Starting college can be an overwhelming experience and stepping foot on campus for the first time is daunting. UCONN is a huge school as it is, but knowing a few basic landmarks that are essential to every student will help you acclimatize swiftly.
1. Gampel Pavilion
The women’s basketball team is the pride and glory of UCONN. They won 111 consecutive basketball games! As such, it is basically required that every student see at least one of their games, and that happens at the big dome itself, Gampel Pavilion. Gampel is also the location for a lot of job and opportunity fairs, so if you want to get connections or get involved on campus, Gampel is a good place to go.
2. Student Union
The Student Union has it all: Multicultural Centers, restaurants, and a convenience store. It’s also where you can rent out outing equipment for hiking or camping, and get tickets for buses and football games. Also, the Student Union hosts a lot of fun events like the Rubber Duck Hunt in the spring and Late Night on the weekends. It’s basically the Kingdom of Free Stuff.
3. Wilbur Cross
Here is where most administrative needs are taken care of. If you need financial aid or the bursar’s office, it’s all here. Wilbur Cross also administers you ID card, which you’ll need in order to have building access, so this will be one of your first pit stops as a freshman. In the fall and spring, the Red Cross host blood drives so you can donate your blood! As a reward, there’s free pizza and cookies!
4. Oak/Laurel Hall
These two buildings are located on Fairfield Way in the center of campus, so they’re not hard to find. These are where most humanities classes take place and as a student, you’ll most likely have at least one or two classes here. A lot of departments also have their offices here so you’ll most likely come to one of these locations for office hours or advising.
5. BioPhysics Building
Even if you’re not a STEM major, or involved in any of the hard sciences, you should use this building as a landmark. It’s in the heart of the sciences part of campus, and has a large tower that you can pretty much use as a beacon. It’s also right next to the greenhouse, which is open to all students and pretty cool to check out. At the top of the BioPhysics tower is “The Summit” which is a huge hangout place for students and a great place to check out the view of campus.
6. Storrs Center
This is more of an accumulation of buildings just off of campus. It’s a pretty cool hangout spot and they have pretty much everything you need: restaurants, CVS pharmacy, UPS, and a grocery store. They also have a couple of fairs throughout the year with giveaways and free food.
7. Transportation Services
Here is where you get your bus pass and parking. You only need to be concerned with parking if you have a car on campus, and you only need to be concerned with a bus pass if you don’t have a car on campus. The bus system is pretty neat. It’s free and it takes you out into the next town where you can visit the malls and shopping strips. There are bowling alleys and movie theaters and such which can make for great visits with your friends on the weekend.
8. Mail Warehouse
If there is any mix-up with your mail, or you have ordered a particularly large package, you’re going to have to come to the warehouse. It’s pretty far and out of the way from the main part of campus, but this place opens up a whole new corner to explore. It’s also really close to Ted’s Bar, which you’ll probably become very familiar with once you turn 21.
9. Police Station/Fire Station
UCONN is a pretty safe school. There are Emergency Blue Lights every couple of feet, scattered throughout the campus in case you need to contact someone quickly and police cars patrol the school frequently. The fire truck also arrives on scene within a couple of minutes. However, it’s probably a good idea to know where these buildings are just in case.
10. Jorgenson Performing Arts Center
Jorgenson hosts a lot of really cool events and shows, and every UCONN student swings by eventually. Last year, during Spring Weekend, Bob Saget gave a comedy show and Evan Peters came by for an interview! Jorgenson also does your standard plays and musicals. The hall is pretty big and relatively nice, so make sure you buy tickets and check it out!