Campus sights to see outside of your tour

Hi friends! You look ravishing today.

So, it’s campus visit season again. Now that the weather is looking better, you’ll have so much more time to really appreciate the campus, not just run from building to building.

Now, I know generally where your campus tour guides will take you, and they’ll cover a good chunk of campus. But, there are some other things you should check out when you visit, so you can be sure that Iowa State is a good place for you!

  • Your major’s building. This seems obvious, but sometimes you’ll be on a tour and you’ll only see “one of the engineering buildings” or “one of the Liberal Arts & Sciences offices.” Ask your tour guide (or even a random student, people are nice here) where your major’s building is. That building is going to be your go-to, so you should be sure that it’s a place you’ve seen and are familiar with!
  • Usual study spots for people in your major. Another obvious one, but not one you’ll often see on a tour. Like the phrase, “birds of a feather flock together” says, people in certain majors tend to study in similar areas. This is another case where you’ll have to ask around, but I’m sure you’ll find luck. For example, all the computer majors study/work in either the Transformative Learning Area (TLA) in Coover Hall, the basement of Pearson, or on the first floor of the library. The math kids I know all study/work on the 4th floor of Carver Hall, and hang out in the Math Help Room (there’s free cookies there, by the way). The journalism kids I know all study/work in either Hamilton Hall, the Communications Building, or Ross Hall. The education majors I know tend to study in MacKay or Lagomarcino, depending on what they want to teach. Now, I’m sure I only know a specific subset of people, but getting to see study areas where you might hang out often is a great opportunity to see how comfortable you’d be in that environment.
  • Cafés on campus. Along the same lines as the dining centers, chances are you’ll be stopping by cafés fairly often (I mean, they take Dining Dollars, so who wouldn’t?), and you should see those too. On your tour you’ll probably be pointed to where the Hub/Caribou is by the library, and Bookends Café inside the library, but there’s quite a few other food places on campus (I haven’t even made my way to all of them yet)! The Design building has a café, and so does Lagomarcino up north, and the Gerdin Business Building too. If you’re in a major that’s near some of these cafés, definitely check them out!
  • The Underground, and other fun places in the Memorial Union. The MU has so many cool places inside of it that are often open for students to use and filled with fun entertainment. The Maintenance Shop (or the M-Shop) regularly has concerts, open-mic nights, and comedy shows. The Workspace is full of crafts like the woodshop, ceramics, painting, dance, drawing, knitting… anyway, a lot of things. The Underground is a full bowling alley, arcade, and billiards area for students to hang out. The University Bookstore is there full of souvenirs and school supplies. And of course, there’s the food court, complete with a convenience store, a Subway, and a Panda Express. Your tour will probably touch on some of these, but you can your visiting family/friends should wander around in there and check out what the MU has to offer.
  • A club meeting. Before you come to campus, go to the Student Organization Database and look up some clubs you might be interested in. Email the club presidents, or check out the club websites to find out when they meet. If you’re on campus during a meeting time, you should pop in and get to know some people with similar interests!

I hope you enjoy your visiting adventure at Iowa State! You’re going to adore this campus, rain or shine. Just like my feelings towards you.

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