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Welcome to Beeghly Library: Learning Commons Project

The Learning Commons Project

Documenting the Journey

January 14, 2022:  Progress on the learning commons is active and visible, both programmatically and physically. 

This is creating energy and excitement as we look forward to a dynamic and modern intellectual hub that supports contemporary learning and innovative pedagogy.  We are collaborating with campus partners to create a series of academic workshops to be held in Beeghly Library that will set students up for a successful semester.  Hosting these workshops in the current library begins to signal the evolving purpose of the facility post renovation to the campus community.  By the end of May, the building will be completely vacated with library services and physical collections temporarily re-homed to the lower and main levels of von Liebig Science Center.  

Exciting News!  We've loaded approximately 30 library carts for the inaugural trip to von Liebig Science Center!  

Tech Services Room with 30 Carts Full of Books

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And the Treasure Room is almost boxed up!

Boxes in Treasure Room

November 23, 2021:  The boxes have arrived! 

710 of them to be exact.  These acid-free boxes will be used to house items from the Archives and Special Collections as they are relocated for the renovation and protect them longer-term when they are permanently placed in their new home in the renovated Archives and Special Collection Suite.

Stack of Acid-Free Storage Boxes

 

September 21, 2021:  Transforming the Archives and Special Collections

The learning commons project includes a newly renovated Archives and Special Collections (ASC) Suite which will reunite valuable academic and historic materials and encourage scholarly use of the collection. The ASC offers fascinating opportunities for learners to engage with people through history, culture, and context, expanding humanities perspectives. It is replete with early primary sources reflecting our heritage, especially as related to Mennonites, Amish, Moravians, and the Church of the Brethren. The collection of rare books includes volumes from Martin Grove Brumbaugh, William Emmert Swigart, and Abraham Harley Cassel. Notable items include the Sauer Bible (1743), Benjamin Franklin’s Experiments and Observations on Electricity (1769), and Thomas Hobbes’s Leviathan (1651). Other rare and unique items include a first edition of Hemingway’s A Farewell to Arms; the Sowell Counterculture Collection including works of Abbie Hoffman and others; and an expansive pamphlet collection. The one-of-a-kind pamphlet collection contains publications from the 1720s to the 1890s, covering a broad range of topics that includes sermons, essays, poetry, letters, eulogies, children’s stories, business plans and other historic items.  The ASC project has two primary goals with long-term impact: to preserve valuable and rare humanities resources and to increase quality engagement with humanities materials by students, faculty, staff, and outside researchers. The Learning Commons is a perfect merger of the historic and contemporary aspects of a library, with the ASC being central to humanistic content and methods. This renovation will establish a physical presence that matches our programmatic commitment to the humanities by visibly and functionally supporting our institutional learning outcomes and humanities-driven curriculum, emphasizing and facilitating interdisciplinary collaboration, and creating an inviting, unique place that not only meets but exceeds the needs of learners and scholars in the 21st Century. Current use is limited as most items are not fully accessible due to physical and logistical constraints and are scattered throughout the building and subject to hazardous environmental factors. A special, highly visible ASC research and preservation suite will be created to showcase this important humanities asset. It is designed to encourage students and classes to explore items of local and national significance.