Bass Library will continue its 24-hour service during reading week, but if students do not follow the rules, the program may be in jeopardy.
Last semester when Bass Library first offered the service, nocturnal students taking advantage of the program to study were joined by a handful of others who brought in tents, sleeping bags, food and even alcohol into the library, turning the traditional all-nighter into a jovial affair. The library staff, unhappy with last year’s results, has agreed to keep the extended hours this semester but will discontinue the program if students do not comply with library rules, Associate University Librarian Danuta Nitecki said.
“For Bass, it’s not just a simple matter,” Nitecki said of the program. “We do have to find security staff who are willing to work the night shifts and it puts in demand the custodial services. We want to make sure it is utilized in an effective way.”
The library has asked the Yale College Council to help them “change the culture” of studying in Bass during reading week through publicity about the service’s uncertain future, YCC Secretary Jasper Wang ‘10 said.
The council has asked Dean of Student Affairs Marichal Gentry to include a reiteration of library rules — including bans on alcohol and sleeping bags — in an e-mail to be sent later this week announcing the extension of Bass’ hours during reading week, Wang said. The YCC will also depend on students to spread the news, Wang said.
“A lot of it is just word of mouth,” Wang said. “Just the fact that students might be cognizant that it could be taken off the table would shape them up a little bit.”
Of the seven students interviewed, a majority expressed ambivalence about the extended hours, saying they could study elsewhere late at night if needed.
“I didn’t really study at the library all 24 hours,” Zachary Mulvihill ‘11 said. “I am not planning on pulling an all-nighter this semester either.”
Yet last spring, students eagerly seized the first opportunity to spend 24 hours in Bass, which opened last October — perhaps too eagerly, five of the students interviewed said.
“The camping-out stuff was too distracting,” said Melissa Wu ‘11, who witnessed the revelry while studying last year.
Bass will be open 24 hours from Wednesday morning to Friday night of reading week, Wang said.
Despite strong initial support for the library’s crackdown on inappropriate library behavior, one freshman said she is sad to have missed out on last year’s fun.
“The whole sleeping bags and tent thing actually sounds like a lot of fun,” Alicia Darnell ‘12 said. “I am still in denial about finals.”
In 2004, Harvard University students called for a 24 hour library service, notably absent from their school. After a rocky start, Lamont Library is now open for 24 hours, five days a week, during the fall and spring semesters.