are relatively cramped and generally windowless.
Starbucks in the Leavey Center
When the coffee shops run by Students of Georgetown, Inc., commonly referred to as The Corp, are already packed, the Leavey Center Starbucks is a great alternative. The inside boasts plenty of space and a warm ambiance. While it’s not as quiet as a library cubicle, the hum of noise stays low enough to foster a surprisingly pleasant environment. If you’re lucky enough to find yourself stocked with Starbucks gift cards after the holidays, this far-hallway pocket of the Leavey Center is the ideal place for an afternoon study session. Make sure you check the hours online, as it sometimes closes early in the day.
When the weather is nice enough that Copley lawn starts to fill up with students, the Leavey Esplanade is a great place to stretch out on a blanket and get some sun while you’re studying. There’s always plenty of open green space, and some time outdoors is a good way to break up those long days of studying and paper writing when the trials of early May roll around. The esplanade also conveniently offers an entrance to Uncommon Grounds, one of The Corp’s coffee shops, for a caffeine fix.
Library of Congress
The Library of Congress is a remarkable space to get some work done off campus. You can apply for a free reader card in the James Madison Memorial Building to access the famous Main Reading Room of the Thomas Jefferson Building across the street. Whether you’re there to take advantage of the library’s massive collection for research or just to do some homework, the reading room is unbeatable. Cavernous, beautiful and quiet, it’s perfect for productivity — and for a picturesque Instagram shot. Keep in mind that some larger bags are not allowed in the reading rooms and will have to be checked in one of the library’s cloakrooms. Check online for specific restrictions.
The Robert and Arlene Kogod Courtyard, which connects the Smithsonian American Art Museum and the National Portrait Gallery, is a beautiful open space for enjoying the sights of the District as well as doing some work on the weekends. With its huge overhead glass canopy, the courtyard allows visitors to enjoy sunshine without having to bear the heat. You can also get a bite to eat at the Courtyard Cafe and enjoy free Wi-Fi while you sit, making it a great spot to catch up on work, enjoy some prime people-watching and take inspirational study breaks wandering through the galleries of the adjoining museums.
A Local Coffee Shop
For those of you who need caffeine constantly within arm’s reach to focus on your work, get yourself off campus and snag a table at a local coffee shop. If you don’t feel like making a long trek, Compass Coffee on Wisconsin Avenue is a good bet — it has plenty of space and free Wi-Fi. Peet’s Coffee on M Street is bright and pleasant, with a spacious second level perfect for settling in to study for the day. If you don’t have any work that requires internet access — or need to make yourself stay off Facebook — Grace Street Coffee is a cozy spot.
File Photo: Julia Alvey/The Hoya