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As they approach the close of their term, Student Government leaders have met a central campaign promise to the campus community.
For the past year, Student Government President Thor Lund and Vice President Wills Brown, along with SG staff, have been meeting with various campus and extra-campus stakeholders in an effort to obtain funding for 24-hour service at central branch of the University of Texas Libraries, the Perry-Castañeda Library (PCL).
As a result of those efforts, the leaders have secured permanent funding for the 24-hour, 5-day per week service at PCL through a generous increase in direct funding from UT Athletics.
Lund and Brown worked vigorously over the first half of their term — including the summer break — to acquire funding for one-year pilot of the expanded service, and in closing out their tenure, are able to make permanent the increased availability of library resources, addressing a popular appeal from the student community at The University of Texas at Austin.
“The industry and perseverance of Thor and Wills is a model of the leadership qualities we know the university instills in its students,” says Libraries director Dr. Fred Heath. “In fulfilling a desire of the community to have greater access to the library, Student Government is playing a role in increasing their fellow students’ performance.”
The PCL will now open for 24-hour service in each of the fall and spring semesters to coincide with the mid-term exam period and continue extended hours through the end of final exams.
The expanded service begins with the Libraries’ normal Sunday noon opening and ends with the regular 11 p.m. Friday closure, with Saturday hours remaining at 9 a.m. – 11 p.m.
Student government representatives were initially able to obtain commitments from the Office of the Provost, the Vice President for Student Affairs and the Texas Exes to provide 24-hour service at the PCL for the first year pilot.
“This is such a big win for all students, and we're happy to leave behind such a lasting legacy and show that Student Government can make such a profound impact on campus,” says Lund. “However, this isn't about us. It's about each and every student that a safe, secure and centrally-located 24-hour study space on campus will benefit for years to come.”
“We're very excited to say that the 24-hour PCL is here to stay,” adds Brown. “This could never have been possible without the help of the University of Texas Libraries staff and UT Athletics.”
Through an agreement with UT Athletics, additional monies from an extant funding arrangement will provide the resources necessary to make the service permanent.