Engineering library resources to remain dispersed

Engineering library resources from the Becton Center will remain distributed among Yale’s libraries in the 2012-’13 academic year, administrators announced Thursday.

Library and School of Engineering and Applied Science administrators held a public meeting in Dunham Thursday to discuss arrangements for the library’s collections, which moved to Bass Library, Sterling Memorial Library, Dunham Laboratory and the Library Shelving Facility in Hamden last semester to allow construction on the Center for Engineering Innovation and Design in Becton. Deputy Dean of SEAS Vincent Wilczynski said the SEAS collections will remain in their new locations for the “foreseeable future,” and administrators will re-evaluate the distribution based on space availability and feedback from the engineering community.

The collections would likely relocate to either Sterling or the Center for Science and Social Science Information, University Librarian Susan Gibbons said in a Tuesday email, though no decision has been reached and no timeline set. The interim library in Dunham is housing reference materials and recent journals.

“Before the [Yale University Library considers] when to move the books we first have to talk with the SEAS community to see whether Sterling or CSSSI is the best location,” Gibbons said.

The number of library users has increased as more students are “discovering the new space,” Gibbon said, and no library services have been suspended despite the move. She added that a portion of the new library location in Dunham is open to students 24/7, calling the hours a “main difference” from when the collections were housed in Becton.

“The School of Engineering & Applied Science has been generous in making the Mann Student Center available to us and we have been working closely with them to insure that it can be used as needed for events while also serving as a library and study space,” she said.

But not all members of the SEAS community have expressed support for the plan.

Mechanical engineering professor Alessandro Gomez said the decentralization of the engineering library may make it more difficult to browse engineering materials.

Four engineering majors interviewed had differing opinions on the redistribution of the engineering library.

Nathaniel Knapp ’14, a chemical engineering major, said he typically uses the computer cluster in Dunham rather than the library itself. He said he is unlikely to trek from his dorm in Davenport College to the new location, which is further from Yale’s main campus, but understood why the collections had relocated to Dunham.

“It’s a fine place to put for the moment because engineering students are already in the area because classes are nearby,” he said. “It’s a good central location for engineering students.”

Electrical engineering major Peter Jasinski ’12 said he has not minded the relocation of physical library resources, adding that he thinks engineering students tend to use the library primarily as a study space.

But Tim Westcott ’14 said the move was “probably necessary” because the library in Becton was outdated and had a “cold, prison-like feel.”

The Thursday meeting was attended by eight SEAS professors, two computer science professors and one undergraduate, Wilczynski said.

Comments

  • yalengineer

    As a tour guide I used to tell visitors that Becton Library was one of the University’s best kept secrets. It’s one of the few empty and quiet libraries on campus.

  • monty

    People who study in libraries tend to resemble their pets more frequently than those who don’t.