Even higher learning at MRC

By Jonathan Chapman

Mount Royal College students have recently increased their access to brain power.

On Tues., Oct. 9, MRC celebrated the grand re-opening of their library, completing a renovation project that began last spring.

"Students have voted with their seats," declared Director of Library Services Ross Thrasher, pointing out that the renovated study areas have been packed since they opened. Thrasher also commended his staff– who sported "Renovation Survivour" buttons–for patience as library resources were removed and then returned to the area over a span less than six months.

Thrasher said the project team was successful in achieving "transparency" in the new design, referring to new glass fronting for the library and increased visibility of help desks and staff. The expanded study areas also feature cathedral-like vaulted ceilings that improve lighting and airflow.

"It’s obviously a welcoming place for students to work," said Margy MacMillan, an Instructional Librarian at MRC. One of her tasks is orienting students to the new resources and she believes that student reaction has been positive.

"There’s obviously a need," she continued, adding that the study and computer areas are frequently full to capacity.

The improvements to the library cost $1.7 million. A further $1 million was spent to expand the library’s print and electronic collections, a commitment to increased resources. The library Web site, also a major renovation site in past years, hosts many of those additions and attracts attention from both domestic and international campus surfers abroad.

The library renovation was part of MRC’s Main Street Project.

"The project’s goal is to create more inviting and convenient services for students," explained Wood. "The library is part of that concept."

The library Web site can be found at www.mtroyal.ab.ca/programs/academserv/lib.

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