Petition to restore Gelman Library’s 24/7 availability gets more than 1,500 signatures

Media Credit: Gelman Library will continue to be open 24 hours seven days a week, starting this month. Hatchet File Photo

Gelman Library will no longer be open to students 24 hours seven days a week, starting this month. Hatchet File Photo

Gelman Library will no longer be open to students 24 hours seven days a week, starting this month. Hatchet File Photo
Gelman Library will no longer be open to students 24 hours seven days a week, starting this month. Hatchet File Photo

An online petition to restore Gelman Library’s hours to 24 hours a day, seven days a week has received more than 1,500 signatures less than a day after going online.

The change.org petition was created in response to a University posting in the library announcing the reduced hours for the fall semester. The petition was launched Monday night after a GW alumnus posted a picture of the flyer in the library to “Overheard at GW,” a popular Facebook group where students post pictures of events and other observations on campus.

From Aug. 31 until Dec. 6, the library will be open 24 hours a day Monday through Thursday, will close at 11 p.m. on Friday, will be open 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Saturday and reopen on Sunday at noon. A University spokeswoman did not immediately return requests for comment on why the hours had changed.

“Apart from faculty and course offerings, there is no single aspect of a university more important for the education and success of its students than a library,” the petition said. “In cutting Gelman Library’s 24/7 hours, the University has demonstrated their disregard for that success – the success of their own students.”

Many students who signed the petition wrote notes explaining why they backed changing Gelman’s hours back to 24/7, arguing that keeping the library open gives students who have jobs during the day a quiet place to study. Out of GW’s 14 peer institutions, New York University is the only college with a library open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Last year, Gelman Library’s budget increased for the first time in a decade, and GW plans to spend $35 million of its $1 billion fundraising campaign on libraries.

Students, faculty and administrators took to Twitter to discuss the change in hours.

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