The LaGuardia Student Technology Center (STC)—aka the most underrated place on campus—is a computer lab and where I work for my on-campus job. I should (because it has been engraved on my prefrontal cortex) say that our space has an audio/visual studio, study rooms, and a variety of gaming consoles. It’s like a day care for geeky and slightly nerdy college students.

Welcome to the STC
Window art at the STC

Let me start with a brief tour. We’re located just south of Bobst Library (that big brown building everyone remembers from the campus tour) on LaGuardia Place. On the first floor, Animal Crossing window art and a jar of lollipops greet you. There’s a couch, a TV, a few chairs, and a hallway to the open study area. Downstairs, there’s another couch, rows of computers, and more TVs (usually populated by the FIFA and Mario Kart series).

Oh, and there are students everywhere! Playing video games, printing big colorful posters for their theatre show, napping, studying, eating—you name it. My favorite thing about the STC is that we have regulars. There aren’t many places like that on campus.

During winter break, there was a student who came here every day specifically to use the Xbox. He would play the same game for hours. Often, he was the only one in the space. For me, this added purpose to the Groundhog Day feeling of working during break. As an international student, I know that sometimes you just can’t go home for x, y, and z reasons. And trust me, finding something free to do in New York City isn’t easy! Seeing that student every day, as if he was clocking in for work, made me realize how cool it would have been if I knew about the STC during my first winter break here.

Semesters can get busy, so there are usually two or three of us working together at the STC. Of course, there are a lot of responsibilities. For example, we keep track of the items we lend out, set up the recording booth, download games, clean, and organize. But most of our time is spent at the front desk. It is a compact space, so whether you like it or not, you will have to talk to your coworkers. You will naturally become friends with some of them or simply enjoy talking.

When the work schedules settle, you know who’s on each of your shifts, so you can be excited to hang out in between doing the job. The front desk has become my source of gossip and jokes. Sometimes it’s even a source of therapy, advice, and STC lore, especially from the veteran employees. We also get to do creative stuff together, like decorating the staircase with xo Kart characters or making a bunch of spring-themed cutouts!

Me and my co-worker Na

If you are considering applying to work here, do not hesitate. Everyone was helpful and friendly when I started. What’s more, there is nothing you can’t ask your coworkers about the job. Although I got some formal training, I picked up most of my skills from trial and error. For example, a customer might have a problem with GarageBand in the audio/visual room, and if we don’t know the solution…well, at least we’re not alone. We will search every internet forum to find it. The hiring process typically begins in the middle of the summer, so go get that résumé ready!

Students play video games at the Student Technology Center at a student–worker appreciation event.
Student worker appreciation event done right.

After a few months, the STC started feeling like a third place to me. People who come here engage with the “ecosystem” that we have created: they study, then play a game to take a break, then remember they wanted to print a poster, then go back to working on their assignments. It feels alive even though it’s mostly computers. As an employee, you don’t just get free coffee—you also understand how much thought was put into the space. We even debate the color of LED lights for the day! I want you to forget the phrase “There’s no cool place on campus.” because it’s not true. The STC (located, again, less than five minutes away from Bobst!!) is a hub for activity and creativity, and I can’t wait to meet you there!

P.S. NYU has two additional STCs: Third North and Kimmel Quick Print. You should check out their resources too!

I’m a sophomore at NYU Courant majoring in Computer Science. I mainly focus on building software and problem-solving algorithms, but my goal is to do machine learning and natural language processing. I’m also taking journalism classes because of my love for writing. I was born and raised in Russia where I went to a boarding high school, so moving to New York City was a huge change for me. I got to travel around Europe as a kid but my first time in the U.S. was when I landed in JFK two years ago. What I love the most about this city is the diversity and the variety of things to do on a Friday night! Outside of school I love traveling, cooking and writing! When I’m not studying or working for the Student Tech Centers, you can find me at the latest new coffee shop in the neighborhood.