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Bryan Information Commons to open soon

By Barbara Burd, Director of Library Services

Excitement is mounting in the library as the construction of the Bryan Information Commons is coming to conclusion. What will students think? Did we get it right? Is this the space that students said they need? Will they like the funky furniture? Will they love the technology? Library staff is asking these questions and more on a daily basis as we prepare to open the doors to the Bryan Information Commons.

In preparation for the opening, the library staff has been busy “tagging” the collection with RFID security tags. This change in the security system will allow individuals to check out books and other materials at self-check workstations located throughout the library as well as at the circulation desk in the Information Commons. New security gates will be installed in the Kimbel Library and in the Commons.

Having had a sneak peek at the Bryan Information Commons, I was impressed by the natural light and the wonderful views of the campus through the expansive windows. Students will be able to relax and reflect in the comfortable couches and chairs provided in these areas. In addition to soft seating, the information commons will feature individual and group work areas, study rooms, presentation areas, a library instruction classroom, a reference/consultation office, and a vending machine area with cafe tables and booths. The Information Commons will support state-of-the-art technology in a wifi environment. Mediascape workstations will provide spaces for collaborative projects. Both Mac and Windows desktop computers will be available at individual workstations. All study rooms are equipped with interactive whiteboards to facilitate student learning.

Assistance will be provided at the information help desk, named in memory of Peter C. Bolton, whose parents gave a generous gift to the library to ensure that all students receive the same assistance provided to their son while he was a student at Coastal Carolina University. Research librarians and staff will also be available in the reference/consultation office on the second floor to assist students with in-depth research questions.

The Bryan Information Commons is scheduled to open for the beginning of the fall semester. Hours of operation will be 24/6, opening at 11 a.m. on Sundays and remaining open until 9 p.m. on Fridays. The Commons will be open 1 to 6 p.m. on Saturdays.

In addition to the opening of the Bryan Information Commons, the Horry County Archives Center will be established in the current Kimbel Library. The Center will house the library’s Waccamaw Collection and will serve as a resource center for the study of the history of this area.

To celebrate the Information Commons and the archives center, the library is planning special events throughout the fall semester. The grand opening of the Bryan Information Commons is scheduled for Aug. 20. Tours of the building and demonstrations on the use of technology will be offered throughout the day. The library is also sponsoring an exhibit, “Lincoln: The Constitution and the Civil War,” running from Oct. 10 through Nov. 30. Invited speakers will discuss the issues facing Lincoln as he used the Constitution to address the secession of the Southern states, slavery and wartime civil liberties. This exhibit is made possible through the American Library Association and the National Constitution Center.

This will be an exciting fall at the library. Please join us as we celebrate the Information Commons and the archives center.

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