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  • Sydney Umstead

Library extends hours for finals

By: Sydney Umstead, News Editor

As finals week approaches, the Andrew L. Bouwhuis Library adjusts its hours to aid students in their studying process. The library is open until 2 a.m. Sunday through Thursday.

Matthew Kochan, library access services coordinator, discussed how the library being open later shows how students are “all in it together.” He also noted that the slogan of finals week should be, “We got this.”

Kochan discussed how during the end of the semester, the library sees “more and more people” coming in. There have also been roughly “60 to 70 people here between the hours of 12 a.m. to 2 a.m.”

As students are preparing for their finals, Kochan has seen “table poaching” start to occur. He elaborated that as new students come in, those who have established tables in the library as being theirs are confused when they see others appear where they typically sit.

Kochan, however, pointed out that he’s “not taking sides” in the table poaching epidemic.

Over the 13 years of working at Canisius, Kochan has witnessed some of the strange happenings that begin to take place when the library is open past normal hours.

He cited one instance of a student bringing in a heater with them and another time when the library was open 24 hours and students had nestled themselves by the bottom level of the library to go to sleep.

There are also times when students leave their stuff at a table during the entire day, which Kochan called “their home base.” Community members who were in the library on Dec. 6 may have also seen student Natalie Faas bring in two pizzas for the studying students.

These pizzas were gifted from Dr. Cochrane following the conclusion of his Living Writers class. According to Kochan, Faas set down the pizzas and proclaimed, “Everyone have some pizza!”

As the fall semester comes to a close, Kochan addressed how there begins to be “people bundled up” as they study late for finals. There have also been “duffle bags of food” brought in to commemorate the all-day study sessions.

Some majors that have utilized the later hours include business, accounting, biology and “a lot of the sports teams.” Kochan joked, saying, “Weird stuff to me, but I’ll walk by and try to guess what it is,” after seeing the library whiteboards lined with study material.

As finals bear some weight on the student body, Kochan addressed how he sees a sense of community emerge from friends comforting each other after taking their finals.

While the library used to routinely be open 24/7, this changed following returning to campus after COVID-related shutdowns. Kochan noted how the library doesn’t have the same staff levels that it had seen pre-COVID.

As the extra hours aid the students, Kochan emphasized that the library is “always trying to give students what they want, if we can afford it and if we can staff it.” He addressed how he would love to go back to being 24 hours but, there isn’t the “staffing that [the library] had pre-COVID.”

To extend hours for finals week, graduate assistants have taken on late-night shifts. When deciding to remain open late, Kochan discussed how the library had received a budget to hire graduate assistants. From there, the library has money in that budget “so that they can work extended hours.”

Kochan gushed that his “hat goes off to them.” He also dubbed them the “superstars” of the late-night to early-morning library shifts.

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