To keep up with students’ need to power their technology, the O’Shaughnessy-Frey library is adding more electrical outlets along the north and south walls of every floor except the main level.
Construction is under way and should be completed before the end of next week.
“There’s a dramatic need for more outlets,” said Dan Gjelten, director of the library. “We noticed it most in the last finals week during December.”
Senior Jamie Carpenter said she has had problems finding an outlet “during midterms and finals especially.”
“If I can’t find an outlet, I just work until the battery runs out,” Carpenter said.
Last October, 2,258 students visited the library each day. In November, 2,247 visited the library, while 1,584 visited in December. Winter break contributed to the decrease.
Freshman Chris Weitgenant said he uses his laptop 90 percent of the time when studying and he thinks the new outlets are a good idea.
“I use the library every day,” Weitgenant said. “When I can’t find an outlet I have to keep walking around until one opens up.”
Each desk along the walls on every floor will now have its own outlet. With a large student body, student laptop use has put a strain on the library’s ability to provide enough power.
“We’ve known for a couple of years that that was a problem,” Gjelten said. “Part of it has to do with the structure itself. “
Many of the desks face exterior walls, which creates an obstacle because the thick stone exterior makes drilling difficult. The library was built in 1960 and was later remodeled in 1990, and while a sufficient amount of outlets were installed in the new part of the building, none were added to the old.
“The Harry Potter room is still going to be a problem,” Gjelten said. “That’s a hard room because of the wood paneling and a lot of the tables are out in the middle of the floor there, so it’s not impossible to drag it out there, but it would be really expensive.”
Tom Graves can be reached firstname.lastname@example.org.