With the current construction dictating the pathways of campus, it is more than ever physically apparent that Georgetown University is running out of space. This fact is especially evident when students cannot find a seat in Lauinger Library during finals, when every table at O’Donovan Hall is taken during mealtimes and when students crowd the floor of the Intercultural Center in between classes.
Unfortunately, the reality is that many of these spatial needs may have to wait until the university finishes this round of intensive construction. However, in the meantime, it would greatly benefit students and administrators to use the space currently available to us in the most efficient way possible. The open space in the ICC Galleria is a perfect opportunity to put existing space to better use and to give students something they need — adequate study space.
Although equipping the ICC with adequate furniture, electrical outlets and study lighting would require additional construction, providing even the most basic study space furnishings would be relatively simple in comparison to other projects on the university’s docket. By adding furniture similar to that of the Healey Family Student Center, the ICC would more efficiently use its space, and avoid the embarrassing perception that students in an academic building might not have any place to study but on the floor.
The fact that studying on the floor has become normal in this building — especially in the lobby where distinguished guests and professional visitors often enter and exit — demonstrates the fact that more study space is badly needed.
The ICC is a symbol of the School of Foreign Service and Georgetown’s international focus, and it is important that its appearance conveys that significance and professionalism. Until there is somewhere for students to study besides the floor, that will remain an elusive goal.