It’s a product of waiting 10 years, said Director of Library Services Dr. Rosemary N. Mokia. She remembers years ago when A.C. Lewis Memorial Library had only two computers. Others had been added over time, but it had been 11 years since new ones had been installed.
Now, the official opening of the Library Instruction Lab that was held Monday with a formal ribbon-cutting ceremony has changed all that.
The library had long been needing to be brought up to par with new computers for the students and faculty, said former Dean of Library Services Pauline Lee.
In order to receive the new computers in the upstairs Reading Room at the library, Lee said, the Grants Committee had to go through the University of Louisiana System Board of Regents. She went to the ULS Web site to research the types of grants they offer that would help support the library in getting new computers.
The Grants Committee had to find the right grant that fit their vision. An outline of the requirements was submitted last summer, but Hurricane Katrina set back the proposal for a while because the system had frozen non-emergency spending.
Although the university asked the Board of Regents for $125,000, only $85,000 was given, and the university had to make up the difference.
"The students need to have a place where they can go and research and get information with the proper technology to utilize," said Dr. Anthony Nelson, acting dean of the College of Business.
Dareece Gibson, a junior from Phoenix, said it is a great feeling to see the school improving and it’s a positive change to have access to new computers in the library.
The university library received 38 new computers for the lab and two computers for presentation. The faculty will be able to instruct the students in lab sessions and with research of the catalog.
Library specialist Jerry Brooks said having a lab where the students can access the Web and various data bases will eliminate any excuses they might have for not doing their research assignments.}