Library Sees Changes, More to Come


by Maggie Grenko

Dunn Library has been the subject of some much-needed changes already, but the future may have even more to hold for the campus’ main research facility.

Librarian and College Archivist Cyd Dyer often asks: What would (Simpson’s) dream library look like? Dunn Library has undergone a facelift this semester, but the future holds a potential remodel entirely.

Cyd Dyer, college librarian and archivist asks:

“Right now we’re in the dreaming stage, envisioning ways to improve the library for the future,” Dyer said. “Where will we be two years from now? Four? Six?”

A few renovations can already be seen at the library this semester. The solar panels that had fallen down during a thunderstorm last year have been replaced on the second floor, and another study room, named after retired professor of history Joe Walt, has been added in the back of first floor. All four study rooms are now complete with white boards.

Some High Schools, in Iowa, have recently purchased Nooks, electronic book-readers, to replace some of the paperback books in their library.

“That is definitely something to think about,” Dyer said.

Dyer would like to see more laptops available to check out as well as a web version of Nook available for download for Simpson students. Currently, the library only has three laptops available for check out.

“We just don’t know where technology is going to go,” Dyer said. “We need to decide as a community what is most helpful to students.”

Sound-proofing Dunn Library seems to be at the top of the priority list. renovation

Sophomore Zachariah Huebener, who is a work-study employee in the library, thinks that carpeting the entire library will minimize the amount of noise.

“I have heard talk about getting carpet down in the library to cut down on noise and I think that would be good,” Huebener said.

Second floor classrooms are also being considered to undergo changes. Since Hawley Academic Resource Center is on the third floor and it is so small, there are ideas of moving Hawley to the second floor to expand and use the current classroom space.

“We are also thinking of taking the last classroom and making it into a relaxing study lounge for students,” Dyer said. “In order to do so, we would need more classrooms to replace the ones we would be taking.”

With the new campus center on its way, there are still questions of what that building will entail. The main issue being classrooms.

“We don’t know if the BSC (Brenton Student Center) is going to include classrooms,” Dyer said.

Dunn Library is also looking into working together with Smith Chapel to get a mini-coffee shop going during finals week.

Library Circulation Supervisor Karin Hooper thinks that this is a great idea.

“The library is centrally located,” Hooper said. “Who can’t benefit from that?”

Dyer stated that outside consultants are expected to visit Dunn next spring and will help fill in the gaps of what the library is missing.

“Right now we’re taking small steps,” Dyer said. “We’ll just have to plan from there.”