By MALLORY BRUNING
Library staff will reduce their inventory of books to provide space for library renovations starting in January 2023. The initiative was announced the first week of September.
Evan Boyd, the Dean of the Calvin T. Ryan Library, explained why the library decided to exhaust the book count.
“The library has not removed books in the past,” Boyd said. “So there is a lot of material in our collection that is not of value for our current educational needs of the institution.”
Encyclopedias, manuals and other documents will be removed if damaged. Books will be replaced by more recent publications if they are more than 20 years old. Obsolete government documents will be deleted as there are digital versions online.
Boyd said the library will remove most of these records because “UNL’s library is the congressional-appointed repository for U.S. government records, while UNK has never been a total collector of them.” .
Certain educational documents used by teachers will be removed from the collection. Library staff work with faculty heads and individual departments to decide which books will stay or be donated. Faculty will fill in the “yes”, “no” or “I don’t care” categories in lists of book collections to decide whether the library should keep them.
The library’s curriculum and media collections will remain intact. This includes the collection of children’s literature and teaching materials to teach classes from preschool to 12th grade.
The Calvin T. Ryan Library team will donate unneeded books to Better World Books. The company will resell the books and donate part of the funds to the library.
According to the Better World Books website, it is a for-profit business that collects new and used books. For every book sold, the company donates it to someone in need.
Students and staff have mixed reactions.
“Some staff members were upset with the renovation which removed many library books and services,” said Emily Mayes, a student at the library. “And since they work in the library, they don’t really like the idea of that.”
In addition to losing books, the basement of the library will be unavailable during the work because books will be stored there. Library staff plan to compile a list of open study spaces for students, including locations and times available.
Joseph Anderjaska, the library’s access services associate, said these processes are intended to improve the campus during these changes.
“I hope that during and after the renovation process, students will not forget that teachers and library staff have to do a lot,” Anderjaska said. “Our goal through all of this has been to improve the library not only for the building space, but also for the benefit of the students.”