By Katie Vorderstrasse
“Shhhh” is often heard. Shrieking giggles fill the room. Bursts of laughter erupt. Class groups discuss projects. Arguments emerge. Cell phone calls progress. Skype calls take place. Gossip takes over. Constant noise overwhelms the library.
Students become frustrated. Instructors overwhelm students. Assigning thousands of words to read each week. Words often become a blur. The cruel casts of instructors assign multiple papers, presentations and projects. Deadlines are given that seem impossible.
Obtaining good grades requires hours of studying. We go to the library in the evenings with the main goal to study. The days are full with classes, activities and jobs. Some go to escape from their noisy roommates. Some even go to escape from their friends. We feel disciplined to do our work in a library. Books surround us, bringing a sense of intelligence, as we escape from the television, music and conversations.
However, when we get to the library we often get carried away with all that’s going on around campus. We gossip with friends about the latest party and sporting event. Coaches force their athletes to go to the library. This is referred to as a study hall. However, some students abuse these times. They meet up with fellow teammates. They procrastinate by talking and using Facebook. We often get so carried away in the rush of people that we forget why we are even there. When you first walk in big windows allow light to shine in from the sun. Long tables are set up. A few sofas are available. Distractions are unending. The entrance door open. Computers print school assignments. Annoying clicks emit from the computer when others check out a movie or CD. Multiple conversations fill the room.
The only truly quiet areas to study are scary. This is why barely anyone uses them. One area is the basement. Concrete floors make it cold. Dim lights hurt your eyes. Overbearing smells take over. The other option is one of the small carrels upstairs. More light is provided. Only books surround you. Claustrophobia takes control. The only access to these areas is through a small staircase making it almost impossible to get there.
During finals week the library is the most popular place on campus. This is why we need a library with designated areas for every student’s needs. Soundproof rooms could be assigned for group projects, providing huge white boards and a table. A coffee shop could be used for gossiping, providing students with coffee, tea, and hot chocolate for late night studying. There could be a special room designed for music and DVD’s with shelves full for students. Comfy chairs would be provided.
A special area could be designed for quiet needs, including peaceful sanctuaries for reading and writing. Flowers could be spread randomly throughout the building. Huge windows would be everywhere. Over sized chairs would be spread through the library with outlets reachable in any area. Headphones would be available upon request. Multiple printers would be spread throughout the building. Numerous tables would be used to spread out class work.
Workers at the library should be responsible for monitoring noise. If students get too loud, kick them out. Cursing, screaming or fighting should be banned. Special times can be designated quieter times. The prime time students study is between 6-9 p.m.
As students we have a job. That job is to get good grades. With good grades we will graduate. This will bring a better career path. We can’t fulfill our job if we go to the library to socialize. We must stick to our purpose and study. If this happens as a school we will be successful.
Katie Vorderstrasse is a freshman majoring in communication. You may e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org.