Best College Libraries

February 6, 2023
The 16 Coolest College

It took a while, but the internet has displaced libraries as the center of college scholarship. Reference books are available online, study groups can meet on Skype, and research films can be streamed to your phone.

Still, let's not count out the ol' brick-and-mortar behemoths full of dead trees. Libraries still house millions of volumes the web doesn't have. They serve as a gathering place for late-night, coffee-fueled cram sessions. And they're where students from all over the world come together, speak in whispers, and make sure no one steals their laptops while they run to the bathroom.
They’re also architectural marvels, and on many of the finest American college campuses they're the most iconic structure that isn't a football stadium. They include neo-Gothic classics at Michigan and Washington, pillared temples at Columbia and Cal, and glass-paned walls at Ohio State and Fresno (yes, Fresno!). And while many campuses around the country have similarly impressive libraries, for a wide representation of big and small, these are the 15 best.

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Sapporo Snow Festival (Yuki Matsuri)

This exuberant celebration of snow and ice has been held since 1950 in Sapporo, the capital city Hokkaido. The week's activities feature a colorful parade and competitive events in winter sports, as well as a display of colossal snow sculptures along the main street and in Odori Park. The sculptures are spectacular—intricately carved and often several stories high. About three weeks before the festival, a wooden frame is built and packed with snow; after the snow has hardened the frame is removed and the carving begins. A different theme is chosen each year for the sculptures. More...

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Who can look down upon the grave even of an enemy, and not feel a compunctious throb, that he should ever have warred with the poor handful of earth that lies moldering before him?
Washington Irving