Staff Picks: Places We Want To Have Socially Distanced Classes

In case you’ve been living under a rock for the past few weeks, Penn State officially announced it plans to return to in-person instruction this fall. Along with many other changes, administrators are discussing converting non-traditional venues into classrooms to host socially distanced lectures.

To give them a helping hand, our staffers discussed where they’d like to potentially take their courses this semester.

Frankie Marzano: Pegula Ice Arena

Pegula would be a great place to have a socially distant class. It’s not too big that’d it’d keep students from focusing, but at the same time, they wouldn’t feel cramped with other people. The arena’s cool air would also mean sweater weather would come early, which is a major plus.

Lindsay Tagliere: The Cybertorium

The Cybertorium in Westgate has probably been my classroom so far. The auditorium-style seating, giant screen, and computers make it easy to actually see what’s happening and pay attention without trying to fit everything on tiny fold-up desks.

Even at full capacity, I had more than enough room to keep away from my fellow classmates. While that was a Godsend after a sweaty 30-minute walk from my dorm, it would be perfect to help keep students socially distant and healthy, too.

Ryen Gailey: HUB Dining

The HUB Dining area’s long tables and plentiful chairs would make it easy for students and professors to comply with social distancing guidelines. These tables can also be easily arranged and moved, so I imagine turning this area into a classroom space would be easier than other areas on campus.

We probably won’t be using the HUB to hang out much anyway this fall, so we might as well put it to use.

Meredith Lea: Palmer Museum Of Art

If you’ve ever visited the Palmer, you probably already know that it’s one of Penn State’s hidden gems.

Aside from the obvious aesthetic appeal, there are tons of nearly hidden places perfect for studying without distraction. There’s a 150-seat auditorium with some of the coziest chairs on campus, which would make it the perfect socially distanced setting for any class. The overall vibes at the Palmer are simply immaculate. Need I say more?

Alysa Rubin: The Bryce Jordan Center

The BJC would be an amazing place to have a socially distant lecture. I mean, it is the site of The Climb™. With a 360-degree view and two levels for folks to sit, students would never need to worry about not being able to see the board.

More importantly, the social distancing capabilities at the BJC are top-tier. With a seating capacity of around 15,000, there would be no trouble fitting a typical Thomas 100 lecture in. Personally, I’d love to have a class in the BJC so I could grab a snack on my way in and out. A chicken basket would make class the best part of my day.

Matt DiSanto: The HUB Lawn

Who wouldn’t want to have class outside every day? Lunatics, that’s who. I rest my case.

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