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Davis, California

Sunday, April 14, 2024

Traversing the UC Davis Campus


Students provide tips on getting around Davis’ confusing campus

Navigating campus can be difficult as a new UC Davis student. Roundabouts are confusing and dangerous, everyone is in a panic to find their new classes and buildings seem nearly impossible to find across the vast campus. Quarter after quarter, it becomes easier to make your way around campus, but veterans of this initial struggle gave advice to make your transition in navigating campus for the first time a bit easier.

“I primarily utilize Google Maps to find my new classes,” said Katelin Hermone, a fourth-year design student. “To get around campus, I type in the name of the hall on Google Maps. I would usually go to the classroom the day before I had the class so I wouldn’t have to be navigating on my phone on the day of. I also try to remember where main landmarks are to help me navigate, like remembering where certain streets are. I made a mental note of where California Avenue is because it’s a major road where I happen to have a lot of my classes too.”

Other popular landmarks to note or familiarize yourself with include the Silo, the Memorial Union and Peter J. Shields Library, as many classes and buildings are near these central locations on campus.

Hermone noted that navigating campus when new students arrive has always been stressful and difficult due to the general confusion of most new students who were unfamiliar with the main landmarks of the campus.

“I normally bike around campus to get around,” Hermone said. “But during the first few weeks I avoid biking in busy areas because I know that bike accidents are more prone to happen when people are confused or lost.”

Andrea Tong, a fourth-year psychology major, noted how she continuously utilizes efficiency apps on her phone to help her get around campus during her time in Davis. UC Davis’ campus spans over 5000 acres and different spots on campus can continue to be confusing to find throughout a student’s time at UC Davis.

“I kind of cheat to navigate around campus,” Tong said. “Normally, what I do – especially if I’m concerned about finding my classes on time – is have a picture of a campus map on my phone. This is so helpful when I’m figuring out my schedule so I have enough time to get to my classes. I look at where each of my classes would be on the map and visualize the distance between my classes.”

Tong added that, while it can be confusing at times to navigate the campus at UC Davis, it did get easier over time.

“Everyone at Davis is really helpful and you can always ask around for help or directions,” Tong said. “After your first year at Davis, you definitely get the hang of what kind of classes you’re going to get. If it’s the same kind of class, they usually stay in the same building and that definitely makes it easier to find later on.”

Kris Lee, a fourth-year economics major, also relies on a digital application to help him navigate campus when finding different locations becomes confusing.

“The thing that worked for me the best was the UC Davis campus map,” Lee said. “You just input the building name onto the campus map, and it would use landmarks to help you navigate to your location. Know your landmarks, like the Memorial Union or the Silo. The campus map would help to navigate you to your location based on its proximity to another main building on campus.”

Being a returning student, Lee provided some words of encouragement to individuals who may be concerned about the maze that is the UC Davis campus.  

“Make sure you look both ways before you cross bike paths,” Lee said. “Getting around campus definitely gets easier; it might take some time to get used to things, but once you do, navigating campus becomes easy.”


Written by: Alyssa Hada — features@theaggie.org



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