The hum of the HVAC is interrupted only by an occasional chime from the elevators facing the zig-zagging staircases that rise in the middle of the atrium. Sun spills into study rooms that line the hallways. Most rooms have floor-to-ceiling windows, and you get a sense you are dangling in the air, completely surrounded by the elements. The world is just waking up. So is Clough Commons.
Some look visibly tired, despite the sunlight bouncing through the windows and off the walls. It appears they may have spent the night in the 24-hour facility. Others are bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. With coffee in hand, Kimberly Schurmeier is the latter. Schurmeier, who teaches chemistry primarily to freshmen, is getting ready for a day of popping in and out of labs and conducting lectures. Her office is warm and inviting and lined with books that detail all the complicated science that may be on the horizon for any young Yellow Jacket. She says seven or eight students might pack into her office during her regularly scheduled hours. “Sometimes they don’t even have questions, they just want to make sure they don’t miss something someone else might ask,” she explains.