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Music Library to Davis, HARC to MCFA—Some Background on the Project

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

I received a request for further information about the plan (recently approved by the Board of Trustees) to move the Music Library to the Davis Family Library, and then to house the History of Art and Architecture Department (HARC) in the space vacated by the Music Library. Although the CAMPUS carried this news, and MiddBlog picked up a LIS blog post on the project, these reports were pretty general. So it makes sense to provide a more detailed account of the project here.

The most important thing to know about this project is that it is aimed at strengthening two areas of the arts curriculum, and that it will unfold in multiple stages. In the first stage of the project, the music library collection will be relocated to Davis Library; that will happen some time this spring or early summer. Then, over the summer, the Music Library space will be renovated for use by HARC, and the department will move out of the Johnson Building, thereby freeing up space in Johnson for the Studio Art Program and Architectural Studies (though this program is part of HARC, it will remain in Johnson). HARC’s newly configured space in the MCFA will include an office suite, and at least one classroom. After the design for that space is complete, a program committee—including faculty from all the arts departments in MCFA—will undertake a review of the teaching spaces in the building to make sure that the classrooms adequately support the full arts curriculum. In a final stage of the project—discussed but not yet formally approved—we plan to renovate the Johnson Building, improving the studio spaces for Studio Art and Architectural Studies and upgrading the building systems.

There are several benefits to this project:

• Moving HARC to the MCFA will bring the department closer to the Art Museum, which is an important teaching resource for Art History, now one of the larger majors on campus. When the program for MCFA was first conceived, the College planned to include HARC in the building, but had to drop that part of the program due to budget constraints in 1988. Returning to that original plan now will be a clear gain for students and faculty.
• Relocating HARC to MCFA will also increase traffic in the building, which is off the beaten path for most students. The atmosphere in MCFA will not change overnight, but over time, I think we can realistically hope to see a significant uptick in the energy
• Creating more and better studio space in the Johnson Building for Studio Art is a major enhancement for that program, as the College has struggled in recent years to find adequate space for the art curriculum. The Architectural Studies Program will likewise benefit from the improved studio space.

One could say—as someone commenting on Middblog already has—that music students and people who just happen to like the Music Library are the losers in this proposition. This is true only in an absolute sense, for while the Music Library will certainly be missed, it is also true that the library’s collections and functions will be well supported in the Davis Family Library. When the Music Library was planned two decades ago, we did not have a cutting-edge, almost new library or one large enough to house music and dance materials. We do now, and so taking advantage of this resource to meet other pressing curricular needs—without constructing new facilities—is the smart thing to do.

Some have asked whether the administration surveyed students to see how they would feel if the Music Library disappeared. We did not, and the details offered above suggest why. We are moving forward to address significant curricular gaps that have been long in the making, and making full use of all our facilities to strengthen the overall profile of the arts at Middlebury without having to build costly new buildings and expand the College’s physical infrastructure.

Technology Helpdesk Relocation

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

Come Monday May 17 the LIS Technology Helpdesk will be relocating from LIB135 to LIB125.  Our actual move of Helpdesk functions will begin Friday May 14 at 3:00pm.  While the Helpdesk functions are being relocated to LIB125 the Helpdesk Student Consultants located at our Walk-In Helpdesk Center in LIB202 will be open for business to receive calls and process problems.  The staff during the relocation will be engaged in the move.  There should be minimal impact to our users during this move and we are confident that we will be back in full operation late Monday morning May 17.  Thank you in advance for your patience and understanding during this transition time.

James Beauchemin x2019
Technology Help and Support Manager

LIS Staff Relocation Plan, May 6th

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

In the interest of sharing this much anticipated plan with everyone as soon as possible, below please see the LIS Staff Relocation Plan that LIS Administration approved this afternoon.   It’s a working document, not a formal one, so please excuse any name abbreviations or spelling errors.  It shows where LIS staff will be located on three floors of the Davis Family Library.   In the coming days we will work with Facilities Services to turn this plan into a move schedule and we will share that schedule widely as soon as possible.

As you know, we are undertaking these moves as soon as possible because the College needs us to vacate the 2nd floor of Voter Hall so that it can be turned into student housing before students arrive for the fall semester.

Thanks to everyone who worked with their managers to help draft the plan, and thanks especially to those who were given few, if any options because our options were generally very limited.   Having said that however, I believe that many of the location changes will be improvements in the long run.  Thanks for your continued patience and forbearance.   Stay tuned….   and here it is….

LIS Staff Relocation Plan May 6th