One of my favorite aspects of being a Scripps Admission Ambassador is showing off our beautiful, Pinterest-worthy campus. Today, I’ll be telling you about some of my favorite spots. A few of these spots are shown on tours, whereas others aren’t discovered until you’re an actual student on campus.
Before we start, I do want to give a special shout out to our lovely groundskeepers and maintenance workers who are dedicated to keeping our campus gorgeous!
1. The Motley & Seal Court
These are two spots in one! Seal Court is our picturesque fountain known for its seal statues (that spurt water out of their mouths), live koi fish, lily pads, and turtles! (The turtles are a little harder to spot because they only show up when they feel like it.) Surrounding the fountain, are plenty of benches, chairs, and tables that are perfect for hanging out and studying. In addition, trees stand around the fountain, ready to provide much needed shade from our round the clock sunny weather. The sides of the fountain are decorated with mosaic tiles that depict an under the sea world. Seal Court is home to our Scripps Tea tradition and a popular spot for sophomores to present on their Core projects every year. You can also buy Challah bread here every Friday from our student club, Scripps Challah, which is dedicated to food justice! Their bread is simply *chef’s kiss*.
Located in this courtyard, is the Motley! The Motley is our student-run coffeeshop. This is where I spend the other half of my work life, as a Barista. When I first visited Scripps, I knew immediately that I wanted to be a Barista here. Dreams do come true! The Motley is a great spot for studying, hanging out, and events! There is a stage where local bands perform and open mics are held. There’s a big screen where films and club presentations are sometimes shown. Best of all, you can take your Motley mug outside and sip your drink in Seal Court. You just have to leave your I.D. behind to guarantee you’ll bring back the mug. Or you can bring your own!
2. Graffiti Wall & the Rose Garden
This is also two spots in one! Are you a history dork like me? Then you’ll love the graffiti wall. The graffiti wall is essentially a collection of illustrations and signatures. Every graduating class since the 1930s has signed their name on the wall around an illustration that reflects what was important to the students during their college years or what was going on in the world at the time. The illustration is painted on by a fellow senior whose design gets voted on by the rest of the class. I love walking by the wall and reading all the old-timey names like Dot and Shirley, as well as the wacky nicknames some of them had. One example I remember is Lil’ Mac. It’s fun to wonder what the stories behind them are. In addition, it’s fascinating to see U.S. history reflected on the wall. For example, one of the most notable signatures is Class of 1970’s which just says “STOP THE WAR,” the Class of 2011’s has a graph depicting the Great Recession, and Class of 2020’s will have flowers sprouting out of a mask.
The graffiti wall is right behind our famous Rose Garden! Legend has it that the reason we have the Rose Garden is because Harvey Mudd guys used to break into the president’s house’s garden and steal the roses to gift to Scripps students as part of their courtship. The president was obviously not too happy about this and so we got the Rose Garden! Anyone can come and pick the roses. Brides-to-be and prom-goers love to use our roses for their flower needs. Some people don’t know this, but there’s also a hidden grill here that’s great for making s’mores!
3. The Browsing Rooms, Especially Toll Hall’s
Every residential hall at Scripps has a browsing room which is basically just an additional study space, except make it ~aesthetic~. My favorite browsing room is Toll Hall’s browsing room. Toll is our oldest residential hall. It actually used to be the entire college when Scripps was first founded. Thus, the architecture in Toll’s browsing room is extra special, extra old, and allegedly extra haunted. (I have yet to experience anything, though!) There’s a chaise lounge that’s perfect for fainting or just reading. The walls are also lined with books that previous students have left behind for subsequent generations. Before you buy your books, make sure to look through the browsing rooms! We don’t show this on tours anymore so the only way to get in is to be a Scripps student or to know one. I love coming here on sunny and quiet Sundays to do work. It’s super serene!
4. Star Court
This special spot is also in Toll Hall and now rarely shown on tours. It’s a great little nook to throw down a blanket and lounge on the grass. Sometimes people take their emotional support animals here to frolic, so you might be able to see some cute dogs. In addition, if you want to splurge a little, get a hammock to hang on the pillars so you can read as the Claremont breeze sways you to sleep. 10/10 would recommend.
5. Denison Library
Are you in love with the dark academia aesthetic? Go to Denison. It has creaky wooden tables and floors, stained glass windows, a fireplace, random statue busts, and a study room that every visitor tells me reminds them of the Gryffindor common room. In addition, there’s a rare book room! The only way in is to ask the librarian for a tour. I highly recommend it because there’s a lot of cool stuff in there. For example, a 3,000+ year old tablet, a book bound in human skin, a gigantic medieval-looking leather bound book, and more! If you’re lucky enough to get a job here, you’ll have even more access. My friend Jeanette works here and she once sent the group chat a picture of an original newspaper about the moon landing that she found in storage. Also, shout out to the head librarian, Jennifer, who’s my plug for Girl Scout cookies during the spring!
6. Tiernan Field House’s Wellness Room
Feeling stressed? Well, head on over to the Tiernan Field House. Tiernan is our wellness center. Not only is it equipped with a gym and a pool, it also focuses on mental/emotional wellness. Every week, Tiernan has de-stress events that you can participate in. One of my favorites is Bob Ross Night, where they put up a Bob Ross video on a big screen and provide all the materials for you to follow along. I’m looking at my winter wonderland painting as I write this. However, while everyone always talks about our pool (which is stunning btw, you should Google it), today I want to focus on the Wellness Room. There’s plenty of couches, a beanbag chair, board games, a mini-waterfall, and, best of all, a massage chair! This is a spot you won’t have access to on a tour and few people know about. This is the place to melt into a puddle of relaxation.
So that’s a few of my favorite spots on campus. Hope you enjoyed it!
See you next Friday!