Preus Library needs later hours

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I am a night person. It is quite normal for me, as it is for most students I know, to toil with homework into the small hours of the morning. It’s when campus is the quietest, no activities can distract, and I can really focus and let the somewhat toxic mixture of procrastination and the fear of failure drive my best work. I typically settle in to complete my work in the Preus Library. Recently, however, an increase in credit load has subsequently led to a growth in assignments due each day, and therefore several nights a week to stay in the library, often until closing.

Luther needs to adjust its library hours to stay open later. As a few of you may be aware, Preus Library cut back its closing time this year. In the past, the Library has closed at 1:00 a.m., but this semester, the Library has been shutting down at 12:00 a.m. While this is still late at night for some, I would like to point out that several contemporary schools, including Iowa State University, St. Olaf College, and Cornell College, are open until 2:00 a.m., and The University of Iowa’s library is open 24 hours.

While I imagine we do not have the resources nor perhaps the demand for a 24 hour establishment I do believe that the Luther community as a whole would benefit from an extension in Library hours until 2:00 a.m. The library stands as one of the few places on campus that I can truly dive into my assignments, something that can be a challenge outside of a purely academic environment.

Let’s be honest, it can be rough trying to study in the dorm rooms. What with the distractions of technology, roommate life, and varying sleep schedules, working in the dorms can be a bit of a nightmare, and near impossible. While designated study spaces do exist, they can be already in use, crowded, or playing hosts to groups of individuals who are there for personal/ non-academic reasons. For those who struggle to concentrate in the presence of other people, this can be a real issue. Therefore, I do not think it is unrealistic for the library, a location built for the extension of knowledge, to remain open later to facilitate learning and study.

While my wish for the library to extend its hours may be a reflection of poor time management, which to some extent is valid, I am far from the only Luther student with this problem. Many of my peers have expressed dissatisfaction with the current system and have conveyed legitimate concerns with how these time constraints will impact them in the coming months. For example, will library hours be extended during finals week?

I have struggled to find any information on potential time changes. Additionally, students should probably not be staying up until 2:00 a.m. to finish homework, but it is commonplace on campus. In other words, Luther should extend the library hours in order to meet the needs of students.

I would like to see some campus discourse around this topic and hear from faculty and students alike on this issue. You know my opinion, now I’d like to hear yours. Write us an opinion piece on this or literally any other issue. Nothing will be altered unless campus services recognize that there is a desire for policy change, and that depends on the student body’s willingness to voice their thoughts.

Opinions expressed in columns and letters are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Chips or organizations with which the author(s) are associated.

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