Towering over the Brickyard, D.H. Hill Library is more than a place to find books. The library combines classic book stacks with touchscreens, video games and the best ice cream known to man. It has become a must-see stop for anyone coming to campus, and that’s why I consider it the crown jewel of the Brickyard.
My primary reason for venturing to the library is to get work done, whether it’s cramming for a test, doing some online homework or meeting with a group. When I need to do some intense studying, I head for the sixth floor. Each student has his or her “spot,” and mine is the sixth floor because it’s actually the seventh one off the ground. That’s my lucky number! Not much has changed in the book stacks. It is the quiet study area with the cubicles. Countless students have spent hours studying in the stacks, and many more will. It’s the constant of the library.
When opting for a more social studying I always go to the Erdahl-Cloyd Wing of the library. This part of the library was once the Student Union, but now it has tables and the Creamery. The Creamery serves Howling Cow Ice Cream, which is made at NC State. With a large flow of people you are bound to see someone you know; I use it as an excuse to take a break from working. In addition to the Creamery, there is a coffee shop called Hill of Beans Coffee. It too closes late and opens up early in the morning. Having the Creamery, Hill of Beans and 24-hour service during the week makes the library my second home before major tests.
My other reason for going to the library is to have fun. That’s an interesting statement, I know, but there are so many things to play with in the library. In the Learning Commons, pictured above, you can start by choosing among an XBox 360, a Wii or a PlayStation to satisfy your gaming itch. These video game stations are almost always occupied, but if you are lucky you can choose from a long list of games for a much needed study break. My personal favorite? Mario Kart for the Wii.
If you’re tired of playing games you can enjoy the library’s technology sandbox. With new touchscreen gadgets and interactive board games, a trip to the library can fill up an afternoon. In addition to being fun to play with, the technology allows for students to practice using things they may encounter in their careers. NC State is committed to providing students with opportunities in school that will help them in life.
No single blog post can do the library justice. I could say one positive thing about it for every book it has, and with nine floors of stacks that would be a lot to write. I have wondered what Daniel Harvey Hill Jr., NC State’s first English professor and its president from 1908 to 1916, would think about having the library named after him. Out of NC State’s founding fathers, I would venture to say his name is most recognizable, and that is the best testament to how grand D.H. Hill Library is.
(Top photograph by Flickr user lkjackson427; middle photograph courtesy of NCSU Libraries)