Does Emerson have what you need to compose, process, and develop your project? Most likely. Are you always guaranteed the opportunity to work on it when you want? Don’t count on it. The computer lab in the library is usually packed, especially during weekday evenings, finals, and days that your personal computer crashes. Students often complain about the lack of available computers in the library, forgetting that there are other labs that can be used to print and work. The labs in the Ansin Building (180 Tremont) are on the smaller size but are very convenient for anyone who lives on campus. Occupancy of the other labs fluctuates based on classes that may be taught in them.The Walker Building (120 Boylston) has a variation of open-access labs, which are always open to students, and classroom labs, which are reserved primarily for classes.
Because of the hit-or-miss availability of lab computers, students should strongly consider bringing their own. Students can save money by leaving a printer out of their carts and printing in the labs, but, again, planning is key. Emerson offers a network connection for each on-campus resident and provides every student with an e-mail address and network account that gives access to computer labs, Web publishing, and on-line tutorials. Each classroom is also hooked up with at least one network connection. The wireless network reaches into the Common, the cafeteria, and some classrooms and common areas. In terms of software, Emerson may not give you anything—or even provide discounted software for that matter—but the computer labs are stocked with a wide range of programs. Important equipment, such as cameras and editing machines, is also available for rental.