Sorry Rice Library…Try Again

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Last semester played host to many new things for the students here at the University of Southern Indiana.

From new fast food choices to high quality sushi, students enjoyed many exciting advancements brought to campus.

One of those new advancements included the new interactive program, BookIt!, which was created for students to reserve study rooms in the beloved Rice Library.

While many students, myself included, had formulated that this was a pretty good idea when it was first brought up. Instead of trying to claw our way to find an empty study room for ourselves and our friends to study together or for group projects, we could all just reserve a room and be done with the matter, right? Wrong.

The majority of the students who attend Rice Library regularly, were not aware of this new program that was put into effect in the first month of the fall semester. However, students became abruptly aware of the program and its underlying power over them rather quickly.

Students who were busy studying in a study room that they had found fair-and-square, were rudely interrupted by another student claiming  “I reserved this room, so you all need to get out.”

In all of my experiences, it is one of the most irritating things to, first, be interrupted while studying and, second, to be kicked out of the room to let someone else study since they apparently “reserved the room.”

What does that even mean?

Rice Library staff apparently “listened to our requests,” and produced a cutting-edge program to put someone else’s studying over another by giving them the power to force the pre-occupants out of a studying room.

The program, BookIt!, can be accessed and used by any student, giving them the ability to reserve any room right out from under somebody else.

Talk about serious shade thrown.

In my mind, there are two blaring issues with this praised program BookIt!.

How should the students who are already in the group study room know that the person who is trying to kick them out actually reserved the room?

I mean anybody could walk into a filled room and divert everyone out just because they claim to have reserved the room.

I have seen this type of deception happen many times to myself and other students.

This leads me to the second issue I see with BookIt!, which is what are the students who are kicked out of the study room supposed to do to carry on their studies?

Are they expected to try and find another empty study room and await another eviction, or scavenge to find an empty table to continue their group work but forced to keep quiet since it’s out in the open?

Now this program, BookIt!,  is not a total loss.

It provides a tool for students who need a study room but do not want to have to find one by chance. However, the staff of Rice Library should open their ears and listen again to these holes in their system to solve these problems to make their program an all-around success.

I suggest making BookIt! only available on designated floors in the library, but leaving the rest of the study rooms available for walk-in students.

This would keep study rooms available for students who are looking to find a room but may have forgotten to reserve one.

It would soon become public knowledge that certain floors are only for reserved group study rooms while the other floors are free for all or no reservation required.

The last adjustment I would make to BookIt!, would be requiring students to show verification of their reserving the study room or introduce a daily schedule on each of the study rooms to prove which and when study rooms are being reserved and who for.

This seems fair and a more organized approach than what exists currently.

Fellow Screagles, be wary when trying to approach a group study room in Rice Library.

If you don’t use the reservation program BookIt!, then you might face eviction from your studies, leaving you standing speechless outside the door you once were in.

Hopefully the beloved staff of the Rice Library are not deaf and have the ability to open their ears once more to these grievances to make their program more efficient and less cut-throat.

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