Where to caffeinate and elate on campus

By Tommy Verdone

Go into almost any building on the University of Massachusetts campus and you can find a cup of coffee. From the Fogbuster coffee to the Marketplace blends, or Santa Domingo, you’d be daft to say that caffeine isn’t easily attainable on campus. But it isn’t necessarily incorrect to say that some environments are better for coffee than others. Someone in a flustered rush could grab a cup of coffee at a number of Grab n’ Go-type venues around campus, but for the seasoned coffee sitter-and-sipper, this style of java won’t make the cut. If you are looking for a good place to sit down, check out any of these campus cafes.

The Integrated Science Building Café

While a bit cliché to mention first on the list, one of the most popular coffee hot spots on campus is located in the Integrated Science Building. Students can get their favorite bold black coffees or frilly extensively named drinks without the chore of having to work their way into town at the Starbucks there. Situated with a number of places to sit around and do work in the presence of others, this is sure to turn into a mass-populated location in the upcoming storm of finals. Located in a busy part of campus right next to Worcester Dining Commons, it is certainly accessible and certainly worth visiting.

Herter Express

This venue is for the aforementioned student in a rush. While there is no way that Herter Express qualifies for a café, it falls nothing short of the latter half of its title. Consisting of nothing more than a few tables, a couple of fridges, some hot boxes with breakfast sandwiches and copious amounts of coffee, this place is perfect for hectic days when many students don’t get a chance to actually sit down and enjoy a drink – or anything for that matter. Here you can grab a number of different bottled drinks such as juice or milk, and foods for breakfast or lunch. While the line may snake back down the hallway in the limbo between class times, the service is quick and the wait is never too long.

Thompson Hall Café

The aptly-named Thompson Hall Café is located on the ground floor of Thompson Hall. One of the quaintest and most atmospheric eateries on campus, it’s hard not to feel comfortable sitting in the calmly lit area filled with light chatter. It is a great, quiet place to do work to the sound of footsteps and quiet conversation, and there are plenty of tiny tables scattered around the inside of the shop, which is rarely filled to the brim with customers. It is another routine little place on campus that sells the basics: sandwiches, pastries, and, of course, coffee and tea. This location, while serving similar foods to the rest of the scattered places on campus, has one of the most unique auras of all.

The Procrastination Station

Maria Uminski/Collegian File Photo

Relatively new on campus and located on the first floor and heart of the monolithic library is the Procrastination Station, which is well equipped to keep you from studying during the seemingly never-ending finals stretches. Offering salads, sandwiches for breakfast and lunch, and even espresso based drinks; the Procrastination Station seemingly has it all in the ways of a café. A customer is able to waste their time, to sit and enjoy eating bacon egg and cheese croissants, or to grab their food and run it back up to the desk they claimed on the 21st floor. Although this place gets overcrowded during the more hectic parts of the day – and furthermore, semester – its accessibility in terms of location and extensive menu supply a great place to take a break from rigorous studies.

For those bracing themselves for the incoming maelstrom that is finals week, coffee should be an indispensable and instantly refillable resource used to fuel academic success. While its effects can have any inexperienced drinker jolting and jittering with the caffeine shakes, it will keep them up all night for that not so lovable, yet necessary, all-nighter.

Thomas Verdone can be reached at [email protected]