Today: Feb 29, 2024

SGA wants to extend Sunday library hours

Monica Szacaks, News Writer-

Traditionally, Sunday is a day when students do most of their homework, so Student Government said it wants to extend library hours to accommodate students’ needs, according to Student Government Association President Ben McNamee.

“What we noticed is that the library hours are shorter on Sunday,” said McNamee, “and that really doesn’t make sense when students are typically doing their homework and preparing for the rest of the week ahead.” 

Chuck Klatt, chair of the Board of Student Issues, said last semester students brought it to his attention that they do not have enough time on Sundays to get their work done. Klatt said the committee realized the library is open longer on days many students are not on campus doing homework, such as Thursday and Friday nights, and decided to put forth an action. 

“So we kind of looked at what is feasible with the budget,” said Klatt, “and we kind of examined the hours and saw if we can swap out hours for others, then that would be the most realistic goal for now to really help the students.”

Christina Baum, library director, said for the library to stay open longer, there needs to be full-time faculty and security working. The cost for two extra hours, according to Baum, for a Sunday evening would be $1,269. She said the cost does not include the security guard, because that comes out of a different budget. 

“I am looking into that for a possibility and I have a librarian that is willing to work that late,” said Baum. “Right now, I’m trying to find somebody that we have that is willing to work the circulation desk.”

Baum said she approves the plan to extend the hours if that is what students need. She said if faculty and security are on board, then it could happen within a month. Baum talked about adding more hours to the schedule while Klatt and McNamee said they want to swap hours so that the budget stays the same. 

The Board of Student Issues, said Klatt, did a lot of research before presenting their concern to their advisers, the director of the library and Student Affairs. Over 200 students were surveyed outside the library on various days, according to Klatt, and members went inside the library on a Thursday and Sunday night to get a visual comparison. 

“What we saw is that there were twice as many students on a Sunday night than a Thursday night,” said Klatt. That showed us that it’s not just what we think, it’s actually happening on campus.”

One survey question, said Klatt, was if students just use the library for the computer lab. He said the majority answered no which shocked him, because he said usually people would think students are using Facebook, browsing the Internet or just printing out papers. To make sure the survey was correct, Klatt said they went into the library and found students doing group projects, using books and utilizing the resources. Students also answered they would use the library if it was open longer on Sunday nights. The survey also consisted of check mark boxes for the amount of hours students spent inside the library at one time. 

“There was a couple 0-2 and 4-6 but the majority was 2-4,” said Klatt. 

“What we got out of it is that they aren’t using the computer lab, they actually use it for work on campus and they are there for at least an hour which is good, because it is perfect for what we want.”

Student Government also noticed on Sundays, the Student Center is open an hour later than the library, according to McNamee. Currently on Sundays, the library closes at 9 p.m. 

“When the library closes,” said McNamee, “all the students that were in there just go outside the library, cross the quad and go into the Student Center to finish whatever they can before they have to go back to their dorms.”

Klatt said he was impressed with how fast Baum and Ron Herron, vice president of Student Affairs, were willing to work with Student Government to make the hours possible. 

“It was started by Southern,” said Klatt. “Student government is just listening to the voices, that’s what we do, and we bring it to the attention of the faculty and they are taking control of it.”

1 Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Latest from Blog