Department of English & World Languages

Walden Studio

The University of Montevallo’s Walden Studio is a space dedicated to quiet reflection and creativity.

The studio is based on the same floor plan as the cabin of nature writer Henry David Thoreau, who advised that self-discovery comes from a singular relationship with nature. Today, Thoreau’s call to reconnect with nature seems urgent on university campuses, where the simple act of “unplugging” from work or social media can feel inconceivable. The Walden Studio is meant to offer a respite from these pressures and distractions.

Walden Studio outside

Situated on a wooded peninsula near the University Lake, the studio includes a workspace, library, seating area, meditation mat, and outdoor classroom. The landscaping features native plantings that highlight the natural seasonal beauty of Alabama. The furnishings in the Walden studio are second-hand and have been reconditioned to preserve the rustic atmosphere of Thoreau’s original cabin, but with functionality in mind.

Beginning October 15, 2021, Walden Studio is open for use by UM students, faculty and staff on weekdays between the hours of 9am-5pm. Keys can be checked out by visiting the English department (Humanities 201). Valid campus ID is required. To reserve the studio or outdoor classroom ahead of time, contact the English Department’s Administrative Assistant, Susan Martin, at or 205.665.6420.

Walden Studio inside

Walden Studio is made possible by a generous donation from James Babcock with additional support from the UM Department of English & World Languages and the UM Green Fund.