San Diego Tribune Union – “Students forced open the doors of a shuttered University of California San Diego library Monday and rushed inside, vowing to stay around the clock until the end of final exams Friday. University police, who were on hand when students arrived at the library before 7 a.m., were pulled out of the area by administrators keen to avoid the kind of campus confrontations that have occurred recently, including the one at UC Davis last month when campus police sprayed nonviolent demonstrators with pepper spray. And administrators said they will not seek to punish anyone for the break-in.”
UC San Diego – “The estate of Alice Goldfarb Marquis, Ph.D., an accomplished writer, historian and alumna of the University of California, San Diego, has left $1.1 million to support the UC San Diego Libraries. The gift from the Alice G. Marquis Living Trust, which represents the largest bequest ever to the Libraries, will help to maintain and enhance collections and services of the UC San Diego Libraries, with a portion of the gift specifically designated to augment the existing H. Stuart Hughes UCSD Libraries Endowment for Modern European History. The Libraries will also direct some of the funding from the bequest to establish a new study area open 24 hours, five days a week, in Geisel Library.”
Inside Higher Ed – “The layoffs of eight library staff members — some with decades of experience and only a couple of years away from retirement — have faculty members at the University of San Diego up in arms. Critics call the administration’s actions an affront to the Roman Catholic teachings of the university. Administrators said a reorganization of the university’s Copley Library was necessary in an increasingly technological world, and eliminating some positions made way for the creation of new positions that ensure the library will stay on top of current, digital trends. Those who lost their jobs devoted many years to the university; four are over the age of 58 and two have worked at the library for more than 25 years. But their jobs include positions such as inventory control official, night supervisor and reserves manager — positions that the library doesn’t see as essential in a digital age. At the very least, faculty critics say, the library workers should have been retrained for new positions.”
Prospect Blog – “UCSD, facing an unprecedented budget shortfall, has announced that it will close four of the six major campus libraries. Administrators justified the necessity of the closure in a mass email sent out this morning:
“Earlier this year, we communicated to the campus community that significant and continuing budget cuts could lead to the closure of four of the Libraries’ facilities.
While we have not yet received our final budget allocation, we have been informed that the Libraries will need to absorb at least a $3 million cut for 2011/2012, which leaves us no choice but to move forward with these closures and consolidations.”
Voice of San Diego – “More than 30 years ago, the state hired Robert Rohlf, a consultant based in Minnesota, to evaluate the San Diego city and county library systems. He recommended consolidating the two departments into one at least in part because of budget pressures. It didn’t happen.
Now, the city’s library system remains one of the first targets when city leaders need big budget cuts. Last month, Mayor Jerry Sanders proposed hacking already reduced branch library hours to 18.5 a week to help plug next year’s deficit. City Council members have made clear those reductions won’t happen, but Sanders’ plan highlights the department’s continued withering.”