Walking into the A.C. Memorial Library can be an exciting moment for some and a quick turn-around trip for others.
Located next to Carver Hall and directly behind Long Jones Hall, the library is not the most popular place on campus. The books are old (some hold mold), the computer labs close early, and there’s a weird smell that hits you immediately when you walk in.
That smell is the smell of old mold. The source of the mold was in the library’s basement; it was covered in its entirety with it. During the last waterproofing project this year, the problem was addressed and the mold in the basement was cleaned. Since then, the mold has stayed away and the library basement is now up to par.
“The basement is now very clean, and since then the mold has cleared up tremendously,” said Cecilia Iwala, interim director of the library.
Although the condition of the library has improved, compared to before the mold was cleaned up, the physical building needs more improvements within.
Many students feel the library isn’t a comfortable learning environment with few resources.
“If we had updated books and a new building, this would be a much better learning environment and place to study,” said Donovan Hygrade, a senior biology major from St. Louis. “Most times I can’t find updated books to look up my work so I have to turn to the Internet, and sometimes that’s not reliable.”
Other negative factors include the elevator, which has been broken for years; and the hours of the computer labs.
The labs close early because of the Information Technology Center – the library has no control over those specific labs and their hours.
Students also have been said to have to pay to print, but this is also out of the library’s control. Due to lack of funds, the library cannot support the labs.
Students are able to print for free at other outlets such as JTS, Brown Hall and one computer lab provided in the library. The library also doesn’t have color printing; there is no budget to support that function.
The fax machine and scanner is outdated and broken, and that has never been offered to students in the library.
“We need faster computers, or new ones,” said Darryl Craig, a junior biology major from New Orleans. “Half of the sites I try to visit don’t even work. And when I’m trying to upload my work from a jump drive, sometimes that doesn’t work.”
Students have often complained about the computers and how slowly they move. There is currently no budget for new computers. Most computers are outdated but are being updated with present day software, which reduces speed and have other major problems.
Students can borrow computers. They are meant used/loaned to students who cannot afford to buy their own. Present the librarian with your valid school ID and complete a check out form and you can check out the computer – if they’re working.
library is the lighting.
Iwala said the library is currently on the list for remodeling. Although requests to replace lights have been made, they have not been replaced because of a shortage of lights from the Facilities Department as well as the burned-out ballasts in the library that cannot be replaced at this time. Without the ballast, the light will not work, even if new lights are installed.
She also believes part of the reason students don’t utilize the library is because of its condition.
Although many students don’t utilize the library, some do. Calilla Fobin, a freshman nursing major from The Island Of Cameroom visits every day. “It’s warm, comfortable and quiet in here,” she explained. “It could be a little more cleaner and organized, but for the most part it’s one of my favorite places on campus.”
The library’s director had a chance to visit Georgia Tech’s new library and expressed how she would love for the university to make changes just as they did.
“After visiting Georgia Tech’s new library I wanted one too. It was so beautiful and nice. The building was welcoming and the students would want to come more,” she said.
The administration is currently working on implementing a new 21st Century library conclusive for students’ learning,