Valley College library offers inadequate time for students to succeed.
by: Brittany Bagwell, Valley Life Editor
Valley College’s library is winning commercial real estate awards for being one of the biggest, best, and most notable construction projects completed in 2013. The Library and Academic Resource Center won the San Fernando Valley’s Business Journal’s 2014 Commercial Real Estate Award. If only students could use it more.
The Library and Academic Resource Center has no weekend hours, something students trying to balance life, work, and school desperately need.
Valley is one of three community colleges in the district without weekend hours. This is in stark contrast to the library at CSUN where, in addition to being open on the weekends, it is open from 7:45 am to 12 am Monday through Thursday. That’s over 16 hours on the four days most students are on campus.
“The library is not open in summer, not in winter.” said nursing major David Kelly “They don’t have the current edition of the philosophy 6 book my class is using.”
Students who cannot afford to buy a copy of a required textbook have the option to check one out on reserve; the time limit for each textbook on reserve is 2 hours. Often there is only one copy of a required book available on reserve. Each instructor that requires that textbook may be using it to teach multiple classes. “The library doesn’t provide the books on reserve,” said library technician Judy Rawl. “Teachers must provide a copy for their classes to use.”
Use of the study rooms in the library is something students need. Study rooms are free for the first two hours. If a group exceeds that time limit they must pay a $10 fee. “It would be helpful to have access to the library and study rooms on the weekends,” said liberal studies major Jesse Sandoval. “Public libraries are crowded, and the Burbank library only has one study room.”
The compounding pressures on low income and working students is disheartening. With resources disappearing, it is no mystery why Valley College students’ transfer rate has been in a steady decline for the past four years.
Award winning real estate buildings are great. A library to support students with a full schedule would be better.