Appleby Café has been open all this term alongside Study Space in St Oswald’s Institute, and plenty of students have been hard at work in both spaces each day. I’ve been especially enjoying my shifts at Appleby Café, in part because of the very tasty paninis (brie, bacon, and cranberry is my favourite), and in part because there’s something nice about bringing a generous helping of hot soup or a steaming mug of good, strong tea to a frazzled student.
Being around Study Space also reminds me of being a student, which, of course, I was, until very recently. I mostly revised in college in my first year (when I wasn’t taking walks in the countryside or watching all eight Harry Potter films with my friends) and (very controversially) didn’t have exams in my third year, but virtually lived in St Oswald’s Institute in my second year. I remember feeling comforted by the friendly smiles I would receive upon entering the room, and really getting into the ‘zone’ because of the pin-drop silence. I also vividly remember trying to figure out the shortest route across the room to the toilet each time I needed it, because of the pin-drop silence.
As a student, I felt a lot less stressed in Study Space than in the university library. There was a sense of peace in the air, and starting and ending our days with prayer reminded me that I was ultimately working to glorify God, and that my worth did not lie in my grades. I hope that Appleby Café and Study Space continue to do this for the students who come in every day. I’m grateful that now, as an Intern, I’m able to be part of something that brought much encouragement to me when I was a student.