A Day in the Life of a University of Pittsburgh Student

Best restaurant near Pitt: Prince of India and also Lotsa Pizza (make-your-own pizza bar)

Best study spot: Quiet study at Hillman library, third floor reading room, there’s a great view of the cathedral of learning.  

Hannah Woodruff is an English Writing/Business Marketing major ( considering a minor in literature or a certificate in public and professional writing) at the University of Pittsburgh ,located in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania.  [A list of UPitt majors can be found here] When she’s not in class, or battling sleep deprivation, she’s participating in Pitt Project Potter (a Harry Potter themed service organization), Three Rivers Review literary magazine, collision literary magazine (can you tell she’s a writer?), French club, or finding a youth group.  Hannah is equally passionate about; being a Ravenclaw, musicals, and chicken tikka masala- here’s a Day in Her Life!


8:00  am: After hitting ‘snooze’ a couple of times, I am probably dragging myself out of bed with bleary eyes and wobbly, seaman legs. I get ready for the day, usually throwing on the first outfit that matches. If it’s a Tuesday or Thursday, my friend Bridget and I are sipping chai tea and nomming on  pumpkin bread from the Starbucks on Fifth Avenue, one building over from our dorm, Holland Hall (the best dorm, in my biased opinion).

10:00 am: If it’s a Monday or Wednesday, I’m in my Microeconomics lecture (economics is a popular UPitt major). It’s 300 people. I’m likely trying to make sense of supply and demand curves, trying not to resort to the calculator for simple math functions, and taking notes furiously before my professor changes the slide. On a Tuesday or Thursday, Bridget and I are in our 300-student Intro to Psychology lecture. (One of my favorite moments was when we talked about the amygdala and how our favorite songs make us feel and someone said, “‘Allstar’ by SmashMouth [is my favorite], because it makes me feel alive.”)

12:00 pm: I’m likely at Market Central, in the basement of the Litchfield Towers. They have a wide variety of places to get food, but my favorites are Magellan, which serves foreign cuisine (the gyros are surprisingly great) and 360, a circular stove top (good stir fry). Also, they have soft-serve ice cream, which is incredibly difficult to resist as they put it right by the dish drop-off.

2:00 pm: It’s pretty much guaranteed I’m at Hillman Library, doing homework or studying in the quiet study on the third floor. I like to nestle into a green armchair facing the window and prop up my feet while I get work done. The third floor quiet reading room has a great view of the Cathedral of Learning (the Hogwarts of Pitt’s campus).

3:00 pm: If it’s a Monday, Wednesday, or Friday, I am in my 300-student Biology lecture (I just took an exam in it the other day, and all the TA’s lining the walls, watching me test was kind of stressful). (No matter what UPitt major you’re in, you will need to take some general education classes) If it’s a Tuesday or a Thursday, I have my United States and the Holocaust class. The latter of the two is about 25 people, so it’s much smaller than the bigger lectures I’ve described thus far).

5:00 pm: Dinner at Market Central.

6:00 pm: I have Intro to Fiction Writing on Monday night and The Music of the Beatles on Thursday. Both classes are amazing and competing for my favorite. I love listening to the Beatles, analyzing their music, and learning more about their lives and times. Fiction is a lot of fun (obviously because it’s my major). There are only 7 people in that class, including me, so it’s a nice, non-threatening environment in which to share work.

8:00 pm: I’m either in a night class or trying to finish my homework in the dorm while getting distracted by my friends.

10:00 pm: Floor activities, people wandering in and out, out at Southside.

12:00 pm: I’m probably on my second wind, hanging out with some people on my floor or watching a couple episodes of something on Netflix.

2:00 am: Usually, I’m getting into bed at this point, and sleeping.

Interest piqued…. 

If Pitt was a television show, it would be: The Walking Dead, because we’re all walking around sleep-deprived.

there’s more…

Favorite thing about College: living on campus, there’s access to a lot more resources, and there’s always something to do.  Especially at a huge urban school like Pitt, departments and clubs are always holding meetings and events.  Just as a freshman, you don’t really know what to prioritize, how to prioritize.

and more…

Favorite thing about Pitt: I love how there is a nice mix between an urban campus and nature.  There are trees , a  botanical garden, and lots of places to read and study. You can always find good places to study.  I like that there’s lots of green in the city, a perfect balance.

One thing you would change:  There’s a lot of homework (laughs).  I think just as a freshman it’s hard to know how to prioritize and what to prioritize, so that can lead to a lot of stress… or putting clocks in the classroom (laughs).

and finally…

Orientation advice?  Don’t be afraid to talk to people.  As a very introverted person, it’s really hard for me to reach out to people, but everyone is new, and everyone wants to make friends.  And not everyone is as close as you might think.  Pitt especially has lots of good mixers, so I would definitely say to go to those.


More information on the UPitt application can be found here. More information on UPitt majors can be found here.  If you want to read about the Top 10 Ways to Money Fast in College click here

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