Since April 1, students looking to study on weekend nights have a library at their disposal. The Office of Student Affairs and O’Neill Library have begun a pilot program that allows for O’Neill to remain open all night on Fridays and Saturdays. In conjunction with UGBC leadership, this initiative will allow students to study on the first floor of O’Neill over the next three weekends, until the library begins its end-of-semester exam hours.
The 24-hour, seven-days-a-week initiative will differ operationally from regular hours. Jim Kreinbring, director of administrative services in the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs, said that because only the first floor of O’Neill will be accessible during the pilot weekends, students must enter through the Maloney Hall side of the library in order to gain access.
“This will definitely appeal to students who would rather get their work done instead of going out and partying.”
-Jason Lam, CSOM ’16
According to Kreinbring, while printers will be available and operational on the library’s first floor, other library services—such as course reserves and headphones—will not. Also, to placate concerns for the safety of students, the study area will be staffed by a security officer between the hours of 10 p.m. and 9 a.m.
“The goal is to provide more late-night study space for students on weekend nights—a suggestion that came from UGBC,” Kreinbring said.
Caroline Monnes, Senator on the Campus Improvements Committee and MCAS ’19, noted that UGBC began working on this initiative after reading a column published in November in The Heights, “A Call for Increased Weekend Study Hours and Locations at BC.”
The author of the column, Magdalen Sullivan, argues that exams and papers are a weekly occurrence, and so students should have the option to study rather than be forced to deal with noisy dorms.
“Right now, the library hours represent a surrender of the University to the social life on campus—an acceptance of bad student habits as opposed to striving to fix it,” Sullivan wrote. “It’s not about active campaigning against drinking on the weekend—it’s about simply giving students the opportunity to opt-out.”
Much like Kreinbring, Monnes’ goals with the pilot program focus on keeping students’ best interests in mind.
Monnes said that this pilot will give students a quiet space on the weekends away from the noise of dorm rooms and lounges to study for upcoming midterms and finals.
BC Libraries and UGBC will also gauge students’ demand for the extended hours in the first weeks of the pilot program.
“This will definitely appeal to students who would rather get their work done instead of going out and partying,” Jason Lam, CSOM ’16, said. “For these students, it must be tough trying to find a quiet place to study on a Friday or Saturday.”
If this pilot program is successful and draws enough attendance, then these overnight hours could continue into the next academic year, Kreinbring said.
“My only concern is that there are not many students that actually study on Friday or Saturday,” Lam said. “Even if there are—I doubt that they would study late into the night … maybe closing at 1 or 2 a.m. would be late enough.”
Featured Image by Savanna Kiefer / Heights Editor