Whether visiting to check out a book or pulling an all-nighter, VCU’s Cabell Library has its doors open to students 24 hours a day from Sunday morning to Friday night until May 13 during its Library Lite All Nite program.
“In the past week I’ve pulled an all-nighter twice,” said Elise Dransfield, a sophomore studying creative advertising.
“I am one of those people who will stay and study all night long,” she said. “I can’t get up early so I’ll sleep in, get up and go to my classes, and then I can just go there and stay as long as I need to.”
“I like that (the library) is open because whenever I pull an all-nighter at my house I just want to get to bed,” she added.
Dransfield’s studies have often kept her at the library until closing, which, during the rest of the academic year is 2 a.m. “I have to stay up until I feel confident that I’m ready for my test or done with whatever I need to be done with,” she said.
“Having Starbucks open is nice too,” she added. Besides 7-11, there are few places to buy food that are open 24 hours a day.
Ireti Adesanya, a junior studying broadcast journalism, used the library’s extended hours more as a freshman than she does now. But even as an upperclassman, Adesanya said, “I go there when I can’t focus.”
“I’m more awake at night,” said Adesanya, who estimates she has stayed up all night studying about 10 times this academic year.
It is also helpful for groups working on projects not to need to leave by 2 a.m., she said.
Chris Rose, a creative advertising junior, also finds the library useful for group project work.
“A lot of teachers ask for group projects,” he said. “The only time I have to meet with my groups is late at night. If they close the library at 12 and I get out of class at 10, that only gives me a couple hours with my group.”
The library also provides a “safe haven” for students to meet.
“You can go there and you feel safe,” Rose said. “You don’t have to worry about meeting
Rose also said the library’s late-night policy helps him to balance full-time work and a busy life during the day.
“A lot of the time the only time I have to use the library is late at night,” he said. “You’ll never see me there during the daytime. I have deadlines to meet so I need to be in the library sometimes until three or four in the morning.”
VCU should do more to assist working students, however, according to Rose.
“Unfortunately VCU does not cater well to students who work in the day because they don’t offer many night classes,” he said. “I have to go to work early in the morning, leave work to go to class and then leave class to go back to work.”
Rose is aware that there are many students in his situation. His advisor worked with at least 20 students last semester who were facing problems signing up for classes due to work during the day, he said.
“That is something that VCU needs to work more toward,” he said.
The library’s Lite All Nite program, according to Rose, is a step in the right direction.