Budget cuts end ‘All Night’ study space in library

Cullen Paradis, Staff Writer

Howe Library will end the All Night Study program in the face of budget cuts, leaving some students without a study space.

Administrators decided to close the program after 16 years in an attempt to balance a reduced budget, following years of declining use and difficulty finding people to staff the room.

“I use overnight study semi-frequently because when I’m studying late, I’ll fall asleep if I’m in my room,” sophomore Izzy duPont said. “It’s a really nice place to study. I’ve tried the Fireplace Lounge [in the Living/Learning Center], but it’s just not the same.”

Mara Saule, retiring dean of libraries, confirmed that the program is being cut at the end of this semester.

“The use of All Night Study hasn’t been great from the be- ginning in 2003, but in recent years, especially after 2 a.m., there’s no one in there,” Saule said. “So this year when we got the budget cuts we needed to look at stopping that service.”

According to data collected by the library, this year the average number of students who used All Night Study after 1 a.m. never went above six people, a decrease from an average of seven in previous years.

Additionally, the program costs $35,000 a year in wages, due to its running costs and the fact it’s staffed by a full-time position, Saule said.

In addition to low attendance and high costs, the pro- gram has had increased difficulty finding people to staff the desk for the night shift, said Paul Philbin, director of access, technology and multimedia services at the library.

“It’s never gone unstaffed, but sometimes we’ve been down to one person,” Philbin said.

Circulation Supervisor Angus Robertson also said the overnight positions were un- usually difficult to hire staff.

“The challenge is keeping students able to balance that responsibility of being up all night but still be successful at their schoolwork,” Robertson said. “Identifying candidates for that job who are going to work out in the long run and stick to the job presents some really interesting challenges.”

Departments across UVM have been handed budget cuts, and the ones handed to the library seem significant, Robert- son said.

First-year Madeline Mauer said the All Night Study space wasn’t advertised enough.

“Not many people know about the All Night Study thing,” she said. “I didn’t know about it until I didn’t need it anymore.”