MARLBORO COMMUNITY CELEBRATES GRAND OPENING OF $3 MILLION ARON LIBRARY WING
MARLBORO, VERMONT – Students, faculty,
staff, and friends of Marlboro College celebrated the long-anticipated
grand opening of the Aron Library Wing Sept. 3 with words
of thanks and excitement.
The new wing will mean double the space for student study, improved lighting, two new classrooms, a group study room, a new computer lab with three private rooms, and more shelf space, according to Library Director Mary White.
After renovations to the original section of the library, students will gain new access to a learning resource center, a new media lab, a special collections room to include the college’s Kipling collection and archives, and expanded service desk hours, White said.
“The current library has 64,000 volumes. Rice Library, built in 1965, was meant to hold 50,000 volumes. When both buildings (the renovation of the old and the new wing) are complete, we will be able to hold 100,000 volumes,” White said. “The lighting in there was so poor that we had to stand on a chair and hold a solar calculator to the ceiling in order to use it one winter night.”
At the grand opening ceremony, Dean of Faculty Jim Tober expressed his enthusiasm for the new library space and opportunities for learning.
“At Marlboro, the student-teacher dialogue has always been text-based – whether as print, illustration, or artifact, or increasingly, digital – and these texts, or at least access to them, are housed in our library,” he said. “Even as the functions of our library continue to grow, this addition allows us to spread out a bit and rededicate ourselves to the centrality of the library in the life of the college.”
White agreed, telling donors during a private dedication ceremony, “I believe that one can judge an academic institution by how it supports its library. One of the many reasons I enjoy working here is because this community considers the library to be its heart and soul.”
Funding totaling nearly $3 million for this project came from two major anonymous donors, with other miscellaneous gifts bringing the total Library Building Fund to almost $3 million.
The new library wing is named for Jerome and Elizabeth Aron. The couple has been friends of the college for years and Jerome has served as a Marlboro Trustee since 1988.
"Jerry and Elizabeth embody the highest ideals of liberal arts education. Marlboro gives expression to those ideals in a dynamic curriculum and learning model. This new library is a bridge connecting students with that model -- linking today's knowledge base with tomorrow's promise. It is a privilege to honor them, in this way," the donors said.