UH plans all-night hours for Hamilton Library
By Beverly Creamer
Advertiser Education Writer
No matter that it's dark. No matter that a good portion of the rest of Hawai'i will be sound asleep.
New hours at Hamilton Library
And he won't be alone.
Beginning Monday, the Manoa graduate library will be open around the clock three days a week, for an additional 25 1/2 hours. That means when doors open at 7:30 a.m. Monday, they'll stay open until 11 p.m. Thursday before resuming the usual weekend schedule.
"I prefer somewhere isolated where I'm not distracted," said Yu, who has loaded his schedule with classes for his last semester and has three to four hours of homework per night, not to mention a large number of papers.
"They close kind of early now so I go to Kahala Mall," he said. "When they close I have no place to study."
Not anymore. With Hamilton set to be open 24 hours Mondays through Wednesdays through the end of the semester, Yu plans to pump the coffee at Starbucks next door at the Paradise Palms café which will also have extended hours until 1 a.m. and plunge into all-night sessions.
Manoa chancellor Peter Englert has made extending the library hours one of his priorities since arriving on campus a year and a half ago. It's part of his focus on enriching campus life for students, and building a sense of community around the increasingly beautiful and student-centered flagship campus.
His idea of improving campus life means everything from extracurricular activities to improved access to academic resources and support. Fourteen additional hours at Hamilton were added several months ago, but the new all-night hours are being added in response to student demand.
Library staffing, security and custodial adjustments have been made to ensure a safe, clean environment for library users, and security guards will be on overnight duty. And campus security patrol officers have been alerted to the potential for additional after-hours campus escort services.
Randy Hensley, library public services division head, said library hours at UH-Manoa are in the mid-range in comparison to peer institutions.
But for Louisiana State University exchange student Jeff Lakey, the all-night hours make less sense than extending the hours to midnight every day. Currently the library closes Friday at 7 p.m. and Saturday at 5 p.m., which Lakey calls "worse than the post office."
"It's not fair to some students," said the business major. "Some may have tests on days the library isn't open so that's not helping them out."
Even with the new all-night hours for half the week, 23-year-old communications major Leilani Blair isn't going to be able to take advantage of them. Her carpool to Waikele leaves at mid-afternoon most days.
Besides, Blair says, even though she studies all night quite often, she likes to do it at home.
But she recognizes that the extended hours are good for the campus and help UH keep pace with Mainland colleges, where such hours are a common amenity.
Meilin Chinn agrees.
As a doctorate candidate in philosophy, it's after midnight when Chinn, 32, thrives. She likes to nap late in the evening and then wake up and go to work.
"I'm a big fan of staying in the library late," Chinn said. "Philosophy is best done in the wee hours of the morning. I do my best work then. I think I catch my second wind."
Do any of these students ever catch up on the sleep they missed?
Yu, for one, sleeps most of the weekend.
Reach Beverly Creamer at email@example.com or 525-8013.