Mabee Library has yielded many complaints over the past several years, but has turned those complaints into benefits for the Washburn students this year.
After a successful 24/7 finals week last semester, where students filled the library every night to study, it seems like the library is ready to start attracting more attention.
Last semester, Kyle Brown, a senior finance major at Washburn, decided to campout under the staircase at the library – and Washburn was OK with it (search on our Web site: “Student camps out in library to make point”). This has happened at numerous other universities, and many students have been kicked out the moment they were discovered. Mabee welcomed this form of excitement in the library.
It’s great to see activities are starting to pick up, and more students are coming in. After all, there are even more features being offered this semester, even though library sleepovers aren’t one of them.
Students can start to take advantage of free printing, brought in by the Washburn Student Government Association. Mabee Library is also providing free workshops this week (see page A2 for dates and times) to help beginners learn more about the library and different research methods.
There is also an even more exciting feature announced this week – talk to your Washburn librarian on AIM. Seriously, put mabeereference into AIM, or any of those other chat interfaces, and ask any [reference] question you deem necessary. Please don’t abuse the system though. They aren’t there for casual conversation like our friends are. Trust us, we’ve tried.
Mabee is also looking for a new dean for next year, and the committee is already in the process of bringing people to campus to meet the staff and students.
These candidates have a challenge to embrace though – keeping this momentum up and going. WSGA has thrown a large amount of their weight behind it this year, but we can’t always expect them to do that, as new student administrations move in every year.
The new vice president of academic affairs and the new WSGA administration may not make Mabee Library their top priority next year, so as an academic body, if it’s something we believe they need to concentrate on, it’s our responsibility to let them know.
It’s also our responsibility to help the new dean market the library, and support their plans to make it better.