Albright College students, alumni, faculty and staff will celebrate the College Library’s 50th anniversary on April 8 with a re-enactment of the book move that marked the building’s opening.
Anniversary festivities will kick off at 2 p.m., with volunteers forming a bucket brigade at 3:15 p.m. to carry books from Alumni Memorial Hall (which housed the library before 1964) to the current Library across the campus walkway.
The event commemorates the Book Holiday of April 8, 1964, when Albright students were given the day off from class to help transfer and shelve books in the new Library. The original move took all day, with students working in two-hour shifts. The anniversary event will feature volunteers – including alumni who participated in the first event – ceremonially “moving” some older books.
“This is the exact day they did it in 1964. It was a unique event,” said Sid Dreese, College archivist.
Albright built the current Library to accommodate a growing student body, which required space for a larger collection. Now, as the College marks the Library’s golden anniversary, it stands on the precipice of a major renovation and expansion of the building to meet the needs of current and future students. Administrative offices, currently housed in the building, will be relocated to make way for a new Learning Commons, designed to bring together students, faculty, high-end technology resources, student support services, and more, in an inviting and comfortable state-of-the-art learning environment. Reflecting student expectations and needs, the Learning Commons will also include new quiet and group spaces, private study areas, tutoring rooms and food/beverage facilities.
The Library renovation is projected to cost $11 million and is a priority project of That Their Light May Shine: The Campaign for Albright College, the most ambitious fundraising initiative in the school’s history, which seeks to raise a total of $55 million. For more information: www.albright.edu/campaign.
From Albright College