U. C. Berkeley: Stephens Hall Graduate Student Lounge to Close
Another part of my past is going the way of all worldly things -- Stephens' Lounge is closing:
On March 31, UC Berkeley graduate students received an email from Dean of the Graduate Division Andrew Szeri stating that the Stephens Hall Graduate Student Lounge, which has been in operation for more than 90 years, will close May 16. (Michelle Pitcher, "Graduate student lounge closure causes unrest," The Daily Californian, April 23, 2014)I worked in that lounge for about five years, from 1984 to 1989 (though with time away for stays in Switzerland, mainly Fribourg and Basel), and as the above photo shows (especially if you click on the photo), it is a beautiful room, and a great place to work:
Located at 440 Stephens Hall, the wood-paneled room is reserved exclusively for use by UC Berkeley graduate students and staff. The space, filled with natural light, is equipped with numerous study areas, and coffee and cookies are available for purchase.Yes, I worked there, and in two senses, as grad student poring over texts and as UC employee pouring coffee. Verily, I was a barista before my time and the term! A very simple barista doing an easy job that somebody had to do. But all that work -- the hard grad-grind and the easy ground coffee -- is all gone now, apparently, if Dean Szeri has his way.
What remain are friendships forged in the lounge -- such as with Natalie Macris, who sent me this sad report -- and memories, of course, one of which long-time readers of Gypsy Scholar might recall, a previously told tale of the lounge . . .