Campus Crowding: How to Deal

Photo by Kate Perkins

With a large campus, a little bit of campus crowding is inevitable; we all know this and it’s nothing new. However, this semester there seems to be a lot more people than usual on campus and things seem a little crowded. All of your favorite places like the HUB, the library, even the dining halls, are getting harder to maneuver because of all the people in your way. Every year, Penn State accepts more and more students than the previous year and it’s definitely noticeable. This year, more than 20,000 new students were accepted to Penn State; a big increase from last year. These new faces are exciting, but they also make for some pretty hectic days. Valley is here to tell you how to work around these changes and avoid the crowds.


Everyone knows that the HUB is always busy. With so much going on like new renovations, activities, and performances, people love to flock to this student center. This usually causes a backup of epic proportions. Word of advice for you all: don’t go the HUB at any time that even closely resembles the lunch hour. Going to the HUB during peak hours is guaranteed to change your 10-minute lunch run into a 45-minute lunch run. Trust us, the Chik-fil-A nuggets are not worth your sanity.

The Library

Ahhh the library, a place of quiet and peacefulness. Not this year. You may arrive one day to find some of your favorite spots already occupied. Popular places such as the Media Commons, the Reading Room (aka the Harry Potter room), and anywhere on the first floor are filling up quickly. If you are determined to have a seat in your favorite part of the library, perhaps change the hours you go. Mornings and evenings are almost always empty. You can also find a new study spot. The library is so big that you could spend an entire day venturing to one of the seminar rooms, or even the stacks where there are always a few empty chairs.

Dining Halls

Everyone needs a good meal from time to time. It’s so easy to stop into one of the five dining halls on campus and enjoy a nice lunch, or even fill up a takeout container so you can eat elsewhere. Similar to the Hub lunch rush, dining halls across campus are experiencing an issue with crowd control. The only difference is, this delay is all day long. Step into Pollock for lunch or dinner and you will find yourself standing in a line that reaches towards the mailboxes. Unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to be a real solution to this problem; people love good food and dining halls don’t have the room to accommodate everyone. You’ll just have to budget in an extra 10 or 15 minutes during your lunch hour.


We all know that change is a good thing. It will take a little while to get used to extra students, but in no time you will be maneuvering campus like a pro!


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