On a busy day of classes and meetings, Hopkins students are guilty of putting their head down and trying to move efficiently through their day—at least I am. That being said, when I have gaps in my schedule I have a few favorite places to stop by, whether it’s just to grab a quick cup of coffee, or gossip hang out with a friend before class.

I came to decide on my favorite spots on campus based on some pretty subjective criteria. Did I like the environment, was it the right sound level, was it close to food & coffee, was it close to class, and of course the ever decisive: did I feel like it? Judge me if you will, but 4 years of this train of thought led me to actual conclusions. Now comes my even more embarrassing admittance: part of what I love about my favorite spots has a bit to do with the ceilings.

Hear me out. It’s not news that the architecture on campus is beautiful. There’s a mixture of old and new and it somehow works perfectly together, and ranks as one of my favorite things about being at Hopkins. When I walk into a building, I like to take in all of my surroundings and on campus it’s easy to notice that the unique designs carry all the way up to the ceiling. If you’re intrigued, here’s a quick peek at some of my favorite ceilings:


photos don’t do Mudd’s ceiling enough justice. The lamps are the perfect brightness…keeps me coming back

Mudd Hall: Mudd is closest to the University Pkwy side of campus, which means it’s closest to my apartment. As a result, this is my favorite early morning or late night spot. In the morning, the natural lighting is beautiful thanks to the gorgeous floor to ceiling windows, and at night the soft lamp lighting is calming. Perks include the atrium being connected to the Undergraduate Teaching Lab (UTL), so close to a lot of classes, and having a branch of the Daily Grind. A smaller branch than Brody means that bagels last longer.


Gilman: Okay this is a no-brainer. Back when I was a high-school senior and was visiting campus during SOHOP, I instantly knew that Gilman Hall was going to be one of my favorite buildings. Pictured first is the atrium, which is a huge, light filled space during the day and one of my favorite spots to grab a quick bite with friends or tackle a quick reading before class. The café, Alkimia, is delicious. Pictured below it, is the ceiling of The Hut, or The Hutzler Reading Room. This is also another huge space, that has amazing natural light during the day and makes the early-bird in me happy because it opens at 6AM. It also closes at midnight, so it encourages healthy sleeping habits.


Gilman Atrium is gorgeous.


The stained glass and the lamps from the ceiling give The Hut a great, rustic feel. You can be sure to find @JHU_Molly and @JHU_Ebo here. Sometimes even @JHU_Aneek

Next up, Levering: Levering has a great café too, and the baristas are always playing happy music. I love to come here to do some lighter work and grab cinnamon rolls that I may or may not crave.


I will admit to this not being the best possible picture of Levering. This part of the ceiling is over my favorite corner of the cafe: comfy leather couches around a table and right next to a fireplace.

Garland: I’ve mentioned this in previous blogs, but Garland is one of my favorite places to study. It houses all of the administrative buildings, but the central atrium is a nice open space. The ceiling is high and has great lighting. A plus: it’s always warm. It’s also just across the path from Levering, in case I’m feeling a more quiet atmosphere.


Garland: A building with super official offices, but nice lighting. Peering up at the ceiling makes it feel like you are in a really big and open space.

B Level: You knew this one was coming. I’m not ashamed of my love for B level in the MSE library. When I need to seriously crack down, I can always focus here. I know fluorescent lighting doesn’t always seem like the best, but there’s something comforting about the ceiling right above my favorite cubicle. @JHU_Ebo can confirm.


B Level: a comforting level of focus @JHU_Ebo is usually in the cube across from me.

These are just a few of the many, unique spots on campus. Next time you’re here, don’t forget to look up.