Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Lounging It Up

I wrote a blog for #gradschoolproblems that may be relevant here. Check it out here

Lounging It Up

In the rare instance that graduate students have some free time (and I do mean rare), where do you spend it? Well, that depends on what your definition of free time means. By free time, do you mean time that doesn’t involve sitting in a classroom (but you’re probably still doing some research)? Or does your definition of free time mean when you’re actually not working at all? Sorry, but if you’re a grad student, that second option doesn’t exist.

Here’s a list of some of the best spots (chosen by fellow grad students) to get a little work done, but also get some relaxation in. In no particular order:
We journalism grad students have made Side Pocket a weekly tradition. If you need something quick and quiet and RIGHT on campus, look no further. With cheap food prices and a “secret” location (ahem, Mountainlair basement), it’s hard to pass up this gem.

Black Bear Burritos
A staple in Morgantown, this restaurant serves up fantastic dishes all while in a cozy atmosphere. What could be better than a burrito in one hand while finishing up that research paper on the ol’ MacBook? I can think of a few things … but this is pretty close.
First-year journalism graduate student Evan Moore already knows where he’s writing most of his thesis: Jay’s Getaway, his favorite local bar. This tiny bar has tons of craft beer and a relaxed environment that is great for unwinding.
I can’t personally vouch for this one because I’ve never been there, but second-year journalism graduate student Katie Patton says it’s a great place to relax and clear your head. “I love it there!” she said. Located on Walnut Street, this hookah bar is close to campus and is the only one in town.

Blue Moose Cafe
Also serving coffee, as well as yummy food, Blue Moose is a good option if you want to get away from campus a little bit but still not have to trek too far. With a calm environment, this cafe can keep you stocked on coffee until you finish that paper or blogpost…
6. Panera
I always think of Panera as like a breeding ground for gainfully employed, upward-bound yuppies who need to get some work again. Yuppie, I am. What beats getting half a salad, half a sandwich, free drink refills and wifi? Not much to this grad student.
Ditto to what I said above, but subtract yummy food and add coffee.
If coffee is your thing, I’ve heard this is one of the best in town. But quite frankly, I love going to the counter, ordering a fresh sandwich any way I want it and observing the busy Willey Street.
WVU alum Jared Crawford (and iPhone application iWVU creator) said his zen place was the Evansdale Library. “The Evansdale library is much more peaceful than the Downtown library. Study rooms in Basement and on 2nd floor are usually free,” he said.

Zen Clay
10. Zen Clay
Is it an art gallery? Is it a cafe? It’s both! And more. But you can get some nice vegetarian options here, all while claiming a table to yourself in order to crank out that thesis. If you need some inspiration, the place is decked out with fantastic artwork, too.
Where do you prefer to go for your home away from home? Anything else you can think of to add to the list – let us know in the comments or vote in the poll!