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Getting to Know ASU: Five Places to Discover on Campus

October 3, 2015

By: Cindy McPeters

With about 18,000 students on campus this fall, many of us are new to Appalachian. In making our way around campus, we need to know those special places that will really help us through our college days.

summittrailOne of the first places to discover is a place where you can quietly reflect. The Summit Trail Solarium in the Plemmons Student Union is just that kind of location. A casual space, the solarium has glass walls, waterfalls, and marble floors; it’s a great spot to enjoy nature indoors, especially once temperatures drop. Open this fall from 9 am to 10 pm Monday through Friday, and on weekends from 1 pm to 10 pm, the solarium is a tranquil but earthy spot on campus. Even if you don’t check out the solarium right away, you should find that hideaway where you can reflect and meditate on your own thoughts.

A second place you might consider visiting is the Special Collections section of the Belk Library.collections On the fourth floor, you can learn what came before you and recognize the long continuum of cultural existence of which we are just a small part. Enjoy artifacts of the Appalachian region and learn about stock car racing’s history. Take a look at some extraordinary resources and lend an eye toward history.


You also need a place to get a snack, drink some coffee, and meet up with friends. Why not try out Crossroads Café? Offering coffees featuring shade-grown beans of Central and South America, this little café on the first floor of Plemmons Student Union offers a variety of light fare such as salads, sandwiches, and wraps as well as muffins, scones, and cheesecakes. It’s important to nourish your social life as well as your mind and body. Hang out with some friends in a cool place that isn’t out of the way (and where you can use your meal card).

You absolutely must visit The Rock. therockThere is a literal rock at Kidd-Brewer Stadium, but more importantly, this campus location gives you an opportunity to meet up with a few thousand of your closest friends. Enjoy the atmosphere and camaraderie of a home football game or concerts and fireworks during the summer. You can even check out another kind of football at the Appalachian Soccer Stadium or learn about another sport at the field hockey stadium. College is what you make of it and supporting your friends and classmates on and off the field is an opportunity to gain more out of your time here on campus.

UWCThe last place on this list is actually one of the first places you should visit. The University Writing Center provides a free service to students, faculty, and staff as well as the Boone community. Located in the Belk Library’s lower level, you can come in to discuss your writing project at any point, whether you are brainstorming, freewriting, organizing or drafting. The writing center staff members are trained to collaborate with you on papers for academic courses, master and senior thesis chapters, personal essays for school or work, creative writing projects, and just about anything else. The UWC is open from 9 am to 9 pm, Monday through Thursday, and from 9 am to 1 pm on Fridays. You can also get technical help with your Aportfolio on Saturdays from 10 am to 4 pm. This is the place to visit when you want some feedback and support for your communications.

While these five places might not make everyone’s list of their top five fave places on campus, they’re great places to start. Remember that you need a place to reflect and relax, another place where you can imagine your participation in a long history, a site to socialize with friends, an opportunity to support your school, and the best location to improve your written communications. There’s a place everywhere on campus for you. Find your own special places, but make sure one of them is the University Writing Center.

Photos: Hanna Wilson, App Commercial Photography major

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