Students slow to use library’s extended hours

By Queen Ramirez


University of the Incarnate Word students are not coming in droves yet to take advantage of the library’s extended hours this fall but the number is likely to pick up.

Most students using J.E. and L.E. Mabee Library are leaving between 11:30 p.m. and midnight although the extended hours are from 7 a.m. to 2 a.m. Monday through Thursday under a pilot program.

The extended hours are being made possible through the Legacy Fund the Student Government Association is managing.

The decision to extend hours came from the students themselves, said Dell Davis, director of public services for the library.

“We welcome students to come to the library to hang out and study,” Davis said.

During the library’s extended hours, services such as printing, photocopying, scanning, and reserving rooms are available until the last 15 minutes before closing time. However, once it is 10 p.m., students who choose to stay in the library must present a valid student ID.

With students still adjusting to the first few weeks of school, it’s likely many are unaware of the new extended hours. According to records kept from past school years, more students visit the library during October when the patronage reaches about 36,000.

In the article, “Students and Libraries May Benefit from Late Night Hours” by Richard Hayman, research shows the most popular time to visit a library as an undergraduate is between 11 p.m. and 2 a.m.

“Sixty-three percent preferred using the library late at night vs. standard daytime operating hours,” Hayman wrote.

If the number of students visiting the library during the extended hours pilot program do not increase by the end of the semester, the extended hours may no longer be available. Should the program have to be put to an end, the opportunity may not arise again.

Freshman Natalie Medrano said she’s glad to know the library has extended hours.

“I am in favor of the extended hours,” Medrano said. “Students always need to be able to accomplish their assignments.”