All college students including myself, know the on-campus study spots all too well. We all have our designated study spot, whether that is the library or near the on-campus Starbucks, but sometimes we need to switch up the scenery. Recently, I have done some exploring around Schenectady and have found some funky coffee shops near Union College that have revamped my studying routine!

Storied Coffee

Honestly, I almost passed Storied Coffee when I went the first time, but I am glad I did not. When I walked in, the rustic and homey atmosphere made me feel instantly at home. Such a welcoming vibe is soothing and makes one feel motivated. The people who work there are super friendly and helpful, making Storied Coffee a home away from home! On top of the atmosphere, the coffee is amazing (I recommend the vanilla latte) and the food is just as incredible! I am so glad I found this little coffee shop because it truly has changed the studying game for me, becoming my new go-to!

Location: 109 Mohawk Ave, Scotia, NY 12302

Square One Cafe (formerly known as Happy Cappuccino)

Jay Street is a cute little road, walking distance from campus, housing some of the most charming cafes and restaurants in the area. Square One Cafe (known as the Happy Cap to Union students) is a Union College favorite, as it is next to many classic brunch spots like Raw and Ambition. This charming cafe is the perfect escape from campus, especially on the weekends, since it is located next to the Schenectady Green Market. After brunch, doing homework in a quaint little coffee shop sounds like the perfect Sunday afternoon! Since Square One Cafe is only a ten-minute walk from campus, it is the perfect escape from the library and other academic buildings. 

Location: 185 Jay St, Schenectady, NY 12305

Graham's Coffee Parlor 

This hidden gem gives off a cozy, authentic coffee shop vibe. It is kind of hipster, taking you out of the urban feeling that is Schenectady. It has a giant window that brings in sunlight and provides a lovely view. For those who love natural light, this just might be your new favorite hangout! As Graham's Coffee is near major retail stores like Target, it makes the drive all the more worth it! After a long day of class and errands, nothing sounds better than sitting in a coffee shop and admiring the view while sipping a hot cup of joe! 

Location: 3406 State St, Schenectady, NY 12304


coffee, milk, tea, beer
Sarah Yanofsky

While this coffee shop may seem obvious, I think it deserves a shout-out. Starbucks is a classic study spot for most college students, Union students included. Even though Union has a "proudly serves Starbucks", it is crucial to switch up the scenery. While not rustic like Storied Coffee and Graham's Coffee, it has the quintessential coffee shop vibe. Starbucks has a bigger variety of drinks than smaller coffee shops, making it appealing to even non-coffee lovers. As Union has only a handful of coffee shops in the surrounding area, sometimes we need to go back to basics!  

Location: 2441 Watt St, Schenectady, NY 12304

2303 Nott St E, Niskayuna, NY 12309