Welcome to Campus
As an English grad student you may not often see much of campus aside from Anspach, which will be your new home. Anspach, pronounced "ann-spa," houses many of the humanities departments at CMU and is a community even tighter than that of campus at large. The English Department office, along with many of the faculty offices, is on the second floor. While working through your program in Anspach, you will likely see the same people in many of your classes, get to know your professors and colleagues, and even recognize faces of folks from other parts of the building after a while. The people will be the key to making the most out of Mt. Pleasant and CMU, and Anspach is where your people will be.
Tip: A good way to feel at home fast is to go out of your way to get to know the people you work beside on a regular basis. Go visit the department secretaries, who are wonderful people, and make sure you visit your professors’ offices so that you can build your CMU English family.
The UC and the Library
A few other places on CMU's campus that bear discussion are Park Library and the Bovee University Center (the UC). These are both a short walk from Anspach and each holds important assets for grad students. The UC is where the CMU Bookstore is, which sells CMU apparel and, more importantly, textbooks. It's always a good idea to compare their prices with Amazon before purchasing, but the Bookstore often offers used books and sometimes even rentals, which can be a great option. If you need a coffee fix and you're a Starbucks fan, the UC will definitely become your favorite place on campus because it's the only place near campus to get a Starbucks coffee.
Tip: The UC is a great place to grab lunch on busy work days. The Down Under Food Court is complete with Papa John’s pizza, Mexican food, a pasta station with lots of options, sushi, a salad bar, and plenty more to choose from.
The Library also has coffee, at Java City, along with snacks and vending machines. The Library will probably be your second-most visited place on campus, after Anspach. As a grad student, there is lots of research to be done and the Library is the place to do it. There are thousands of scholarly books and other resources to be explored through the Library's website, though until you get comfortable with the research system, you can always go to the Research Help Desk on the second floor to find help. That said, the Library is fairly user friendly, with clearly-noted numbering and moveable stacks. There are four floors in the Library and each has plenty of desks to work at, many with computers. Each floor also has several printers you can easily use to print with credits pre-installed on your student ID.
Tip: Though usually many computers are open, during finals week it can get busy but the Library's website has a constantly-updated map of each floor that shows which computers are free so that you can tell before you go in if you will be able to find a spot.
The best thing about the Library is being able to sit by the huge picturesque windows as you study; grab a table by the window on the fourth floor and you will have plenty of light and a nice view of campus. The Library is generally pretty friendly about quietly chatting with friends, but if you’re looking for quiet, the section on the first floor is usually less crowded and much quieter, still with lots of light to be had. You can have drinks with lids in the library, including bottled water or even a coffee from Java City, but no food is allowed.
Samantha Miller is graduating from CMU’s English Department with a Masters in English Language and Literature, Children’s and Young Adult Literature concentration. She is originally from the Chicago suburbs but has lived in Mount Pleasant for six years and earned her BA from CMU in 2014 with a major in sociology and a minor in journalism. Miller enjoys studying popular culture and is a raging foodie.
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