The beloved Barnard Library will be torn down this coming December as work on the new Teaching and Learning Center will commence during Winter 2015. This means that this finals season will perhaps be the last time Barnard students can stress out during their final exams in the library. Regardless, we are already emotional about losing barnlib, and Barnard Babe Courtney Couillard brings us a proper farewell to the library.
Oh, Barn Lib. I thought I would never want to study in you when I could just study in Butler across the street, but your humble charm has grown on me these past couple years. I’ve strolled through your stacks, forgetting whether or not N-Z was on the second of third floor, scribbling call numbers on a sticky note. While I know that Butler houses a much larger collection than your own, there is something about finding myself in the section of books about women and politics that took my breath away. I enjoyed finding past Barnard students’ notes in margins of your books, and I always knew that you would have a copy of the book I was searching for when it was checked out in the Columbia libraries. I am happy I ended up giving you a chance.
You offered me refuge after pacing through every floor of Butler during Reading Week, unable to find a seat. While you may not be the prettiest building, I can’t deny the feeling of triumph when I find a seat open in front of the windows, allowing me to procrastinate while watching people sit out on the lawns instead of finishing my paper. Even those tight cubicles on the third floor created that good ol’ Barnard community we know and love. Most importantly, not a single man dares to study in Barn Lib, so it’s pretty much just a girl party at all times on every floor.
Beyond just your resources of books and a spot to sit as I study, you have housed a handful of my own academic experiences at Barnard. One of my first classes at Barnard was held in Lehman. Your librarians helped guide me through my first daunting research paper on As You Like It in First Year English. I climbed all the way up your flights of stairs for meetings with my Political Science advisor. I’m going to miss all of this when next year I will somehow have to navigate LeFrak to find my advisors desk and continue to search in Butler for a place to sit. While you are undeniably Barnard’s ugliest building, you still somehow held your ground with the hot new thing—the Diana Center–across the way.
Barnard Library, I will miss you dearly when you leave us at the end of next semester. I feel bad for the incoming first-years who will never stress eat a muffin in one of your cubicles during finals, or chat with their mom on the phone while squatting in the stairwell. Nonetheless, I’m sure you will be replaced with yet another bigger and better building to add to Barnard’s resume.