Students weigh in on idea of expanded library hours

Kathleen Pizzo

The Sacramento State Library is open until 11 p.m. on weekdays, but some students feel they could utilize its services after the current closing time.

Hannah Lifson, a 21-year-old communication studies major, said she is in the library five days a week and prefers it to other study areas such as the 24-hour Academic Information Resource Center.

“I like coming to the library,” Lifson said. “In the AIRC it’s cold, there’s classes going on and everyone’s really loud.”

Lifson said she also uses the services in the library, like the Media Center and check-out desk.

“When I want to rent out a laptop, I only have until 8 p.m. so I have to get it done during the day when I have class,” Lifson said.

Nielsen Gabriel, president of Associated Students Inc., said a student came to him about extending the library hours and there may be more who would appreciate the extension.

“It’s an example of how we are looking at every student issue,” Gabriel said. “We’re going to talk to the Faculty Senate and the Dean of the Library and see what we can do.”

Mary Reddick, head of User Services, said during the regular semester there is not an obvious need for longer hours except during finals and midterms, but when students want more study space the AIRC is open 24 hours.

“We wouldn’t refuse it if we saw there was a demand through a survey or something like that,” Reddick said. “I don’t make those decisions, but my sense is that if there was a real strong demand and we had the resources to cover it, we would try to accommodate people.”

As far as student demand, Gabriel said he would initially ask ASI Executive Vice President Erica Brown to put out a survey that would assess how students would utilize the library later at night.

“Anything is possible,” Gabriel said. “But the reality is, you have to think about who is going to man that service desk and you have to think about hiring security for it too. As far as it’s feasibility, I’d have to look into it.”

Reddick said that because homelessness is an issue on campus, there would have to be a strong security system in place.

“I think it’s a matter of funding, resources and people to keep it open,” Reddick said.

The library is open from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. on weekdays but is closed at 5 p.m. on weekends.

But services such as the Media Center, which closes at 9 p.m. on weekdays and 5 p.m. on weekends, and the Reference Desk, which closes at 6 p.m. on weekdays and 5 p.m. on weekends, close before the rest of the library.

No CSU campus offers a full service library 24 hours a day but several are open until midnight.

San Francisco State offers a 24-hour research center and Cal Poly offers a 24-hour light night study center, but neither offer both.

Tyler Rumbaugh, a 20-year-old economics major, said because of the current library closing time, he refrains from using it.

“I use the library a decent amount but I use the AIRC more because I study when it is late,” Rumbaugh said. “If the library was open later I probably would use it more because I like to study a lot the night before a test and the AIRC is always really full.”