Places to be at UWT

With all the changes made during remote learning, new and returning students alike will need to know the places-to-be for socialization and campus life.

It’s been a long time since the University of Washington-Tacoma Campus has been open for in-person learning, and much has changed. Almost two whole years of students have come and gone, and new students are going to be making their way to campus for the first time, and what a campus it is. From all of the different buildings, to all the separate centers and offices within the buildings, to the proximity of the sights and venues of downtown Tacoma proper, it can be overwhelming for those approaching it for the first time.

Everyone will have their own niche and preferences when going about campus life. But, it’s important to understand just where the key spots on campus are, either for socialization, information, resources, or just to have a nice spot to sit down and eat.

Do keep in mind that even with in-person classes, masks will still be required along with social distancing, and prepare yourself for occupancy limits and potentially other new mandates as the school year starts.

First off, students can’t go wrong with a nice trip to either of our libraries, both of which are located near the middle of campus. While you’ll have to be quiet and polite when it comes to socialization, our libraries are wonderful places to relax, study, and sit down for a bit between classes. The Snoqualmie Building Library is the main stop, and recently got a facelift for the new year. Going up the stairs to its sister Tioga Library will be worth the extra steps, as it has even more available quiet study rooms that most students won’t get the drop on, making it easier to get yourself some nice and quiet elbow room.

Secondly, we have to talk about the Dawg House! The energetically named student space is located on the eastern half of the Mattress Factory, right up the street from the various restaurants on Pacific Ave., and features plenty of seating, space, and even entertainment such as a music center, pool, ping pong tables, and video games. Currently, it has an occupancy limit of 27 people due to safety regulations, but that just means it’s first-come first-serve to enjoy the socialization and entertainment.

Third, most students will already find themselves in this area, but the GWP Building all the way down to the West Coast Grocery Building on the far north of campus will be the place to be for students. Not only are there plenty of places to kick up your feet and wait for classes taking place nearby, but it’s also connected to our campus bookstore and the titular West Coast Grocery convenience store. You’ll also be able to find several campus bulletin boards inside, keeping you up-to-date on events and offers on and around campus.

Last but not least, there’s also the great outdoors. Or at least, as “great outdoors” as you get in the middle of a bustling city. The UWT campus has plenty of wonderful patches of greenery along its pathways, including the great Prairie Line trail that stretches all the way from east to west. With many benches for you to kick up your feet, feel the breeze, and not have to worry about anything for a moment. Plus, you can also take the time to check out the various pieces of architecture and artwork installations along the trail, with unique designs and stories behind them.

This is nowhere near an exhaustive list, and as a student on campus you’ll have more than enough chances to find your spot and find plenty of friends, but knowing where to begin will get that ball rolling down a great year back on campus.