C. Adam Pfander Photograph


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A Space to Work In

February 19, 2013   

I cannot imagine a more perfect study space than the small desk in my room.  My books lay stacked beside me, ready to be utilized at a moment’s notice; my laptop is plugged in and begging to be opened; a coffee machine is standing by. These few supplies can fuel hours of uninterrupted study time—giving me the freedom to accomplish any and all assignments that I have.  When it comes to doing work, I see no reason to leave my room.

But I cannot just stay in my dorm room all day.  When departing for class, I try to replicate my room’s endless preparedness by bringing with me every schoolbook I own—I literally carry a bookshelf in my backpack.  Some of these books will sit unopened for weeks or months.  But I am always prepared to cite any reading, to start any assignment.

More important than its equipage, my room is isolated, free from the daily hum of activity that pervades the Hill.  Hamilton campus is just too lively, too full of friendly faces to concentrate on work for extended periods of time.  If I study in a public space like KJ, I am certain to encounter a classmate or teammate; I will halt my work to say hello and maybe enjoy some rambling conversation.  But all the while precious minutes slip by.

In my few months on the Hill, I have learned under what conditions I am most productive.  For me, a study space must be stripped of distractions and solely dedicated to work.  In this environment, I slip into a steady rhythm—I study diligently and keep going until all my work is done.  The socialization prevalent in public spaces interrupts this tempo. 

I would not trade the solitude of my small desk for any other study area at Hamilton; it is important to find a space you can call your own, a space where you can work.