Applying for study time

The Wilfrid Laurier University Students’ Union (WLUSU) and Graduate Students’ Association (GSA) have put forward a proposal to university administration for 24-hour library access.

The proposal was made in light of the Strategic Investment Fund (SIF), which asked members of the university community to submit ideas for funding in order to improve university operations.

Kyle Walker, WLUSU president, explained the $51,021 cost of the project would support “having students work the [circulation] desk longer on days when it’s only open until 8 or 9 [p.m.] and an overnight security cop.”

The proposal compared the facility’s size and resources to other study spaces on campus.
Using the example of the dining hall, Walker explained, “Students will resort [to] there and it’s not the best study space because there’s no computer outlets, the wireless signal is poor, some nights the lights just go off.”

“We need a space the students can go to and rely on and know it’s meant for studying,” he concluded.

Christinia Landry, president of the GSA, echoed the importance of having reliable study space cam pus, particularly for graduate students. “The stereotypical graduate student as being a night-hawk is a stereotype for a reason,” she said. “A lot of students do thesis writing and that sort of thing during the night.”

The resources available at the library were also considered as part of the proposal. In addition to the more obvious resources such as books, computers and group study rooms, Landry pointed out other items that could be used more.

“I know that the library has PhD study rooms and lockable graduate carrels and it would be nice for our membership to be able to access those whenever it is that they are struck with inspiration,” she said.

While the argument does stand that the current system of having the library open for 24 hours during the exam periods has only had moderate success, Landry and Walker noted that the period is not as busy for students as the 12 weeks of classes.

“That’s the only period during the year when students don’t really, or aren’t really inclined to stay up all night because they have no commitments during the day,” Walker explained.
Having the library accessible 24 hours a day, according to Landry, also ties in with the university’s mission to enhance student experience.

“More research-intensive universities do tend to have 24-hour access to the library,” she said. “I know that the university wants to increase the graduate student enrolment so this could be a way … with respect to interesting students to coming to Laurier with the [university’s] commitments to academics.”

The deadline for submissions for the SIF was Sept. 14. At the time of print, Ryan Simon, director of budgets and the business office, said that approximately 40 proposals had been received.

Successful proposals, now under review by the university president and vice-presidents, are projected to be announced in October.

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